13 Watch Our Tongues Lest We Offend God
Jingwei Yingkou City, Liaoning Province
It is stipulated in “Ten Administrative Decrees God’s Chosen People Must Keep”: “Do not judge God, do not talk about the things of God at will, do what man should do, say what man should say, do not overstep the scope, do not go beyond the boundary, watch your tongue, and guard your steps, lest you do things that offend God’s disposition.” Doctrinally we all know that God’s disposition does not tolerate man’s offense, but because we do not know God’s disposition and do not know God’s substance, and because we disobey and resist God by nature too seriously, when encountering things that are not in conformity with our notions, we talk loosely, and unconsciously say words of offending God’s disposition. For example, when the work arrangement concerning the seven-year trial was distributed, some people said, “It had been said that the day of God would come in the year 1999, but now it is said to come in seven years. Who knows how many years there will be in the future before it actually comes. God’s word is not accurate.” When some people heard that the leader XX, who had followed God for many years, was expelled, they said, “He has believed in God for so many years and has undergone so many sufferings, yet he was expelled without demur. God is too heartless. God has no love either.” Some leaders always performed their duties according to their own will and acted arbitrarily against the work arrangements. After being removed by God’s family, they said that in serving God, keeping God’s company was like living with a tiger. When some people saw that God’s family arranged for those who had no work to do to go back home, they said, “When the gospel work needed people in the beginning, God’s family spared no effort to fellowship with them and encourage them to leave home to perform their duties. Now the amount of the gospel work becomes less and they are of no use, so they are sent home. Isn’t this killing the donkey the moment it leaves the millstone?” When some people saw that others became leaders but they themselves didn’t, they said, “They know how to win the favor of and fawn on the right people, so they can become leaders. The person like me who does not know how to fawn and flatter is disliked by both God and man.” Some people, because God’s family arranged for them a duty not to their liking, said, “God’s family finds that I am good-natured and that it is easy to take advantage of me, so they always arrange for me the duties no one is willing to perform. If I were a tough one, they would surely not arrange this way. God’s family also bullies the weak and fears the strong.” Some people, because unpleasant things or disasters befell them, complained against God, “Why does God not keep me? I have worked so hard to expend for God. Why do such things still come upon me? God has no love, and he is not righteous either.” Some people, when preaching the gospel, in order to win more people and finish the task, said some words of blaspheming God along with those denominational people. Some people believed in God as if for others. When their anger flares up, they would recklessly say the word “I don’t believe anymore” without thinking. When some people heard that someone who pursued hard suddenly died by accident, they judged God without thinking, saying that God was not righteous. And so on. We have spoken too many such words, but when we say these words, we do not mind at all, thinking that we only say some words but have not done any thing that disobeys and resists God, frustrates God’s work, or offends God’s disposition. So, we do not feel afraid nor realize the gravity of the matter, nor do we confess and repent of our sins to God.
