Principles for Establishing a Church and Managing Church Life
I. Principles for Establishing a Church and Accepting New Believers
1. Principles for Establishing a Church
The principles for establishing a church are: So long as there is a group of people (around 20) who have truly accepted God’s work, who request to formally join the church, and who are willing to fulfill their duties, then a church can be established. If there are around 10 new believers who ask to have gatherings, a gathering group can first be set up, but a church cannot be established. If the new believers have not formally recognized and accepted the true way while they investigate it, then a church should not be established. The establishment of a church should be done in person by a church leader, a gospel preaching deacon or a nurturing deacon. Before establishing a church, it is most critical to first clearly communicate how church leaders and deacons are elected. After the new believers have all understood the principles for electing leaders and deacons, an election can then be held. After the church leader and deacons have been elected, the person responsible for establishing the church shall preside over and hold a prayer meeting during which they should formally announce the establishment of the church, announce who are to be the church leaders and deacons, and then begin to pray. Everyone shall pray before God and declare that they formally believe in Almighty God and are joining the church. They should also declare that they thoroughly accept and submit to God’s work, will seek truths to attain God’s salvation, will exalt God and bear witness for God to repay God’s love and spend their whole life for God. They may also relate their wishes, aspirations and innermost thoughts to God. After God’s chosen people have finished their prayers, the church will then have been established, and the leaders and deacons may officially begin leading the church life.
The leaders and deacons are elected once every year. The election is only valid when the number of participating people from the church is over 80%. If the work being done by the elected church leaders and deacons has been fruitful, they can be reelected indefinitely.
The number of people in a church may range from a minimum of 20 to around 50. If gatherings become problematic because the number of people has exceeded 50, another church can then be established.
The name of the church can be determined according to the local name of the place: Churches in villages can be named after the name of the village or the town; churches in cities can be named after the city or the district.
To ensure that church work carries on as normal and that church life is not affected, all conduct and behaviors that disturb church life must be regulated. There are primarily 7 types of behaviors that disturb church life, as described below:
1) Organizing cliques and fighting over power and gain within the church, engaging in intrigues and infighting is all conduct that disturbs church life;
2) Passing judgments at will, attacking church leaders and deacons thereby causing chaos within the church is all conduct that disturbs church life;
3) Affecting the eating and drinking of God’s words and the fellowship of truths thereby causing a lack of good results from gatherings is all conduct that disturbs church life;
4) Not following the arrangements of church leaders and doing whatever one pleases thereby causing trouble for the church is all conduct that disturbs church life;
5) Any preaching of outdated spiritual theories, misleading religious theories or philosophical ideas that disturb the eating and drinking of God’s words as well as the fellowshiping of truths is all conduct that disturbs church life;
6) Constantly spreading notions and fallacies to deceive people, resulting in God’s chosen people being confused, having a vague belief in God, and lacking a path is all conduct that disturbs church life;
7) Violating the arrangements from the above and doing other things instead, resulting in God’s chosen people lacking a goal in their pursuit of truths and being unable to enter onto the right path of their faith in God is all conduct that disturbs church life;
There are three primary ways to deal with those who disturb church life: 1. If this is their first offense, they shall be rebuked by the church leaders; 2. If they refuse to accept advice or rebuke, they can then be rebuked by everyone during gatherings; 3. If such assistance still fails to produce any change, then their church life shall be discontinued, they shall be asked to practice self-reflection, and will only be permitted to rejoin gatherings after they have self-reflected and have written a repentance letter. Otherwise, they may be dealt with in accordance with the church’s seven rules for expulsion.
