91. The Principles of Being a Church Deacon
(1) A church deacon should cooperate harmoniously with church leaders, learn to submit to the truth, report any difficulties they face to a leader in a timely fashion, and resolve them by means of seeking the truth;
(2) It is necessary to safeguard all of the church’s work. When antichrists and evil spirits beguile God’s chosen people, a church deacon should protect them well, lest they be deceived;
(3) A church deacon should focus on their own life entry, and on practicing the truth and acting according to the principles, doing their duty well, and remaining true to God’s commission;
(4) It is necessary to supervise the work of church leaders in light of work arrangements. If they are found not to be doing practical work, a church deacon should offer them directions and help or report it to their superiors.
Relevant Words of God:
In their work, church leaders and workers must pay attention to two things: One is to do their work exactly according to the principles stipulated by the work arrangements, never violating those principles and not basing their work on anything that they might imagine or on any of their own ideas. In everything they do, they should show concern for the work of God’s house, and always put its interests first. Another thing—and this is most crucial—is that in all things, they must focus on following the Holy Spirit’s guidance and do everything in strict keeping with God’s words. If you are still capable of going against the Holy Spirit’s guidance, or if you stubbornly follow your own ideas and do things according to your own imagination, then your actions will constitute a most serious resistance against God. Frequently turning your back on the enlightenment and guidance of the Holy Spirit will only lead to a dead end. If you lose the work of the Holy Spirit, then you will not be able to work; and even if you do somehow manage to work, you will accomplish nothing. These are the two main principles to abide by while working: One is to perform your work in exact accordance with the arrangements from the Above, as well as to act according to the principles that have been set forth by the Above; and the other is to follow the guidance of the Holy Spirit within you. Once these two points are grasped, you will not be so liable to make mistakes.
Excerpted from “The Main Principles of Work for Leaders and Workers” in Records of Talks of Christ of the Last Days
You need to have an understanding of the many states that people will be in when the Holy Spirit performs work on them. In particular, those who coordinate in service to God must have an even stronger grasp of the many states brought about by the work that the Holy Spirit performs on people. If you only talk about a lot of experiences or ways of attaining entry, it shows that your experience is overly one-sided. Without knowing your true state and grasping the truth principle, it is not possible to achieve a change in disposition. Without knowing the principles of the Holy Spirit’s work or understanding the fruit it bears, it will be difficult for you to discern the work of evil spirits. You must expose the work of evil spirits, as well as the notions of man, and penetrate straight to the heart of the issue; you must also point out many deviations in people’s practice and problems they might have in their faith in God, so that they may recognize them. At the very least, you must not make them feel negative or passive. However, you must understand the difficulties that objectively exist for most people, you must not be unreasonable or “try to teach a pig to sing”; that is foolish behavior. To resolve the many difficulties people experience, you must first comprehend the dynamics of the work of the Holy Spirit; you must understand how the Holy Spirit performs work on different people, you must have an understanding of the difficulties people face and of their shortcomings, and you must see through to the key issues of the problem and get to its source, without deviating or making any errors. Only this kind of person is qualified to coordinate in service to God.
Excerpted from “What an Adequate Shepherd Should Be Equipped With” in The Word Appears in the Flesh
The church is under construction, and Satan is trying its utmost to demolish it. It wants to demolish My construction by any means possible; for this reason, the church must be purified quickly. Not the slightest dregs of evil must remain; the church must be purified such that it becomes flawless and continues to be as pure as in the past. You must be awake and waiting at all times, and you must pray before Me more. You must recognize the various plots and cunning schemes of Satan, recognize the spirits, know people, and be able to discern all kinds of people, events, and things; you must also eat and drink more of My words and, more importantly, you must be able to eat and drink of them by yourselves. Equip yourselves with all of the truth, and come before Me so that I may open your spiritual eyes and allow you to see all the mysteries that lie within the spirit…. When the church enters its construction phase, the saints march to battle. Satan’s various hideous features are set before you: Do you stop and edge backward, or do you stand up and, relying upon Me, continue to move forward? Thoroughly expose Satan’s corrupt and ugly features, spare no feelings, and show no mercy! Fight Satan to the death! I am your backup, and you must have the spirit of the male child! Satan is lashing out in its final death throes, but it will still be unable to escape My judgment. Satan is beneath My feet and it is also being trodden under your own feet—this is a fact!
