154. The Principles of How to Treat Unbelievers
(1) One may interact wisely with good people among the unbelievers, being those with a conscience who are receptive to reason. One may also spread the gospel to them;
(2) Evil people among the unbelievers, being those who are capable of anything when faced with the slightest harm to their interests, should be kept at a distance. One must never remain in contact with them;
(3) With those whom one must keep in contact due to work, one should be cautious in their speech. Speak only of external things; do not open your heart to them;
(4) One should be respectful of their boss or leader and obey them. Do not, however, do anything sinful, and do not get overly involved with them, but respect them from a distance.
Relevant Words of God:
What are the differences between the unbelievers and people who believe in God? Is it just a difference of faith? No. Take “Man was created by God,” for example: This is the truth. What is the attitude of people who believe in God when they hear this? They acknowledge and believe this absolutely. They embrace this fact, this truth, as the foundation of their faith in God—this is what accepting the truth is. It means accepting, from the depths of your heart, the fact of man’s creation by God, gladly being a creature of God, willingly accepting the guidance and sovereignty of God, and acknowledging that God is our God. And what is the attitude of those who do not believe in God when they hear “Man was created by God”? Not only will they not acknowledge it, but they will even mock you, doing all they can to try to use this against you, make fun of you, look upon you with contempt, and heap scorn upon these words and this fact; they may even adopt an attitude of mockery, sarcasm, contempt, and hostility toward those who accept these words. Is this not detestation of the truth? What do you think when you see such people? Do you hate them? “Man was made by God—what’s wrong with that? You don’t accept this, you don’t know where you came from, you are truly ungrateful, you are unconscionable and treacherous. You truly are the ilk of Satan!” Is that what you think? And what causes such an averse mentality to arise in you? Is it simply because they do not like those words? It is because of their attitude. Your anger would not be so great if they respected these words as ordinary words, as a theory or faith. But when they come out with words, attitudes, and dispositions that are repulsive, antagonistic, scornful, and defamatory, you get angry. Is that how it is? Though they do not believe in God, there are those who respect other people’s faith, who do not try to tear down everything other people say. You do not have any aversion or hatred toward them; you can get along peacefully with them and interact with them. Toward those who try to tear down the truth—who detest the truth—you feel anger in your heart. Could you be friends with them? Apart from not being friends with them, what else do you think of them? If you were asked to choose how you would treat them, how would you treat them? You would say, “Man was made by God, and what a great and hallowed thing that is! Not only do you not accept this, you also try to tear it down—you truly have no conscience. If God gave me the power, I would damn you, I would smite you, I would turn you to ash!” Is that your sentiment? This is a sense of justice. But when you see that they are a demon, the sensible thing would be to ignore them, to stay away from them, to just play along when they speak to you—this is the wise thing to do. Deep down, though, you know you have nothing in common with such people. They could never have faith in God, and even if they did, God would not want them. They are beasts, demons. The things we love, the path we walk, our view on life—they are all different from them. So do not speak of matters of the truth with them again, do not cast pearls before swine. They detest the truth, you know what kind of thing they are, and to talk of the truth with them again would be clearly foolish, for after you had finished speaking, they would arbitrarily try and tear down the truth, and then you could not face God and would feel indebted to God. If people can hold such an attitude toward those who do not love the truth, those who detest the truth and who try to tear down the truth, how much more is this true for God? God’s disposition, God’s essence, what God has and is, God’s life, and what is revealed in God are all the truth. There is no doubt that someone who detests the truth is hostile to God and is the enemy of God. This is more than a problem of being incompatible with God, and God’s wrath toward such people is very great.
Excerpted from “Understanding the Truth Is Crucial to Fulfilling One’s Duty Properly” in Records of Christ’s Talks
If there is a change in your disposition and you gain the truth, then your perspective will be compatible with God. When your perspective is compatible with God, are you still compatible with those who are corrupt? You resist them, you are repulsed by them, you loathe them—is this not the effect that is achieved? Their essence becomes clear to you. Because you have already seen your own essence, and have changed, can you not also see the essence of corrupt mankind? And now that you see the essence of corrupt mankind, and are compatible with God, do you not despise corrupt mankind? Do you not despise those who do not believe in God, who are hostile to God, who have forsaken God, turned their backs on God, and disobeyed God? How could you be compatible with such people? Thus, if there is a change in your disposition, you are sure to despise these people and be repulsed by them. Yet because, today, we live among the corrupt, we can only endure, and can only live by our wisdom. We cannot, because of the change in our disposition, pay them no heed, or go at them with hammer and tongs—we cannot do that, we must be wise.
Excerpted from “What Changes in Disposition Are, and the Path to Changes in Disposition” in Records of Christ’s Talks
Sermon and Fellowship Excerpts for Reference:
How should we treat the unbelievers? Most unbelievers do not accept the truth, and they also deny and oppose God, and they all live under the domain of Satan. As such, we must be smart in how we deal with them. Today, the work of salvation done by God has yet to be completed, and it is still necessary to spread the gospel and testify to God. A small number of unbelievers are people who believe there is God and seek the true way, and the gospel must be preached to these people who can be saved. As such, we must make more effort to locate and contact those among the unbelievers who seek God as well as good people who are helpful to us. We must get to know them through interacting with them, keep in touch with them, and, when the right opportunity presents itself, preach the gospel to them and bring them before God to accept His work. This is God’s commission, and it is the bounden duty of every single person. As for wicked people, harmful people, and all those who belong to demons who deny and resist God, who slander the true way and render service to the devil by persecuting God’s chosen people, without question we must reject and shun them; this is the wise choice to make. It is dangerous for anyone to approach these wicked devils, and anyone who does so will sooner or later end in misfortune. Relations should be maintained with the relatives and friends of unbelievers if they are good people and are of assistance to those who believe in God; if these relatives and friends are wicked people, then it is better to cut off all relations with them. In sum, we should be wise in our approach to all unbelievers.
Excerpted from Work Arrangements
God requires that we act with principle, speak with principle, approach people with principle, and not violate the principles in how we treat different people. Violating the principles is violating the truth. If you act or speak wantonly and arbitrarily, then this proves that you are not living in God’s words or before Him; it means that you are an unrestrained person who lives within a satanic disposition and under Satan’s domain. … What is the principle for how to treat Satan? The way to treat Satan is to hate it forever, curse it forever, reject it forever, and resolutely fight against it to the very end. What principle should you use when dealing with this evil and immoral world? It is to abandon it forever, detest it, and draw a clear line between yourself and it. What principle should you use when dealing with wicked people? You should hate and forsake them forever. Moreover, you should guard against them and learn to discern them, not fall for their tricks, refrain from interacting with them, not accept any favors from them, and draw a clear line between yourself and them. What principles should you use with regard to any relatives and friends who are unbelievers? For those who possess some humanity, you may interact with them, but cautiously; do not become overly involved, because doing so is not beneficial. Unbelievers seek nothing but profit, and everything they say and do has an ulterior motive to it. Therefore, you should refuse to interact with people who have poor humanity. It is okay to interact with people who have slightly better humanity and are relatively well-intentioned, but you must have wisdom. No matter what people, events, or things people who believe in God might encounter, they must always handle them with principle. Not having any principles proves that you do not possess any truth, that you live by Satan’s philosophy, and that your actions are the same as those of unbelievers. You are nominally a believer in God, but in actuality, you are a nonbeliever.
Excerpted from Sermons and Fellowship on Entry Into Life