2. Why it is said that corrupt mankind is more in need of the salvation of the incarnate God
Relevant Words of God:
God’s saving of man is not done directly using the method of the Spirit and the identity of the Spirit, for His Spirit can neither be touched nor seen by man, neither can man draw near. If He tried to save man directly using the perspective of the Spirit, man would be unable to receive His salvation. If God did not put on the outward form of a created man, there would be no way for man to receive this salvation. For man has no way of approaching Him, much as no one was able to go near the cloud of Jehovah. Only by becoming a created human being, that is, only by putting His word into the body of flesh that He is about to become, can He personally work the word into all who follow Him. Only then can man personally see and hear His word, and moreover enter into possession of His word, and by this means come to be fully saved. If God did not become flesh, no one of flesh and blood would be able to receive such great salvation, nor would a single person be saved. If the Spirit of God worked directly in the midst of mankind, all humanity would be struck down, or else, with no way of coming into touch with God, they would be completely carried away captive by Satan. The first incarnation was to redeem man from sin, to redeem him by means of the fleshly body of Jesus, that is, He saved man from the cross, but the corrupt satanic disposition still remained within man. The second incarnation is no longer to serve as a sin offering but rather to save fully those who were redeemed from sin. This is done so that those who have been forgiven may be delivered from their sins and made fully clean, and by attaining a changed disposition, break free of Satan’s influence of darkness and return before the throne of God. Only in this way can man be fully sanctified. After the Age of Law had come to an end, and beginning with the Age of Grace, God began the work of salvation, which continues until the last days when, in judging and chastising the human race for their rebelliousness, He will completely purify mankind. Only then will God conclude His work of salvation and enter into rest. Therefore, in the three stages of work, only twice has God become flesh to carry out His work among man Himself. That is because only one in the three stages of work is to guide men in leading their lives, while the other two consist of the work of salvation. Only by becoming flesh can God live alongside man, experience the suffering of the world, and live in a normal body of flesh. Only in this way can He supply men with the practical way that they need as created beings. It is through the incarnation of God that man receives full salvation from God, and not directly from heaven in answer to his prayers. For, man being of flesh and blood, he has no way of seeing the Spirit of God, much less of approaching His Spirit. All that man can come into contact with is God’s incarnate flesh, and only by means of this is man able to grasp all the ways and all the truths and receive full salvation.
—The Word, Vol. 1. The Appearance and Work of God. The Mystery of the Incarnation (4)
God became flesh because the object of His work is not the spirit of Satan, or any incorporeal thing, but man, who is of the flesh and has been corrupted by Satan. It is precisely because the flesh of man has been corrupted that God has made fleshly man the object of His work; moreover, because man is the object of corruption, God has made man the only object of His work throughout all the stages of His salvation work. Man is a mortal being, is of flesh and blood, and God is the only One who can save man. In this way, God must become a flesh that possesses the same attributes as man in order to do His work, so that His work might achieve better effects. God must become flesh to do His work precisely because man is of the flesh, and incapable of overcoming sin or divesting himself of the flesh. Though the essence and identity of God incarnate differ greatly from the essence and identity of man, yet His appearance is identical to that of man; He has the appearance of a normal person, and leads the life of a normal person, and those who see Him can discern no difference to a normal person. This normal appearance and normal humanity are sufficient for Him to do His divine work in normal humanity. His flesh allows Him to do His work in normal humanity, and helps Him do His work among man, and His normal humanity, moreover, helps Him carry out the work of salvation among man. Although His normal humanity has caused much tumult among man, such tumult has not impacted the normal effects of His work. In short, the work of His normal flesh is of supreme benefit to man. Though most people do not accept His normal humanity, His work can still achieve results, and these results are achieved thanks to His normal humanity. Of this there is no doubt. From His work in the flesh, man gains ten times or dozens of times more things than the notions that exist among man about His normal humanity, and such notions shall all ultimately be swallowed by His work. And the effect that His work has achieved, which is to say, the knowledge that man has toward Him, far outweighs man’s notions about Him. There is no way to imagine or measure the work He does in the flesh, for His flesh is unlike that of any fleshly human being; although the outer shell is identical, the essence is not the same. His flesh engenders many notions among man about God, yet His flesh can also allow man to acquire much knowledge, and can even conquer any person possessed of a similar outer shell. For He is not merely human, but is God with the outer shell of a human, and none can completely fathom or understand Him. An invisible and intangible God is loved and welcomed by all. If God is just a Spirit that is invisible to man, it is so easy for man to believe in God. People can give free rein to their imaginations, can choose whatever image they like as God’s image to please themselves and make themselves feel happy. In this way, people may do whatever their own God most likes and wishes for them to do, without any scruples. What is more, people believe that no one is more loyal and devout than they toward God, and that all others are Gentile dogs, and disloyal to God. It can be said that this is what is sought by those whose belief in God is vague and based on doctrine; what they seek is all much the same, with little variation. It is merely that the images of God in their imaginations are different, yet their essence is actually the same.
