80. I Prostrated Myself Before Almighty God to Confess My Sin
Nanyang City, Henan Province
I was formerly a co-worker in the “Praise Church.” After turning to the Lord Jesus in 1988, I pursued zealously. Whenever something happened in the church, I would run in front. Gradually I won a good reputation of being an “Old Faithful.” However, I, an “Old Faithful,” became a thorough antichrist when God’s salvation of the last days came upon me. Whenever I think of that, I feel extremely ashamed and remorseful…
It was a day in February, 1998. In a co-workers’ meeting, our leader said, “Now there is a sect called the ‘Eastern Lightning.’ They preach that the Lord has come back and done a new salvation work. It is a typical heresy and cult! They seduce men with beautiful women and commit adultery. Once you listen to their way, you’ll be captivated. Once you join them, you can’t withdraw. If you listen to their way but don’t accept it, they will gouge out your eyes, cut off your ears, or break your arms or legs, and even your whole family will be in danger of being killed. From now on, once you see the people of the ‘Eastern Lightning,’ drive them away, and once you see their books, tear them…” Then, he took out three booklets against Almighty God: Curfew, Resist the Heresy—the Eastern Lightning, Refutation of the Errors of the Seven Spirits Sect. He asked us to copy the words down and spread them in the churches. After hearing the leader’s words and reading the booklets, I believed them to be true and began to despise and hate the people of the “Eastern Lightning.” I thought, “After I go back, I will take strict precautions to protect the flock. I will be irreconcilable with the ‘Eastern Lightning.’”
After I went back to the church, I immediately hammered the leader’s words and the words in the booklets into the brothers and sisters and also led them to pray to curse the “Eastern Lightning,” asking the Lord to stop its steps, demolish all its work, and punish its followers… I also made a rule in the church: No one is allowed to receive strangers. If they come, drive them away; if they don’t leave, call “110,” and never be soft on them.
Once when we were having a meeting, a sister who preached God’s new work came to the host family. I shouted to her in the courtyard, “This is my territory. Leave quickly! Or I’ll call ‘110’ to arrest you! …” After driving her away, I made up lies to frighten the brothers and sisters, “Once you listen to the words of the ‘Eastern Lightning’ preachers, you’ll be poisoned. You don’t know the Bible and are easy to be deceived. So better leave the sheep starving to death than let them eat poisoned grass! …”
After that, the brothers and sisters came to preach God’s new work to me more than one hundred times. But they were all pushed or pulled out, or beat or sworn away by me. In the summer of 1999, a sister, who was once on good terms with me in our church (she had already accepted God’s new work at that time), came to preach the gospel to me. I said arrogantly, “Three stages of work? Jesus Christ has won a victory once for all. You are possessed, and you even come to deceive me. Leave quickly! …” With that, I pushed and beat her out of the house rudely. Not long after that, a brother in our village came to preach the gospel to me again. Upon seeing him, I blazed with fury. I yelled abuse at him, “How come you crawled here again like a turtle? OK! If you don’t fear to be beaten, just come! …” As I swore at him, I picked up an iron bar and battered at him wildly until he was driven out of the gate. And I kicked his bicycle like mad… After I beat him away, I went to the meeting place quickly and bragged about my “heroic deed” before the brothers and sisters to let them imitate me.
Although I vehemently sealed off the church and resisted God’s new work, the condition of the church became more and more desolate: the preachings of the leaders and co-workers were dry and dull; the group leaders, the deacons, and the several totally consecrated sisters in the church all returned to the world one after another; the number of the people attending the meetings dropped greatly, and the rest of believers often raised envy and strife and they even quarreled about trivial matters. Troubles came one after another. In the summer of 2001, I suddenly felt weak all over and suffered an unbearable pain in both sides of my chest, and I couldn’t even ride a bicycle. I prayed about it but it didn’t get any better. I went to the hospital for examination, but the doctor told me that there was nothing wrong with me. The pain lasted for more than two months. In the fall of that year, a sister who preached God’s new work came to me and gave me a gospel letter, and I burned it. After that, I got a fever, my nose bled, I felt cold and hot by turns, and my body was all sore and weak. I lay in bed for more than one month. I really suffered unspeakably! During the Spring Festival of 2002, I heard that an elderly sister of our church who believed for more than twenty years died of cardia cancer on the first day of the Spring Festival. I was dumbfounded by the news, thinking, “She rushed about all day to guard against the ‘Eastern Lightning,’ doing her best to ‘defend the church,’ and she was never soft on the believers of the ‘Lightning.’ How come such a faithful person came to such an end? What’s all this about? …” “O Lord! I don’t understand all this. May You open my spiritual eyes. I’m willing to serve You, but my body and heart can’t endure anymore. What should I do? May You show me the way ahead…”