3. The Church’s Principles for Hosting
The hosting duties of the church shall be the responsibility of the appointed host families. When hosting those performing work as well as the brothers and sisters, the host families must follow the hosting principles in order to be commemorated and blessed by God. The specifics of the hosting principles are as follows:
1) When hosting, the host families must never arrange for a big feast. The circumstance of the host families must be considered, the host families should not be ruled over by vanity of the flesh and their own conceit. They should stay within their means, and the borrowing of money for hosting shall never be tolerated;
2) When an affluent family is hosting, no more than four dishes can be cooked; and when a family at a poor and backward area is hosting, no more than two dishes can be cooked. The dishes should be primarily vegetarian, and some meat can be included when under better circumstances. In the case of a lower living standard, the dishes can be completely vegetarian (except for those people with illness);
3) If the host family is affluent, it may host using its own money, but it must avoid a big feast, and it certainly must not cause adverse impacts to God’s house. If the host family is impoverished, the church may reimburse its expenses. The borrowing of money for hosting shall never be tolerated;
4) If the host family has discovered any worker who is lazy and picky, it may report to those at the higher levels. If such workers are unrepentant, the host family may refuse to host them and should not be constrained by the position of such workers, for all of God’s chosen people are equal in the presence of God and the truth. While the duties that each shall fulfill may be different, there is no distinction of superiority and inferiority amongst us.
We hope that all host families can implement these principles, for only by hosting in this manner can we satisfy God’s will, and we shall not feel troubled by how to do hosting. The host family and the workers can supervise each other and encourage each other, for such a practice is beneficial to everyone. The workers should focus on the work of God’s house and treat it as their top priority; those who focus on eating, drinking and having fun should repent and restrain themselves. All those workers who are constantly being lazy shall be sent home.
4. The Church’s Principles for Accepting New Believers
The principles for accepting new believers into the church are: So long as they sincerely believe in God, even if they have only a sliver of hope or chance to be saved, they should still be accepted into the church and they should never be kept out. The standard for accepting people into the church should not be too high, for the entire mankind has already been too deeply corrupted and only a few have the humanity that qualifies them. If they are not evildoers or muddleheaded people, and if they sincerely believe that Almighty God is the incarnate God, then they should be accepted into the church. Regardless of whether they are laborers, farmers, teachers, scientific and technological personnel, or government employees, we must treat them all as equals without any bias. We must especially have extreme patience in guiding cadres, teachers and scientific and technological personnel to enter into God’s words and to understand all the truths. Because these people have greater difficulties entering into God’s words, we cannot have too high or too stringent an expectation of them. If we truly have love for them, then we should stay in touch with them and assist them regularly. Even though these people often require a longer time than ordinary people to enter the truths and build up a foundation in their faith in God, once they have really entered into the truths they are all valuable talents. We must understand that the cultivation of talents requires us to pay a price.
For those being accepted by the church, usually the approval of the church leaders and deacons is sufficient. In special circumstances, approval of the entire church is required. If some people do not agree with the acceptance of a new believer, then he must be tested for a period of time. While he is being tested, his sponsor or the person who preached the gospel to him should constantly stay in touch with him and carefully observe him. If this person sincerely believes in God and has a chance to be saved, then he can be accepted into the church. The work of accepting people into the church cannot be too extreme; only evildoers and confused people should be restricted. We should accept most people, and only special cases should require further discussion and approval of the church.
The matter of accepting people into the church should be carried out carefully, primarily to prevent those evildoers who want to take advantage of the church, who often commit adultery, or who are extremely arrogant, from joining our church. There are also those who only come to socialize or kick up a fuss, who we must also prevent from joining our church. Because such people do not love truths, therefore even if they join the church they won’t stay until the very end. In the church, those who eventually give up belong to this type of person. Furthermore, we must also prevent those who are spying on the church from infiltrating our church. The church must mainly prevent the following three types of people from mixing with our congregations: One type is those who are so evil, depraved, and base that the church absolutely cannot accept them; another type is the spies who want to infiltrate the church, who the church absolutely cannot accept either; the last type is those who do not sincerely believe in God. They will give up sooner or later even if they were accepted into the church, so the church must not accept them.
