Taiwan’s SETN news network broadcasted a heartwarming feature about Chinese Christian Youth Association’s (Christian Gospel Mission (Taiwan)’s youth arm) celebration of Mother’s Day in 2009.
CGM’s children dressed up in cute animal costumes and performed for their mothers, followed by a personalized message of thanks to their own parents. CGM also organized outdoor activities for the families, such as a spring onion picking session in Yilan County. Through faith in God, families – the fundamental building blocks of society – are strengthened and unified. This then contributes to a strong and virtuous society.
Hear the testimonies of some of these families who are part of the Christian Gospel Mission, founded by Pastor Jung Myung Seok (turn on english subtitles on youtube):
[Headline News] Christian Gospel Mission President Jung Myung Seok endeavors to spread the real truth (Page 130, 131)
These days, Christianity in Korea is in need of a big paradigm shift like in the days of Copernicus in terms of the goals and direction the churches need to strive for, the Word given to them in the Bible and the responsibilities related to it, their sense for history, and the ability to discern between what is intrinsic and what is extrinsic. In this kind of situation, President Jung is attempting to present a new vision of Christianity that fits this time period.
Working during the day and studying at night, through the 30 years of his life of prayer, he received the Lord.
Normally people tend to consider what is concrete and visible as important, but intangible things can have tens or hundreds of times more importance than what is concrete. There are cases when something concrete and visible only gains meaning and displays its value when it gains an intangible quality, which exists invisibly. We have witnessed these cases over and over from biographies of saints and the philosophers of the world.
In order to actualize the gospel of Christianity on this earth, as a faithful worker or pastor, one does not need an academic degree, a title, or a fancy position.
Instead of these things, what one needs is the ability to take care of one’s flock of sheep better than anybody else, a more clear and precise understanding of the sheep’s pain, grief, and life joys and sorrows, time to spend with one’s sheep, and the ability to actualize an open heart of giving in one’s daily life. In terms of numbers, the size of christianity is grand to the point that you can see a cross–a sign of a church–every 10 blocks, but the doctrine of christianity is losing its light and is in a situation similar to the high priest Eli whom God left. At this time when people are wondering about truth, President Jung’s message that illuminates the truth in a new way is very convicting.
The ultimate reason religion exists is to lead human beings to a better way of living and teach people to embrace socially neglected classes of people so that all members of society can live happily. President Jung is a person who realized himself, in the process of learning about his life of faith, that religion should not be just a prodigious theory but a lifestyle, and he worked to actualize this realization in his daily life.
He said, “I met Jesus in person during my extreme life of prayer, and while serving and loving him like a lover, I received wisdom and the truth behind how to serve the Heavens and save lives. My one and only teacher is Jesus Christ, God, and the Holy Spirit. I came to understand the way to testify about the Trinity and realized the deep heart of the Heavens by loving and serving God and Jesus solely with the mentality and thoughts of God and Jesus.”
When he became 33 years old in January 1978, President Jung wrapped up his ascetic life in the mountains and came down. He compiled the original notes that he wrote down from the Word that he received from the Heavens and made 120 pages of charts for months. That year, at the end of May, he packed the notes and the charts, went to Seoul, and devoted his ministry to evangelizing youths.
“We can’t deny that history has been changing according to the times. If Christianity in Korea blindly obeys the doctrine, which has become a dogma to them, while focusing on mysticism and the simple and blind ritualism of asking for blessings, disregarding religious essential truth, it can easily approach the general public, but it will not be able to save thisgeneration, save human beings’ spirits, nor help people take action upon the Will of God. In order to understand the Bible correctly, we have to interpret the parables in the Bible correctly. Once the parables are interpreted correctly, the secrets of the Heavens and the purpose of God’s creation, and furthermore, the purpose of life can be understood. Christian churches view the Bible with an incorrect perception. They interpret the Bible in a singular and literal way, being bound to its doctrine without considering the pertaining time period or science. That’s why they cannot properly interpret the Bible, which was written with symbols and parables,” Jung said.
Through his sermons, he quenches the spiritual thirst of the young generation.
“God is not the one who is confined within the frame of religion. He is the god of religion, the god of science, the god of philosophy, the god of literacy, and the god of art. He is the god of everything. That is why the true truth has to make sense not only religiously but also scientifically and philosophically,” he explained.
Within the short time period of 25 years, the Christian Gospel Mission has grown rapidly into a ministry organization where 200,000 young people have gathered, and they have currently spread the gospel to 50 nations. The Mission said that the deciding factor of their achievements thus far is President Jung’s open view of religion and the world. Its success hinged on this point.
“Jesus took care of the sick and the poor. Healing the sick and looking after the poor was originally my job and mission. This work always has to be done with a thankful, grateful, and joyful heart. What I mean is that I did not suffer from doing it. It was my duty. Even in the future, I will keep taking care of the sick and those who are hurt. This is the mission I have during this time,” President Jung said.
He keeps the absolute commision, “While we are alive, we should make Heaven on earth” and takes it beyond the logic of salvation, which is, “Let’s believe God and go to Heaven after death.”
During his ascetic life, he went through so many situations and difficulties. During the process, he heard voices from the Heavens, received inspirations and word related to life, and realized many things personally, and he has been spreading the gospel and leaving it etched in history through his writings and drawings.
