Words on How God Determines People’s Outcomes

Excerpt 77

Some people are too poor of caliber and do not love the truth. No matter how the truth is fellowshipped about, they’re not up to it. They have believed in God for many years and still cannot talk about any real experiences or understanding. So, they determine that they are not among God’s predestined, chosen people, and that they cannot be saved by God, no matter how many more years they believe in Him. They hold in their hearts, “Only those who are predestined and chosen by God can be saved, and all those who are too poor of caliber and unable to understand the truth are not among God’s predestined, chosen people; they could not be saved, even if they believed.” They think God does not determine people’s outcome based on their manifestations and behavior. If this is your thinking, you greatly misunderstand God. If God truly acted so, would He be righteous? God determines people’s outcome with one principle: Ultimately, people’s outcome will be determined based on their own manifestations and behavior. If you cannot see God’s righteous disposition and are always misunderstanding God and distorting His intentions, such that you’re always pessimistic and disappointed, is that not self-inflicted? If you don’t understand how God’s predetermination works, you should seek truth from God in His words and not blindly determine that you are not among His predestined, chosen people. This is a serious misunderstanding of God! You simply don’t know God’s work at all, and you don’t understand God’s will, much less the painstaking effort behind God’s six thousand years of management work. You give up on yourself, speculate and doubt God, fearing that you are a service-doer who will be cast out once you have finished your service, always ruminating, “Why should I do my duty? Am I rendering service as I do my duty? Wouldn’t I be falling for a trick, if I were disposed of when I’ve finished rendering my service?” What do you make of this thinking? Can you discern it? You always misunderstand God, categorizing Him among the devil kings that rule in the world, guarding your heart against Him, always thinking He is as selfish and despicable as humans. You never believe that He loves mankind, and you never believe in His sincerity in saving mankind. If you’re always characterizing yourself as a service-doer and fear being cast out after rendering your service, then yours is the deceitful mentality of nonbelievers. Unbelievers don’t believe in God because they don’t admit there is a God, nor that God’s word is the truth. Given that you believe in God, why don’t you have faith in Him? Why don’t you admit that God’s word is the truth? You are unwilling to do your duty, and you undergo no hardships in order to practice the truth, and as a result, you have still not gained the truth, despite your many years of faith in God, and despite all that, you push the blame off onto God in the end, saying that He has not predestined you, that He has not been sincere with you. What problem is that? You misunderstand God’s intentions, and do not believe His words, and neither put the truth into practice nor show your loyalty while performing your duty. How can you satisfy God’s will? How can you gain the work of the Holy Spirit and understand the truth? Such people are not even qualified to be service-doers, so how could they be qualified to negotiate with God? If you think God is not righteous, why do you believe in Him? You always want God to say to you, personally, “You are of the people of the kingdom; this will never change” before you exert yourself for His house, and if He doesn’t, you will never give Him your heart. How rebellious and intransigent such people are! I see there are a great many people who never focus on changing their dispositions, much less on practicing the truth. They focus only on asking at every turn whether they’ll be able to obtain a good destination, how God will treat them, whether He has a predestination for them to be His people, and other such matters of hearsay. How can such people, who don’t attend to their proper work, obtain the truth? How can they remain in God’s house? Now, I solemnly tell you: Though a person may be predestined, if they cannot accept the truth and put it into practice to achieve submission to God, then being cast out will be their ultimate outcome. Only those people who sincerely expend themselves for God, and put the truth into practice with all their strength, will be able to survive and enter into God’s kingdom. Though others may see them as someone who is not predestined to remain, they will have a better destination than those supposedly predestined people who have never had loyalty to God, on account of God’s righteous disposition. Do you believe these words? If you cannot believe these words and continue your obstinate straying, then I tell you, you certainly will not be able to survive, because you are simply not someone with true belief in God or a love of the truth. Since this is so, God’s predestination is not important. The reason I say so is because in the end, God will determine people’s outcomes by their manifestations and behavior, whereas God’s predestination only plays a small role objectively, not a leading role. Do you understand this?

