Fellowship and Answers of the Above About the Questions of the Korean Church
Now there are many Americans and Filipinos coming into the faith. They also have this kind of problem. They all want to preserve the best elements of their culture and traditions. Is this in line with God’s will? It is most certainly not in line with God’s will. We’ve got to see through to the truth of this matter. We must realize God’s will—the great calamities are coming and after the calamities only one kingdom will remain, the kingdom of Christ. All of humanity will come together under one faith, they will all become one family, members of the family of God and people of Christ’s kingdom. At that time Chinese people won’t be called Chinese, they will be called “God’s chosen people in China.” Our Korean brothers and sisters will be called “God’s chosen in Korea,” our American brothers and sisters will be called “God’s chosen in America.” They are all members of God’s family—this is a very objective way of viewing things, no? Also, no matter what country you come from, what kind of cultural background you have, or how humane you are, God doesn’t care about these things—God only cares about who accepts the truth and has entered into more of reality, who lives in accordance with God’s word, and who lives with truth, reality and witness. For these are the people that God will commend. Is this not how things are? In Korea there are those that think most Chinese are not as polite and humane as Koreans. What does God think about this, do you know? God would say: “I don’t care how humane or polite you are, this is not the truth and has no real use. I only care about who in the future, having experienced My work, attains the truth and lives according to My word, for these are those that I will commend.” Is this not God’s meaning? Now you understand God’s will! So does God commend people based upon whose culture is better or who is better at preserving their traditions? God’s not interested—no matter how well you keep to this or that doctrine, it’s all of no use. If you don’t seek the truth at all and fail to accept God’s judgment and chastisement, then no matter how well you keep to your doctrines you will never be purified, saved and enter into the kingdom of heaven. This is fact. God has dictated that man’s fate will not be determined by his cultural background, the strength of his character, how filial he is—it’s not based on that. Man’s fate is determined only by whether or not he has attained the reality of truth—this is God’s will and the principle by which He treats and views people and determines their fate. If you can’t see through to the truth of this matter, then how will you experience obeying God, how will you obey God’s work? If you always act based upon your conceptions, you’ll be most easily apt to resist, misinterpret and rebel against God, or go astray from His work. Then isn’t acting in this way not to your advantage?
Question (3)： We Koreans place a lot of importance on etiquette: The young must be respectful of their elders. You Chinese are not really that polite—in spreading the gospel you should be aware of Korean customs and conduct yourselves in accordance with those customs. You can’t be overly hurried or pressing and you certainly shouldn’t prune and deal with them.
Answer: This is a very practical comment, “in spreading the gospel you should be aware of Korean customs and conduct yourselves in accordance with those customs. You can’t be overly hurried or pressing and you certainly shouldn’t prune and deal with them,” this is true. Given that what this person said is right, we ought to accept it! Some people that spread the gospel really have no manners or wisdom. Spreading the gospel in this way is unprincipled and ineffective. The question begins, “We Koreans place a lot of importance on etiquette: The young must be respectful of their elders. You Chinese are not really that polite,” this is based on their traditions. “The young should respect their elders,” is this right? In theory it is true that juniors should be respectful of their seniors, this is right, but if an elder prevents you from practicing faith or carrying out the truth, should this elder be respected? Respect for elders should be demonstrated according to principle, and we should follow principles. If an elder resists God, holds people back from practicing faith or seeking and studying the true way, then is this elder not a demon? Should we respect even those elders that are demons? No matter what aspect of the truth we are carrying out, we must do so according to God’s word. Be it in His work in the Age of Grace or the Age of Kingdom, God has never preached that we must respect our elders or be filial to our mother and father. The call to honor one’s mother and father comes from the Age of Law—it is stated in the Ten Commandments—the commandments in the Age of Grace and the Age of Kingdom do not include such a demand. Have I spoken the facts? Now we must have the correct understanding of the traditions of our forefathers and the commandments of the Age of Law. No matter what age we may be in or what stage in God’s work we are experiencing, we must always act according to God’s word and not according to man’s cultural background and even less so according to traditions. In the Age of Grace, Peter rebelled against his parents and broke from his family to follow Jesus. Did Jesus Christ castigate him? “You were wrong to rebel against your parents, you ought to be filial to your mother and father,” Lord Jesus never said anything of the kind. Lord Jesus even said, “Follow me, you ought to follow me.” The implication of this statement is that if your parents obstruct you, you needn’t listen to them, you can rebel against them. You need only listen to the word of God. This is God’s will, is it not? So now there are some people here saying, “We Koreans place a lot of importance on etiquette: The young must be respectful of their elders. You Chinese are not really that polite,” is this right? If you’re speaking with unbelievers, then it’s all right to say something like this. However, if you’re directing this comment toward God’s chosen people—some leaders are of the younger generation, they are not elders, should they still obediently follow their elders? So in God’s family there is no such doctrine that “the young must respect and be filial to their elders,” there is no such claim. Did Lord Jesus ever say anything of this kind? Did Almighty God ever say anything like this? Filial piety is a commandment from the Age of Law! By now, it’s already been scrapped! Peter led the way in breaking off from his family, Lord Jesus led the way in abandoning His mother and father, is that not how it was? We need to be clear on these issues. We shouldn’t always be understanding the work of God in terms of our own conceptions. If our brothers and sisters were always engaged in filial piety, who would be left to devote themselves to God? Who would still be able to abandon everything to follow God? So when Lord Jesus asked of man, “So likewise, whoever he be of you that forsakes not all that he has, he cannot be My disciple,” who will fulfil and honor these words? Was Lord Jesus filial to His parents? Did He recognize His parents in front of others? He did not recognize them before a crowd, He said, “Who is my mother? and who are my brothers? … For whoever shall do the will of my Father which is in heaven, the same is my brother, and sister, and mother.” Would you still call Jesus heretical? Do you dare condemn God? The Lord is the truth, the way, and the life; we ought to obey the Lord. In pursuing the truth and experiencing God’s work, is it not disruptive to God’s chosen people’s experience of God’s work to always be concerned with honoring customs, respecting elders and being polite? This is called moving backward—if you want to adhere to the laws of the Age of Law, then go follow Jehovah and experience the laws of Moses. Some people can’t even get themselves to abandon and distinguish their ancestor’s traditions and Korean culture. How do they expect to accept the truth and the judgment and chastisement of God’s word?