—The Word, Vol. 1. The Appearance and Work of God. Corrupt Mankind Is More in Need of the Salvation of the Incarnate God
Man is untroubled by his carefree belief in God and believes in God however he pleases. This is one of the “rights and freedoms of man,” with which no one may interfere, for people believe in their own God and not the God of anyone else; it is their own private property, and almost everyone possesses this kind of private property. People regard this property as a precious treasure, but to God there is nothing more lowly or worthless, for there is no clearer indication of opposition to God than this private property of man. It is because of the work of God incarnate that God becomes a flesh with a tangible form, and who can be seen and touched by man. He is not a formless Spirit, but a flesh that man can see and come into contact with. However, most of the Gods people believe in are fleshless deities that are formless, which are also of a free form. In this way, the incarnate God has become the enemy of most of those who believe in God, and those who cannot accept the fact of God’s incarnation have, similarly, become the adversaries of God. Man is possessed of notions not because of his way of thinking, or because of his rebelliousness, but because of this private property of man. It is because of this property that most people die, and it is this vague God that cannot be touched, cannot be seen, and does not exist in reality that ruins man’s life. Man’s life is forfeited not by the incarnate God, much less by the God of heaven, but by the God of man’s own imagining. The only reason that the incarnate God has come into the flesh is because of the needs of corrupt man. It is because of the needs of man, not of God, and all His sacrifices and sufferings are for the sake of mankind, and not for the benefit of God Himself. There are no pros and cons or rewards for God; He shall not reap some future harvest, but that which was originally owed to Him. All that He does and sacrifices for mankind is not so that He might gain great rewards, but purely for the sake of mankind. Though God’s work in the flesh involves many unimaginable difficulties, the effects that it ultimately achieves far exceed those of the work done directly by the Spirit. The work of the flesh entails much hardship, and the flesh cannot possess the same great identity as the Spirit, He cannot carry out the same supernatural deeds as the Spirit, much less can He possess the same authority as the Spirit. Yet the essence of the work done by this unremarkable flesh is far superior to that of the work done directly by the Spirit, and this flesh Himself is the answer to the needs of all mankind. For those to be saved, the use value of the Spirit is far inferior to that of the flesh: The work of the Spirit is able to cover the entire universe, across all mountains, rivers, lakes, and oceans, yet the work of the flesh more effectively relates to every person with whom He comes into contact. What is more, God’s flesh with tangible form can better be understood and trusted by man, and can further deepen man’s knowledge of God, and can leave upon man a more profound impression of the actual deeds of God. The work of the Spirit is shrouded in mystery; it is difficult for mortal beings to fathom, and even harder for them to see, and so they can only rely on hollow imaginings. The work of the flesh, however, is normal, and based on reality, and possessed of rich wisdom, and is a fact that can be beheld by the physical eye of man; man can personally experience the wisdom of the work of God, and has no need to employ his bountiful imagination. This is the accuracy and real value of the work of God in the flesh. The Spirit can only do things that are invisible to man and difficult for him to imagine, for example the enlightenment of the Spirit, the moving of the Spirit, and the guidance of the Spirit, but for man who has a mind, these do not provide any clear meaning. They only provide a moving, or a broad meaning, and cannot give an instruction with words. The work of God in the flesh, however, is greatly different: It involves the accurate guidance of words, it has clear will, and has clear required goals. And so man does not need to grope around, or employ his imagination, much less make guesses. This is the clarity of the work in the flesh, and its great difference from the work of the Spirit. The work of the Spirit is only suitable for a limited scope and cannot replace the work of the flesh. The work of the flesh gives man far more exact and necessary goals and far more real, valuable knowledge