BY THE HONORABLE MINISTER LOUIS FARRAKHAN | LAST UPDATED: SEP 26, 2012 – 6:39:44 PM
[Editor’s note: The following article contains edited excerpts from the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan’s address during the Westside Baptist Ministers Conference at Pleasant Grove Baptist Church in Chicago, Illinois on Saturday, April 28, 2012.]
In The Name of Allah, The Beneficent, The Merciful.
As a Muslim, we believe in all of the prophets, and the scriptures which they brought. We believe in Moses, who brought us the Torah; and the Israelite prophets that gave us what is called “The Old Testament.” We believe in Jesus who brought us the Injil, or “The Gospel”; and the Apostles who gave us what is called “The New Testament.” We believe in Prophet Muhammad ibn Abdullah through whom God revealed The Holy Qur’an.
God’s pattern is the same; it does not change. According to the Book of Malachi, Chapter 3, verse 6, God says: “I am God, and I change not…”; and in the Book of Ezekiel, Chapter 34, verses 11-13 He says: “I, even I, will go after that sheep that is lost. And I will bring that sheep again, and settle them on the mountains of Israel…” We can find no people more fitting of that description of “The Lost Sheep” than the Black man and woman of America in the Western Hemisphere, who were brought to America in the holds of ships. And in that process we were made into slaves from a free people: Our names were taken, our language was taken, our culture was taken, our religion and our God were taken; and we were deprived of the history—a long and regal history that we had before slavery.
That losing of name, language, culture, religion and history made us a people “without roots.” And as a tree without roots is dead, a people without a knowledge of their history is likewise “dead”: We were put into a state where we had eyes, but we couldn’t see; we had ears but we couldn’t hear; we had tongues but we couldn’t speak the language of free men and women! We needed a Jesus to open our blinded eyes. We needed a Jesus to un-stop our ears. We needed a Jesus to cleanse us from spiritual leprosy. We needed a man to raise us from a dead level, and raise us to a Living Perpendicular, and put us on The Square!
I am a student of the Most Honorable Elijah Muhammad, whom I believe God has raised up for us. I thank Allah for my Teacher and what he gave to us that really represents “The Master Grip” to raise Hiram from the dead!
Dear brothers and sisters: You are that “Hiram,” you are that “Master Architect” that was “hit in the head” and “brought on a westerly course and buried in a shallow grave.” You are that natural architect because your fathers built worlds! So in the scripture, when we ask the question of Jesus: “Where is this ‘Kingdom of God’?” and Jesus said The Kingdom is “within you”—then it is within you to build God’s Kingdom!
But in order to do that, you have to be resurrected from a “dead level,” meaning from spiritual death and spiritual ignorance, and be given The Light of God.
Dear pastors, you are The Key to the liberation of our people, and of humanity. But “pastors” have to be magnetized. In the Book of John, Chapter 12, verse 32, Jesus said: “If I be lifted up from the Earth, I will draw all men unto me.” His spirit, his anointing was a “magnet” that would draw men; and if we are Jesus’ true disciples, then we, too, should have “magnetic appeal.”
My desire is to share with you that which will strengthen you in preaching The Gospel, and strengthen you in the building of your churches. Because I want to see your churches grow! I want to see your churches successful.
How to magnetize ourselves to go in same direction
Consider the properties of a “magnet”: In order to become a “magnet,” all of the molecules in a piece of metal that are not going in the same direction have to be attracted by a magnet which will pull all of the molecules into one direction; then that which could not “magnetize” then becomes a magnet!
Dear pastors, we are not “in accord” (going in the same direction) not only with “each other,” but we are not in accord with our own selves. A pastor cannot be a “magnet” if he is in conflict with his Discipleship of Jesus: Where you’re focused on actively following in the footsteps of Jesus, and not just “passive spectators.” Jesus warned us, “Be ye not hearers of the Word, but be ye doers of the word,” because success in ministry is not in “preaching” The Word, but in living The Word!
Whether we are Christian, or Muslim, we cannot be careless about how we live our “Christianity” or our “Islam.” So before we begin addressing the “social” problems plaguing our communities, we have to address the real problem, which is “us.” When you look at the youth out there in the streets, you say: “They’ve gone crazy!” Yes… But some of us may have sent them “crazy” by the way we have responded to our “calling” (divine work). We must learn to come together and reason with The Gospel that we preach so that we will be in accord with what we preach—not living contrary to what we preach, thinking that we will “magnetize” people and draw them. If we are not willing to live The Gospel, then it is hypocrisy to preach it.
According to the Book of Matthew, Chapter 23, verses 27-28, Jesus said: “Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are like unto whited sepulchers, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men’s bones, and of all uncleanness. Even so ye also outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within ye are full of hypocrisy and iniquity.” “Whited sepulchers” is not talking about White skin, but the “whiteness” or “cleanliness” which is supposed to symbolize Christ. But if we have a church, a mosque or a synagogue that is a “whited sepulcher,” where in it are the bones of dead people who don’t function according to The Gospel, The Holy Qur’an, or The Torah… If we have synagogues, mosques and churches that are not effective in changing the reality that’s outside the door—and we’re not effective in changing our own hypocritical reality—then we as “ministers,” “imams” and “rabbis” need someone to minister unto us!
