Sermons and Fellowship About God’s Word “Christ Does the Work of Judgment With the Truth” (V)
What do we gain by submitting to God’s judgment and chastisement? We gain the truth expressed by God, we see the complete revelation of God’s disposition; we see all that God has and is being displayed, revealed in Christ. So, if we experience the work of Christ of the last days, and by the end we come to know the practical God incarnate, then we will have seen the disposition of the God in heaven, all that the God in heaven has and is, in other words, His essence. All these things are revealed in the incarnate God and the words that He has expressed, and these are the fruits and effects that we gain from our faith in the practical God. Aren’t these rewards tremendous? They are tremendous. If you believe in the practical God and experience His work, if you believe in Him for two, three decades, and you gain the truth, the way, and the life, if you live out a meaningful life and become a witness for Christ of the last days, then this is the greatest honor in life. It is even more honorable and meaningful than being a president or a scientist. Is that not the case? As I fellowship and chat with you here today, many of you have become somewhat edified in your lives, and is this not something meaningful? What do I feel in my heart? That I have not lived in vain, that I am somewhat useful, that I have contributed my insignificant part in the work of God and therefore I have not lived in vain. This is what I feel in this regard. Also, we see that so many people are able to gather together to eat and drink God’s words in this way, and if this is not the work of the Holy Spirit, who else has this ability to have all of you listen, with such concentration and seriousness, to someone like me chatting? Could a president’s speech get so many people to listen to it with such seriousness? No, it could not, for people would only listen to such a speech on a superficial level. Today, God’s chosen people have gathered together like this, listening to the fellowship about God’s words with such earnestness to gain some practical edification. Is this not the work performed by the Holy Spirit? This is the enlightenment and illumination from the Holy Spirit, this is the result achieved by the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit has led me, this man, and trained this man so many years to achieve this. Of course I am not satisfied with that which I have gained. I want to gain even more, to strive to edify God’s chosen people even more. Isn’t that even better? We cannot compare ourselves with Christ, for Christ is God while we are human beings. But we must strive for better results. There are now many who have put a lot of effort into seeking the truth. These people are quite young, in their twenties, thirties, or forties. These people are eating and drinking God’s words as if they are dying of thirst and hunger, seeking the truth. After eight or ten years, the words that they speak and the duties that they fulfill will have different effects. Some of them might be as good as I am, while some might even be better than I am. If they have good qualities and do not go down the wrong path, then of course they will progress faster than me. Therefore, keep striving thus, do not rush, keep on striving every day, keep on seeking every day, keep on working hard every day, and slowly you will enter into the reality of the truth. Unwittingly, you will become principled in all things, you will no longer make the same mistakes again and again, you will overcome such mistakes. This is the way to progress quickly. Gradually, you will be able to communicate some reality of the truth. After a decade has passed, there will not be only a few people giving sermons and fellowshiping like I am doing now, there will be at least several dozens. And what will that look like? There will be at least several dozens, and wouldn’t it be great if there were several hundred? Do you have faith in this?
What characteristics do my sermons and fellowship have? First, my words are simple, I use vernacular, everyday language. Second, everything I say is words of real experience, they always contain reality, and they are never empty. Third, none of what I say uses grandiloquent words or phrases to compose a grand oration. What does the sermon of someone without truth focus on? Such a man always considers if what he says is grammatical, thinking of ways to gain the admiration of others through his splendid and lively language. Once he focuses on such things, then he ceases to be practical, is that not the case? Whenever you speak with the language of everyday life and real experience, you will have the reality of the truth. Remember this. If you have this reality, then you can be a witness for God. To speak is not to make an oration, to speak is to fellowship the truth; when you speak you must emphasize the reality. This is how one fulfills one’s duty, this is how one becomes God’s witness. And what about the experience of God’s work? You must always seek the truth, always fellowship your understanding of God’s words with words coming from your heart, and in this way, you will unwittingly understand many truths, rid yourself of much corruption, and gain clarity about many truths. Once you gain this clarity, that which you say will hold more weight, will no longer sound hollow, and will contain much less theorizing. Is this not the process? Once you are quite clear about the truth, the words you speak will also be more specific and complete, and your expression more accurate; if the truths that you understand are too shallow, you won’t be able to make your words more specific, or more complete, or more practical, even if you want to. Therefore, the depth of meaning of the words that you speak is directly related to the amount and depth of the truths that you have understood.