than the work of the Spirit. The work that is of greatest value to corrupt man is that which provides accurate words, clear goals to pursue, and which can be seen and touched. Only realistic work and timely guidance are suited to man’s tastes, and only real work can save man from his corrupt and depraved disposition. This can only be achieved by the incarnate God; only the incarnate God can save man from his formerly corrupt and depraved disposition. Although the Spirit is the inherent essence of God, work such as this can only be done by His flesh. If the Spirit worked single-handedly, then it would not be possible for His work to be effective—this is a plain truth. Though most people have become the enemies of God because of this flesh, when He concludes His work, those who are against Him will not only cease to be His enemies, but on the contrary will become His witnesses. They will become the witnesses that have been conquered by Him, witnesses that are compatible with Him and inseparable from Him. He shall cause man to know the importance of His work in the flesh to man, and man shall know the importance of this flesh to the meaning of man’s existence, shall know His real value to the growth of man’s life, and, moreover, shall know that this flesh will become a living fountain of life from which man cannot bear to part. Though the incarnate flesh of God is far from matching God’s identity and position, and seems to man to be incompatible with His actual status, this flesh, who does not possess the true image of God, or the true identity of God, can do the work that God’s Spirit is unable to do directly. Such is the true significance and value of God’s incarnation, and it is this significance and value which man is unable to appreciate and acknowledge. Though all mankind look up to God’s Spirit and look down on God’s flesh, irrespective of how they view or think, the real significance and value of the flesh far exceed those of the Spirit. Of course, this is only with regard to corrupt mankind. For everyone who seeks the truth and longs for the appearance of God, the Spirit’s work can only provide moving or inspiration, and a sense of wondrousness that it is inexplicable and unimaginable, and a sense that it is great, transcendent, and admirable, yet also unattainable and unobtainable to all. Man and the Spirit of God can only look upon each other from afar, as if there were a great distance between them, and they can never be alike, as if man and God were separated by an invisible divide. In fact, this is an illusion given to man by the Spirit, which is because the Spirit and man are not of the same kind and shall never coexist in the same world, and because the Spirit possesses nothing of man. So man does not have need of the Spirit, for the Spirit cannot directly do the work most needed by man. The work of the flesh offers man real objectives to pursue, clear words, and a sense that He is real and normal, that He is humble and ordinary. Although man may fear Him, for most people He is easy to relate to: Man can behold His face, and hear His voice, and he does not need to look at Him from afar. This flesh feels approachable to man, not distant, or unfathomable, but visible and touchable, for this flesh is in the same world as man.
—The Word, Vol. 1. The Appearance and Work of God. Corrupt Mankind Is More in Need of the Salvation of the Incarnate God
When God had not yet become flesh, people did not understand much of what He said, because His words came out of complete divinity. The perspective and context of what He said was invisible and unreachable to mankind; it was expressed from a spiritual realm that people could not see. For people who lived in the flesh, they could not pass through the spiritual realm. But after God became flesh, He spoke to mankind from the perspective of humanity, and He came out of and surpassed the scope of the spiritual realm. He could express His divine disposition, will, and attitude through things humans could imagine, things they saw and encountered in their lives, and using methods that humans could accept, in a language they could understand, and with knowledge they could grasp, to allow mankind to understand and to know God, to comprehend His intention and His required standards within the scope of their capacity and to the degree that they were able. This was the method and principle of God’s work in humanity. Even though God’s ways and His principles of working in the flesh were mostly achieved by means of or through humanity, it truly did achieve results that could not be achieved by working directly in divinity.