At a big evangelism rally, a publication party for The Book of Salvation, which President Jung wrote while he was abroad, was held at the Wolmyeongdong retreat center on May 29. The essence of salvation is broken down in the book for readers to understand easily. Some reviews stated that the book was so fun to read while touching on profound truths that once the readers started to read, they couldn’t let go of the book.
Even though he has never received professional art education, with the inspiration that he has received from the Heavens and the talent that he was born with, his art pieces transcend existing styles of art. You can see examples of his paintings displayed at the Gusang Art Gallery in Wolmyeongdong. He is also active in creating cultural exchanges as a chairman of the Global Peace and Cultural Union.
A painting that President Jung drew
This painting was drawn when Jung received an inspiration that brushed by his mind. The allegorical expressions relayed skillfully by the power of a brush stroke contains powerful messages. A snail is trying to climb up a cliff in the painting. He falls from the cliff but does not give up and climbs up again, and when he falls again, he climbs up again. After several attempts, he barely makes it to the peak and shouts, “Ah! I’ve finally made it.” However, just as he was about to take a rest, a stork walks up to him from behind and says, “Jackpot!” and goes to peck at him to eat him. This painting depicts the moment that determines the snail’s destiny.
The painter depicted the image of God’s face with clouds in the sky, and conveyed the feeling within God’s eyes, which show that he is searching with fiery eyes for the righteous to see if there is even one righteous man in the world. The background is drawn symbolically: from the right to the left, you can see Namdaemun*, the National Assembly of the Republic of Korea, chimneys of factories, the Trade Center, the 63 building, the Twin Towers, a sun village* where wealthy people live, and a moon village* and a milky way village* where poor people live, which are located on the very top of a mountain and the closest to the sky. Also, in front of Namdaemun*, there are people who are worshiping idols before steles. The idol worshiper who is dark and has a tail is a monkey, which conveys the idea that idol worshippers are inferior than animals. It is the eyes of God, the Divine Being, who is anxiously looking for the righteous in the world.
* In Korean, “sun village” is a name that is used to define an area where wealthy people live, and “moon village” and “milky way village” are names that are used to define an area where poor people live. Usually, moon and milky way villages are located high up on mountains since the price of those areas are cheap.
Introduced in ‘The Encyclopedia of Korean Poetry’, page 2717
‘Poet Jung Myung Seok is someone who has opened his eyes to the mysterious and profound wonders of the world created by the Creator. He discovered the law of creation, which states that nature is like human beings, and human beings are like God. In his poems, he ties together and connects a variety of difficult concepts [within this theme]. Then he gains the power to embrace both heaven and earth. He pursues an ideal world and at the same time, reveals [in his poem] his strong will to maintain his optimism and endure his difficult life.
Along with 3500 others, President Jung Myung Seok of Christian Gospel Mission is a believer of God who lives only for the sake of saving lives, and was recently recorded in a larger, revised edition of ‘The Encyclopedia of Korean Poetry,’ which represents 100 years of the history of poetry in Korea (1908 ~ 2010).
The book made the evaluation that Poet Jung views the essence of nature from the perspective of the Creator’s law of creation. He was also described as someone who binds the love of Heaven and Earth through his world of poetry.
Especially through the following appraisal [of Jung], it was acknowledged that he has penetrated both the world of God and the world of reality: ‘His sincere world of poetry expresses a love of praising Heaven and love of embracing the broken Earth. His literature creates hope and harmony for modern people whose lives lack a balance between reality and ideals.’
Poet Jung’s name was recorded on page 2717 of The Encyclopedia of Korean Poetry, published last March.
In this book, Jung was introduced as a poet and ten of his poems were introduced, such as ‘Narrow mind,’ ‘Life,’ ‘Our love,’ ‘Movement of the cloud,’ ‘Never-changing heart,’ ‘Hope,’ as well as others.
In his poem ‘Hope’, he sings of true happiness and hope that is gained only by someone who has overcome difficulties and has been trained in perseverance. He also reveals the deep truth of life and initiates deep thoughts within the reader.
Happiness goes/even in a blizzard /life winter// Happiness goes/in the thorny field/even in a bone-aching life/of hardship and difficulty//Happiness/doesn’t want to give herself to anyone/she takes the painful road/that creates struggle//Hope too/doesn’t want to live with anyone/it looks for and goes to one/who endures and perseveres//
Poet Jung Myeong-seok’s book, ‘Spiritual Poem’, became a best seller in 1989. He officially became a poet through ‘the Munyesajo (Literary Movements and Trends) Writers Association’ in 1995, and had the spotlight shone on him in the world of Korean poetry and literature.
Since then, Poet Jung has never slackened in his writing of poetry as he releases between three to five poems every month. He has now released around 3,000 poems. He has written around 30,000 proverbs of wisdom that he received through his life of faith and, among them, 6,000 proverbs were published in six books (Heaven’s Words, My Words).
The large, revised version of ‘The Encyclopedia of Korean Poetry’ shows 100 years of the history of Korean poetry at a glance. It includes all the poets [of the 100 years], from the early poets in the history of Korean poets (Choi Nam-seon, Lee Yuk-sa, Lee Sang-wha, Jung Ji-yong), to the most recent poets (Jung Hyun-jong, Cheon Yang-hee, Hwang Dong-gyu). [The book includes poetry from] poets who have deceased, poets who were lost due to being kidnapped to North Korea or defecting to North Korea, and poets who are still alive.