You say that we must accept God’s work of judgment of the last days, as only then will our corrupt satanic dispositions be cleansed and changed, and only then will we enter the kingdom of God. So, as the Lord requires, we are humble and tolerant, we love our enemies, we bear our cross, we discipline our body, we forsake worldly things, we work and preach for the Lord, and so on. Are these not all changes that have occurred in us? Are you saying that this is still not enough for us to enter the heavenly kingdom? I believe that as long as we continue striving in this way, we will become holy and will enter the heavenly kingdom.
Bible Verses for Reference:
“Not every one that said to Me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that does the will of My Father which is in heaven. Many will say to Me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name? and in Your name have cast out devils? and in Your name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess to them, I never knew you: depart from Me, you that work iniquity” (Mat 7:21–23).
“Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord” (Heb 12:14).
Relevant Words of God:
Most people place special emphasis on behavior in their belief in God, as a result of which there are some changes occurring in their behavior. After believing in God, they stop contending with others, they stop fighting with people and insulting them, they stop smoking and drinking, they do not steal any public property—whether it be but a nail or a plank of wood—and they even go so far as to not take it to the courts when they suffer losses or are wronged. Without doubt, some changes do occur in their behavior. Because, after believing in God, accepting the true way makes them feel especially good, and because they have also tasted the grace of the work of the Holy Spirit, they are particularly fervent, and there is even nothing that they cannot forsake or suffer. Yet after having believed for three, five, ten, or thirty years—because there has been no change in their life disposition, in the end they slide back into old ways, their arrogance and haughtiness grows, and they begin to fight for power and profit, they covet the money of the church, they do anything that serves their interests, they crave status and pleasures, and they become parasites of the house of God. Most of the leaders, in particular, are abandoned. And what do these facts prove? Changes in nothing more than behavior are unsustainable. If there is no alteration in people’s life disposition, then sooner or later their wicked side will show itself. Because the source of the changes in their behavior is fervor, coupled with some work by the Holy Spirit at the time, it is extremely easy for them to become fervent, or to show kindness for a time. As the unbelievers say, “Doing one good deed is easy, what’s hard is doing a lifetime of good deeds.” People are incapable of doing good deeds their whole life. Their behavior is directed by the life; whatever their life is, so is their behavior, and only that which is revealed naturally represents the life, and one’s nature. Things that are fake cannot last. When God works to save man, it is not to adorn man with good behavior—God’s work is in order to change people’s dispositions, to make them reborn into new people. Thus, God’s judgment, chastisement, trials, and refinement of man are all in order to change his disposition, so that he may achieve absolute obedience and faithfulness to God, and the normal worship of God. This is the aim of God’s work. Behaving well is not the same as obeying God, much less does it equal being compatible with Christ. Changes in behavior are based on doctrine, and born of fervor—they are not based on the true knowledge of God, or upon the truth, much less do they rest on the guidance of the Holy Spirit. Even though there are times when some of what people do is directed by the Holy Spirit, this is not the expression of the life, much less is it the same as knowing God; no matter how good a person’s behavior, it does not prove that they obey God, or that they put the truth into practice. Behavioral changes are a momentary illusion, they are the manifestation of zealousness, and they are not the expression of the life.
Excerpted from “The Difference Between External Changes and Changes in Disposition” in Records of Christ’s Talks
[A]fter people start believing in God, when they don’t understand a lot of things, they feel that they are already living in God’s word, and that they are already obeying God and are already very much satisfying God’s intentions. That is because when nothing has happened to you, you can do whatever you’re told and you can fulfill your duty without hesitation or resistance, or if the house of God gets you to spread the gospel you can do so without any complaint and can accept the suffering, or if you are asked to run around or do whatever job, you’ll be willing to do it. These things make you feel like you are someone who obeys God and someone who is genuinely pursuing the truth. But suppose someone gets serious with you and asks: “Are you an honest person? Are you someone who truly obeys God? Are you someone who has achieved dispositional change?” As soon as this is taken seriously and the truth is used to check each person, it can be said that nobody is qualified and that nobody can genuinely practice in accordance with the truth. That is to say, the source of people’s behavior and actions and the essence and nature of the things they do all becomes condemned when matched against the truth. What is the reason? It’s because man does not know himself and is always using his own methods to believe in God and fulfill his duty. He is also using his own methods to serve God and feels full of confidence and reason, and in the end feels he has gained a lot. Before he knows it, he believes he is acting in accordance with and has completely satisfied God’s intentions, achieved God’s requirements, and is already complying with God’s will. You may feel such feelings or perhaps you have believed for several years and feel you have made some gains, but the more this is the case the more you should return before God to properly introspect: over these past few years, whether your actions before God are completely in compliance with God’s intentions, which things have resisted God and which things have satisfied God, and whether your behavior has satisfied God’s requirements or can satisfy God’s requirements. You should be dissecting these things.
