Escape From the Influence of Darkness, and You Will Be Gained by God
What is the influence of darkness? This so-called “influence of darkness” is the influence of Satan’s deception, corruption, binding, and controlling of people; the influence of Satan is an influence that has an aura of death. All those who live under the domain of Satan are doomed to perish. How can you escape from the influence of darkness after gaining faith in God? Once you have sincerely prayed to God, you turn your heart to Him completely, at which point your heart is moved by God’s Spirit. You grow willing to give yourself to Him completely, and at this moment, you will have escaped from the influence of darkness. If everything man does is that which pleases God and in line with His requirements, then he is someone who lives within the words of God and under His care and protection. If people cannot practice the words of God, if they are always attempting to fool Him, acting in a perfunctory manner toward Him, and not believing in His existence—then these are all people living under the influence of darkness. Men who have not received God’s salvation are living under the domain of Satan; that is, they all live under the influence of darkness. Those who do not believe in God are living under the domain of Satan. Even those who believe in God’s existence might not necessarily be living in His light, for those who believe in Him may not actually be living within His words nor be able to submit to God. Man is limited to believing in God, and because he does not have knowledge of God, he is still living within the old rules, among dead words, with a life that is dark and uncertain, neither fully purified by God nor completely gained by Him. Therefore, while it goes without saying that those who do not believe in God are living under the influence of darkness, even those who do believe in God may still be under its influence, for they lack the work of the Holy Spirit. Those who have not received God’s grace or mercy and those who cannot see the work of the Holy Spirit are all living under the influence of darkness; and most of the time, so are people who merely enjoy the grace of God yet do not know Him. If a man believes in God yet spends most of his life living under the influence of darkness, then this man’s existence has lost its meaning—and what need is there to mention people who do not believe that God exists?
All those who cannot accept God’s work, or who accept God’s work but are unable to meet His demands, are people living under the influence of darkness. Only those who pursue the truth and are capable of meeting God’s demands will receive blessings from Him, and only they will escape from the influence of darkness. Those who have not been released, who are always controlled by certain things, and who are unable to give their hearts to God are people under Satan’s bondage who live within an aura of death. Those who are unfaithful to their own duties, who are unfaithful to God’s commission, and who fail to perform their functions at the church are people living under the influence of darkness. Those who deliberately disturb the church life, who intentionally sow discord between their brothers and sisters, or who form cliques are people who live deeper still under the influence of darkness, in Satan’s bondage. Those who have an abnormal relationship with God, who always have extravagant desires, who always want to gain an advantage, and who never seek transformation in their dispositions are people who live under the influence of darkness. Those who are always sloppy and never serious in their practice of the truth, and who do not seek to meet the will of God, seeking instead only to satisfy their own flesh, are also people who are living under the influence of darkness, shrouded by death. Those who engage in crookedness and deception when working for God, who deal with God in a perfunctory manner, who cheat God, and who always make plans for themselves are people living under the influence of darkness. All those who cannot sincerely love God, who do not pursue the truth, and who do not focus on transforming their dispositions are people living under the influence of darkness.
If you wish to be praised by God, then you must first escape from Satan’s dark influence, opening your heart to God and turning it toward Him completely. Would God praise the things you are doing now? Have you turned your heart to God? Have the things you have done been what God requires of you? Are they in line with the truth? Examine yourself at all times and concentrate on the eating and drinking of God’s words; lay out your heart before Him, love Him with sincerity, and devotedly expend yourself for God. People who do this will surely receive God’s praise. All those who believe in God, yet do not pursue the truth, have no way of escaping from Satan’s influence. All those who do not live their lives with honesty, who behave one way in front of others but another way behind their backs, who give the appearance of humility, patience, and love though their essence is insidious, cunning, and without loyalty to God—such people are typical representatives of those who live under the influence of darkness; they are the ilk of the serpent. Those who only ever believe in God for their own benefit, who are self-righteous and haughty, who show off, and who protect their own status are people who love Satan and oppose the truth. These people resist God and belong entirely to Satan. Those who are not attentive to God’s burdens, who do not serve God wholeheartedly, who are always concerned with their own self-interests and the interests of their families, who are unable to abandon everything to expend themselves for God, and who never live by His words are people outside of His words. Such people cannot receive God’s praise.
