Do you know how David Yonggi Cho managed to ‘possess the land’ on Yoido Island and how he obtained the finances to build his ‘church’?
Cho explains how in his book ‘The Fourth Dimension (Volume 1)’ in the “way of prayer and faith.”
Before we read his story, it is important that we warn you that Cho is actually listening to a demon that is promoting the pagan Buddhist practices of the Soka Gokkai. Cho presents these pagan teachings (which he calls the laws of incubation) as Christian truth by twisting the bible, and by claiming he received these direct revelations from the Holy Spirit.
As a result of this teaching, it is interesting to read below how he assumes that the voice he is listening to is the Holy Spirit. Especially when it encourages him to practice manipulation and deceit so he can get what he wants from the city’s deputy mayor. When we compare this spirit to the Spirit of Truth (John 14:17), it is easy to see that Cho is not hearing from God. (See what the Aletheia Creed says about Christian truth.)
David Yonggi Cho writes,
“To what school do you belong? I know that many attend different schools and colleges, but what school do you belong to in your thinking life? Do you belong to Philip’s school, or do you belong to the School of Andrew?
When God spoke to my heart in 1969, and told me to build a church that would seat 10,000 people, I was frightened. Every moment I felt like Philip. I talked with the board of elders, and all of them thought like the disciples of Philip. They would tell me it was impossible.
When I talked with my 600 deacons, again I found every one of them thinking the same way. So I, too, joined the school of Philip, and I came to Jesus and told Him I could not build that church. But in my heart Christ commanded me, “I did not ask you to confer with your deacons and elders. I told you to go and build.”
“Lord”, I replied, “you know that I don’t have anything to build with. It will take so much more money than I have now.”
Then through the Holy Spirit Jesus spoke to my heart, “What do you have that you personally could give?”
In my heart I knew what He was asking, but I refused to recognize His request, saying, “Jesus, don’t ask me to do that. I married when I was thirty years old, and through the years I’ve saved my money so that I could build a beautiful home and give it to my wife, I can’t sell that house.”
But the Lord replied, “Give what you have.”
“Father, it’s just $20,000,” I cried. “That can’t build the church and apartment complex. They cost $5 million. The amount my house would bring could not possible be enough.”
But God said, “Sell your home and bring that money to me with faith.”
“Oh, God, this is terrible!” I responded. “How can I do that?”
“If you are ever to believe my Word,” the Lord admonished me, “you must first be willing to give of what you have and what you own.”
To a Korean wife the home is everything. It is the place she raises her children, it is the place she builds her life, it is a precious possession to her. So I was afraid to tell my wife, and I began to travail in prayer. I prayed that my wife would consent about the selling of our home.
That evening I bought gifts of flowers and scarves home to my wife. “Why are you bringing me these gifts?” she asked. “Are you worried that I don’t love you anymore?” But she was pleased, and she fixed the evening meal happily.
“Oh, praise God.” I responded. “I’m so happy that I’ve chosen you. If God ever wanted me to choose another girl again, I’d still pick you. You are more beautiful to me each day.” After a time, when I felt the moment to be right, I said, “Honey, I have a big problem.”
Concerned, she looked at me, insisting, “Tell me.”
“We are going to build this big church which will seat 10,000 people.” I told her, “It will cost five million dollars and as I was praying about this matter, the Holy Spirit spoke to my heart and said that if I was to get the money for the church, I would have to start from my own household. God wants us to submit five loaves of bread and two fishes… and those five loaves and two fishes are our house!”
My wife turned pale, and then looking straight into my eyes she said, “This home is mine, not yours. Don’t you dare touch this house. It belongs to me and to my children. You cannot give this house up.”
Her reaction was just as I had feared. Then I went to the Lord and prayed, “Lord, now I’ve done what I can. The rest is up to you. Send your Holy Spirit to prick her heart, so that she will surrender.”
That night as I prayed, I could see my wife constantly turning and tossing in her sleep. I knew then that the Holy Spirit was working, I said to the Lord, “Oh God, keep on nudging her.”
And sure enough, the Lord nudged her; for almost a week she could not sleep, and her eyes became bloodshot. Finally she came to me, “I cannot stand it any longer, I cannot refuse what the Holy Spirit wants. I’ll give up the house.” So she brought the title deed for the house, and together we took that tile deed and gave our home for the construction of the church. We were like Andrew, who though he had only five loaves and two fishes in his hand, had the faith that Jesus could take this small portion of food and feed an entire crowd. We, too, belonged to the school of Andrew.