5. The Church’s Principles for Offerings
All those who believe in God know very clearly that God’s work requires the coordination of people, and it requires leaders and workers from all levels of the church to supply, water, and guide God’s chosen people in maintaining God’s work. The expansion of God’s gospel of the kingdom requires God’s chosen people to run around and expend themselves; in addition, the various books of God’s word and of communication of truths used by God’s chosen people require printing and distributing. Therefore, God’s work of salvation pays a price for each and every one of God’s chosen people who receive God’s work, and all such expenses are supported by the offerings that God’s chosen people make to God. As a result, God has expectations for all God’s chosen people, and offering to God is a duty and obligation of created beings, and expending themselves for God is the responsibility that they should fulfill. This is justified and obligatory. Everyone should offer up their share for God’s work, regardless of how each person understands this matter. Some insist on making an offering of ten percent, while others contribute in different ways. As long as it is being offered willingly, God will gladly accept it. God’s house only specifies that those who have only believed in God for less than a year are temporarily exempt from providing any offerings, while poor people are not required to provide any offerings but can make offerings according to their faith. The church will not accept offerings that might lead to family disputes. Those making an offering of money must pray several times, and only after they are sure they are completely willing and are certain they will never have any regrets are they to be allowed to make their offerings. For those who have believed in God for over two years, regardless of the manner with which they are making their offerings, as long as they have prayed and are completely willing, no one has the right to interfere.
God’s chosen people should only contribute their offerings after they have understood the principles and significance of making an offering, because only then will they be commemorated and blessed by God. Making an offering is the responsibility and obligation of God’s chosen people; it is also a good deed that all people should have. If someone has never contributed any offerings after believing in God for several years, it shows that they do not have real faith and that they still don’t understand the truths. This is sufficient to show that this person’s relationship with God is not normal. Those who have believed in God for many years yet have never contributed any offerings are certainly unbelievers. They are certainly those without conscience or reason, and they do not deserve to live in the presence of God. The principles for making offerings are: You must know God’s work, can see that you have come to a real understanding of the truths through your faith in God, know how to live as a human, walk the path of attaining salvation, feel that you are in debt to God for His love, and that you must fulfill your duties as a man such that your conscience will feel at ease. If you then make offerings at this time, you shall be completely willing, while at the same time, you will feel enjoyment and comfort because you have conscience and reason. If someone has believed in God for many years, yet does not feel that he is a pursuer of the truth and that he will attain salvation, then he has no need to make any offerings, for he will not be completely willing even if he should make any offerings. Such a person does not love truths, is an unbeliever, and it is a matter of course that such a person does not make any offerings. The church does not allow anyone to ask others to make offerings through preaching or any other reason. All those who are keen to talk about making offerings have ulterior motives. The matter of making offerings depends on each individual’s conscience and reason, as well as their understanding of truths.
All of God’s chosen people must understand that all offerings are made for God and not for any individual church or individual person. You are certainly making a mistake if you are making an offering to an individual church or an individual person. Since the offerings made by God’s chosen people are for God, they shall be managed and utilized by God’s house as it sees fit. They do not belong to any one church, and they are only temporarily kept by any one church. Other than proper uses by the church, the church has no authority over such offerings because they were made to God. Therefore, it is only proper that they are uniformly managed and utilized by God’s house, and no one has the right to interfere. If anyone should hand the offerings made to God over to antichrists and evildoers, then they are selling out these offerings made to God. This is an act of betraying and blaspheming God, and such people shall inevitably be punished and cursed.
When God’s chosen people make offerings, they are performing their duty and obligation as created beings; but this is entirely determined by their faith. Only those with real faith are able to perform splendid good deeds and bear witness, and faith can only be gained from pursuing truths. Some people have faith in God, while others have no such faith. Some have faith in God’s righteousness, while others cannot recognize that God is righteous. Such are the different states of different people. We cannot demand that everyone be the same, therefore the offerings made to God are entirely based on the willingness of each person. If a rich man has the faith of Job and offers all that he possesses to God, then that is a good deed. Some people fail to offer all of themselves to God, even at the very end, and this is the greatest failure of their faith in God.
