Fellowship and Answers of the Above About the Questions of the Korean Church
Today some of our brothers and sisters from South Korea have brought up some issues, in the following I’ll commune my thoughts.
Question 1: The church is led entirely by Chinese people and Chinese people hold all of the authority. Why aren’t Koreans included in the leadership?
Answer: Is this true? Are Koreans included in the leadership now? Are we cultivating South Koreans and North Koreans for leadership roles? The family of God treats all people fairly, no matter what nationality or race they are. All those among them that seek the truth will be cultivated by the family of God. This is what we call non-discrimination, fairness and reason. If Chinese people fail to seek the truth, the family of God eliminates them just like anyone else. Those Chinese, South Koreans and North Koreans that seek the truth are cultivated by the family of God just the same, isn’t this the correct course of action? No matter their nationality or race, the family of God only cultivates those that truly seek the truth. In the same way, no matter their nationality or race, the family of God expels all resisters and condemners of Christ. Is there an exception made for Chinese people? Has the person who asked this question seen the reality of God’s work? Do you see how the family of God cultivates people in a fair and reasonable way? It is true, then, that the family of God cultivates those Koreans that pursue the truth. So how about this question? He asked: “Why aren’t Koreans being included in the leadership?” In reality, the family of God includes all. For example, thirty to fifty Filipinos have accepted the work of God in the last days. From within that group, Filipinos were selected to serve as their leaders. Additionally, members of God’s family were put there to water and supply that group. Would it be alright to not have some Chinese there to water and supply the group? Would it be easy for the Filipinos to enter into the reality of the truth if they were to guide themselves in experiencing God’s word? Not easy. It takes ten years or so of experience to enter into the reality of the truth. So, Koreans were picked to serve as leaders in Korea and some are being cultivated to be deacons, but still some Chinese must be there to shepherd. Be it in China, Korea or, in the future, all over the world, the family of God adopts the same strategy in preaching and communing. If, once Koreans get five or six, seven or eight years of experience under their belts and some people enter into the reality of the truth, not only will we be cultivating them to serve as church leaders, we’ll also be asking them to step into roles as district and regional leaders—then they’ll have some serious responsibilities and their burden will be that much heavier, isn’t that so? Have they reached that level yet? If they’ve yet to reach that level, they can only serve as church leaders at present. They can also be trained to start serving as district preachers, but it’s got to come a little at a time. If they just entered into the faith two or three years ago and don’t understand anything, do you really want them serving as a great leader or leading the whole Korean church? Does that seem right? Should they really break off from the program of watering and shepherding of the family of God? You see here it says, “The church only uses Chinese as leaders and only the Chinese hold authority.” Is it really the Chinese that hold authority? You can’t really say that it’s Chinese holding authority: More properly, this is the family of God and it’s ruled by the truth. Those who have the truth will become leaders in the family of God, and those that do not have the truth will be eliminated just the same. Why is it, you say, that all the authority right now is in the hands of the Chinese? Right now, the largest group of believers is Chinese, so of course most of the leaders are Chinese. If and when Koreans have been in the faith for ten or so years, then the number of Korean leaders will go up—then things will be different!
God has revealed Himself and is working in China, the man used by the Holy Spirit is also a Chinese. In the future, as people from all different countries accept the faith, does it really make sense to reselect a new Christ and a new man used by the Holy Spirit in every single country? Would God act in this way? God has become flesh in China, so He is a Chinese person. The man used by the Holy Spirit was born in China—he is Chinese—this is God’s doing. You can’t say, “In obeying and following God incarnate we are obeying and following Chinese people, this means the Chinese have all the authority. We accept the guidance and shepherding of the man used by the Holy Spirit—this also proves that the Chinese are in power.” This is how God has arranged things! Now, if in the future believers from all different countries start saying, “We don’t accept the Chinese leadership, we don’t accept the shepherding of the Chinese, we only accept God’s leadership and shepherding,” then how do you explain the fact that God is Himself a Chinese person? Are you going to select your own Korean, American, or British God? Does this make sense? This is the second time God has become flesh, there is no third or fourth time. God became flesh in China, does this somehow mean that He will only be responsible for doing His work in China? Will He not be capable of leading God’s chosen people all over the world? Can He not be the Savior for all of humanity? Will He only save the Chinese? Isn’t that a bit absurd? Now someone has said, “The church only uses Chinese as leaders, the Chinese have all the authority. Why aren’t there any Korean leaders?” Is this in line with reality? What was the intent of the person who asked this? He wants to create divisions, he wants to divide the chosen people of God’s family and set up an independent Korean church under his control. Is he not trying to set up his own independent kingdom? Does this person recognize the work of God?
