20. Only the Word of Almighty God Can Save Me

Shi Lianjun

Huai’an City, Jiangsu Province

I joined the Joseph Church in 1997. In 1999, I was appointed as the district leader of the church in Shuyang County. At that time, the kingdom gospel of Almighty God had spread to our county. I remember that one day in August of that year, someone in our church told me that a person who preached the gospel of the last days was in the home of a believer in Huji Township. After I heard it, I immediately called in four young brothers, and we impersonated the local village cadres and headed swiftly toward the house of that believer on our motorcycles. When we were about 200 meters away from his house, we switched off the engines, and walked up to the house quietly. Peeking through a crack in the door, I saw a stranger in the room reading something aloud from a book in his hands. Furious, I kicked the door open with violence. At the sight of my sudden action, the man hastily put the book into his pocket. I lunged forward, and tore his pocket and snatched the book from him, which I found was a copy of The Truth That One Must Be Equipped With. I leafed through a few pages and flung it onto the desk, and then I grabbed him by the coat front with my left hand, and poking his forehead with my right hand, I asked him with a ferocious tone, “Where did you get this book? Where do you come from?” As I said this, I gave him a violent push that sent him reeling against the door. Before he realized what had happened, I grabbed the book on the desk and tore it in half fiercely. Then I ripped several pages from it and tore them to pieces, and after balling them up, I threw it at his face while blaspheming loudly, “This is purely from the devil, Satan, from an evil spirit, a deceiver!” When he saw I had torn his book, he immediately fell on his knees to pick up the torn book and the balled-up pieces of paper with his hands, and said in tears, “O God, how hard is Your work on earth!” Seeing him so grieved, I was not moved at all, and instead I shouted with glaring eyes, “Get out quickly! If you come again, I’ll send you to the police station!” In this way, I drove him out.

Later, many people came to testify about Almighty God’s work of the last days to me; but for fear of being deceived, I always drove them out before they could speak. Sometimes when they came, I was at home, but I had locked the door from the outside, or I gave them a cold shoulder by pretending to have work to do somewhere. I cannot remember how many times I had done such things.

Although I was so malicious, disobedient, and resistant, Almighty God’s great love did not leave me. On the afternoon of February 13, 2002 (the second day of the Chinese New Year), it was raining outside. Two sisters, pushing their bicycles with the wheels covered with mud and gravel, trudged into my house. When I saw it was the same two persons who had visited my house a few days before, my anger rose. I hurried to push them outward and slammed the door before they were completely out. “Ow!” I heard a cry. The fingers of a sister were shut in the door. But I shouted abuse at her: “You deserve it! Cheek!” Then I went in to watch TV.