Dedicating one’s entire being to expend for God should be based on one’s own choice. Some people dedicate themselves to spread the gospel, others serve in churches. Some people dedicate their entire being to expend for God full time. Others can only expend themselves for God part of the time. This all depends on the choices people are willing to make; God’s family does not force people to do things. If you are suited to do a job for God’s house, then God’s family will call on you; whether or not you are willing to answer the call is up to you. If there is someone willing to devote themselves, they must heed the arrangements of God’s family. God’s family can arrange work for a person according to his strengths. If that person does a good job, then he may be kept on. If a person is not up to the task, then God’s family can give them another job to do. God’s family arranges work for each person according to their background and strengths. God’s family will not assign tasks to the incompetent. People must learn to obey and submit to God’s orchestration. Regardless of the work carried out, there are principles to follow within God’s house. Since there are principles for people contributing and expending themselves for God, therefore there are also principles for making offerings to God. For those within God’s house, regardless of the duties being fulfilled, there are principles that should be followed, and they should all carry out them according to principles. This is something that God’s chosen people must stick to.
6. Bribing Leaders or Workers With Gifts Is Strictly Prohibited
Between brothers and sisters, we can practice love and charity, which fits entirely with God’s words. However, some people buy expensive items for the church’s workers, and such gift giving does not actually reflect love and charity but stems completely from the ulterior motives of the individuals concerned. Indeed, there are some workers or preachers who have become greedy and have asked for “assistance” from their brothers and sisters. Their eyes light up when they see other people’s possessions which they desire, and they look for any way possible to obtain them, thus completely exposing the greedy ugliness of the great red dragon. We hope that our brothers and sisters will take this as a warning and refrain from following the evil ways of this world. Faith in God requires you to pursue truths as well as conduct all your affairs according to truths. There can be charity and assistance when love exists between brothers and sisters, but if the emphasis is on the gifting of expensive items to those workers and leaders who do not have any financial difficulties, such “charity” will not be commemorated by God because it is entirely a self-serving means. If a host family is facing difficulties and lacks some essential items, then it is a genuine target for charity. Real love and charity does not involve the ulterior motives of the individual. If others are comforted by acts of charity and assistance, then such acts fit with God’s intention. But if the purpose is to please a certain leader due to the ulterior motives of the individual, then such acts of charity and gifting absolutely do not fit with the truths. I heard about a well-off sister distributing some rather inexpensive items to other workers. However, she was being charitable to all workers and not only to particular workers, therefore such charity can be called true love.
The good deeds that are expected by God are charities toward those poor people and brothers and sisters facing real difficulties, who sincerely contribute to God’s work and expend themselves for God. We must conduct ourselves appropriately and act with correctness when we practice love and charity, for only then do we accord with God’s intention. Those in the role of a leader or a worker must consider the work of God’s house, fulfill their duties well, and refuse gifts from the brothers and sisters. Only such people are loyal servants of Christ, good leaders for their brothers and sisters, and good workers of God’s house.