Some people say: “I’ve got a bad disposition and can’t change it, no matter how much I pursue that. So I’ll just let nature take its course. If I can’t succeed in my pursuit, there’s nothing to be done about it.” Such people are extremely negative, so much so that they have given up hope for themselves. These people are irredeemable. Have you put in effort? If you truly have, and are willing to suffer hardship, why can you just not rebel against the flesh? Are you not a person with a heart and a brain? How do you pray each day? Wouldn’t you seek the truth and rely on God? For you, to let nature take its course means to wait passively, not to cooperate actively. To let nature take its course in that way is akin to saying, “I don’t need to do anything; everything is predetermined by God, either way.” Is this truly God’s will? If not, then why won’t you submit to God’s work, instead often getting negative and unable to perform your duty? Some people, when they’ve transgressed a bit, conjecture: “Has God revealed me and cast me out? Will He strike me down?” God has come to work this time not in order to strike people down, but to save them, to the greatest possible extent. No one is without error—if everyone were struck down, would that be salvation? Some transgressions are done on purpose, while others are involuntary. If you are able to change after you recognize the things you do involuntarily, would God strike you down before you do so? Would God save people that way? That’s not how He works! Regardless of whether you have a rebellious disposition or whether you have acted involuntarily, remember this: You should reflect and know yourself. Turn yourself around, right away, and strive for the truth with all your strength—and, no matter what circumstances come about, do not give yourself over to despair. The work God is doing is that of man’s salvation, and He will not casually strike down the people He wants to save. This is certain. Even if there really were a believer in God whom He struck down in the end, that which God does would still be guaranteed to be righteous. In time, He would let you know the reason He struck that person down, so that you would be utterly convinced. Right now, just strive for the truth, focus on life entry, and pursue the good performance of your duty. There is no mistake in this! No matter how God handles you in the end, it is guaranteed to be righteous; you should not doubt this, and you do not need to worry. Even if you cannot understand God’s righteousness at the moment, there will come a day when you will be convinced. God works justly and honorably; He openly reveals everything. If you mull this over carefully, you will come to the heartfelt conclusion that God’s work is that of saving people and transforming their corrupt dispositions. Given that God’s work is that of transforming people’s corrupt dispositions, it is impossible that people do not have revelations of corruption. It is only in those revelations of corrupt disposition that people can know themselves, and admit that they have a corrupt disposition, and be willing to receive God’s salvation. If people accept no truth at all after having revealed a corrupt disposition, and continue living by their corrupt disposition, they will then be liable to offend God’s disposition. God will visit varying degrees of retribution on them, and they will pay the price for their transgressions. If you unconsciously become dissolute on occasion, and God points it out to you and prunes you, and you change for the better, God will not hold it against you. This is the normal process of a disposition transforming, and the true significance of the work of salvation is manifest in this process. This is the key. As an example, on the issue of boundaries between the genders, let’s say you’re attracted to someone, always looking to chat with them, saying seductive words to them. Later, you ponder, “Isn’t this sleazy behavior? Isn’t this a sin? Isn’t it an insult to God, not to keep the boundary between the genders clear? How could I do such a thing?” After realizing this, you rush before God and pray, “Oh, God! I have sinned again. This is ugly and truly disgraceful. I hate the corrupted flesh. May You discipline me and punish me.” You make up your mind to stay away from such things in the future, and not to contact the opposite sex alone. Will that not be a change? And having changed in that way, your previous indiscretions will no longer be condemned. If you chat with someone and seduce them, and you don’t think it’s a shameful thing, let alone hate yourself, caution yourself, make up your mind to rebel against the flesh, or confess and repent your sins to God, then you might go on to commit much more misdeeds, and things will get worse and worse, leading you to sin. If you do this, God will condemn you. If you sin over and over again, that is intentional sin. God condemns intentional sin, and intentional sin is irredeemable. If you really reveal some corrupt disposition involuntarily, and you can truly repent, rebel against the flesh, and practice the truth, God will not condemn you for it, and you can still be saved. God’s work is meant to save man, and someone who reveals their corrupt disposition should accept being pruned, judged, and chastised. As long as they can accept the truth, repent, and change, won’t that have satisfied God’s will? Some people do not accept the truth and always adopt a precautionary attitude toward God. Such people have no life entry, and in the end, they’ll all have to sustain losses.