The rain continued, but two sisters still stood outside. About half an hour later, my wife noticed that there was blood-stained rainwater flowing down the threshold of our house into the yard. Looking through the crack in the door, she saw one sister was wrapping up her injured fingers with tissues, and there were many blood-stained tissues on the ground. So my wife opened the door and let them in without my permission. At that time, I sat on a chair, legs crossed and back toward them, watching TV, with a teacup in one hand and some sunflower seeds in the other. I cast a sidelong glance at them and saw their rain-drenched hair clinging to their foreheads, their clothes dripping water, and their cotton-padded shoes saturated with muddy water. But I did not speak to them nor ask them to sit down. However, they greeted me warmly. I just took my time sipping tea and eating sunflower seeds. One hour passed, and one episode of the serial was over. Only then did I take a look at them. I thought, “Are people like you qualified to talk about belief in God with me, a dignified district leader of the Joseph Church? I have read through the Bible over a hundred times and deliberated over every word and every sentence in it, and I know which chapter and verse any sentence is in. I have preached countless sermons, sustained countless people, and trained countless workers. I usually only ‘feed’ those senior leaders and knowledgeable preachers, and the junior workers of the house of Joseph can hardly have a chance to meet me.” At this thought, I said to them with arrogance, “Ask your ‘leader’ to come and discuss the Bible with me. I’ll surely defeat him!” Hearing my words, they smiled, and one of them said to me, “Brother, it is true we don’t know much about the Bible. Please give us some instruction.” At this, I said proudly, “Genesis 28:14 says that all peoples on earth will be blessed through Jacob and his offspring. Joseph was the eleventh son of Jacob, and in Genesis 49:25-26, Jacob blessed Joseph, saying, ‘Even by the God of your father, who shall help you; and by the Almighty, who shall bless you with blessings of heaven above, blessings of the deep that lies under, blessings of the breasts, and of the womb: The blessings of your father have prevailed above the blessings of my progenitors to the utmost bound of the everlasting hills: they shall be on the head of Joseph, and on the crown of the head of him that was separate from his brothers.’ You see, we, the house of Joseph, were blessed with so many blessings, and we are Jacob’s offspring, so all peoples on earth will be blessed through our Joseph Church. Besides, Genesis 37:9 says that Joseph saw in the dream that the sun, moon, and eleven stars bowed down to him. These verses are enough to prove that we people of the house of Joseph are the most blessed, and that all denominations will be ruled by our Joseph Church in the future, and the head of our Joseph Church will lead us to judge all peoples on earth! The Ephraimites of our Joseph Church will reign for hundreds of thousands of years!” After I finished these words, the sister smiled again and said, “Brother, since you know the Bible very well, you surely won’t forget what Psalms 78:67 says: ‘Moreover he refused the tabernacle of Joseph, and chose not the tribe of Ephraim.’ Doesn’t this verse plainly say that God had already rejected Joseph? In fact, the Scripture only records the work God did before. It’s true that Joseph was blessed, but have you ever thought that it was not God Himself but his father Jacob who blessed him? Jacob was only a created being in God’s hand. He could not represent God, nor could his blessing of Joseph fully represent God’s will. Brother, you should also know that Genesis 50:22-26 says that Joseph did not come out of Egypt in the end, but died in Egypt, a land cursed by God. Finally, it was through Moses that God brought the Israelites out of Egypt and into the good land of Canaan, the very land blessed by God. But Joseph did not enter into it, much less enjoy it. Brother, why do you still cling tightly to ‘Joseph’?” At her fellowship, I found nothing to answer, for what she said was fully scriptural and all true. However, I was unable to lay aside my vanity and face, and so I turned the pages of the yellowed Bible in my hand and said loudly, “Acts 4:12 says that salvation is found in no one else but Jesus, and Hebrews 1:3 says that Jesus is the exact representation of God’s being. These verses plainly say that Jesus is God, but why do you preach Almighty God today?” The other sister answered me calmly, “Brother, please look at Revelation 1:8, 4:8, 15:3… These verses say that the Lord God is the Almighty who is, and who was, and who is to come. From these prophecies, we can see that the entire work of managing mankind from the creation of the world to the conclusion of the age in the end is done by Almighty God Himself. Let’s also look at Genesis 17:1, 28:3, 35:11… These verses all say that God’s name is Almighty God, for His substance is almighty. Just now you mentioned that Jacob blessed Joseph; wasn’t it also done in the name of the Almighty? Isaiah 10:21 says, ‘The remnant shall return, even the remnant of Jacob, to the mighty God.’” And then she fellowshipped with me about the three stages of God’s work: The name “Jehovah” represents the Age of Law, the name “Jesus” represents the Age of Grace, and “Almighty God” represents the final Age of Kingdom. God takes different names in different ages, and each name has its meaning.

After hearing this, I asked another question: “In John 5:39 the Lord said: ‘and [the Scriptures] are they which testify of me.’ Why then have you forsaken the Bible today?” The sister answered me with a smile, “Brother, we believe in God to gain life, and not to keep obstinately to the Bible. Before and after the sentence you just mentioned, there are other words which you have ignored. Jesus said: ‘Search the scriptures; for in them you think you have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me. And you will not come to me, that you might have life.’ Just consider this: The Lord clearly said here that we human beings ‘think’ that in the Scriptures we have eternal life. It is true that the Scriptures are God’s testimony, but if we want to receive life, we must go to God, must follow God’s footsteps. Furthermore, Revelation 2:17 prophesies, ‘… To him that overcomes will I give to eat of the hidden manna, and will give him a white stone, and in the stone a new name written, which no man knows saving he that receives it.’ The hidden manna mentioned here refers to the words in the little scroll prophesied in Revelation, which are the utterances of God Himself in the Age of Kingdom. Brother, please think about this: Of Jesus’ disciples at that time, who had seen or got the white stone? Who had eaten the hidden manna? They will only be given to people when the Lord comes the second time. Just as the Lord said in John 16:12-13: ‘I have yet many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. However, when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: … and he will show you things to come.’” The two sisters’ fellowship left me at a loss what to say or do. But I really could not put aside my pride, so I said shamelessly, “The Lord Jesus was able to raise the dead at that time. Now there’s a brother in our church who has terminal esophageal cancer. You can go to preach the gospel of the last days to him. If he gets healed, I will acknowledge that the way you preach is the true way and the one you believe in is the true God.” One sister said to me, “Brother, as a believer in Jesus, why don’t you obey the word of the Lord? In Matthew16:4, the Lord said to those who tested Him: ‘A wicked and adulterous generation seeks after a sign; and there shall no sign be given to it, but the sign of the prophet Jonas.’” I was dumb again. And then they read me these words of Almighty God: “Do you believe in signs and wonders, or do you believe in God Himself? Jesus did not display signs and wonders when He was derided by others; was He not God? Do you believe in signs and wonders, or do you believe in the substance of God? Man’s views about belief in God are wrong! Jehovah spoke many words during the Age of Law, but even today some of them have yet to be fulfilled. Can you say that Jehovah was not God?