II. Administrative Management Principles of the Church
During the large-scale expansion work of the gospel, it is inevitable that many evildoers infiltrate the church, which introduces much trouble into church life and causes great disturbance to the life entrance of the brothers and sisters. The presence of these people in God’s house is very disadvantageous to the work of God’s house. Their impact is extremely negative because their conduct seriously humiliates God’s name, and they are most certainly not people that God wishes to save. They do not love truths, they do not seek to know God, yet they have the intense desire to be blessed as well as the mindset of an opportunist. They are servants of Satan, they are evildoers who disrupt God’s work, and they are the demons who have been cursed by God to sink into perdition and perish. To ensure that God’s work is carried out smoothly without any interference—and to maintain a normal church life—God’s house is compelled to purge these wolves in sheep’s clothing, as well as all the other evildoers and unbelievers, from the church. Such acts bring great satisfaction to all our brothers and sisters. We must all come to know that God’s work only saves those who truly believe in God and pursue the truth, those who can leave behind everything to fulfill their duties, and those who can submit to God’s arrangements and are not reckless. All those who are able to submit and carry out their duties when they hear God’s voice are those who truly come before His throne. All those who hear God’s voice yet still rebel, resist, and do evil are incorrigible and should be eliminated; they should be expelled and purged from the church. In God’s work, whether someone can be saved or not depends on whether that person pursues truths and the path that they walk. Ultimately, some people shall be saved and perfected, while others shall be eliminated and cursed, this is a matter of course. All of God’s chosen people must realize this, for God is righteous, and His disposition may not be offended by anyone. All those who do evil are destined to sink into perdition and perish. Such people are a scourge even if they stay in God’s house, therefore they might as well be expelled and purged from the church as quickly as possible. We shall now make public the rules for expelling and purging people, which God’s chosen people should all learn.
1. The Church’s Principles for Purging People
Since the work of God in the last days is the work of judging and chastising the human race by expressing words of truth, the requirements for the people that receive His work are that they possess a normal line of thinking, a sound sense and are able to understand the truth. We can see clearly that the church has been infiltrated by those who are demon-possessed, those who have the grave work of evil spirits as well as all kinds of dull-witted people and people with abnormal sense. These people do not understand the truth in the slightest degree, and are unable to fulfill the duties they need to fulfill. If they remain in the church, they are just a burden that will wear us out. This is why they must be purged. Doing so is beneficial to the church as well as its members. There are mainly several kinds of people that need to be purged:
1) If anyone, even though the family environment allows for gatherings, does not live the church life all along, they are actually a non-believer and they must be purged.
2) Those who pretend to be Christians but are actually non-believers must be purged.
3) If someone who once had a mental disorder or was possessed by demons does not have common sense all along or if someone frequently has the work of evil spirits, they do not meet the prerequisites for accepting God’s work and have no way of understanding the truth. This is why they must be purged.
4) For those who are severely handicapped, including those who suffer from all sorts of weird diseases, and those old people who are deaf or have blurred vision or are numb imbeciles, if they are unable to understand the truth no matter how you communicate to them, then they must be purged.
5) If anyone always has conceptions about God, has a suspicious attitude, does not seek the truth in the slightest, has a malicious heart, and wants to sue the church or sue the church leaders due to their dissatisfaction with them, they must be purged.
6) If someone is despised by the majority of the people in the church and they feel disgusted with this person as their words and actions are the same as nonbelievers, such a person must be purged.
7) If someone especially likes to follow people and flatter people, is apt to follow the work of evil spirits, believe in lies, and be deceived, always has conceptions of God, maintains a skeptical attitude and does not accept the truth, they are classified as absurd and evil people and must be purged.
The seven kinds of people mentioned above do not meet the requirements for accepting God’s work and have no way of understanding the truth. Even if these people believe in God, they cannot obtain the truth and they cannot be saved. That is why they are all people that must be purged. The main reason that these people must be purged is because they do not meet the requirements and conditions of God’s work. Those who must be purged are not evil-doers, that is why they are only purged and not expelled.
