126. The Principles of Love Between Brothers and Sisters
(1) Brothers and sisters who truly believe in God and love the truth must love and encourage one another, and cooperate in harmony. Only thus will their lives grow;
(2) Read God’s words and fellowship on the truth together frequently, communicating what they know through experience. Support each other, help one another, and share in your progress as you pursue the truth;
(3) Keep a heart of goodwill, and be capable of tolerance and pity for your counterpart. If you find they have a problem, help them; if you cannot help them, do not trivialize, belittle, or prejudge them;
(4) Mutual love must be built upon a foundation of the truth principle. If one commits acts in violation of the principles, they should be criticized, exposed, pruned, and dealt with.
Bible Verses for Reference:
“A new commandment I give to you, That you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this shall all men know that you are My disciples, if you have love one to another” (Jhn 13:34–35).
“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like to it, You shall love your neighbor as yourself” (Mat 22:37–39).
Relevant Words of God:
These relationships are not established in the flesh, but on the foundation of God’s love. There are almost no fleshly interactions, but in the spirit there is fellowship, mutual love, mutual comfort, and provision for one another. This is all done on the foundation of a heart that satisfies God. These relationships are not maintained by relying on a human philosophy for living, but are formed very naturally through carrying a burden for God. It does not require man-made effort. You need only practice according to God’s word principle. Are you willing to be considerate of the will of God? Are you willing to be a person who is “without reason” before God? Are you willing to completely give your heart to God and to disregard your position among people? Of all the people you have contact with, with whom do you have the best relationships? With whom do you have the worst relationships? Are your relationships with people normal? Do you treat all people equally? Are your relationships with others maintained according to your philosophy for living, or are they built on the foundation of God’s love? … A normal relationship between people is established on the foundation of giving their hearts to God, and not through human effort. Without God in their hearts, interpersonal relationships between people are merely relationships of the flesh. They are not normal, but rather, are an abandonment to lust. They are relationships that God detests, that He loathes. If you say that your spirit has been moved, but you always want to have fellowship with people who you like, with whomever you think highly of, and if another person is seeking but you do not like them, even hold a bias against them and will not engage with them, this is more proof that you are subject to your emotions and you do not have a normal relationship with God at all. You are attempting to deceive God and cover up your own ugliness. Even if you can share some understanding yet you carry wrong intentions, then everything you do is good only by human standards. God will not praise you—you are acting according to the flesh, not according to God’s burden. If you are able to quiet your heart in front of God and have normal interactions with all those who love God, only then are you fit for God’s use. This way, no matter how you associate with others, it will not be according to a philosophy for living, but it will be before God, living in a way that is considerate of His burden.
Excerpted from “It Is Very Important to Establish a Normal Relationship With God” in The Word Appears in the Flesh
If you have yet to find the feeling and the principles of being a saint, this proves that your life entry is too shallow, and that you have not yet understood the truth. In your conduct and the environment in which you live each day, this requires you to savor and to ponder, to fellowship with each other, to encourage each other, to keep each other alert, to help and care for each other, and to support and provide for each other. Do not always focus on others’ faults, but reflect on yourself frequently, and be proactive afterward in admitting to another what you have done that constitutes interference or harm to them. Learn to open yourself up and fellowship, and often discuss together how to fellowship practically on the basis of God’s words. When the environment of your lives is frequently thus, relationships among the brothers and sisters become normal—not complicated, indifferent, cold, or cruel like relationships between unbelievers. You will slowly divest yourselves of such