As previously mentioned, events of the past can be wiped clean at a stroke; the future can be made to supersede the past; God’s tolerance is as boundless as the sea. Yet there are also principles to these words. It is not the case that God will wipe clean any sin you have committed, no matter how great. God does all His work with principles. In the past, an administrative decree was set that addresses this issue: God forgives and pardons all sins one commits before accepting His name. But for those who continue to sin after having come to believe in Him, it’s a different story: One who repeats a sin once is given the chance to repent, while those who repeat it twice or refuse to change in spite of repeated reprimands are expelled, without further chance to repent. God is always tolerant with people to the greatest extent possible in His work. In this, it can be seen that God’s work is truly the work of saving people. However, if, in this final stage of work, you would yet commit unpardonable sins, then you are truly irredeemable, and you cannot be rescued. God has a process for purifying and changing people’s corrupt dispositions: It is in the process of man’s constant revelation of their corrupt nature that God achieves His aim of cleansing and saving mankind. Some people think: “Since it is my nature, let it all be exposed. Once it is, I’ll know it and put the truth into practice.” Is this process necessary? If you are truly one who puts the truth into practice, and you reflect on yourself when you see which corruptions are revealed in others and what wrong things they have done, and when you see the same problems in yourself, you immediately correct them and never do those things in the future, is this not indirect change? Or if you sometimes want to do something but realize beforehand that it is wrong, and you can rebel against the flesh, doesn’t this also achieve the effect of being purified? Practicing the truth in any aspect requires going through repeated processes. It is not that a corrupt disposition will disappear completely after the truth is practiced once. One must repeatedly seek the truth, repeatedly be pruned, chastened, and disciplined, as well as judged and chastised, before their corrupt disposition is thoroughly resolved, such that they will have no difficulty in practicing the truth again. If one ends up able to practice the truth completely according to God’s will and have true submission toward God after being pruned, judged, and chastised, that is a change in their disposition.

Excerpt 78

In God’s work of the last days, He determines people’s outcomes based on their manifestations. Do you know what “manifestations” refers to here? You might think that manifestations refers to the corrupt dispositions that people reveal while doing things, but that is not actually what this means. Manifestations here refers to whether or not you are able to practice the truth; whether or not you are able to be loyal while performing your duty; your perspective on believing in God, your attitude toward God, your resolve to suffer hardships; your attitude toward accepting judgment, chastisement, and pruning; the number of serious transgressions that you have committed; and the extent to which you ultimately achieve repentance and transformation. All of these combined make up your manifestations. Manifestations here does not refer to how many corrupt dispositions you have revealed or how many bad things you have done, but to how many results you have gotten and how much real change you have undergone in your belief in God. If people’s outcomes were determined based on how much corruption their nature has revealed, no one could attain salvation, because human beings are all deeply corrupt, they all have a satanic nature, and they all resist God. God wants to save people who can accept the truth and submit to His work. No matter how much corruption they reveal, as long as they can ultimately accept the truth, achieve true repentance, and undergo true change, they are people who are saved by God. Some people cannot see through this and think that anyone who serves as a leader will reveal more of their corrupt dispositions, and that whoever reveals more corruption will definitely be cast out and not be able to survive. Is this point of view correct? Although leaders reveal more corruption, if they are people who pursue the truth, then they are qualified to experience God’s judgment and chastisement, they can embark upon the path of being saved and made perfect, and they will ultimately be able to give a beautiful testimony for God. These are people who have truly changed. If people’s outcomes were determined based on how much of their corrupt disposition is revealed, then the more they served as leaders and workers, the quicker they would be revealed. If this were the case, who would dare to be a leader or a worker? Who could reach the point of being used and perfected by God? Isn’t this point of view too absurd? God mainly looks at whether people can accept and practice the truth, whether they can stand firm in their testimony, and whether they have truly changed. If people have true testimony and have undergone true change, they are people that God approves of. Some people appear to reveal little corruption on the surface, but they lack true experiential testimony, they have not truly changed, and God does not approve of them.