—The Word, Vol. 2. On Knowing God. God’s Work, God’s Disposition, and God Himself III
Now man sees that the work of God incarnate is indeed extraordinary, and there is much in it that cannot be attained by man, and that are mysteries and wonders. Therefore, many have submitted. Some have never submitted to any man since the day of their birth, yet when they see the words of God this day, they fully submit without noticing they have done so, and they do not venture to scrutinize or say anything else. Humanity has fallen under the word and lies prostrate under the judgment of the word. If the Spirit of God spoke directly to man, mankind would all submit to the voice, falling down without words of revelation, much in the way that Paul fell to the ground in the light on the road to Damascus. If God continued to work in this way, man would never be able to come to know his own corruption through the judgment of the word and thereby attain salvation. Only through becoming flesh can God personally deliver His words into the ears of each and every human being, so that all who have ears may hear His words and receive His work of judgment by the word. Only this is the result achieved by His word, rather than the Spirit becoming manifest to frighten man into submission. It is only through this practical and yet extraordinary work that the old disposition of man, hidden deep within for many years, can be fully exposed, so that man may recognize it and have it changed. These things are all the practical work of God incarnate, in which, speaking and executing judgment in a practical manner, He achieves the results of judgment upon man by the word. This is the authority of God incarnate and the significance of God’s incarnation. It is done to make known the authority of God incarnate, to make known the results achieved by the work of the word, and to make known that the Spirit has come in the flesh and demonstrates His authority through judging man by the word. Although His flesh is the outward form of an ordinary and normal humanity, it is the results His words achieve that show to man He is full of authority, that He is God Himself, and that His words are the expression of God Himself. By this means all humanity is shown that He is God Himself, that He is God Himself who became flesh, that He is to be offended by none, and that no one can surpass His judgment by the word, and no force of darkness can prevail over His authority. Man submits to Him entirely because He is the Word become flesh, because of His authority, and because of His judgment by the word. The work brought by His incarnate flesh is the authority that He possesses. The reason why He becomes flesh is because the flesh can also possess authority, and He is capable of carrying out work in a practical manner among mankind, in such a way that it is visible and tangible to man. This work is much more realistic than the work done directly by the Spirit of God, who possesses all authority, and its results are also apparent. This is because God’s incarnate flesh can speak and work in a practical way. The outward form of His flesh holds no authority, and can be approached by man, whereas His essence does carry authority, but His authority is visible to none. When He speaks and works, man is unable to detect the existence of His authority; this facilitates Him in doing work of a practical nature. All this practical work can achieve results. Even though no man realizes that He holds authority, or sees that He is not to be offended, or sees His wrath, He achieves the intended results of His words through His veiled authority, His hidden wrath, and the words He openly speaks. In other words, through His tone of voice, the sternness of His speech, and all the wisdom of His words, man is utterly convinced. In this way, man submits to the word of God incarnate, who seemingly has no authority, thereby fulfilling God’s aim of saving man. This is another aspect of the significance of His incarnation: to speak more realistically and allow the reality of His words to have an effect upon man, so that man may witness the power of the word of God. Therefore, were this work not done by means of the incarnation, it would not achieve the slightest results and would not be able to fully save sinful people. If God did not become flesh, He would remain the Spirit who is both invisible and intangible to man. Man being a creature of flesh, he and God belong to two different worlds and are possessed of different natures. The Spirit of God is incompatible with man, who is of flesh, and there is simply no way of establishing relations between them, not to mention that man is incapable of turning into a spirit. This being so, the Spirit of God must become a created being in order to do His original work. God can both ascend to the highest place and humble Himself to become a human creature, doing work among mankind and living in their midst, but man cannot ascend to the highest place and become a spirit, and even less can he descend to the lowest place. This is why God must become flesh to carry out His work. By the same token, during the first incarnation, only the flesh of God incarnate could redeem man through His crucifixion, whereas there would have been no way for the Spirit of God to be crucified as a sin offering for man. God could directly become flesh to serve as a sin offering for man, but man could not directly ascend to heaven to take the sin offering that God had prepared for him. This being so, all that is possible would be to ask God to run back and forth a few times between heaven and earth, not to have man ascend to heaven to take this salvation, for man had fallen and, moreover, man simply could not ascend to heaven, much less obtain the sin offering. Therefore, it was necessary for Jesus to come among mankind and personally do the work that simply could not be accomplished by man. Every time God becomes flesh, it is out of absolute necessity. If any of the stages could have been carried out directly by the Spirit of God, He would not have submitted to the indignity of being incarnated.
