Question 8: How exactly does God perform His judgment work to save and cleanse mankind in the last days?
Answer: Currently, all those who seek and study the true way want to know how Almighty God does judgment work in the last days. Pertaining to this aspect of the truth, Almighty God has expressed ample words. Let us look at a few passages of His words:
“God’s work in the present incarnation is to express His disposition primarily through chastisement and judgment. Building on this foundation, He brings more truth to man and points out to him more ways of practice, thereby achieving His objective of conquering man and saving him from his own corrupt disposition. This is what lies behind the work of God in the Age of Kingdom” (Preface to The Word Appears in the Flesh)
“In the last days, Christ uses a variety of truths to teach man, to expose the essence of man, and to dissect the words and deeds of man. These words comprise various truths, such as man’s duty, how man should obey God, how man should be loyal to God, how man ought to live out normal humanity, as well as the wisdom and the disposition of God, and so on. These words are all directed at the essence of man and his corrupt disposition. In particular, the words that expose how man spurns God are spoken in regard to how man is an embodiment of Satan, and an enemy force against God. In undertaking His work of judgment, God does not simply make clear the nature of man with a few words; He exposes, deals with, and prunes over the long term. These methods of exposure, dealing, and pruning cannot be substituted with ordinary words, but with the truth of which man is utterly bereft. Only methods such as these can be called judgment; only through judgment of this kind can man be subdued and thoroughly convinced into submission to God, and moreover gain true knowledge of God. What the work of judgment brings about is man’s understanding of the true face of God and the truth about his own rebelliousness. The work of judgment allows man to gain much understanding of the will of God, of the purpose of God’s work, and of the mysteries that are incomprehensible to him. It also allows man to recognize and know his corrupt substance and the roots of his corruption, as well as to discover the ugliness of man. These effects are all brought about by the work of judgment, for the substance of this work is actually the work of opening up the truth, the way, and the life of God to all those who have faith in Him. This work is the work of judgment done by God” (“Christ Does the Work of Judgment With the Truth” in The Word Appears in the Flesh).
“The work done by God during this age is chiefly the provision of the words for the life of man, the disclosure of the substance of the nature of man and the corrupt disposition of man, the elimination of religious conceptions, feudal thinking, outdated thinking, as well as the knowledge and culture of man. This must all be laid bare and cleansed away through the words of God. In the last days, God uses words, and not signs and wonders, to make man perfect. He uses His words to expose man, to judge man, to chastise man, and to make man perfect, so that in the words of God, man comes to see the wisdom and loveliness of God, and comes to understand the disposition of God, so that through the words of God, man beholds the deeds of God” (“Knowing God’s Work Today” in The Word Appears in the Flesh).
“God has many means of perfecting man. He employs all manner of environments to deal with the corrupt disposition of man, and uses various things to lay man bare; in one regard He deals with man, in another He lays man bare, and in another He reveals man, digging out and revealing the ‘mysteries’ in the depths of man’s heart, and showing man his nature by revealing many of his states. God perfects man through many methods—through revelation, dealing, refinement, and chastisement—so that man may know that God is practical” (“Only Those Who Focus on Practice Can Be Perfected” in The Word Appears in the Flesh)
When God works to judge and cleanse corrupt mankind in the last days, He uses many aspects of truths to judge and expose man’s satanic nature that disobeys and resists God, and show man God’s holy and righteous disposition tolerating no offense. Through the judgment of God’s word, man is able to clearly see the truth of their deep corruption by Satan, and really get to know God’s holy essence and His righteous disposition intolerant of offense, having reverence for God. They thus escape the bondage and control of sin, and achieve cleanness and God’s salvation. When we read Almighty God’s word, we can feel that God is judging and exposing us face-to-face, and can all feel that God’s word, like a double-edged sword, judges and exposes our disobedient and God-resisting satanic nature. We see clearly the truth that we’ve been deeply corrupted by Satan, that our nature is arrogant, deceitful, selfish and despicable. Although we believe in God we cannot let God be exalted, and we don’t have a heart that fears God. We often lie and deceive God, deceive other people. We believe in God but worship and follow man. Once we have status, we even show off ourselves and build ourselves up, so that people will listen to and obey us. We can even split from God and confront Him, setting up independent kingdoms. When we encounter natural or man-made disasters, we even complain about God and resist God. When God’s new work doesn’t match our notions, we will even act like the Jewish Pharisees back then, making up conclusions about God and judging Him as we please. If we expend a little, do some work or suffer a little for God, we will act all self-important and flaunt our seniority, demanding grace and blessings from God. As soon as our desires are not satisfied, we will act negative and slow down or quit our work, etc. We can see that our corruption by Satan runs too deep! We have not lived out the image of human beings at all! We are essentially the embodiment of Satan! Facing the truth of our corruption by Satan, we are all deeply ashamed and extremely remorseful, and we have appreciated that God’s holiness cannot be defiled and that His righteous disposition cannot be offended. We cannot help but fall down before God, regretting our evil ways, despising our satanic nature, and repenting to God. We are willing to accept God’s judgment and chastisement, perform our duty as created creatures, and obey everything God has orchestrated and arranged. This is the result of the judgment of God’s word on His chosen people!
We all know after experiencing God’s judgment and chastisement that God not only uses His word to judge and expose us. He also, targeting our actual situations, sets up various environments, people and things to test and reveal us, concretely prune and deal with us, discipline us. Through actually experiencing God’s judgment and chastisement, dealing and pruning, we see that our nature is too arrogant, too obstinate. If we don’t receive such judgment and chastisement, our disposition would not be able to achieve change. For instance, sometimes we don’t practice the truth while fulfilling our duty. Through our arrogant nature, we do whatever we please, exalt ourselves, and build up ourselves to impress people, making our spirits dark inside and unable to sense God’s presence, and our hearts hurt and refined. At this time, God’s word will reproach us inside. Sometimes God will set up people and things to deal with and prune us, so that we will return before God to reflect and know ourselves, and unconsciously recognize our arrogant ambitions of wanting to control and possess people. When we see our own nature is that of the archangel, our hearts cannot help but tremble in fear. We feel that God’s disposition is unoffendable, and fall down before God to pray and repent to Him. At this moment, God’s words will comfort us, encourage us, and make us understand all the pain and effort of God’s salvation of mankind, so we can not be passive and weak, have confidence to pursue the truth, and seek dispositional change. After experiencing God’s actual dealing and pruning, discipline and chastening many times, our arrogant disposition achieves change, we become much more low-key in fulfilling our duty and not as insolent as before, and can take the initiative to open up and recognize our own corruption, consciously exalt God, bear witness to God, and feel that living like this puts our heart at ease and is enjoyable. God’s salvation work really is too practical! It is through actually experiencing such judgment and chastisement from God that we now have real knowledge of God’s righteous disposition, and know what kind of person God loves and what kind of person God despises, what kind of person he would save and what kind of person he would eliminate, what kind of person he would bless and what kind of person he would curse, and have also gotten to know that God indeed inspects everything and dominates all. God is right beside us, concretely guiding us, saving us, making us appreciate that the truth expressed by God is His judgment and chastisement of us corrupt mankind. It’s inspection, it’s cleansing. With fear of God in our hearts and changes to our corrupt disposition, we can seek the truth when we run into things, practice the truth, and obey God, gradually living out the likeness of a real man. The change we have been able to achieve as of today is completely the result of experiencing God’s judgment work of the last days. It is God’s immense love and salvation for us.
Excerpted from the movie screenplay of Song of Victory