God determines the outcome of a person based on their manifestations and essence. Manifestations here refers to whether a person is loyal to God, whether they have love for Him, whether they practice truth, and to what extent their disposition has changed. It is based on these manifestations and their essence that God determines the outcome of a person, not on how much they reveal their corrupt disposition. If you think that God determines the outcome of a person based on how much corruption they reveal, you have misinterpreted His intentions. In fact, people have the same corrupt essence, there is just a difference in whether or not they have good or bad humanity, and in whether or not they can accept the truth. No matter how much one reveals their corrupt disposition, God knows best what lies in the depths of their heart; there is no need for you to hide it. God observes the depths of people’s hearts. Regardless of whether it is something that you do in front of or behind others, or what you want to do in your heart, all of it is laid bare before God. How could God not be aware of what people do in secret? Is this not self-delusion? In truth, no matter how deceitful a person’s nature may be, no matter how many lies a person tells, no matter how skilled they are at disguising themselves and deceiving, God knows it all like the back of His hand. God knows leaders and workers this well, so doesn’t He know His ordinary followers that well too? Some people think, “Anyone who leads is foolish and ignorant and is bringing about their own destruction, because acting as a leader inevitably makes people reveal corruption for God to see. Would there be so much corruption revealed if they didn’t do this work?” What an absurd idea! If you don’t act as a leader, will you not reveal corruption? Does not being a leader, even if you show less corruption, mean that you have attained salvation? According to this argument, are all those who do not serve as leaders the ones who can survive and be saved? Isn’t this statement too ridiculous? People who serve as leaders guide God’s chosen people to eat and drink the word of God and to experience God’s work. This requirement and standard is high, so it is inevitable that leaders will reveal some corrupt states when they first begin training. This is normal, and God does not condemn it. God not only does not condemn it, but He also enlightens, illuminates, and guides these people, and places extra burdens on them. As long as they can submit to God’s guidance and work, they will progress faster in life than ordinary people. If they are people who pursue the truth, they can embark on the path of being made perfect by God. This is the thing that is most blessed by God. Some people can’t see this, and they distort the facts. According to human understanding, no matter how much a leader changes, God will not care; He will only look at how much corruption leaders and workers reveal, and only condemn them based on this. And for those who are not leaders and workers, because they reveal little corruption, even if they do not change, God will not condemn them. Isn’t this absurd? Isn’t it blasphemy against God? If you resist God so seriously in your heart, can you be saved? You cannot be saved. God determines people’s outcomes mainly based on whether they have the truth and true testimony, and it mainly depends on whether they are people who pursue the truth. If they do pursue the truth, and they can truly repent after they are judged and chastised for committing a transgression, then as long as they do not say words or do things that blaspheme God, they will surely be capable of attaining salvation. According to your imaginings, all ordinary believers who follow God to the end can achieve salvation, and those who serve as leaders must all be cast out. If you were asked to be a leader, you’d think that it would not be okay not to do it, but that if you were to serve as a leader, you would involuntarily reveal corruption, and that would be just like sending yourself to the guillotine. Isn’t this all caused by your misunderstandings about God? If people’s outcomes were determined based on the corruption that they reveal, no one could be saved. In that case, what would be the point of God doing the work of salvation? If this truly were the case, where would the righteousness of God be? Mankind would be unable to see God’s righteous disposition. Therefore, you have all misunderstood God’s intentions, which shows that you do not have true knowledge of God.

