81. Almighty God’s Word Turned Me away from the Evil Way
Jiamusi City, Heilongjiang Province
I was once an ordinary believer of the Local Church. After I believed in the Lord, I pursued hard for gaining His commendation. However, later I was deceived by the rumors and became a sinner who resisted God’s work of the last days. While I was resisting Almighty God’s work of the last days crazily, Almighty God’s great love came upon me, and He saved me, a heinous sinner, with His word from my evil way, and thereby I could truly step onto the right track of believing in God.
One day in June, 1997, the preacher of our church held an urgent meeting with us after he came back from a co-workers’ meeting. He said, “People who preach that God has come to do His work of the last days are trying to enter some churches. Their sect is called the ‘Eastern Lightning.’ They are irresistible. Whoever hears their fellowship will be attracted to their way and can hardly back out. It is the typical work of an ‘evil spirit.’ Those people are redolent of ‘evil.’ Even if others curse them, beat them, or report them to the police, they still don’t stop their steps. So shameless as they are, isn’t there an ‘evil spirit’ working on them? They have lost the sense of a normal man. For the sake of preaching their way, they have even abandoned their families, husbands, or children, and don’t live a normal life anymore. But for the work of an ‘evil spirit,’ who could have such zeal?” And he also said, “We should be on our guard in future. Don’t receive any stranger.” Afterward, the church required us to pray to curse the people of the “Eastern Lightning” at twelve noon every day.
One month later, two sisters came to our meeting place to preach about God’s work of the last days, but our preacher drove them away. Afterward, the preacher picked out four believers who had a burden to “protect” the brothers and sisters, and I was one of them. I thought it a good opportunity for me to show my faithfulness to the Lord. So, since then, I visited the homes of the brothers and sisters almost every day. There were totally 42 believers in the church. And I busied myself visiting them from morning till night. Moreover, whenever I met the people who preached about God’s work of the last days, I followed and cursed them, not allowing them to preach on our territory. The preacher was very satisfied with my performance, and I also felt like achieving something great, and was more enthusiastic in my resistance.
One November morning, it was very cold. I went out to pour dirty water after breakfast. Opening the door of the room, I saw two strange women walk into my courtyard. I thought to myself, “They must be from the ‘Eastern Lightning.’ How dare you come to my home! See how I’ll fix you.” I walked to them with the water bucket and asked, “Who are you?” They answered, “We came to preach about the work of the last days of Almighty God. We heard you are a believer in the Lord, so we want to have a fellowship with you.” I said fiercely, “You are from the ‘Eastern Lightning.’ You want to come to ‘poison’ me? You ‘Satans,’ ‘evil spirits,’ wolves that steal the sheep, get out! Or else I won’t be easy on you!” But they refused to leave. One of them said, “We mean no harm. We just want to testify to you God’s new work.” Seeing that they were unwilling to go, I threw the dirty water in the bucket over them. As they didn’t expect it and were close to me, the whole bucket of dirty water was poured over them. Then I went back to the room, bolted the door, and sat on the warm kang to watch the fun through the glass window. I saw them shivering with cold, their clothes frozen quickly, and in the end they left reluctantly with tears in eyes. But I felt like a winner and was greatly happy at that time. After that, they came to my home many more times, but I drove them away every time. One day in December, a co-worker who served our church came to have a two-day meeting with us, on which he again spoke of many slanders against the “Eastern Lightning.” This increased my hatred for the “Eastern Lightning.” The co-worker said to us, “We should be harsh with the people of the ‘Eastern Lightning’ in future. As long as we won’t be deceived by them, we can treat them in any way.” At the leader’s instigation, I became even bolder.