We can say such words, mainly because we have not realized the nature and consequence of speaking these words. God says: “Some people talk loosely and say whatever they want to say. Seeing that God is a normal and ordinary person now, they slander him in whatever way they like. Such people have no good fruit to reap. You resist God in this way, and act against God, openly resisting God, openly blaspheming God, openly slandering God, and openly judging and calumniating God. Such people are all the objects of severe punishment in the future. … Your words are out, which means that spilled water cannot be gathered up. Can God allow a person to casually resist him, casually judge him, and casually blaspheme him while ignoring it? Then God would have no dignity! … If you can blaspheme God once, you can judge God once, or you can slander God once, it is a permanent blot, which can never be removed. … No one fears God while believing in God. When your temper flares up and when your anger wells up, you say whatever you want to say. Then you will have to pay some price for the words you have said. This is not so small a matter!” “Since you have done things you should not do and said things you should not say, you will receive your deserved retribution. You should know that although you have no principles in speaking and doing things, God is highly principled in doing things and speaking. You receive your retribution, because you have offended God, not a human.” “Is God one you can fool at will? One you can judge casually? Or one you can talk about at will? This is an extraordinarily serious matter. If you say a wrong word, you are finished. It’s a matter that may cost you your life!” From every sentence of God’s word, we can see God’s righteous disposition that does not tolerate anyone’s offense and see that slandering, judging, and blaspheming God is a matter that may cost one his life and is a blot that will never be removed. Such people will absolutely have no good fruit to reap and will surely receive their deserved punishment and retribution, because God is the Creator, God has dignity, and he by no means allows a little creature to slander him or blaspheme him at will. In the Age of the Law, the Israelites uttered complaints against God whenever encountering difficulties in the wilderness, so they provoked God’s wrath, received God’s punishment, and died in the wilderness. In the Age of the Kingdom today, things like people receiving punishment and retribution for saying words of offending God have happened from time to time. A sister, because the communication deacon in her church died suddenly while sleeping at night, passed a judgment before another sister, saying, “God does not discipline the passive people. This sister was so burdened for the work of God’s family, but God took her away. I think God is unrighteous by doing so….” As she spoke, God’s discipline came upon her. Her mouth suddenly quivered, and she could not even utter a word in the end. Another sister who preached the gospel, because she had notions about this fellowship “How Should We Treat the Day of God,” said thoughtlessly, “It was already said at the end of the year 2003 that the gospel work would be concluded then, but now here comes such a saying. The above is really powerful; whatever he says is right….” After saying that, she tore the work arrangement. Not long after that, she got stomach cancer and died, receiving her deserved retribution. Outside God’s family, many people from various sects and denominations were also cursed and punished by God for slandering God and blaspheming God. These are the facts all of us have seen, and they are enough to show us God’s majestic and wrathful disposition that does not tolerate anyone’s offense. What is the nature of our talking loosely? When we casually judge that God’s word is not accurate, this is essentially denying the faithfulness of God, and it is actually saying that God is a God who cheats people. When we say that by asking people to perform their duties, God is making use of people to do service, and that God will kill the donkey the moment it leaves the millstone after people finish their duties, it is essentially saying that God employs diabolic means and is sinister and cunning. When we say that in serving God, keeping God’s company is like living with a tiger, it is essentially denying and blaspheming God’s substance of being beautiful and good, and is saying that God is unapproachable and is putting God on the par with the archfiends. When we say that those who can fawn are popular in God’s family or say that God’s family also bullies the weak and fears the strong, it is essentially denying God’s substance of righteousness and holiness, and is saying that God also likes evil and darkness and is unfair like man. When we loosely say “I don’t believe anymore,” it is essentially denying and rejecting God. By saying these words, we are purely judging God, slandering God, condemning God, and blaspheming God. It is an extraordinarily serious matter and has seriously offended God’s disposition. However, we think that we just say some words and there is nothing more, and some people even say that they are telling the “truth.” This is enough to show that we do not know God’s disposition, do not know our arrogant and conceited satanic nature, believe in God but do not treat God as God, and have no fear or reverence for God at all. If we do not repent and confess our sins immediately, the consequence will be dreadful to contemplate.
Then, how can we watch our tongues lest we offend God’s disposition?