In order to edify and benefit others with your words, in order to give weight to your words, what problem must you first overcome? You must first overcome the problem of understanding the truth. If you do not understand the truth, then this wish and this desire of yours will never be realized. Some might say: “Even though I have understood the truth, yet I am still arrogant and self-conceited.” Pay no heed to that. Once you have understood the truth, whenever you reveal any arrogance and self-conceit, you will feel guilty in your heart, you will hate yourself, you will despise yourself, and gradually you will reveal less and less arrogance and self-conceit, until it disappears altogether. This is the way it goes. In short, once you have truly understood the truth, then your corruption will peel off and lessen bit by bit. Before you have understood the truth, that is, when all that you understand are theories, your corruption will not lessen, and you continue to reveal what you have revealed in the past. And when does the corruption that you reveal begin to lessen? When you have truly understood the truth, your heart will demand that “This time around, I must act according to the truth, for the truth is great.” Once your heart is clear, once your understanding of the truth is clear, the path to practice the truth will also be clear, and you will know how to practice. Once you truly understand the truth, you will feel bliss, excitement, peace, and joy in your heart when you practice the truth, and you will feel guilt, unease, pain, and regret in your heart when you go against the truth. This will be determined by your heart’s attitude toward the truth. You see, if you are a good person, and you kill someone, what do you feel afterward? Fear, pain, torment, which shows that you are a good person, that your committing murder is the transgression of a basically good person. What about when a devil kills someone? If he kills one person, then it is just one person who died; if he kills a hundred people, to him that is just another number, and it is no different from killing one person, for he feels nothing in his heart. If he has finished off all of his enemies, he would even feel joy, “Finally I have reached my goal!” How come the state of mind of a devil who has killed many people is so different from that of a truly good man who has killed only one person? Who can explain this? For there is a difference between their nature and essence. Some people have a good nature, they can feel their conscience, their conscience has not been buried, it has not completely disappeared, and therefore their conscience is doing its job. Once they are haunted by their conscience, they have no peace in their heart, it is filled with unease, fear, and pain, and these things turn into torment. Yet a devil is not affected by conscience. If you ask him about conscience, he will ask you how much a pound of conscience costs. That is why he feels no fear or guilt no matter how many people he has killed. He might even celebrate his misdeeds by making a toast. Look at those in the army, once they have won in battle, and the officer arrives, they say: “Let us feast! We have won!” They brag to each other how many enemies they have killed, making a sport out of who has killed more enemies. Such men are devils. After they gain power they show no magnanimity toward their enemies. They are all devils.
Some might also say: “While I do reveal corruption, how come I do not feel any guilt in my heart? I do not feel any guilt in my heart even though I have sinned.” Why is this? It shows that such a person does not like the truth, that the truth has not taken root in his heart, that it has no place in his heart. This shows that his nature is corrupt, for he feels nothing even when he has sinned. If he has truly understood the truth, if the truth has a place in his heart, then if he doesn’t act according to the truth again, he won’t be able to overcome his conscience. When a man feels his conscience very strongly, is that a good thing or a bad thing? That’s a good thing, for if you have a conscience, you can enter into the reality of the truth. If you have no conscience, your whole life is done for, for you shall never pursue the truth. Can we say that those without conscience have no humanity? The lack of conscience is the lack of humanity. What is conscience? It is man’s spirit. Some people have no conscience, because they have no spirit of man. A man who has conscience also has humanity, so a man without conscience has no humanity. Therefore, for many, once they have sinned, once they act against the truth, they are haunted by their conscience, they feel unease, they pray to God and they repent. These are the people that can be saved. When a man does not feel anything from his conscience, then this man is done for, he is a dead man, a living corpse, a man that cannot be saved. Is this not the case? Some are moved after reading God’s words of judgment. They shed tears, which shows that these people have the spirit of man, and the Holy Spirit is performing work on them. For some, regardless of how much they read God’s word they are not enlightened or illuminated by the Holy Spirit, and they are not moved and shed no tears regardless of what they read; that’s the trouble. Some are able to ponder in their heart regardless of what words of God they are reading and gain results from that. Some of God’s words are the truth regarding visions, and once they heard that these are the truth regarding visions, they ponder these words and they are illuminated and enlightened. When they read a certain passage of God’s words, they are able to know which aspect of the truth this passage relates to, and after some pondering, they are again illuminated and enlightened. They are able to gain results and be illuminated whenever they read God’s words. Such people will certainly receive salvation and be perfected, for their spiritual condition is normal. Some read God’s words and these words appear to be no more than black script on white paper to them. They have no understanding after reading such words, they are not moved, they are not illuminated, and they have not gained anything. Such people are the same as those new believers, for their heart is not quiet before God, their heart has yet to live in God’s words, it has yet to enter into God’s words. These people are still outside of God’s words, and they are still very far from entering into God’s words. When you read God’s words, if you were to say: “These are the words spoken to me by the God that I believe in. Ah, it is so wonderful that I got to read these words today; I have gained so much, I have been enlightened and illuminated. Today, when I was reading God’s words, I truly saw God performing His work on me. God has not abandoned me. I am indeed attending a feast.” Once you have such feelings it shows that you are someone who is living inside God’s words, that you are one of God’s chosen people. If your heart has yet to enter into God’s words, if you have yet to live inside God’s words, and if you always feel like you are reading an ordinary book when reading God’s words, and that it is no different from reading man’s words, then this is very troublesome indeed! You have not been quiet before God for a long time, and your heart is still in the mundane world.