relationships. Brothers and sisters become closer and more intimate with each other; you are able to support one another, and to love each other; there is goodwill in your hearts, or you have a mentality with which you are capable of tolerance and compassion toward each other, and you support and care for each other, rather than a state and attitude in which you fight with each other, trample over one another, are jealous of each other, engage in secret competition, harbor hidden scorn or contempt for each other, or in which none obeys another. Living in such states or circumstances creates terrible relationships between people. It not only creates all sorts of negative influences on you and causes you harm, but also negatively influences and harms others to varying degrees. It is very difficult, in general, for people to overcome this—you get angry when people look at you the wrong way, or when they say something that is out of line with your will, and when someone does something that stops you from getting a look-in, you resent them, and feel uncomfortable and unhappy, and can think only of how to restore your reputation. Women and young people are particularly incapable of overcoming this. They are always ensnared in these petty dispositions, these tantrums, these petty emotions, and it is difficult for them to come before God. Entangled in these complex, weblike relationships, entwined in them, it is difficult for people to quiet themselves before God, and quiet themselves in God’s words. Therefore, you must first learn how to get along well with your brothers and sisters. You must be tolerant of each other, lenient with each other, be able to see what is exceptional about one another, what each other’s strengths are—and you must learn to accept others’ opinions, and to retreat deep into yourself to engage in self-reflection and gain self-knowledge. You must not indulge yourself, or give free rein to your ambitions, desires, or your merest strengths, forcing others to listen to you, to do as you say, to think highly of you, and to raise you on high, yet be oblivious to the strengths of others while exaggerating and magnifying their shortcomings without restraint, at all turns publicizing, belittling and despising their shortcomings, or using words and others means to hurt and aggravate others, such that you will have made them obey you, heed you, fear you, and hide from you. Would you want to see such a relationship between people come about or exist? Would you want to feel what it is like?
Excerpted from “The Most Fundamental Principle for the Practice of Entering Truth Reality” in Records of Christ’s Talks
God lifts the needy from the dust; the humble must be made high. I will use My wisdom in all its forms to govern the universal church, to govern all nations and all peoples, so that they are all within Me, and so that all of you in the church might submit to Me. Those who did not obey before must now be obedient before Me, must submit to each other, forbear each other; your lives must be interconnected, and you must love one another, all drawing on each other’s strong points to offset your own weaknesses, and serving in coordination. In this way will the church be built, and Satan will have no opportunity to exploit. Only then will My management plan not have failed. Let Me give you another reminder here. Do not allow misunderstandings to arise in you because such-and-such person is a certain way, or acted in such-and-such a way, with the result that you become degenerate within your spiritual condition. As I see it, this is not appropriate, and it is a worthless thing. Is the One you believe in not God? It is not some person. The functions are not the same. There is one body. Each does his duty, each in his place and doing his very best—for each spark there is one flash of light—and seeking maturity in life. Thus will I be satisfied.
Excerpted from “Chapter 21” of Utterances of Christ in the Beginning in The Word Appears in the Flesh
Whether you are a younger or an older brother or sister, you know the function you ought to perform. Those in their youth are not arrogant; those who are older are not passive, nor do they regress. Moreover, they are able to use each other’s strengths to make up for their weaknesses, and they can serve one another without any prejudice. A bridge of friendship is built between younger and older brothers and sisters, and because of God’s love, you are able to better understand one another. Younger brothers and sisters do not look down on older brothers and sisters, and the older brothers and sisters are not self-righteous: Is this not a harmonious partnership? If you all have such resolve, then the will of God will certainly be accomplished in your generation.