As of now, most of our Korean brothers and sisters have only accepted the work of God in the last days for a short time, at most maybe two to three years or three to five years. They haven’t yet entered into the reality of the truth, this is objective fact. Now these questions that the Korean brothers and sisters have brought up are real questions and probably represent some of their conceptions and imaginations and their actual thinking. If this is the actual thinking and notion of most of our Korean brothers and sisters, then these are actually existent problems. It can be said that this is the biggest and most serious problem facing the Korean church now. So this is a serious problem, and the nature of the problem is also serious. I suggest to our Korean brothers and sisters that you bring this problem to the church and seek the truth according to God’s word to resolve the issue. Our Korean brothers and sisters have a Korean version of God’s word, let’s address these issues according to God’s word. If these issues are not resolved, there’s no telling what the consequences may be. How bad may the consequences be? Why would I use this phrase “there’s no telling what the consequences may be”? What I mean, is that if these issues are not resolved, the Korean church will be in crisis. And perhaps because these issues really do exist, many of our Korean brothers and sisters will follow these people (the people questioning God’s family) and break off from the guidance and shepherding of God’s family. Should they do so, they’ll be heading down an errant path and will be eliminated! Does this seem possible? It’s very possible. Sometimes the difference between right and wrong is determined by a single thought, just as the acceptance of God’s work hangs in the balance of a single thought. In the key moment, one awakes, one realizes and accepts, just as, conversely, one can get caught up on something or led astray by some absurd theory and thus choose to deny. So these real issues have certainly all occurred to our Korean brothers and sisters. It’s just that, some of these people understand a bit of the truth and thus realize that these ideas don’t stand to reason and so they set them aside or abandon them. Those that don’t understand the truth keep these ideas in their hearts and who knows when they’ll suddenly burst forth. This is the reality of the situation. That’s why we are cultivating those Koreans that seek the truth. Our purpose is to make leaders out of the best of every race and every nation.
Among the Koreans, let’s observe, there are a few outstanding brothers and sisters that, having gone through two to three years of cultivation, have emerged as seekers of truth. That which, before they were incapable of abandoning, they can now abandon—before they might have made family life their major priority, but now they’ve let that go. Before, they might not have understood the concept of truth, but now they grasp importance of seeking the truth. They’ve begun to let go of worldly things, to develop their faith, and as they progress, those that love the truth and seek the truth are revealed. Everyone can see, it’s clear as day, those that seek the truth are cultivated by the family of God. There are some that fail to seek the truth—they have their own opinions and illusions—they don’t accept the truth and so the family of God does not cultivate such people. Is this the right way of doing things? So everyone can see quite clearly, we need to cultivate the best and brightest of God’s chosen from every country and make them into shepherds and leaders—it’s just a matter of time. So the family of God is currently involved in selecting seekers of the truth from within the Koreans to cultivate as leaders. After three or five, seven, eight, or ten years, once we’ve cultivated leaders who have the truth and can bear witness, we can appoint them as district leaders and workers in Korea. Isn’t this how God’s family is currently working? Then does this person’s comment that “All the leadership roles in the church are held by Chinese, the Chinese hold all the authority. Why aren’t there any Koreans in leadership roles?” really hold up? Do you understand? This comment does not hold up! Someone remarked, “You say that these people (potential leaders) need to be trained before they can become leaders or workers within the Korean church—you ought to select seekers of truth and outstanding members among the Koreans to be church and district leaders in Korea right away.” Does this seem suitable to you guys? Then if the Korean church is united in demanding that “we select Koreans as district leaders to manage our affairs and Chinese stop participating in the management process (in Korea),” does this seem right? Should we let Koreans do according to their own tastes and their own culture? Should we allow them to lead the Korean church according to their traditions? Most Korean brothers and sisters believe that we shouldn’t. Why doesn’t it seem right? Without the truth, it just won’t do. If they were really to guide and shepherd the Korean church in the absence of truth and reality, what, you say, would be the consequence? In that sense, they will be incapable of bringing God’s chosen into the reality of God’s word. If they’re incapable of doing this, they will send God’s chosen people in Korea into ruin, isn’t that the truth? So, in order to bring you God’s chosen in Korea in front of God, to nurture you into maturity so that in the future you’ll be able to shepherd the Korean church, the family of God is training, cultivating and shepherding you by assigning Chinese people—who have accepted God’s work for longer and have a greater understanding of the truth—to act as your leaders. Is this suitable?
Question 2: Korean and Chinese culture are quite different, so using Chinese management and administration principles in Korea is ineffective. You should try to understand and respect Korean culture. Your management of the Korean church should reflect a sensitivity to Korean culture, and your work and administration should be conducted in a way that is appealing to Korean people.