—The Word, Vol. 1. The Appearance and Work of God. The Mystery of the Incarnation (4)
Because the one who is judged is man, man who is of the flesh and has been corrupted, and it is not the spirit of Satan that is judged directly, the work of judgment is therefore not carried out in the spiritual world, but among man. No one is more suitable, and qualified, than God in the flesh for the work of judging the corruption of man’s flesh. If judgment were carried out directly by the Spirit of God, then it would not be all-embracing. Furthermore, such work would be difficult for man to accept, for the Spirit is unable to come face-to-face with man, and because of this, the effects would not be immediate, much less would man be able to behold the unoffendable disposition of God more clearly. Satan can only be fully defeated if God in the flesh judges the corruption of mankind. Being the same as man possessed of normal humanity, God in the flesh can directly judge the unrighteousness of man; this is the mark of His innate holiness, and of His extraordinariness. Only God is qualified to, and is in the position to, judge man, for He is possessed of the truth, and righteousness, and so He is able to judge man. Those who are without truth and righteousness are not fit to judge others. If this work were done by the Spirit of God, then it would not mean victory over Satan. The Spirit is inherently more exalted than mortal beings, and the Spirit of God is inherently holy, and triumphant over the flesh. If the Spirit did this work directly, He would not be able to judge all of man’s disobedience and could not reveal all of man’s unrighteousness. For the work of judgment is also carried out through man’s notions about God, and man has never had any notions about the Spirit, and so the Spirit is incapable of better revealing the unrighteousness of man, much less of completely disclosing such unrighteousness. The incarnate God is the enemy of all those who do not know Him. Through judging man’s notions and opposition to Him, He discloses all the disobedience of mankind. The effects of His work in the flesh are more apparent than those of the work of the Spirit. And so, the judgment of all mankind is not carried out directly by the Spirit but is the work of the incarnate God. God in the flesh can be seen and touched by man, and God in the flesh can completely conquer man. In his relationship with God in the flesh, man progresses from opposition to obedience, from persecution to acceptance, from notions to knowledge, and from rejection to love—these are the effects of the work of the incarnate God. Man is only saved through the acceptance of His judgment, man only gradually comes to know Him through the words of His mouth, man is conquered by Him during his opposition to Him, and he receives the life supply from Him during the acceptance of His chastisement. All of this work is the work of God in the flesh, and not the work of God in His identity as the Spirit. The work done by God incarnate is the greatest work, and the most profound work, and the crucial part of the three stages of God’s work are the two stages of the work of incarnation. The profound corruption of man is a great obstacle to the work of God incarnate. In particular, the work carried out on the people of the last days is tremendously difficult, and the environment is hostile, and the caliber of every kind of person is quite poor. Yet at the end of this work, it will still achieve the proper effect, without any flaws; this is the effect of the work of the flesh, and this effect is more persuasive than that of the work of the Spirit. The three stages of God’s work shall be concluded in the flesh, and they must be concluded by the incarnate God. The most important and most crucial work is done in the flesh, and the salvation of man must be personally carried out by God in the flesh. Even though all mankind feels that God in the flesh seems unrelated to man, in fact this flesh concerns the fate and existence of the whole of mankind.
—The Word, Vol. 1. The Appearance and Work of God. Corrupt Mankind Is More in Need of the Salvation of the Incarnate God
For all of those who live in the flesh, changing their disposition requires goals to pursue, and knowing God requires witnessing the real deeds and the real face of God. Both can only be achieved by God’s incarnate flesh, and both can only be accomplished by the normal and real flesh. This is why the incarnation is necessary, and why it is needed by all corrupt mankind. Since people are required to know God, the images of the vague and supernatural Gods must be dispelled from their hearts, and since they are required to cast off their corrupt disposition, they must first know their corrupt disposition. If only man does the work to dispel the images of the vague Gods from people’s hearts, then he will fail to achieve the proper effect. The images of the vague Gods in people’s hearts cannot be exposed, cast off, or completely expelled by words alone. In doing so, ultimately it would still not be possible to dispel these deep-rooted things from people. Only by replacing these vague and supernatural things with the practical God and the true image of God, and making people gradually know them, can the due effect be achieved. Man recognizes that the God whom he sought in times past is vague and supernatural. That which can achieve this effect is not the direct leadership of the Spirit, much less the teachings of a certain individual, but the incarnate God. The notions of man are laid bare when the incarnate God officially does His work, because the normality and reality of the incarnate God is the antithesis of the vague and supernatural God in man’s imagination. The original notions of man can only be revealed when contrasted against the incarnate God. Without the comparison to the incarnate God, the notions of man could not be revealed; in other words, without reality as a foil, the vague things could not be revealed. No one is capable of using words to do this work, and no one is capable of articulating this work using words. Only God Himself can do His own work, and no one else can do this work on His behalf. No matter how rich the language of man is, he is incapable of articulating the reality and normality of God. Man can only know God more practically, and can only see Him more clearly, if God personally works among man and completely shows forth His image and His being. This effect cannot be achieved by