One day in the latter part of December, Sister Wang in the neighboring village, who was also of the Local Church, came to my home. We had constant contact and fellowship with each other at normal times, and we got along well and kept nothing from each other. At the sight of her, I warmly let her into the room. Then we began to fellowship about the church’s condition: Now brothers’ and sisters’ love grew cold, some dozed at meetings, some even went back to the world to earn money, and the co-workers vied with each other and envy and strife constantly arose in the church. We saw eye to eye with each other in our talk. When I mentioned the “Lightning,” I said with anger and hatred, “It is all because of the disturbance of the people of the ‘Lightning’ that the church now is in a bad condition. Sister, we should have the burden and pray to curse them. The church almost falls apart because of them; can you swallow it? Only when I see them receive retribution can my hatred be slackened…” I became more and more excited while I was talking. Sister Wang hurriedly cut in, “You should watch your words. Don’t be uninhibited in speaking. We are believers in God. The Lord told us to love even our enemies!” “It depends,” I said, “You can’t love everyone. If you love an ‘evil spirit,’ aren’t you resisting God?” She said, “We know that only God can condemn others. We men don’t have such right. You condemn them as an evil spirit; you are speaking in the position of God. The Scripture says, ‘He that keeps his mouth keeps his life: but he that opens wide his lips shall have destruction.’ (Proverbs 13:3) I feel frightened when you speak that way.” “Frightened of what?” I said, “This is what our preacher told us.” Then a doubt arose in my mind. And I asked her, “Which side are you on?” Saying so, I was on the edge of losing my temper. Sister Wang said to me quietly, “I’m just reminding you that you shouldn’t go too far. You didn’t see what you’ve just said, but just heard it from the preacher, and the preacher also heard it from others. Sister, if we speak what we haven’t seen, we are giving a false testimony. God is not mocked. (Galatians 6:7) Giving a false testimony will incur God’s punishment. We should watch our tongue before we say whatever we like!” Her words sounded reasonable, so I felt somewhat afraid. She continued, “Sister, we’ve just fellowshipped about the condition of the church. Do you know why it is so? Actually, the church and the brothers and sisters sank into such a condition not because they were disturbed by others, but because the famine, which was predestined by God, came upon them. It has fulfilled the prophecies in the Bible. (Amos 8:11-12; 4:7-8; Matthew 24:12; Revelation 3:16) Because God has done a new work, and the Holy Spirit has begun to uphold God’s new work. God is using His word to judge and purify man’s corruptions. This work is what the ‘Eastern Lightning’ preaches.” “Stop it!” I shouted all at once. “No wonder that I feel there is something wrong in your talk. You are actually a spy from the ‘Eastern Lightning.’ You told me this after a whole day’s fellowship! Now if you don’t have anything else to do, please go. I don’t want to listen anymore. You have been ‘deceived.’ Don’t try to ‘deceive’ me. I only believe in the Bible. The Lord has saved me, and I needn’t anyone else’s salvation. I’ll save your face for the sake of our former relations. Leave now! Never come again. We are not one in spirit now. No need to fellowship!” Saying so, I got up and went to cook dinner, and she had to rise to her feet and leave. Before she left, she said, “I’ll come some other day.” But I didn’t answer her.
After that, she came to my home many more times to fellowship with me, once every one or two days. I received her out of courtesy for the first couple of times, but later, I began to avoid her purposefully. Whenever she came, I said I had got something to do and had to go out. In order not to come in vain each time, she took with her some slips of paper on which she copied some words of God. If I was at home, she would fellowship with me about them. If I wasn’t in, she would leave them at my home. However, I never read those words but burned them right away after I came back and saw them.
One day, she came again with a bicycle. This time, I didn’t avoid her, but said angrily, “Let’s not disturb each other in future. You believe yours and I believe mine. Don’t come anymore. I’m tired of no one when I see you.” When she heard this, tears flowed from her eyes. She wept, “Sister, I came to your home time after time because I have received the salvation of the last days. Were it not for the encouragement of God’s love and the working of the Holy Spirit, I wouldn’t be willing to suffer this. Man has no love. If according to the will of my flesh, I wouldn’t want to come long before. So many times I came to your home and you gave me a cold shoulder. And so many times I came and you purposefully avoided me. It’s normal for you to react like this, because you haven’t accepted God’s new work and aren’t clear about God’s present will.” Hearing her words, I wanted to fellowship with her and get the bottom of it, but I was afraid of being deceived. So I said, “Even if you came for my sake and you have believed in a right way, I won’t believe with you. The Lord Jesus has given me so much grace. I can’t be conscienceless. I can’t betray the ‘true way.’ I have nothing to talk with you. From now on, you are not my fellow-believer. You can go to preach to whoever you want to preach.” In the end, she left in tears. Watching her receding figure and thinking of her expectant eyes, I felt kind of rebuked. I thought to myself, “She could give up her face and come to my home again and again for my sake despite my rejection time after time. I gave her a cold shoulder, yet she neither hated me nor got angry. She is more patient than me and her love is greater than mine. If it were not out of God’s love, no one could do this. Could the way she has accepted really be the true way?” I could no longer calm down…
The next morning, I went out to visit the brothers and sisters as usual. After I came back and entered the gate in the evening, I found a letter lying on the stone beside our gate. I took it into the room, and opened it after a little hesitation. It was from Sister Wang. It reads as follows:
