Sermons and Fellowship About God’s Word “What Do You Know of Faith?”
How is truth pursued in doing our duty? Do you know how the pursuit of truth is carried out? Seek the truth in all things. Whatever difficulty you face, you should seek the truth and act according to principle. You should communicate the principle of truth. When you communicate together, you’ll find a way to work according to this principle. When the difficulty is resolved, everyone will say, “Oh, I feel so assured.” Where does this feeling of peace and assurance come from? Can it be bought with money? No, it comes only through putting truth into practice. In carrying out the truth, in doing things according to principle, the mind is particularly at peace and particularly at ease: “I used not to know what happiness was. This is what happiness is.” And so it is. This peaceful, assured feeling is so good to have; it is a blessing from God, something that God gives us to enjoy. God says, “You put the truth into practice, and I give you a feeling of peace and assurance. I let you enjoy it. When you bear witness for Me and have true testimony, I make your heart happier and you enjoy it more.” Surely this is true happiness in life! So now with many people, the more they loyally perform their duty the more they enjoy it. They don’t feel tired, they feel at peace and assured. When I dealt strictly with a person, someone else saw it and thought, “Oh, he was dealt with harshly, and he can still be obedient. How come I can’t be obedient? Look at his stature, he really can be obedient.” The person suffered a lot from this, thinking it over and reflecting, “What did I do wrong? How was it that I didn’t practice the truth? I was really confused, how could I have done that?” He prayed to God, prayed always, and then he understood: “Although people understand some of the truth, their life disposition has not actually changed much. So they can still rebel against God, they can still go against the truth, and they still do what they like. I understand, I don’t have a testimony of change in my life disposition. For a while I thought I had changed a little. My approach to things actually had changed a little, so my life disposition had definitely also changed. Through all this dealing, this big blow, I have realized I haven’t really changed. I still have to submissively and honestly accept God’s judgment and chastisement, and still have to keep my feet on the ground and pursue the truth, so that I can perform my duty adequately!” With this effort, and with a period of experience, he saw some results, “This time when I did my duty, I felt it not hard to practice the truth; this time when I faced difficulty in doing my duty, I was able to seek the truth, and able to forsake the flesh. I didn’t depend on my own notions and imaginations, and I didn’t have faith in myself. I obeyed the truth, and I followed people who said what was right.” In this, his mind experienced the peace and pleasure given by God, His assurance and comfort. “Oh, my life has grown. This time I forsook my flesh and practiced the truth, and this has brought me greater peace and pleasure. This has been an experience of growth in life. It wasn’t easy, but worthwhile! This way of dealing with me was the judgment and chastisement of God; it was the greater love of God, a love that is more real. God loves me so much, He has not rejected me. He has not put me aside, uncaring!” He went on with his experience like this. After a few years, obeying God has become easy for him, and it feels painful to go against God. Obeying God is happiness, it is peace, while not obeying God means pain. So it is that there will tend to be an increasing obedience to God and a decrease in rebellion against God. Isn’t this an improvement in life? And when it gets to this stage, has his life disposition changed? It has changed indeed, as he practices the truth more and rarely acts willfully according to his physical desires. This is the evidence of change in his life disposition. Does this person in doing his duty still include his own personal plans? Is there some sort of a deal, or an intention to receive blessings? No. All of it is completely to satisfy God, to love God, to fulfill the duty of a creation of God. Isn’t everything he does, the duty that he performs, a true testimony? If the devil there wants to make an accusation, God will say: “Who are you accusing? Can’t you see how well this person is doing his duty in this way? He is loyally doing his duty for Me, he is doing his duty to be as a person should be, surely you can’t deny that?” The devil Satan ponders: “It’s truly the case. Whatever this person says, I can see that it is entirely for God.” Finally, Satan says, “I don’t dare to accuse this person, and even if I do accuse him it will fail, and I will be shamed, so I won’t accuse him.” Or maybe this person will escape being tested. If the devil finds that what he says secretly reveals his personal intention, and he is getting personal benefit, doing a deal with God, then the devil still dares to accuse him. If the devil still dares to accuse him, then he will be tested again. Is this true or not?
Now we see clearly, what it is after all to bear witness for God. Can witness be expressed in words? To express it in words is to bear witness; if you do not have words to express yourself but your heart prays to God, it is still testimony. What you do, the duty you perform, is in itself testimony also. These three points form one line, they all have an equal sign, and doesn’t this make up your bright and resounding witness? Yes, it does. So what is bearing witness to God actually? Is it clear now? Can you express this in the right words? Some people have the right idea in their mind but they can’t put it into words. They are afraid it might come out as dogma, cant or exaggeration that might displease God. So they think, “I simply transform it into practical action and faithfully perform my duty, expressing myself through doing my duty.” This is better, isn’t it? If we do our duty to God and bear witness, then why does disaster or tribulation come sometimes? What should we think about this? Does this disaster or this tribulation come from God? It comes from God, God has allowed it, but sometimes there is an accusation from Satan. If this trial comes, if this kind of test comes to clarify this matter, what should we do? At this time God will observe what we do, what we say, and how we pray, so will Satan, to see whether we are loyal to God and whether we belong to God. There will be a dispute about it in the spiritual realm, is this not the case? Wasn’t Job’s case a polemic in the spiritual world? God said, “Job is a man who fears God and shuns evil, he is a blameless man.” Satan disagreed, “No, I see this differently in such and such a way.” As soon as God heard this accusation, He said, “He is in your domain, you can test him, I allow it, but you cannot have his life.” In the spiritual world there was this matter, and in the material world and in the world of man, Job’s trials began. So whatever comes on us, comes among us, it is presided, arranged, and permitted by God. How should we look at such things? God had no work of the last days at the time of Job, and He had not made known so many truths, so Job was part of the age of faith in the vague God. Job faced trials without being able to guess at God’s purpose. Yet he was still able to stand in witness. In that age, Job’s testimony was the highest. That was not simple. But now we can say that we are in a different age to that of Job, we have so many truths that God has made known, and God has revealed so many real situations and mysteries, whether in the world of humankind or the spiritual world, and God has spoken of the background of the spiritual war. If the testimony we give cannot be higher than the testimony of Job, that will be not right. So today if we face some trials and tribulations, how will you see them? This is the time that most reveals people. When normally you face something, God is not serious with you. But look at the time when Job was under trial: God was already watching him beforehand, as if He had set up cameras and tape recorder, waiting for Job to speak, to see how he would bear witness and what he would say. Satan was also looking, to see if it could win the bet. When a trial comes upon man, it reveals him most. The whole spiritual world is watching! Some people think: God may be in heaven looking, He does not notice or care about ordinary things. Maybe He takes a look by chance, it doesn’t matter. We can do whatever we want to do, eat whatever we want to eat, say whatever we want to say. Do people like this have fear of God? They really don’t. You take the things of the spiritual world simply. Doesn’t God observe the unseemly things done behind people’s back? He observes everything. So the things you do behind people’s backs, the thoughts you have in your mind, the things you say to people secretly—all of these are involved in your witness. Listen carefully, and understand!