any human being of flesh. Of course, God’s Spirit is also incapable of achieving this effect. God can save corrupt man from the influence of Satan, but this work cannot be directly accomplished by the Spirit of God; rather, it can only be done by the flesh God’s Spirit wears, by God’s incarnate flesh. This flesh is man and is also God, is a man possessed of normal humanity and also God possessed of full divinity. And so, even though this flesh is not the Spirit of God, and differs greatly from the Spirit, it is still the incarnate God Himself who saves man, who is the Spirit and also the flesh. No matter what He is called by, ultimately it is still God Himself who saves mankind. For the Spirit of God is indivisible from the flesh, and the work of the flesh is also the work of the Spirit of God; it is just that this work is not done using the identity of the Spirit, but is done using the identity of the flesh. Work that needs to be done directly by the Spirit does not require incarnation, and work that requires the flesh to do cannot be done directly by the Spirit, and can only be done by God incarnate. This is what is required for this work, and it is what is required by corrupt mankind. In the three stages of God’s work, only one stage was carried out directly by the Spirit, and the remaining two stages are carried out by the incarnate God, and not directly by the Spirit. The work of the Age of Law done by the Spirit did not involve changing the corrupt disposition of man, and neither did it bear any relation to man’s knowledge of God. The work of God’s flesh in the Age of Grace and the Age of Kingdom, however, involves man’s corrupt disposition and his knowledge of God, and is an important and crucial part of the work of salvation. Therefore, corrupt mankind is more in need of the salvation of the incarnate God, and is more in need of the direct work of the incarnate God. Mankind needs the incarnate God to shepherd him, support him, water him, feed him, judge and chastise him, and he needs more grace and greater redemption from the incarnate God. Only God in the flesh can be the confidant of man, the shepherd of man, the very present help of man, and all of this is the necessity of the incarnation both today and in times past.
Throughout the entire management work, the most important work is to save man from the influence of Satan. The key work is the complete conquest of corrupt man, thus restoring the original reverence of God in the heart of conquered man, and allowing him to achieve a normal life, which is to say, the normal life of a creature of God. This work is crucial, and it is the core of the management work. In the three stages of the work of salvation, the first stage of the work of the Age of Law was far from the core of the management work; it only had the slight appearance of the work of salvation, and was not the beginning of God’s work of saving man from the domain of Satan. The first stage of work was done directly by the Spirit because, under the law, man only knew to abide by the law, and man did not have more truth, and because the work in the Age of Law hardly involved changes in the disposition of man, much less was it concerned with the work of how to save man from the domain of Satan. Thus the Spirit of God completed this supremely simple stage of work that did not concern the corrupt disposition of man. This stage of work bore little relation to the core of the management, and it had no great correlation to the official work of the salvation of man, and so it did not require God to become flesh to personally do His work. The work done by the Spirit is implicit and unfathomable, and it is deeply frightening and unapproachable to man; the Spirit is not suited to directly doing the work of salvation, and is not suited to directly providing life to man. Most suitable for man is to transform the work of the Spirit into an approach that is close to man, which is to say, what is most suitable for man is for God to become an ordinary, normal person to do His work. This requires God to be incarnated to take the place of the Spirit in His work, and for man, there is no more suitable way for God to work. Among these three stages of work, two stages are carried out by the flesh, and these two stages are the key phases of the management work. The two incarnations are mutually complementary and they complement each other perfectly. The first stage of God’s incarnation laid the foundation for the second stage, and it can be said that the two incarnations of God form one whole and are not incompatible with each other. These two stages of God’s work are carried out by God in His incarnate identity because they are so important to the entire management work. It could almost be said that, without the work of the two incarnations of God, the entire management work would have ground to a halt, and the work of saving mankind would be nothing but empty talk. Whether or not this work is important is based on the needs of mankind, on the reality of mankind’s depravity, and on the severity of Satan’s disobedience and its disturbance of the work. The right one who is up to the task is predicated upon the nature of the work performed by the worker, and the importance of the work. When it comes to the importance of this work, in terms of what method of work to adopt—work done directly by God’s Spirit, or work done by God incarnate, or work done through man—the first to be eliminated is work done through man, and, based on the nature of the work, and the nature of the Spirit’s work versus that of the flesh, it is ultimately decided that work done by the flesh is more beneficial for man than work done directly by the Spirit, and that it offers more advantages. This is God’s thought at the time when He decided whether the work was to be done by the Spirit or by the flesh. There is a significance and a basis to each stage of work. They are not groundless imaginings, nor are they carried out arbitrarily; there is a certain wisdom to them. Such is the truth behind all of God’s work. In particular, there is even more of God’s plan in such a great work as God incarnate personally working among man. Therefore, God’s wisdom and the entirety of His being are reflected in every action, thought, and idea in His work; this is the more concrete and systematic being of God. These subtle thoughts and ideas are difficult for man to imagine, and difficult for man to believe, and, moreover, difficult for man to know.