During the wheat harvest season in 2003, I met two brothers who preached God’s gospel of the last days (I didn’t know their identity then) at a co-worker’s home. When they talked about the condition of the church, I asked, “Now is indeed the last days. The church is so desolate. Why is it so?” One brother said, “This is because the Lord has returned in the flesh and done a new work of judging and purifying people. The Holy Spirit has transferred His work to those who follow the footsteps of the Lamb. Where there is God, there is life supply, and those churches will have vitality and vigor. Now the churches are desolate because they fail to keep up with God’s new work!” Hearing this, I was alert at once. “I meet the people of the ‘Eastern Lightning’ again. What should I do?” I felt a little afraid, but then I thought, “God is my support. What do I fear?” So I decided to use my “wisdom” to fight with them. I then raised a question, “Hebrew 13:8 clearly says, ‘Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever.’ This verse shows that the Lord Jesus has won a victory once for all and the salvation of the cross is forever. Why do you say there are three stages of work?” The brother fellowshipped patiently, “This word in the Bible is quite right. But we should have a correct knowledge of it, otherwise we’ll circumscribe God easily. In fact, this word means that God’s substance will never change but not that God’s work will never change. That is to say, God is forever God and is forever holy, His disposition and substance will never change, His will to save man will never change, but His work is done according to man’s need and it changes continuously. If God’s work were unchanging, then why has the Lord Jesus brought people from the Age of Law into the Age of Grace? And how can the corrupt mankind be purified and brought into the holy kingdom in the end?” As he said that, he opened the book of God’s word and read these words: “There are those who say that God is immutable. That is correct, but it refers to the immutability of God’s disposition and substance. Changes in His name and work do not prove that His substance has altered; in other words, God will always be God, and this will never change. If you say that the work of God always stays the same, then would He be able to finish His six-thousand-year management plan? You merely know that God is forever unchanging, but do you know that God is always new and never old? If the work of God never changed, then could He have brought mankind to today? If God is immutable, then why is it that He has already done the work of two ages?” “The work of God continues to advance, and though the purpose of His work remains unchanging, the means by which He works are constantly changing…. At that time, Jesus stated that the work of Jehovah had fallen behind in the Age of Grace, much as I say today that the work of Jesus has fallen behind. If there had been only the Age of Law and not the Age of Grace, Jesus could not have been crucified and could not have redeemed all mankind; if there had only been the Age of Law, could mankind possibly have developed until this day? … ‘God is changeless, and God will always be God’; this saying is true indeed. The essence of God does not change, God is always God, and He could never become Satan, but these do not prove that His work is as constant and invariable as His essence. You declare that God is thus, but how then can you explain that God is always new and never old? The work of God continuously spreads and constantly changes, and the will of God is continuously manifested and made known to man. … If the disposition of man can change, why cannot man allow My work and My words to also continuously change? Must I be subject to the restrictions of man? Are you not now simply resorting to sophistry?” Hearing these words, I was speechless. “Right! Before, we often said that God is a real and living God, but how could I circumscribe God’s work within the salvation of the cross?”
The brother continued to fellowship, “God’s six-thousand-year management plan is divided into three stages: the first stage is the Age of Law, during which Jehovah God did the work of giving the law and leading people to live, so that they became conscious of sin; the second stage is the Age of Grace, during which the Lord Jesus did the work of being crucified and redeeming mankind, so that people’s sins were forgiven; and the third stage is the Age of Kingdom, during which Almighty God does the work of judging and purifying people on the basis of the first two stages of work, with the result that their sins will be removed eventually. The three stages of work are closely related, and they are all for the purpose of saving people completely and bringing them to the pleasant destination…” Then the brother read another passage of God’s word: “After the work of Jehovah, Jesus became flesh to do His work amongst man. His work was not carried out in isolation, but built upon the work of Jehovah. It was work for a new age after God had concluded the Age of Law. Similarly, after the work of Jesus ended, God still continued His work for the next age, because the entire management of God is always progressing forward. When the old age passes, it will be replaced by a new age, and once the old work has been completed, a new work will continue the management of God. This incarnation is God’s second incarnation following the completion of Jesus’ work. Of course, this incarnation does not occur independently, but is the third stage of work after the Age of Law and the Age of Grace. … Though Jesus did much work among man, He only completed the redemption of all mankind and became man’s sin offering, and did not rid man of all his corrupt disposition. Fully saving man from the influence of Satan not only required Jesus to take on the sins of man as the sin offering, but also required God to do greater work to completely rid man of his disposition, which has been corrupted by Satan. And so, after man was forgiven his sins, God returned to flesh to lead man into the new age, and began the work of chastisement and judgment, which brought man to a higher realm. All those who submit under His dominion shall enjoy higher truth and receive greater blessings. They shall truly live in the light, and shall gain the truth, the way, and the life.” Then I was enlightened. “Oh! The three stages of work are God’s management plan and are done according to men’s need! The Lord Jesus only saved men from sin and He didn’t do the transforming and purifying work. Today Almighty God does the work of purifying men with His word, which is a higher and deeper work based on the Lord Jesus’ work. This is the very need of us corrupt mankind. Only in this way can men be saved completely.”