Excerpted from “Only by Recognizing Your Misguided Views Can You Know Yourself” in Records of Christ’s Talks
A sinner such as you, who has just been redeemed, and has not been changed, or been perfected by God, can you be after God’s heart? For you, you who are still of your old self, it is true that you were saved by Jesus, and that you are not counted as a sinner because of the salvation of God, but this does not prove that you are not sinful, and are not impure. How can you be saintly if you have not been changed? Within, you are beset by impurity, selfish and mean, yet you still wish to descend with Jesus—you should be so lucky! You have missed a step in your belief in God: You have merely been redeemed, but you have not been changed. For you to be after God’s heart, God must personally do the work of changing and cleansing you; if you are only redeemed, you will be incapable of attaining sanctity. In this way you will be unqualified to share in the good blessings of God, for you have missed out a step in God’s work of managing man, which is the key step of changing and perfecting. You, a sinner who has just been redeemed, are therefore incapable of directly inheriting God’s inheritance.
Excerpted from “Concerning Appellations and Identity” in The Word Appears in the Flesh
Though Jesus did much work among man, He only completed the redemption of all mankind and became man’s sin offering; He did not rid man of all his corrupt disposition. Fully saving man from the influence of Satan not only required Jesus to become the sin offering and bear the sins of man, but it also required God to do even greater work to rid man completely of his satanically corrupted disposition. And so, now that man has been forgiven of his sins, God has returned to the flesh to lead man into the new age, and begun the work of chastisement and judgment. This work has brought man into a higher realm. All those who submit under His dominion shall enjoy higher truth and receive greater blessings. They shall truly live in the light, and they shall gain the truth, the way, and the life.
Excerpted from Preface to The Word Appears in the Flesh
Before man was redeemed, many of Satan’s poisons had already been planted within him and, after thousands of years of being corrupted by Satan, he has within him an established nature that resists God. Therefore, when man has been redeemed, it is nothing more than a case of redemption in which man is bought at a high price, but the poisonous nature within him has not been eliminated. Man that is so defiled must undergo a change before becoming worthy to serve God. By means of this work of judgment and chastisement, man will fully come to know the filthy and corrupt substance within his own self, and he will be able to change completely and become clean. Only in this way can man become worthy to return before the throne of God. All the work done this day is so that man can be made clean and be changed; through judgment and chastisement by the word, as well as through refinement, man can purge away his corruption and be made pure. Rather than deeming this stage of work to be that of salvation, it would be more apt to say it is the work of purification. In truth, this stage is that of conquest as well as the second stage in the work of salvation. It is through judgment and chastisement by the word that man arrives at being gained by God, and it is through the use of the word to refine, judge, and disclose that all of the impurities, notions, motives, and individual aspirations within man’s heart are completely revealed. For all that man may have been redeemed and forgiven of his sins, it can only be considered as God not remembering the transgressions of man and not treating man in accordance with his transgressions. However, when man, who lives in a body of flesh, has not been set free from sin, he can only continue to sin, endlessly revealing his corrupt satanic disposition. This is the life that man leads, an endless cycle of sinning and being forgiven. The majority of mankind sin in the day only to confess in the evening. This way, even though the sin offering is forever effective for man, it will not be able to save man from sin. Only half the work of salvation has been completed, for man still has a corrupt disposition. … It is not easy for man to become aware of his sins; he has no way of recognizing his own deeply rooted nature, and he must rely on judgment by the word in order to achieve this result. Only thus can man gradually be changed from this point onward.
Excerpted from “The Mystery of the Incarnation (4)” in The Word Appears in the Flesh
I decide the destination of each person not on the basis of age, seniority, amount of suffering, and least of all, the degree to which they invite pity, but according to whether they possess the truth. There is no other choice but this. You must realize that all those who do not follow the will of God shall also be punished. This is an immutable fact. Therefore, all those who are punished are so punished for the righteousness of God and as retribution for their numerous evil acts.
Excerpted from “Prepare Sufficient Good Deeds for Your Destination” in The Word Appears in the Flesh
You might imagine that, having been a follower for so many years, you have put in hard work no matter what, and you should be granted a bowl of rice in God’s house just for being a service-doer. I would say that the majority of you think this way, for you have always pursued the principle of how to take advantage of things and not be taken advantage of. Thus, I am telling you now in all seriousness: I do not care how meritorious your hard work is, how impressive your qualifications, how closely you follow Me, how renowned you are, or how much you have improved your attitude; as long as you have not met My demands, you will never be able to win My praise. Write off all those ideas and calculations of yours as soon as possible, and start treating My requirements seriously; otherwise, I will turn everyone to ash in order to bring an end to My work and, at best turn My years of work and suffering into nothing, for I cannot bring My enemies and those people who reek of evil and have Satan’s appearance into My kingdom or take them into the next age.
Excerpted from “Transgressions Will Lead Man to Hell” in The Word Appears in the Flesh