Today, it should be clear to all of you that, in the last days, it is principally the fact of ‘the Word becomes flesh’ that is accomplished by God. Through His actual work on earth, He causes man to know Him, and to engage with Him, and to see His actual deeds. He causes man to clearly see that He is able to display signs and wonders and there are also times when He is unable to do so, and this is dependent on the age. From this you can see that God is not incapable of displaying signs and wonders, but instead changes His working according to His work, and according to the age. In the current stage of work, He does not show signs and wonders; that He showed some signs and wonders in the age of Jesus was because His work in that age was different. God does not do that work today, and some people believe Him incapable of displaying signs and wonders, or else they think that if He does not display signs and wonders, then He is not God. Is that not a fallacy? God is able to display signs and wonders, but the work of this age is different, and so He does not do such work. Because this is a different age, and because this is a different stage of God’s work, the deeds made plain by God are also different. Man’s belief in God is not the belief in signs and wonders, nor the belief in miracles, but the belief in His real work during the new age.” At these words, I woke up somewhat, and came to realize that my former viewpoint of believing in God was wrong. I thought, “I have only sought signs and wonders but not sought God’s will, and I have believed that whether a way is the true way should be judged by whether its followers’ prayers can be fulfilled and whether they can heal the sick and drive out demons. I have determined the true way and false ways based on this without knowing that God’s work is always progressing forward.” But as my heart was too hardened, I still had my back to them. Then they turned on their recorder and played the tape of God’s word for me: “Religious heads are merely the leaders of a particular religion, and cannot represent God, or the One who created the heavens and earth and all things. Religious heads can lead all those within the entire religion, but cannot command all creatures beneath the heavens—this is a universally acknowledged fact. Religious heads are mere leaders, and cannot stand equal to God (the Creator). All things are in the hands of the Creator, and in the end they will all return to the hands of the Creator. Mankind was originally made by God, and regardless of the religion, every person will return under the dominion of God—this is inevitable. Only God is the Most High among all things, and the highest ruler among all creatures must also return under His dominion. No matter how high the status of man, he cannot take man to a suitable destination, and no one is able to class all things according to kind. Jehovah Himself created mankind and classed each according to kind, and when the end time arrives He will still do His own work Himself, classing all things according to kind—and this cannot be done by any apart from God.” When I heard this, I suddenly saw the light. “Yes, aren’t Jacob, Joseph, and the head of our Joseph Church all men, the creatures of God? Since they are creatures, they cannot be called God, much less represent God, nor can they speak in the place of God. A religious head can only lead all those within his own denomination but cannot command the people in all the other denominations. Thus, how can the people of all the other denominations turn to our Joseph Church? Only the Creator is able to do the work of unifying all denominations into one.”