Excerpted from “On Everyone Performing Their Function” in The Word Appears in the Flesh
In performing your duty, you must train yourself to work in harmony with your brothers and sisters, fellowship openly with them, lay everything out on the table, communicate openly, publicly, and honestly, and speak clearly. Then everyone divvies up the work and cooperates, working together in harmony. If there is anything still not understood, then everyone should get together and fellowship more. Those who do understand should fellowship their understanding without hesitation, and anyone who has gained the light of enlightenment should hurry up and tell others about it. If, while others are performing their duties, you are able to give them more help and support, then you should spare no effort to do so, without the slightest reservation. How do despicable girls tend to think? “I know this, but I won’t tell you.” “If you won’t tell me, then I won’t tell you.” This is how despicable girls think—mean, and very afraid that others will be better than they. That is not the sort of thinking that someone with normal humanity should possess. It is not normal humanity or a positive thing; this is a corrupt disposition. All these things that are selfish, mean, deceitful, shadowy, dirty, and shameful are not positive things; they are all negative things. You must therefore learn to let go of these things. You must not let them control, constrain, or dominate you; you have to break past them and strive to be someone in possession of the truth and who lives in the light. Honesty, openness, sincerity, the ability to be tolerant, forbearing, patient, and self-effacing; learning to cherish others, learning to find joy in helping others, doing good deeds, and having a good heart—all of these are positive things. As for those negative things, once you discover that you have such thoughts or ideas, or that you are in such states, you must learn to forsake them and relinquish them. If you do not, then they will control you, and once they have you under their control, you will be capable of doing this type of thing—and then, you will forever be a puppet, enslaved and controlled by your corrupt satanic disposition, and you will never gain the truth. If people wish to gain the truth, they must first recognize what corrupt dispositions they have, how they express those corrupt dispositions, what their thoughts are, what their ideas are, and what states they are in that are at odds with the truth. They should bring these negative, passive things out into the open and recognize them, and then resolve them one by one by learning to forsake them, break through them, and give them up. They should learn to use the truth in the way they treat others, in their approach to their duties, and in their approach to every single thing that happens in their lives, and they should learn to speak and act in accordance with the truth. In this way, little by little, people will come to possess human likeness; they will get better and better at performing their duties, and everyone will work more and more harmoniously together and will become increasingly unified.
Excerpted from “How to Experience God’s Words in One’s Duties” in Records of Christ’s Talks
Sermon and Fellowship Excerpts for Reference:
The love between brothers and sisters should be established upon the truth principle. Both speech and action must be in line with the truth, taking the truth as standard. You should not rely on your emotions, nor engage in deception or deceit, and you particularly should not be using each other. You should frequently have fellowship on the truth, encourage and help each other in your entry into life, and you should not quibble over your personal gains or losses. As people have corrupt dispositions, during interactions friction can be unavoidable, but you must be able to tolerate and forgive each other, pursue the truth together, and take concerted action to meet a common goal. By frequently having fellowship on the truth, you can open up your hearts and be free from prejudice, encouraging and obeying each other, becoming partners in life. This is what mutual love should look like. If brothers and sisters really are kindred spirits, they will be able to establish relationships of mutual love. In their mutual love they will be able to fellowship normally and seek and pursue the truth together; they will not collude to do things in violation of the truth or to take the path of resisting God. Instead, they will be of one mind in satisfying God’s will. If anyone makes a blunder and wounds another, they will both be tolerant and forgiving. If someone does something contrary to the truth that harms the church’s interests, they should not be shielded. Their problems should be pointed out directly by means of fellowshiping on the truth so that they have the opportunity to repent and start anew, to realize their error, and to feel remorse for what they have done. This is true mutual love. People who are able to help each other and progress together in truth entry and dispositional change have an interpersonal relationship of true mutual love, entirely in accordance with the truth principle. No matter how intimate it may be, a relationship based on emotions is not one of mutual love. When two or three people in the church huddle together, cover up for each other, fawn on each other, use and protect each other, and do not practice the truth at all, then they are in collusion to do evil and are a mob of villains. Such people getting together is something God hates and curses. All who often form cliques in the church, who win others over by doing them small favors, and who vainly hope to take control of the church, are the lackeys of Satan, and God will punish them. When people genuinely love each other, this not only benefits them in life and with the truth, but it can also benefit the church and the work of the church. All who possess loving hearts are necessarily those who love the truth, and they will always get along well with most other people. No matter what faults others may have, as long as they pursue the truth, then those with loving hearts will get along well with them. Such a relationship is built upon the foundation of being able to fellowship on the truth and help each other; this is true mutual love. Mutual love does not come about by colluding with each other to do evil or conspiring against others, but by pursuing the truth in order to do your duty well. If mutual love is not built upon the foundation of pursuing the truth life, but upon the affections of the flesh, then such mutual love is meaningless and benefits no one, and, on the contrary, it can be troublesome for the church.
Excerpted from The Fellowship from the Above