When God created men, it was so that they could enjoy His abundance and genuinely love Him; in this way, men would live in His light. Today, as for all those who cannot love God, are not attentive to His burdens, are unable to give their hearts fully to Him, are not able to take His heart as their own, and cannot shoulder His burdens as their own—God’s light does not shine upon any such men, and they therefore are all living under the influence of darkness. They are on a path that is diametrically opposed to God’s will, and there is not a shred of truth in anything they do. They are wallowing in the mire with Satan; they are people who live under the influence of darkness. If you can often eat and drink the words of God and be attentive to His will and put His words into practice, then you belong to God, and you are a person who lives within His words. Are you willing to escape from the domain of Satan and live in the light of God? If you live within the words of God, then the Holy Spirit will have an opportunity to perform His work; if you live under Satan’s influence, then you will give the Holy Spirit no such opportunity. The work that the Holy Spirit performs on men, the light that He shines on them, and the confidence that He gives to them last for only a moment; if people are not careful and do not pay attention, then the work of the Holy Spirit will pass them by. If men live within the words of God, then the Holy Spirit will be with them and perform work on them. If men do not live within the words of God, then they live in Satan’s bonds. If men live with corrupt dispositions, then they do not have the presence or the work of the Holy Spirit. If you live within the boundaries of the words of God, and if you live in the state that God requires, then you are one who belongs to Him, and His work will be performed on you; if you are not living within the boundaries of God’s requirements, but living instead under the domain of Satan, then you are decidedly living within Satan’s corruption. Only by living within the words of God and giving your heart to Him can you meet His requirements; you must do as God says, making His utterances the foundation of your existence and the reality of your life; only then will you belong to God. If you actually practice in accordance with God’s will, He will perform work on you, and you will then live under His blessings, in the light of His countenance; you will grasp the work that the Holy Spirit performs and feel the joy of God’s presence.
To escape from the influence of darkness, you must first be loyal to God and eager at heart to pursue the truth; only then can you have a correct state. Living in a correct state is the prerequisite for escaping from the influence of darkness. Not having a correct state is not being loyal to God, and not being eager at heart to seek the truth; and escaping from the influence of darkness is out of the question. My words are the basis of man’s escape from dark influences, and people who cannot practice in accordance with My words will not be able to escape from the bonds of the influence of darkness. To live in a correct state is to live under the guidance of the words of God, to live in a state of loyalty to God, to live in a state of seeking the truth, to live in the reality of sincerely expending oneself for God’s sake, and to live in a state of genuinely loving God. Those who live in these states and within this reality will slowly transform as they enter into the depth of the truth, and they will transform as the work goes deeper; and in the end, they will certainly become people who are gained by God and who love God genuinely. Those who have escaped from the influence of darkness can gradually ascertain God’s will and gradually come to understand it, eventually becoming confidants of God. They not only harbor no notions about God and do not rebel against Him, but they also detest even more those notions and rebellion that possessed them before, and genuine love for God arises in their hearts. People who are unable to escape from the influence of darkness are all completely occupied with the flesh and full of rebellion; their hearts are filled with human notions and philosophies for living, as well as their own intentions and deliberations. What God requires is a singular love from man; what He requires is that man be occupied by His words and by a heart full of love for Him. To live within the words of God, to search within His words for that which they should seek, to love God for His words, to run for His words, to live for His words—these are the goals that man should strive to achieve. Everything must be built on God’s words; only then will man be able to meet God’s requirements. If man is not equipped with the words of God, then he is nothing but a maggot possessed by Satan! Weigh this: How much of the word of God has taken root inside of you? In which things are you living in accordance with His words? In which things have you not been living in accordance with them? If God’s words have not completely taken hold of you, then what exactly occupies your heart? In your everyday life, are you being controlled by Satan, or are you being occupied by the words of God? Are His words the foundation upon which your prayers are based? Have you come out of your negative state through the enlightenment of the words of God? To take God’s words as the foundation of your existence—this is what everyone should enter into. If His words are not present in your life, then you are living under the influence of darkness, you are rebelling against God, you are resisting Him, and you are dishonoring His name. Such people’s belief in God is pure mischief and disturbance. How much of your life has been lived in accordance with His words? How much of your life has not been lived in accordance with His words? How much of what the word of God has required of you has been fulfilled in you? How much has been lost in you? Have you looked closely at such things?
Escaping from the influence of darkness requires both the work of the Holy Spirit and man’s dedicated cooperation. Why do I say that man is not on the right track? People who are on the right track can first give their hearts to God. This is a task that takes a very long time to enter into, for humankind has always lived under the influence of darkness, and has been under Satan’s bondage for thousands of years. Therefore, this entry cannot be achieved in a mere day or two. I raised this issue today so that men can gain a grasp of their own state; once man can discern what the influence of darkness is and what it means to live in the light, then entry becomes much easier. This is because you must know what Satan’s influence is before you can escape from it; only after that will you have a way to cast it off. As for what to do thereafter, that is humans’ own business. Enter into everything from a positive aspect, and never wait passively. Only in this way can you be gained by God.