Then I heard the following words: “Although Jehovah, Jesus, and the Messiah all represent My Spirit, these names only denote the different ages in My management plan, and do not represent Me in My entirety. The names by which people on earth call Me cannot articulate My entire disposition and all that I am. They are merely different names by which I am called during different ages. And so, when the final age—the age of the last days—arrives, My name shall change again. I shall not be called Jehovah, or Jesus, much less the Messiah, but shall be called the powerful and almighty God Himself, and under this name I shall bring the entire age to an end.” My heart was shocked by these words, and I thought, “Why do these words carry authority, power, and majesty? Apart from God, who else dared to speak in such a position?” Then I truly realized that all my doings were exactly the same as the Pharisees’ sinful deeds of resisting Jesus in the Old Testament age. “Have I not become a Pharisee of the new age? I have only believed in God’s name, but not His substance, and I have even regarded God’s new work in the last days as the deception of an evil spirit. Haven’t I committed the sin of blaspheming the Holy Spirit?” At that moment, I felt as if awakening from a dream. I dared not be heart-hardened anymore. So I hastily put down my crossed legs, and turned and looked at the sisters, who had stood for several hours. When I gave my chair to them and invited them to sit down, they wept…

Thank God for His great salvation for me. It was God’s word that conquered me, so that I gave up my five years of vague belief in the Joseph Church, and turned to Almighty God—Christ of the last days, and began to walk upon the right track of believing in God and pursuing to know God. Afterward, I read these words of God: “… those who believe in God because of the signs are surely the category that shall suffer destruction. Those who are incapable of accepting the words of Jesus who has returned to flesh are surely the progeny of hell, the descendants of the archangel, the category that shall be subjected to everlasting destruction.” “Those who only care about the words of the Bible, but who are unconcerned about the truth or seeking My footsteps—they are against Me, for they limit Me according to the Bible, and constrain Me within the Bible, and so are blasphemous in the extreme towards Me. How could such people come before Me? They pay no heed to My deeds, or My will, or the truth, but instead obsess over words, words that kill. How could such people be compatible with Me?” These words of God made me tremble with fear, and moreover, made me regret my past deeds: “I not only resisted God, but also hurt so many brothers and sisters who preached the gospel of the last days and hindered so many brothers and sisters from turning to Almighty God. I was really guilty of the most heinous sin! I believed in God and longed for Him, but I didn’t know Him and even opposed Him, the returned true God. I hate myself for turning away my ears from the truth and refusing God’s salvation so many times. The brothers and sisters came time and again with smiling faces, but I always threw them out with a horrible face. I was really inhuman! No matter how high the message they preached, I always closed my ears to it, and I blasphemed that it was of an evil spirit coming to deceive people. I even thought that only I was God’s intimate and that only the God I believed in was the true God, while the God others believed in was a false god. Little did I know that what I did was opposed to the new work of Almighty God, and I was an antichrist. It is too late for me to regret…” Thinking of this, I prayed, “O Almighty God! Thank You for giving me another opportunity to be saved. It is Your word that has woken me up and enabled me to receive Your great salvation. According to what I have done, I should have been cursed by You. However, You remembered no transgressions of mine and still melt me with a tender motherly love and enlightened me with Your words, so that I could accept Your work of the last days, the work of purifying people with the word. O God! How great Your love is! You have expended too much care and thought on me, and I will not let You down. I will do all I can in these last days to cooperate with You and bring to You those who truly believe in You but are still groping in darkness, so that they will understand Your intention and stop resisting You, and so that Your heart will be consoled.”

Here I sincerely advise the brothers and sisters in the House of Joseph and all the other denominations and sects who have not turned to Almighty God: Never follow in my footsteps! Wake up and quickly turn to Almighty God! For Almighty God is precisely the returned Jesus! There is not much time left for Him to select people in a hidden way. I hope that the brothers and sisters will not miss this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Otherwise, when God appears publicly, it will be too late for you to do anything. Just as Almighty God says: “… when you see Jesus descend from the heaven upon a white cloud with your own eyes, this will be the public appearance of the Sun of righteousness. Perhaps that will be a time of great excitement for you, yet you should know that the time when you witness Jesus descend from the heaven is also the time when you go down to hell to be punished. It will herald the end of God’s management plan, and will be when God rewards the good and punishes the wicked. For the judgment of God will have ended before man sees signs, when there is only the expression of truth.

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9. A Confession

Before God I have committed monstrous sins. I resisted the Almighty God’s end-time work by every possible means all along. I even condemned and blasphemed God’s flesh, burned up the book of the Almighty God’s word, and beat, abused, and insulted the brothers and sisters many times who preached God’s new work. However, the Almighty God, who is full of mercy and love, did not put me to death but stretched out his hand of salvation and gave me the opportunity to be saved.


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