The best thing about His work in the flesh is that He can leave accurate words and exhortations, and His specific will for mankind to those who follow Him, so that afterward His followers can more accurately and more concretely pass on all of His work in the flesh, and His will for the whole of mankind, to those who accept this way. Only the work of God in the flesh among man truly accomplishes the fact of God’s being together and living together with man. Only this work fulfills man’s desire to behold the face of God, witness the work of God, and hear the personal word of God. The incarnate God brings to an end the age when only the back of Jehovah appeared to mankind, and He also concludes the age of mankind’s belief in the vague God. In particular, the work of the last incarnate God brings all mankind into an age that is more realistic, more practical, and more beautiful. He not only concludes the age of law and doctrine but, more importantly, He reveals to mankind a God who is real and normal, who is righteous and holy, who unlocks the work of the management plan and who demonstrates the mysteries and destination of mankind, who created mankind and brings to an end the management work, and who has remained hidden for thousands of years. He brings the age of vagueness to a complete end, He concludes the age in which the whole of mankind wished to seek God’s face but was unable to, He ends the age in which the whole of mankind served Satan, and He leads the whole of mankind all the way into a completely new era. All this is the outcome of the work of God in the flesh in place of God’s Spirit. When God works in His flesh, those who follow Him no longer seek and grope after those things which seem to both exist and not exist, and they cease to guess at the will of the vague God. When God spreads His work in the flesh, those who follow Him shall pass on the work that He has done in the flesh to all religions and denominations, and they shall communicate all of His words to the ears of the whole of mankind. All that is heard by those who receive His gospel shall be the facts of His work, shall be things personally seen and heard by man, and shall be facts and not hearsay. These facts are the evidence with which He spreads the work, and they are also the tools that He uses in spreading the work. Without the existence of facts, His gospel would not spread across all countries and to all places; without facts but only with man’s imaginings, He would never be able to do the work of conquering the entire universe. The Spirit is impalpable to man, and invisible to man, and the work of the Spirit is incapable of leaving any further evidence or facts of God’s work for man. Man shall never behold the real face of God, he shall always believe in a vague God that does not exist. Man shall never behold the face of God, nor will man ever hear words personally spoken by God. Man’s imaginings are, after all, empty, and cannot replace the true face of God; the inherent disposition of God, and the work of God Himself, cannot be impersonated by man. The invisible God in heaven and His work can only be brought to earth by God incarnate who personally does His work among man. This is the most ideal way for God to appear to man, in which man sees God and comes to know the true face of God, and it cannot be achieved by a non-incarnate God. Having carried out His work to this stage, God’s work has already achieved the optimal effect, and has been a complete success. The personal work of God in the flesh has already completed ninety percent of the work of His entire management. This flesh has provided a better beginning to all of His work, and a summary for all of His work, and has promulgated all of His work, and made the last thorough replenishment to all of this work. Henceforth, there will not be another incarnate God to do the fourth stage of God’s work, and never will there be any wondrous work of a third incarnation of God.