One day, however, a problem about the land we planned to build on came up. The Korean government was developing a special piece of land called Yoido Island. This piece of property was going to be modeled after New York’s Manhattan Island. They were building government buildings on the land and would allow only one church there. Church bids came from all over Korea; the Presbyterian, Methodist, Baptist, Catholic, Buddhist and Confucists applied to the government. All were screened and passed through Congress for permission to build a church on this special land.
I also submitted an application. The man in charge looked at me and asked, “What denomination do you belong to?”
“The Assemblies of God”, I replied.
“You mean that church where they shout praises to God in such a loud and noisy way? And pray for the sick and speak in strange tongues?”
“That’s right,” I responded.
He shook his head, “You know this church is going to be right in front of the new Congress Hall. This church has got to be dignified, and your church is not. We can’t accept your application.”
I was happy in my heart, however, because this would excuse me from building the church. I returned to the Lord in prayer, “Lord, you heard that, didn’t you? We are not dignified enough to build there.”
You can bring every excuse you can think of to the Lord, but the Holy Spirit always has the answer. The Holy Spirit responded, saying, “When did I ask you to go and apply for a building permit?”
“Am I not supposed to?” I questioned.
“My child”, He answered, “you should not follow the path you are now walking. You must walk the other way, the way of prayer and faith.”
So I began to fast and pray. Then in my heart the wisdom of the Holy Spirit spoke, “Go and find who is in charge of developing that island.”
I went and soon found that the city’s vice mayor was in charge of developing the whole area. I began to ask about his personal home and life, and I found out that his mother was a member of a Presbyterian church. So I visited her, praying with her, and she became filled with the Holy Spirit. She then began to come to my church.
In Korea, the mother-in-law carries quite a bit of power and authority over the daughter-in-law. I told this woman to bring her daughter-in-law to church, telling her, “Your daughter-in-law has got to be saved.”
So she prayed and I prayed, and she brought her son’s wife to the church. After listening to the sermon she gave her heart to Christ and was filled with the Holy Spirit.
I then began to work though her, thinking to myself, “If I’ve got the wife, I know I can get to the husband.” So I instructed her, “You’ve got to bring your husband to church.”
“But he is so busy,” she replied.
“You don’t want him to go to hell, do you?” I sternly asked. “So bring him to church.”
When eventually she brought him I preached a powerful message. Though I was not looking directly at his face, I was really preaching for him; and miraculously he gave his heart to the Lord.
The next Sunday he walked into my office. “Pastor, you know I’m in charge of the development of Yoido Island. We are permitting one Korean church to come and build there. I wish we could bring our church there.”
I wanted to shout, but the Holy Spirit would not allow me to. Sometimes the Holy Spirit works in very mysterious ways; the Holy Spirit impressed my heart to say no, but I argued. “No. I’ve worked so hard for this.” While my heart was crying to say yes, I replied, “No, Mr. Vice Mayor. To bring this church to Yoido would take an enormous amount of money, and we would have to buy at least three or four acres of land. That would cost more than five million dollars. I think it’s impossible. To make matters worse, we are considered an undignified Pentecostal church, and they would not even accept my application.”
He smiled and said, “I think I have a way. You pray for one week and then I’ll come back. You can give me the answer then, because I can take care of it quickly.”
For one week I prayed, and the next week he returned to my office. “Pastor, if you make the decision to move the church there, I’ll make all the arrangements for you to have the choicest land. I’ll also do all the paper work, with my own office paying the expenses. I’ll send my man to Congress to get all the necessary agreements, and I’ll do all the paper work for that, too. I’ll do everything for you, and you will have the land. More than that, I’ll make all the arrangements for you to buy the land by credit from the city government.”
Then the Holy Spirit said in my heart, “SHOUT!”
“Mr. Vice Mayor”, I said, “I accept.”
God kept me from saying ‘yes’ for one week, and as a result we not only miraculously got the land, but were saved from doing all the paper work as well.
I then went and signed a contract with a construction company. Shortly afterwards they dug the foundation, and began the building of the church and apartment house complex. This Vice-Mayor is now one of the leading elders in my church.””
Source: David Yong-gi Cho, The School of Andrew, The Fourth Dimension (Vol 1), Published: US, Bridge-Logos Publishers, 1979. Pg 105-112.