2. The Church’s Principles for Expelling People
During the large-scale expansion of the gospel, all kinds of evildoers have infiltrated the church. These evildoers are arrogant and have no sense. They are also filled with ambitions and haven’t the slightest interest in pursuing truths. They try their best to interfere with, disrupt, and dismantle the work of the church. Some of them are totally incorrigible and commit all kinds of wicked deeds. They become demons that oppose God, therefore the church must expel all of them. The expulsion of these people must accord with the following seven rules:
1) Absurd and delusional people who constantly spread conceptions against God and judge God’s work in the church, who are always dissatisfied with the work of God’s house, who confuse right with wrong, spout nonsense, are truculent and unreasonable, and don’t accept the truths one little bit, must be expelled;
2) Those who continue to form cliques, sow discord, engage in intrigue, disturb church life and do not repent, must be expelled;
3) Those who are involved in embezzlement or borrow money from God’s house without returning it, must be expelled;
4) Those who are promiscuous or engage in homosexual acts and remain incorrigible must be expelled (except for occasional offenders);
5) Those who, when fulfilling their duties, continue to just muddle through, act in a reckless manner, are bad influences, and have no semblance of people who believe in God, must be expelled;
6) Those who are negligent and act in a reckless manner when fulfilling their duties, causing great losses to church finances or damage to the work of God’s house, must be expelled without exception;
7) Those who seriously betray the church or their brothers and sisters must be expelled. Revealing things that are unimportant because of moments of weakness but withholding critical things does not count as betraying the church or their brothers and sisters as it is normal behavior. Serious cases are those where people reveal everything that they know without any reservations, and where people speak and work for the great red dragon because of their cowardice and have completely become tools of Satan. Such people belong to Judas’ kind, the kind who betrays their Lord and their friends, and they must be expelled.
These are the seven standards and principles for expelling all the evildoers. Anyone who matches any of these seven standards shall be expelled. If someone’s transgression does not meet any of these seven standards, then they must not be expelled and should be given an opportunity to repent. Anyone with the slightest chance of salvation should also not be expelled. If they seriously interfere with the church, they should be isolated, and only if isolation has not attained the desired result should they be expelled. Expulsion from the church is a measure aimed at all those evildoers and incorrigible people; it is an administrative measure of the church. Therefore, none of church leaders or workers may use expulsion as a means to subdue others or resolve personal issues. Those being expelled by the church should only be evildoers, antichrists, and those incorrigible people who commit all kinds of wicked deeds. Therefore, expulsions from the church should never violate the above principles.
3. Purging and Expelling People From The Church Must Be Based on Their Essence
All work carried out by God’s house abides by principles. There are principles for promoting and using people; there are also principles for expelling and purging people. In order to carry out work in accordance with our principles, we must see clearly through the essence of the issue, and we must never make the mistake of relying on appearances. Only by doing things this way can we ensure that we meet God’s expectations. When we are unable to see clearly through the essence of people, it is easy for us to violate principles and rigidly follow rules. Right now, most leaders have this shortcoming, primarily due to the fact that they understand too few truths and they are unable to see clearly through the essence of most people. Therefore, when they are dealing with matters they are totally lost, and all they are able to do is rigidly follow rules. Therefore they are unable to ensure that they can properly carry out their work without making mistakes. Before the church expels or purges a particular person, they must first understand this person’s essential nature thoroughly. At the very least, they must understand thoroughly that this person will not change no matter how many years of faith, that this is absolutely someone who does not seek the truth, that this person basically does not possess a normal person’s conscience and sense and the Holy Spirit absolutely does not work on him or her. This person can be purged or expelled only if everyone acknowledges that he or she is like this. Only by following these procedures can it be guaranteed that there will not be any mistakes made. If we are able to completely understand God’s intentions in terms of which people should be saved, abandoned, or eliminated, then we can correctly purge and expel those people that the church should purge and expel, without wronging any innocent people and without missing any bad people. Only by correctly purging and expelling people in this way can we fully accord with God’s intentions. The church must base its decision of purging or expelling someone on that person’s essence. Only in this way can it be guaranteed that the decision is in accordance with God’s intentions and that no mistakes will be made. For example, the expulsion of demon-possessed people, antichrists who continue to judge God’s work or the man used by the Holy Spirit, those who are regularly promiscuous or commit homosexual acts, and those who continue to commit all manner of evil and disturb the work of God’s house is based on the fact that by nature and essence they already belong to Satan and they can no longer be saved. As determined by their essence, these people have not been predestined and selected by God but are evildoers and opportunists who have sneaked into God’s house. Therefore, we must expel as many people like this as possible. Such acts can never be wrong. This is because these procedures are implemented based on a person’s essence and not on their momentary transgressions. If it is only based on a person’s momentary transgressions, then it is likely that some people who have momentary transgressions but are able to genuinely repent will be ruined. God’s family has never permitted the expulsion of people that have committed serious transgressions but are able to truly repent.