For some, once I have fellowshiped about God’s words, they become weary: “Why am I not able to understand? I am not listening to this any longer, this is not interesting. I might as well listen to secular songs and music.” What kind of a person is this? They belong to the mundane world, their heart is not in God’s house. They do not hear any of these most practical words and most practical things that are being fellowshiped by God’s family. None of such things have penetrated their heart, and this shall not end well for them, for it is difficult to say whether or not they can be saved. Their heart remains in the mundane world, it has yet to return to God’s house, it has not returned to the presence of God. Aren’t such men like homeless drifters? They are drifters, with hearts that drift. Some people, once they listen to my fellowship of the truth, become resistant. They say: “I am not listening to this! This is not interesting, I am not listening to this!” Who are these people? They have yet to enter the stream of work performed by the Holy Spirit, they are appalled by the fellowship of the truth, and that is troublesome. These people are also living outside God’s words, they are devils. If they are unable to receive anything after listening to several years of sermons, then that is the end for them, they shall be eliminated. Look at those in God’s house who can be saved, they are able to gain entrance through the sermons and fellowship from above. These sermons and fellowship have entered their heart, they are thirsty and hungry for more, and these are people who have entered the stream of work performed by the Holy Spirit. If some are unable to gain entrance by listening to the sermons and fellowship from above, if these sermons and fellowship cannot enter their hearts, if they become resistant and produce conceptions, if they don’t feel any interest, then what are they? Even though they believe in Almighty God, they have yet to enter the stream of work performed by the Holy Spirit, therefore they are living outside God’s words. Is that not the case? Those living outside of God’s words, while they are in the Church of Almighty God in name they are cheating themselves, and they do not count. Therefore, in any church or any gathering, those who have accepted the sermons into their hearts, who also fulfill their duties to the best of their abilities, these people will be saved, these people will be protected when catastrophe arrives, and they will survive. If someone has not accepted the sermons into their hearts and has not entered into the stream of the Holy Spirit’s work, they are outside God’s word and the work performed by the Holy Spirit. They are only in the Church of Almighty God in name. God calls them unbelievers who are outside of God’s words. These people belong with the unbelievers. Therefore, if you were asked how many people in your church can be saved, simply take a look. Those who have accepted the sermons into their hearts and entered into the stream, regardless of what sermons they listen to, they submit, and they agree with them, they have complete understanding of the sermons, they share a common language with God’s chosen people from God’s house. These are the people that shall be saved, these are the people that have received the work performed by the Holy Spirit. Some might then say: “That is not for certain. Although I am weary of listening to the sermons, and I have conceptions and do not obey, yet I read God’s words as if I am dying of thirst and hunger. I am serious in reading God’s words.” Does this make sense? If you are unable to understand the sermons, how are you able to understand God’s words? Who are you trying to fool? Do you think that others are totally ignorant? Sermons and fellowship are based on God’s words, they come from the experience of God’s words, and they fit with God’s words. God’s words are profound truths, while the man’s words are spoken in everyday language derived from everyday experiences. The everyday language is the language that the man uses to translate God’s words, the language of witnessing, the language of experiencing. If you can’t even understand these words spoken in everyday language, it is impossible that you will understand God’s words. And so could you really understand God’s words? If God’s words are like grain, then my sermons and fellowship are milk, milk for babies to suckle. If you cannot even drink milk, how can you eat grain? Who are you trying to fool? You are lying through your teeth. If you are really saying that you read God’s words as if you are dying of thirst and hunger, why don’t you give us a short fellowship so that we can all hear what you are able to reveal? Do you really hunger and thirst for God’s words? Are there unbelievers in God’s house? What are the manifestations of this kind of unbeliever? First, being unable to take God’s word to heart. They do not read it. Look at that book of God’s words that they own, always sitting there, gathering dust, rarely opened. Second, not listening to the sermons and fellowship, becoming weary and resisting whenever they are listening to them, even releasing their own conceptions, “I do not listen to the man, I only listen to God,” or even giving lofty speeches loaded with theories, filled with official-sounding words. Aren’t these people who deceive others? You are unable to accept man’s fellowship, fellowship from the man used by the Holy Spirit, but you are able to directly ingest God’s words?! Are you not lying through your teeth? Therefore, have both feet on the ground when experiencing God’s words. You should be able to gain some illumination from pondering God’s words; you should quiet your heart praying and seeking the truth before God. From reading God’s words, you should be able to understand the background from which God has spoken such words, the purpose of God in saying such words, the meanings behind such words, what is to be gained and understood by men from such words. If you have gained results from all this then you have been illuminated from reading God’s words, you have understood the truth, and you have attained real results.