We’re always telling people what they should do, but who is going to tell us what we have not done? And call us to accountability to The Word of God that we preach? The people are not stupid! They are not “blind” in that sense! They won’t come to us; they will reject us if they see that we are not what we claim to be.
“Judgment,” the scripture teaches, will not start “outside.” Judgment is going to start in The House of God. And as a Christian: If all the prophecies that says Christ’s Return is imminent, then how will He find you, me and us upon His Return? Do you think He would be pleased with us? And don’t think He’s coming back to “teach”—He did that already! The scriptures teach that when He comes back, He has a “sword in His Hand,” and his garments are “dripping with blood,” and He’s at “the head of 10,000”!
Christ comes to judge. How will we be facing The Wrath of God when we have allowed a wicked world like this to influence the Houses of God, and influence the men and women of God? Don’t you think that we are not in a War with Satan! The Bible teaches no “liars,” no “fornicators,” no “adulterers,” no “effeminates” will be in The Kingdom—but they’re in the church, they’re in the mosque, and they’re in the synagogue! And we are afraid to say what Jesus said when it comes to correcting the immoral behavior of ourselves, our churches, our choir directors, and the people that give a lot money.
So if we, as pastors over the people, are victims of Satan’s Deception, then we will actually preach against The Book, and we allow the deviation! This is a problem. We’re demagnetized: Our “molecules” are going in all kinds of different directions…
‘Except you become as this little child’
Dear pastors, you are getting older and older, and you can’t hold on to your preaching forever. So if you really want to see The Kingdom built, you should be training young people to stand in your place when you can’t stand any longer. You shouldn’t be afraid of the young people who just graduated from a theological seminary. You should never, ever, as a man of God, be envious of young people who can preach The Gospel better than you.
But if you’re a wise elder, you will understand that these younger ones haven’t lived long enough to experience what you have experienced; and that’s why the scriptures teaches, “Old men for counsel, but young men for war.”
Jesus saw a child which he brought up in front of his Disciples, and said: “Except you become as this little child, you cannot see The Kingdom of God.” What was in the “little child” that Jesus saw which caused him to literally admonish his Disciples?
Whenever Jesus met a Disciple, he met a Disciple that was formed by a world: Peter was fishing when he met him; he said, “Well, Peter, you’re doing good; but if you come and follow me, I’ll make you a fisher of men.” All of our people are out here “swimming in the sea of sin”; and the first image of a sign for Christians was never the “cross,” it was a fish. And if you are not “fishing,” how could you say you represent Jesus? How could you say you represent Peter, who was given authority over the church in his absence?
You’re “over” The House, but are you fishing? How many new ones did you bring? If you haven’t made the members of the congregation fishermen, then the church is dying as we are also dying. I don’t care how good you “preach,” or how good you “whoop” and “holler”: We’re all going to die. So what will happen to the church after we are dead? What will happen to the mosque? What will happen to the synagogue? If we are not preparing people for the inevitable which will happen to each of us, then we have failed Christ.
Christ, before he left, said: “If I send you, and they receive you, then they’ve received me, and they receive Him Who sent me.” Our “work” is to prepare people to be “sent out”—it’s not inside the church! Now, you can “sing,” and that’s fine; you can shout, and that’s beautiful! You can have words of praise, that’s great! But The Work is not “singing,” not “shouting,” not “praising,” The Work is raising a people from a dead level, and making them fit for The Kingdom of God!
And if we, the leaders, are not fit to be in The Kingdom, how can you make a people any better than yourself? We are channels, we are vessels. But if the vessel is unclean, then God may not be able to use it effectively. Dear pastors, our people are more than what money can buy! “The problem” is not the people; the problem is the leadership, because we have become corrupted where we put an attachment of money to “preaching.”
As “The Agents of Salvation” for a people that are dying in the streets: If we make money our objective, then we have already corrupted our spirit and we have lessened our effectiveness.
I love our preachers, because I know you are the hope of our people, if you get right. But you’re not the hope of our people if you refuse to change and be better; then, as the scriptures teach, you will be “discarded.”
The heights we can ascend to with a change of heart
The scriptures teach us about “a man born blind.” Know that these parables are not just there for “no reason.” These parables are telling us something about a condition that was so grave; that once this condition was healed you would know that God was intervening in the affairs of that “blind man.”
That man that was “born blind”: He was sitting and begging; and he was outside the door of the synagogue—he wasn’t even in the synagogue! So when Jesus walked up, the Disciple asked him: “Master, who did sin? Did this man, or his parents, that he is born blind?” And Jesus said, “Neither he, nor his parents. He is born blind that The Works of God might be made manifest in him.” (Book of John, Chapter 9, verses 1-5).
When a man is “born” blind, he never saw the sun, he never saw the moon, and he never saw the stars. That “sun” represents Freedom: A man “born blind” never saw the light of a day where he was free. He never saw the “moon” which represents Equality. He never saw the “star” that represents Justice. He never saw himself, he never saw his brother, and he never saw his mother… He could hear “a voice,” but he never saw!
Our children are out there killing, raping, robbing, and are very destructive. But guess what? They’re the best generation we’ve ever produced. “How could you say that, Farrakhan, with the evil that they’re doing?” You know, Jesus had to descend into hell before he could ascend into heaven.
See, the “depth down” that you’ve gone will tell you “how high” you can go when you have a change of heart that can only come when we hearken unto The Voice of The Messiah.