Today, I’m writing to you to open my heart to you. I have been to your home for twenty-one times, but each time you rejected me. You didn’t read the words of God I copied for you, and even said blasphemous words of resisting God, which was most intolerable to me. To be frank, your frosty looks cut my heart. Each time I came out of your home, I resolved to never come again. But when I arrived home and read God’s words, I felt I would be indebted to God’s salvation to me if I did so. The following are God’s words I copied down. I hope you can read them. You will see God’s care and God’s selfless love for mankind from them. As long as you read them carefully, you will know God’s intention. God says: “How will you pass on your seeings and experiences to those pitiable, poor, and devout religious believers who hunger and thirst for righteousness and are waiting for you to shepherd them? … Are you aware of the burden you shoulder, your commission, and your responsibility? … What plans do you have for the progress of the next step of work? How many people are waiting for you to be their shepherd? Is your task a heavy one? They are poor, pitiable, blind, and at a loss, wailing in the darkness, ‘Where is the way?’ How they yearn for the light, like a shooting star, to suddenly descend and disperse the force of darkness that has oppressed men for so many years. … These men who suffer deeply remain imprisoned in the dungeons of darkness, without hope of release, even on the day that the light flashes; when will they weep no longer? These fragile spirits who have never been granted rest are truly suffering such misfortune. … Have you ever thought how grieved and anxious God’s heart is? How can He bear to see the innocent mankind He Himself created suffering such torment? … Have you forgotten that you are one of the victims? Out of your love for God, are you not willing to strive to save those who have survived? Are you not willing to use all your effort to repay the God who loves mankind like His own flesh and blood?” (from “How Should You Attend to Your Future Mission” in The Word Appears in the Flesh) It is after reading these words of God that I have an unfailing strength in my heart and can brace myself up again after constant disappointments. It is on my mind that I am a victim as well, so I should use all my effort to repay the God who loves mankind like His own flesh and blood. After reading God’s words, I feel there is nothing that I can’t give up. Below are more words of God. I believe they will help you to remove your notions. God says: “Though man has been redeemed and forgiven of his sins, it is only considered as God not remembering the transgressions of man and not treating man in accordance with man’s transgressions. However, when man lives in the flesh and he has not been set free from sin, he can only continue to sin, endlessly revealing the corrupt satanic disposition. … The majority of men sin in the day only to confess in the evening. As such, even if the sin offering is forever effective for man, it would not be able to save man from sin. …” “After thousands of years of Satan’s corruption, man already has within him a nature that resists God. Therefore, when man has been redeemed, it is nothing more than redemption, where man is bought at a high price, but the poisonous nature within has not been eliminated. Man that is so defiled must undergo a change before being worthy to serve God. Through this work of judgment and chastisement, man will fully come to know the filthy and corrupt substance within him, and he will be able to completely change and become clean. Only in this way can man be worthy to return before the throne of God.” (from “The Mystery of the Incarnation (4)” in The Word Appears in the Flesh) Sister, I hope you can see God’s eager desire to save man in God’s words. Do seek immediately! How anxious and sad God’s heart is!
After reading the letter, I couldn’t help shedding tears. I wept bitterly and read the letter many more times. Each word in the letter pricked my heart. Through the letter, I understood why they could leave their families and give up their careers to preach about God’s gospel of the last days and why they could endure various humiliations and abuses. It was because God’s words encouraged them that they could have unshakable faith. From that I felt that God’s love is so real. And I also realized that the words our preacher said before, such as “Those people are full of ‘evil.’ Even if others curse them, beat them, or report them to the police, they still don’t stop their steps. It’s the typical work of an ‘evil spirit,’” were purely deceitful lies which perverted the truth and called white black. They were simply blasphemies to the Holy Spirit. Thank Almighty God! It was His words that awakened me from the dream and freed me from the deception of the rumors.
Three days later, Sister Wang came to my home again. At the sight of her, I was both glad and embarrassed, and felt very guilty inside. But she said, “You resisted before because you didn’t understand God’s new work. Now God’s word has enlightened you. You should thank God for saving you.” Her comforting words made me feel even more ashamed. Then she fellowshipped with me about God’s three stages of work, and read the piece of God’s word “Corrupt Mankind Is More in Need of the Salvation of God Incarnated in the ‘Flesh.’” After listening to that, I was more clear within. She asked me how I understood these words. I said, “Sister, no need for more questions. I accept! These words have truly awoken me. I have no words to say.” Since then, I began to read God’s word and was completely certain about Almighty God’s work of the last days. I felt inexpressibly remorseful. Thinking of what I had done before, I hated myself bitterly. I had rejected God’s coming, resisted God’s work, said so many slanderous and blasphemous words, and done so many malicious things, such as tracking and insulting the gospel preachers and throwing dirty water over them. It wouldn’t be too much no matter how severely God punished me. But God didn’t treat me according to my evil deeds and bestowed His salvation upon me again and again to awaken me. Thank God! God’s love is so great! Moreover, I realized that I had really been blind and ignorant without my own views. I didn’t seek or investigate by myself but always listened to the leader’s words and almost took the leader as God. Only then did I understand the true meaning of the Lord’s words, “… if the blind lead the blind, both shall fall into the ditch.”
In February of 1998, I attended the Kingdom meeting for the first time. I found that the brothers and sisters were from different denominations and they all had love for each other and conducted themselves properly. I saw the scene of God uniting all into one. Excitement was beyond my words. At the meeting, I tasted the delight of the working of the Holy Spirit, and knew clearly that the leader’s words “they don’t have humanity and there is an evil spirit working on them” were all lies. Brothers and sisters, success comes from depending on God, and depending on man can only result in failure. Wake up quickly! Don’t be fooled anymore. Revelation 3:20 says, “Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.” Now the Lord is knocking at the door. Open your heart to Him, and He will come in to you, sup with you and be with you. “He that has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches..” You should hear, my brothers and sisters!