Firstly, we must know God’s disposition and know God’s substance. God says: “If you do not know God’s disposition, you cannot possibly do for God what you should do. If you do not know God’s substance, you cannot possibly have fear and dread toward God, but only casual perfunctoriness and prevarication, and even more, irredeemable blasphemy. … If you do not know God’s disposition, then you will easily offend God’s disposition. If you offend God’s disposition, it means that you infuriate God Godself. In that case, the fruit you produce in the end will be offending the administrative decrees.” “I advise you to exert an effort to understand the contents of the administrative decrees and exert an effort to know God’s disposition. Otherwise, it is very hard for you all to keep your mouths shut, and you will speak with an unbridled tongue and talk in a high-sounding way. Unknowingly, you will offend God’s disposition, and unknowingly, you will fall into darkness, losing the presence of the Holy Spirit and losing the light.” In the man’s fellowship attached to Christ’s Talks with Church Leaders and Workers, it says: “The disposition God expresses in the Age of the Kingdom is God’s inherent disposition, which has given us an excellent opportunity to know God. We should pay attention to every word of God, even to what deep meanings are hidden between the lines of God’s word. We should all the more pay attention to God’s intention and God’s requirements for mankind, especially the significance and the substance of the contents of the kingdom’s constitution, commandments, and administrative decrees issued by God. These are all very important to knowing God’s inherent disposition. Knowing God’s disposition is the major part of knowing God. If we do not know God’s disposition, knowing God will be out of question. And God’s disposition is closely related to the administrative decrees. We must start with God’s administrative decrees and should first grasp, understand, and know about them. Only thus can we know God’s disposition and at the same time have the guarantee of not offending God’s disposition. Only this is keeping ourselves effectively.” From God’s words and the man’s fellowship, we see that if we want to watch our tongues lest we offend God’s disposition, we must know God’s disposition, know what kind of God he is, what God likes, what God hates, and what God curses and destroys, and know what kind of words we should say, what kind of words we should not say, by saying what words we are offending God and displeasing God. In this way, we will have principles and a sense of propriety in our speaking, and we will restrain ourselves from talking loosely and offending God. However, to know God’s disposition, we have to first pay attention to understanding the administrative decrees and then understand and know God’s disposition from God’s administrative decrees. God’s administrative decrees are closely related to God’s disposition; the administrative decrees are what God requires people to abide by, and no one is allowed to go against them. If people offend the administrative decrees, they infuriate God Godself. If we do not know God’s administrative decrees, we will act audaciously and presumptuously and talk loosely before God and will unconsciously offend God’s disposition and provoke God’s wrath. In addition, we should also know God’s disposition from God’s word. In God’s word, there are many words by which God judges people’s “casually passing judgments on and blaspheming God and practicing deception,” such as “How could you blaspheme my holy name with your viperine tongue and lips?” “Your viperous tongue will eventually destroy your flesh that commits destructions and abominations. … And why do you not take this opportunity to ‘sever’ your tongue that speaks unrighteous things?” “Do you think your tongue can deceive my Spirit? Do you think your tongue can escape my wrath? Do you think your tongue can judge the deeds of me Jehovah at will? Am I a God for man to judge? How could I allow a tiny maggot to blaspheme me like this?” In God’s word, there are many other such words, from which we can see God’s disposition that does not tolerate man’s offense. Man can casually judge God, cheat God, slander God, and blaspheme God; this is an extraordinarily serious matter and has seriously offended God’s disposition. It is not as we have imagined that we have only said a few unsuitable words. We can also know God’s disposition of not tolerating man’s offense from those around us who are chastened and disciplined by God, those who are purged and expelled, and the living examples of the people from various sects and denominations being punished by God for resisting God, and other aspects. Through knowing God’s disposition, we will have fear of God and thus be kept by God from sinning in tongue and offending God.