God determines people’s outcomes based on their manifestations, and manifestations here refers to the results of God’s work on them. I will give you an analogy: In an orchard, the owner waters and fertilizes his trees, then waits to collect their fruit. The trees that bear fruit are good trees and they are kept; those that do not are definitely not good trees and they cannot be kept. Consider this situation: A tree does bear fruit, but it also contracts a disease, and some of its bad branches need to be cut off. Do you think that this tree should be kept? It should be kept, and it will be fine once it has been pruned and treated. Consider another situation: A tree has no diseases, but it does not bear fruit—such a tree should not be kept. What does “bear fruit” mean here? It refers to God’s work achieving results. Because people have been corrupted by Satan, they will inevitably reveal their corruption in the course of experiencing God’s work, and they will inevitably commit some transgressions. However, at the same time, God’s work will achieve some results in them. If God did not care about these results, and only looked at the corrupt dispositions that people revealed, then saving people would be out of the question. The results of salvation are principally manifested in people’s performance of their duties and their practice of the truth. God looks at the results that people have attained in these areas, and then at the seriousness of their transgressions. Then He decides their outcomes, and whether or not they will remain based on a combination of these factors. For instance, some people revealed a great deal of corruption in the past, and showed an immense consideration for their flesh; they were not willing to expend themselves for God, nor did they uphold the interests of the church. However, after listening to sermons for several years, they underwent real change. They know now to strive toward the truth principles in the performance of their duties, and they achieve more and more results in their duties. They are also able to stand on God’s side in all things, and do their utmost to uphold the work of God’s house. This is what is meant by transforming one’s life disposition, and it is this transformation that God wants. Furthermore, there are some people who, whenever notions occurred to them in the past, would always spread them around, and their hearts were only satisfied when these notions had formed in other people, but now when they have some notions, they are able to pray to God, seek the truth, and be submissive without spreading their notions or doing anything to resist God. Has a transformation not occurred in them? Some people would immediately become resistant whenever they were pruned by anyone in the past; however, when that happens to them now, they are able to accept it and know themselves. Afterward, they undergo some actual transformation. Is this not a result? However, no matter how much you change, it is impossible to be completely free of transgressions, and your nature cannot be transformed completely in an instant. If someone embarks upon the right track of belief in God, and knows to seek the truth in all things, then even if they show a bit of rebellion, they will realize it at the time. After they do, they will hurry to confess and repent to God, and to change, and their state will only get better and better. They may commit the same transgression once or twice again, but not a third or fourth time. This is transformation. It’s not that this person has changed in some respect, so they no longer reveal corruption, and they no longer commit any transgressions at all. It’s not like that. This kind of transformation means that someone is able to practice more of the truth after experiencing God’s work, and put some of what God requires into practice. Such a person will commit fewer and fewer transgressions, they will reveal less and less corruption, and their episodes of rebellion will become less and less severe. From this it is clear that God’s work has achieved results; what He wants are these sorts of manifestations in people, which show that results have been achieved in them. Therefore, the way that God handles people’s outcomes or how He treats every person is completely righteous, reasonable, and fair. You only need to put all your effort into expending yourself for God, and boldly and assuredly practice the truths that you should practice, without any worries, and God will not mistreat you. Think about it: Can those who love and practice the truth be punished by God? Many people are always suspicious of God’s righteous disposition, afraid that they will still be punished even after they put the truth into practice; afraid that even if they show loyalty to God, He will not see it. Such people have no knowledge of God’s righteous disposition.

Some people become negative after being pruned; they lose all energy to perform their duties, and their loyalty disappears as well. Why is this? This problem is very serious; this is the inability to accept the truth. They do not accept the truth, partly due to their lack of knowledge of their corrupt dispositions, which leads to them not being able to accept being pruned. This is determined by their nature which is arrogant and conceited, and has no love for the truth. It is also partly due to people not understanding the significance of being pruned. They believe that being pruned means that their outcome has been determined. As a result, they mistakenly believe that if they forsake their families to expend themselves for God, and possess some loyalty to God, then they should not be pruned; and, if they are pruned, then this is not God’s love and righteousness. This kind of misunderstanding causes many people to not dare to be loyal to God. Actually, when all is said and done, it is because they are too deceitful and do not want to suffer hardships. They just want to obtain blessings the easy way. People do not understand God’s righteous disposition at all. They never believe that all of God’s actions are righteous, or that His treatment of everyone is righteous. They never seek the truth in this matter, but always make their own arguments instead. No matter what bad things a person has done, what great sins they have committed, or how much evil they have done, as long as God’s judgment and punishment befalls them, they will think that Heaven is unfair, and that God is not righteous. In the eyes of man, if God’s actions do not align with their desires, or if His actions are inconsiderate toward their feelings, then He must not be righteous. However, people never know whether their actions conform to the truth, nor do they ever realize that they rebel against and resist God in all their actions. If, no matter how people transgressed, God never pruned them or reproached them for their rebellion, but instead was calm and gentle with them, only treated them with love and patience, and allowed them to dine and enjoy things alongside Him forever, then people would never complain about God or judge Him to be unrighteous; rather, they would insincerely say that He was very righteous. Do such people know God? Can they be of one heart and mind with God? They have no inkling that when God judges and prunes humans, He wishes to purify and transform their life dispositions so that they can succeed in submitting to Him and loving Him. Such people do not believe that God is a righteous God. As long as God rebukes, exposes, and prunes people, they will become negative and weak, always complaining that God is not loving, and always grumbling that God’s judgment and chastisement of man is wrong, unable to see that this is God purifying and saving man, and not believing that God determines people’s outcomes based on their displays of repentance. They always doubt God and guard against Him, and what will be the result of this? Will they be able to submit to the work of God? Will they be able to achieve true change? This is impossible. If this state of theirs continues, it will be very dangerous, and it will be impossible for them to be purified and made perfect by God.

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