To ensure that the church acts correctly regarding the people that it expels and purges, God’s house has previously stipulated that full approval from the church leader and deacons must be obtained to expel someone. The approval of the church must also be obtained, and the person may be expelled with the approval of a large majority of the church members (over 80%). This rule is still valid. We can now use this rule to re-examine all those who have been expelled or purged, and if some of them have fairly good humanity and were expelled because of a temporary offense, they can be invited back to resume their church life. Regarding those with bad and evil humanity, they should be abandoned forever. When you are able to see clearly through the essence of people, then it is much easier to carry out your work. As long as you can see clearly through what type of people they are, then you have also seen clearly through people’s essence.
4. Church Leaders at All Levels Are Never Allowed to Expel Others on Their Own
In days past, some church leaders would expel others due to a variety of reasons. Some have expelled people for their leaving homes to work elsewhere, for not going to gatherings very often, for not pursuing the truth, for always being negative, for being too old, and even for clinging to the mundane world and being entangled in the worries of the world. These are all grave mistakes. Such actions have violated the arrangements of God’s house. God’s house absolutely does not allow for the expulsion of others using arbitrary reasons, or the direct expulsion of any other person by any one leader or worker. The expulsion of anyone by the church must be carried out in strict accordance with the rules of God’s house, and it must be decided after being approved by the majority of the church members. Only the church has the authority to expel anyone, and no one has the authority to expel others. Expulsion from the church is a most solemn matter; it is an issue that determines a person’s fate. Such a matter must be decided with the approval of the majority of the church members, for it is only fair to treat others this way. To ensure that the church is just, fair and reasonable when expelling others, God’s house has specifically ruled that only the following people can be expelled:
1) Those that can be confirmed to be demon-possessed and constantly being worked on by evil spirits may be expelled;
2) Those that can be confirmed to belong in the category of antichrists can be expelled;
3) Those evildoers that are known to always disturb the church, commit all kinds of evil deeds, and are incorrigible can be expelled;
4) Those evildoers who can be confirmed to be of Judas’ kind, who are able to betray the church and God’s chosen people and who are able to thoroughly betray God, can be expelled;
5) Those discovered to be stealing from the offerings, engaging in embezzling or swindling money from God’s house—and who refuse to return any of it—can be expelled.
Only those belonging to one of these five categories can be expelled from the church, but their expulsion must be approved by the majority of the church members. The expulsion documents must have the signatures of the relevant leaders and workers from all levels of the church, and should be filed to help avoid any mistakes. This is a reasonable procedure, such that if mistakes are discovered we can assign responsibility for them. This procedure must be followed when expelling or purging others. Regarding those who should have been purged based on earlier rules, such as those who are of too poor a quality and are unable to really understand truths—as well as those who don’t seek and don’t frequently go to gatherings—as long as they do not disturb the church, they can remain in the church to be observed for another year or two. If for several years more they continue to not pursue the truth nor consistently attend gatherings, they can then be purged from the church. God is righteous with everyone, and God’s house must be responsible for everyone who believes in God. Especially for matters involving the end of people, we must pay extra attention to be fair and reasonable, and we must never handle such matters carelessly. Those being irresponsible with people’s life and their end lack humanity. They are cruel people, and do not deserve to serve God. The act of leaders at all levels of the church expelling others without good reasons is something that totally opposes God and causes the most sorrow to God. It is a great evil and iniquity that is offensive to God and to reason. Those leaders who expel God’s chosen people on their own must be isolated and asked to reflect on themselves. If they do not admit to their wrongdoings and repent, they must be replaced.
August 2, 2003