All those religious disruptors, and those who tear down the church’s construction, cannot be shown the smallest bit of tolerance but will be judged immediately; Satan will be exposed, trampled, destroyed utterly, and left with nowhere to hide. All manner of demons and ghosts will surely reveal their true forms before Me, and I will cast them all into the bottomless pit from which they will never be free; they will all be beneath our feet. If you want to fight the good fight for the truth, then first of all, you must not give Satan any chance to work—to this end, you will need to be of one mind and able to serve in coordination, relinquish all your own notions, opinions, views, and ways of doing things, quiet your heart within Me, focus on the voice of the Holy Spirit, be attentive to the work of the Holy Spirit, and experience God’s words in detail. You must have only one intention, which is that My will be done. You should have no other intention apart from this. You must look to Me with all your heart, watch closely My actions and the way I do things, and not be negligent at all. Your spirit must be sharp, your eyes open. Ordinarily, when it comes to those whose intentions and objectives are not right, as well as those who love to be seen by others, who are eager to do things, who are prone to causing disruptions, who are good at spouting religious doctrine, who are Satan’s lackeys, and so on—when these people stand up, they become difficulties for the church, and this causes their brothers’ and sisters’ eating and drinking of God’s words to come to nothing. When you encounter such people play-acting, ban them immediately. If, despite repeated admonitions, they do not change, then they will suffer loss. If those who stubbornly persist in their ways attempt to defend themselves and try to cover up their sins, the church should cut them out immediately and leave them no room to maneuver. Do not lose a lot by trying to save a little; keep your eye on the big picture.
Excerpted from “Chapter 17” of Utterances of Christ in the Beginning in The Word Appears in the Flesh
Sermon and Fellowship Excerpts for Reference:
Work Responsibilities of Church Deacons of Watering
1. In church life, deacons of watering must take the lead in eating and drinking the words of God, integrate God’s words when they fellowship their experiences and understanding on all things, know and dissect their own corrupt dispositions, and reveal their own incorrect motivations and various satanic poisons, so that God’s chosen people may learn how to practice and experience God’s words, and come to know themselves, so that they are able to understand the truth and enter reality.
2. Deacons of watering must properly carry out the work of watering newcomers. Before anything else, they must address their own erroneous notions and understanding. They must attain genuine understanding of the truths relating to visions. They must be able to lovingly and patiently water newcomers, and ensure that newcomers understand these truths within six months, so that they may root themselves in the true way.
3. A church’s deacon of watering must attend assemblies with all groups by rotating between them. Upon discovering a problem, they should immediately address it by seeking the truth; major problems must be solved by fellowshiping with the church leaders. There must be no concealment of the true facts.
4. Deacons of watering must work in harmony with church leaders to carry out the work of the church. They should regularly communicate with church leaders regarding issues and difficulties that exist in the church, and jointly seek the truth principle in order to solve these problems. Deacons of watering should also monitor the work of church leaders and provide prompt fellowship and reminders should they discover any deviation or shortcoming. Should any serious problem be discovered, they should report it to their superiors immediately.
Excerpted from Work Arrangements
Work Responsibilities of Gospel Deacons
1. Gospel deacons should manage those in the church who are adept at spreading the gospel or willing to be trained in spreading the gospel. Gospel deacons should frequently fellowship truths, wisdom, and various effective means of spreading the gospel to such people, so that those who spread the gospel may understand the truth and grasp principles.
2. Gospel deacons must follow the principles of “five preach” and “eight never preach.” They must ensure that the recipients of the gospel are of relatively good humanity, yearn for the truth, and are capable of understanding the truth. The gospel must not be preached to those who are of evil humanity, have no interest in the truth, and do not truly believe in God.
3. Gospel deacons must mobilize God’s chosen people to go to different denominations to find out which of their members yearn for the appearance of God and love the truth, as well as to learn more about how long they have believed in God, their moral quality, and their caliber; where a practical plan for spreading the gospel can be ascertained, someone suitable should be arranged to go spread the gospel to them. In addition, the gospel deacons must discover which of the denomination member’s relatives, friends, and acquaintances are suitable gospel targets, so that someone can be arranged to spread the gospel to them.
4. Gospel deacons must mobilize God’s chosen ones to feel people out and find potential prospects to spread the gospel to, employing various appropriate and effective means to seek gospel targets. When such people are discovered, they must be reported to the church, after which a suitable method can be discovered and identified by which to preach to them.
Excerpted from Work Arrangements
Work Responsibilities of Deacons of General Affairs
1. Deacons of general affairs are responsible for distributing books of God’s words, the latest sermons and fellowships, and work arrangements to God’s chosen people, ensuring that there are no delays or omissions.
2. Deacons of general affairs must get to know and have an understanding of the practical difficulties faced by those of God’s chosen who perform their duties full time, and do everything possible to help them address their concerns.
3. Deacons of general affairs must regularly check on the custody situation of church assets and literature to ensure the integrity of all church assets.
Excerpted from Work Arrangements