The work of God in the flesh must be done in the flesh. If it were done directly by the Spirit of God, it would yield no effects. Even if it were done by the Spirit, the work would be of no great significance, and would ultimately be unpersuasive. All creatures wish to know whether the work of the Creator has significance, and what it represents, and what it is done for the sake of, and whether the work of God is full of authority and wisdom, and whether it is of the utmost value and significance. The work He does is done for the salvation of the whole of mankind, for the sake of defeating Satan, and for bearing testimony to Himself among all things. As such, the work that He does must be of great significance. The flesh of man has been corrupted by Satan, and it has been most deeply blinded, and profoundly harmed. The most fundamental reason why God works personally in the flesh is because the object of His salvation is man, who is of the flesh, and because Satan also uses the flesh of man to disturb the work of God. The battle with Satan is actually the work of conquering man, and at the same time, man is also the object of God’s salvation. In this way, the work of God incarnate is essential. Satan corrupted the flesh of man, and man became the embodiment of Satan, and became the object to be defeated by God. In this way, the work of doing battle with Satan and saving mankind occurs on earth, and God must become human in order to do battle with Satan. This is work of the utmost practicality. When God is working in the flesh, He is actually doing battle with Satan in the flesh. When He works in the flesh, He is doing His work in the spiritual realm, and He makes the whole of His work in the spiritual realm real on earth. The one who is conquered is man, man who is disobedient to Him, and the one who is defeated is the embodiment of Satan (of course, this is also man), who is in enmity to Him, and the one who is ultimately saved is also man. In this way, it is even more necessary for God to become a human who has the outer shell of a creation, so that He is able to do real battle with Satan, to conquer man, who is disobedient to Him and possessed of the same outer shell as Him, and to save man, who is of the same outer shell as Him and has been harmed by Satan. His enemy is man, the object of His conquest is man, and the object of His salvation is man, who was created by Him. So He must become human, and in this way, His work becomes much easier. He is able to defeat Satan and conquer mankind, and, moreover, is able to save mankind. Although this flesh is normal and real, He is no common flesh: He is not flesh that is only human, but flesh that is both human and divine. This is the difference between Him and man, and it is the mark of the identity of God. Only flesh such as this can do the work that He intends to do, and fulfill the ministry of God in the flesh, and fully complete His work among man. If it were not thus, His work among man would always be empty and flawed. Even though God can do battle with the spirit of Satan and emerge victorious, the old nature of corrupted man can never be resolved, and those who are disobedient to God and oppose Him can never truly become subject to His dominion, which is to say, He can never conquer mankind, and can never gain the whole of mankind. If His work on earth cannot be resolved, then His management shall never be brought to an end, and the whole of mankind will not be able to enter rest. If God cannot enter rest with all of His creatures, then there shall never be an outcome to such management work, and the glory of God shall consequently disappear. Although His flesh has no authority, the work He does will have achieved its effect. This is the inevitable direction of His work. Regardless of whether or not His flesh is possessed of authority, as long as He is capable of doing the work of God Himself, then He is God Himself. Regardless of how normal and ordinary this flesh is, He can do the work He should do, for this flesh is God and is not just a human. The reason this flesh can do the work that man cannot is because His inner essence is unlike that of any human, and the reason He can save man is because His identity is different from that of any human. This flesh is so important to mankind because He is man and, even more so, He is God, because He can do the work that no ordinary man of flesh can do, and because He can save corrupt man, who lives together with Him on earth. Though He is identical to man, the incarnate God is more important to mankind than any person of value, for He can do the work that cannot be done by the Spirit of God, is more able than the Spirit of God to bear testimony to God Himself, and is more able than the Spirit of God to fully gain mankind. As a result, although this flesh is normal and ordinary, His contribution to mankind and His significance to the existence of mankind make Him highly precious, and the real value and significance of this flesh is immeasurable to any human. Although this flesh cannot directly destroy Satan, He can use His work to conquer mankind and defeat Satan, and make Satan fully submit to His dominion. It is because God is incarnated that He can defeat Satan and is able to save mankind. He does not directly destroy Satan, but instead becomes flesh to do the work to conquer mankind, who has been corrupted by Satan. In this way, He is better able to bear testimony to Himself among His creatures, and He is better able to save corrupted man. God incarnate’s defeat of Satan bears greater testimony, and is more persuasive, than the direct destruction of Satan by the Spirit of God. God in the flesh is better able to help man know the Creator and is better able to bear testimony to Himself among His creatures.