Facing God’s words of truth, I was too ashamed to show my face. “I have believed in God for more than ten years and have been expecting the Lord Jesus’ coming day and night. But when the Lord came back, I didn’t seek and investigate but believed the rumors from my leader and sealed off the church and bound the brothers and sisters. I would rather starve them to death than let them accept God’s new work. I ruined so many innocent souls and greatly hindered God’s gospel of the last days work from spreading in our place. But God didn’t remember my transgressions and still sent gospel preachers to me more than one hundred times. I not only didn’t accept it but tore the gospel letter, swore at, insulted, beat, cursed the gospel preachers, and even worse, I viciously prayed to curse God. I’m really a bold desperado and heinous antichrist, who deserves to die ten thousand deaths! The illnesses I had suffered were the very expression of God’s righteous deposition and also the punishments and rewards for my grave sin…” When I thought of these, tears poured down my cheek and I fell before God. “O God! I’m too corrupt and worse than a pig or a dog! I frenziedly resisted Your new work for five years, committing an unforgivable and monstrous sin. I deserve to be cursed and burned forever in the eighteenth hell. But You didn’t abandon me and still save me to the utmost, so that I have the fortune to hear Your voice and be conquered by Your authoritative and powerful words. This is really Your great grace and uplifting! Dear God! Your salvation is immense; even if I devote my whole life, I can’t make up for my great indebtedness to You. I only wish to cooperate with Your work by my actions, preaching the gospel to save more souls and bringing more brothers and sisters in darkness before You.”
After I accepted God’s new work, I brought some brothers and sisters before God. From then on, we ate and drank God’s word every day and enjoyed the nourishment from God’s word. We gradually understood the purpose of God’s management plan, the mystery of God’s incarnation, the inside truth of the Bible, and many other truths. The more we ate and drank God’s words, the more we were certain about God’s new work and felt clear and steady in our heart. Only then did I understand the real meaning of our leader’s words “Once you listen to it, you’ll be captivated.” “Yes! Who is willing to leave when he has the new manna to eat and is in the arms of the true God?” But I never expected that when I went to a host family to preach the gospel, wanting to tell them God’s eager intention to save man, the sister who had been closely associated with me treated me like an enemy and the brother also pulled his face and said fiercely, “Never come to my home again!” And a co-worker swore at me while pushing me out, “Shut your face! You bad woman! I heard you went out to sleep with men. What a shame! …” Hearing these words, I felt as if I were struck by thunderbolts. “They even fabricated such a malicious rumor about me.” I shuddered with fury all over and tears flowed down my face… But through my personal experience I finally understood that those words against the “Eastern lightning” were all created out of nothing, and they were all rumors, slanders, and sheer unfounded words against the true way! I saw that Article 4 of the Ten Administrative Decrees God’s Chosen People Must Obey says clearly, “Man has corrupt disposition and even more has emotion. So, in the service in coordination, two people of different sexes are forbidden to coordinate alone. If discovered, they shall be expelled, no matter who they are.” I remembered that when I contacted the brothers and sisters who believed in Almighty God, they all behaved and spoke properly, were humble, and had love. When being together, they only talked about God’s intention, how to know God and obey God, and how to love God, and knew their corruptions according to God’s word, and pursued to be transformed in disposition to satisfy God. I had never seen any improper behavior between them. The word “if you listen to their way but don’t accept it, they will break your arms or legs” was even more a deceitful lie. Many people in our neighboring churches had listened to their way yet didn’t accept it, but I never saw anyone lost their arms or legs. At that time, I even more hated myself for believing the rumors and embellishing and spreading them to deceive the brothers and sisters, acting as an accomplice of the leader. I deserved being sworn at today! It is really true that good will be rewarded with good, and evil with evil. When I thought of this, my anger disappeared and I stopped complaining, for through this experience, I tasted how hard it was for God to do the work on earth, and I also saw God’s great love and salvation for man!
Dear brothers and sisters, I hope that you can gain some enlightenment from my personal experience. May you see through Satan’s schemes sooner, and come to seek and investigate the true way, and follow the pace of God’s work. Almighty God is waiting for everyone who thirsts for and seeks the truth to return all the time!