At the same time, we must pursue to know God’s substance of righteousness and faithfulness. God says: “God has faithful substance, so what he says is always trustworthy, and what he does, even more, is beyond fault and beyond doubt.” “God is essentially faithful; he does what he says and accomplishes what he does. He is faithful. Everything he does for man is sincere; he not only speaks….” “People do not know Christ’s substance, nor know God’s disposition, and even less can they truly worship God. They have only seen Christ’s being ordinary and normal outwardly, but do not know his substance. In this case, people will easily treat Christ as an ordinary person. They can treat him with disdain, can cheat him, can resist, disobey, and judge him, can regard themselves as infallible and not take his words seriously, can treat his flesh casually, and can form notions about and blaspheme him.” From God’s words, we see that if we do not want to offend God’s disposition, we have to pursue to know God’s substance. After we have gained a practical, accurate, and true knowledge of God’s substance, we will have fear and adoration for God, and we will not casually deny God, condemn God, complain against God, or blaspheme God and will not offend God’s disposition. For example, if we know God’s substance of being beautiful and good and his substance of love, we will realize that God is the expression of all beauty and good and is the expression of all love. He is grieved at people’s living in the darkness, and he sorrows over people’s heading for a decline and stepping onto a path of no return. We will realize that God saves every person to the utmost. Even if one has committed transgressions, but as long as he has truly repented and has gained a true transformation, God will cancel his past transgressions. He is full of tolerance, mercy, comprehension, and sympathy for corrupt people…. If we have realized these, we will not say such words as these: “God has no love for man” or “In serving God, keeping God’s company is like living with a tiger.” If we know God’s substance of faithfulness and know that every word he says or everything he does is sincere, we will not say that God’s word is not accurate. If we know God’s substance of righteousness and holiness, we will not say that God likes to be flattered and fawned on like man, bullies the weak and fears the strong like man, and is evil and ugly like man, and that God is unrighteous. If we know that God is almighty and he rules over everything and understand God’s kind intention in maneuvering all things to make us perfect, we will not casually deny God and reject God, and we will not say “I don’t believe anymore” or pour out a stream of complaints against God. If we have truly seen God’s wonder and wisdom, we will not accuse God of cheating us because the steps of his work and the ways of his work are not in conformity with our notions, but on the contrary, we will offer praises up to God because of his wise and wonderful work and will know from it our baseness and ugliness of expending for the day; thus we will correct our viewpoint of believing in God and have a correct goal to pursue. And so on. Therefore, we should pursue to know God’s substance. Only if we have a true knowledge of God’s substance will we have fear of God and watch our tongues. No matter what person, matter, or thing that is not in conformity with our notions comes upon us, we will not misunderstand or utter complaints against God, much less deny God and blaspheme God.
Secondly, if we want to watch our tongues lest we offend God’s disposition, we must also know our arrogant and conceited nature. After being corrupted by satan, we are full of satanic nature within and without, we do not have the slightest submission to or fear of God, we do not know what identity we have and what position we should stand in, and we always transcend our original position and always make demands of God, wanting God to do everything according to our will. When what God does is not in conformity with our notions or is of no benefit to our flesh, we can complain against God, judge God, and blaspheme God at any time. It can be said that since man has the arrogant root and has the arrogant substance, he will easily exalt himself and revere himself as supreme, he can disobey God, resist God, judge God, and blaspheme God, he can violate the work arrangements and act his own way, he can exalt himself and testify himself, and he will even regard himself as God for others to worship. This is enough to show that if our arrogant disposition is not transformed, we will easily offend God’s disposition. So, if we do not want to offend God’s disposition, we must spend effort in knowing our arrogant and conceited nature, accept the chastisement, judgment, pruning, and dealing of God’s word more, and forsake ourselves and deny ourselves more. No matter what thing we encounter, even if we cannot understand, or discern, or comprehend it, we need to watch our tongues lest we casually pass judgments or draw conclusions, and we should seek God with a fearful heart, take God’s word as the truth, and view things and do things according to God’s word. Only thus will we not talk loosely and offend God’s disposition.
Finally, let us look at God’s sincere admonishments to us: “For example, you put God in your heart all the time, do things according to his words, and seek his will in everything. Do not do things that disrespect and dishonor God, much less put God behind your mind to fill the future emptiness in your heart. If you do so, you will offend God’s disposition. Again, for example, you never speak words of blaspheming and complaining against God in all your life. Again, for example, in all your life you can do properly the things God commits to you and can obey all God’s words. In that case, you will have achieved not offending the administrative decrees.” From God’s words of admonition, we see God’s salvation to us and his compassion for us. God does not want us to say words of offending God’s disposition or do things of offending God’s disposition and thus fall into punishment. God hopes that we can all be kept by him because of knowing his disposition. So he has told us about his disposition, administrative decrees, and intention and has showed us the way to avoid offending God’s disposition. May we all understand God’s heart, care for God’s intention, spend more effort in the truth concerning knowing God and knowing ourselves, so that we will have fear of God because of knowing God and knowing God’s disposition, and so that we will not grieve God’s heart anymore by what we say and do because of knowing our corrupt nature and thus grasping ourselves and forsaking ourselves.