Answer: What is being discussed here? Let me dissect this fallacy for all of you. God’s current work is the expression of truth. This expression of truth is not just directed toward Chinese people, it’s directed toward all of humanity, to all countries and all people. God’s work is to allow all of humanity to accept the truth. Does God’s work transcend the cultural background of every country? Does God’s work transcend all the conceptions and illusions of corrupt humanity from every country and land? So does this assertion that “You should try to understand and respect Korean culture. Your management of the Korean church should reflect a sensitivity to Korean culture, and your work and administration should be conducted in a way that is appealing to Korean people,” does this assertion hold up? Will those that accept God’s work still hold onto Korean culture and sensibility? They cannot hold on. In the future there will be no Korean, Chinese, American, British, French or any other country’s culture and customs. They all must accept the guidance of God’s word and live in accordance with God’s word. Only God’s word is truth. The culture, conceptions and tastes of various countries do not constitute the truth, but tools that Satan uses to corrupt humanity, am I right? So what is your view of Korean culture, Korean style, their customs, habits and the traditions of their forefathers? Do these things constitute the truth? No matter how well you follow these things, even if you adhere very closely, it does not mean that you are humane, much less that you have truth and reality. God will not commend you for following these things and there will be no talk of the kingdom of heaven—and destruction will follow, am I right? So in the end, no matter how well Koreans keep to their culture, traditions and customs, if they don’t accept the work of God in the last days, they will be destroyed by God. In the future, the customs and culture and knowledge of every country will be eliminated and destroyed. Do you really see what this means? In the future, will people still distinguish between Chinese and Korean? If he really believes in God, why is he always talking about China and Korea—what’s the point? What do China and Korea have to do with our faith in God and experience of God’s work? Is it good, as men of faith, to always talk about China vs. Korea? Of course not! If you’re always talking about this kind of stuff, will it allow people to attain the truth? Will it allow people to be perfected by God? It has nothing to do with it. The Chinese brothers and sisters have all rebelled against and abandoned both the good and bad aspects of Chinese culture and knowledge, we don’t want it. We’re not Chinese people, we are members of God’s family. We are the people of Christ’s kingdom. So, Koreans should also rebel. The countries of the world, even if they are democratic and free, will fall to ruin. Isn’t this the truth? If China falls to ruin, does it make sense that Korea would survive? Korea will also fall to ruin, because it is a country of this world. You’ve got to see to the heart of this matter, enough with this foolishness! It was never said in God’s word that Korean culture issues from God, that Korean culture must be preserved, or that in the future Korea will exist alongside the kingdom of Christ and not be destroyed. Did God ever say this? God never said anything of the kind, because all of the world’s countries are Satan’s countries and must be destroyed.
Now there are many Americans and Filipinos coming into the faith. They also have this kind of problem. They all want to preserve the best elements of their culture and traditions. Is this in line with God’s will? It is most certainly not in line with God’s will. We’ve got to see through to the truth of this matter. We must realize God’s will—the great calamities are coming and after the calamities only one kingdom will remain, the kingdom of Christ. All of humanity will come together under one faith, they will all become one family, members of the family of God and people of Christ’s kingdom. At that time Chinese people won’t be called Chinese, they will be called “God’s chosen people in China.” Our Korean brothers and sisters will be called “God’s chosen in Korea,” our American brothers and sisters will be called “God’s chosen in America.” They are all members of God’s family—this is a very objective way of viewing things, no? Also, no matter what country you come from, what kind of cultural background you have, or how humane you are, God doesn’t care about these things—God only cares about who accepts the truth and has entered into more of reality, who lives in accordance with God’s word, and who lives with truth, reality and witness. For these are the people that God will commend. Is this not how things are? In Korea there are those that think most Chinese are not as polite and humane as Koreans. What does God think about this, do you know? God would say: “I don’t care how humane or polite you are, this is not the truth and has no real use. I only care about who in the future, having experienced My work, attains the truth and lives according to My word, for these are those that I will commend.” Is this not God’s meaning? Now you understand God’s will! So does God commend people based upon whose culture is better or who is better at preserving their traditions? God’s not interested—no matter how well you keep to this or that doctrine, it’s all of no use. If you don’t seek the truth at all and fail to accept God’s judgment and chastisement, then no matter how well you keep to your doctrines you will never be purified, saved and enter into the kingdom of heaven. This is fact. God has dictated that man’s fate will not be determined by his cultural background, the strength of his character, how filial he is—it’s not based on that. Man’s fate is determined only by whether or not he has attained the reality of truth—this is God’s will and the principle by which He treats and views people and determines their fate. If you can’t see through to the truth of this matter, then how will you experience obeying God, how will you obey God’s work? If you always act based upon your conceptions, you’ll be most easily apt to resist, misinterpret and rebel against God, or go astray from His work. Then isn’t acting in this way not to your advantage?
Question 3: We Koreans place a lot of importance on etiquette: The young must be respectful of their elders. You Chinese are not really that polite—in spreading the gospel you should be aware of Korean customs and conduct yourselves in accordance with those customs. You can’t be overly hurried or pressing and you certainly shouldn’t prune and deal with them.
Answer: This is a very practical comment. “In spreading the gospel you should be aware of Korean customs and conduct yourselves in accordance with those customs. You can’t be overly hurried or pressing and you certainly shouldn’t prune and deal with them,” this is true. Given that what this person said is right, we ought to accept it! Some people that spread the gospel really have no manners or wisdom. Spreading the gospel in this way is unprincipled and ineffective. The question begins, “We Koreans place a lot of importance on etiquette: The young must be respectful of their elders. You Chinese are not really that polite,” this is based on their traditions. “The young should respect their elders,” is this right? In theory it is true that juniors should be respectful of their seniors, this is right, but if an elder prevents you from practicing faith or carrying out the truth, should this elder be respected? Respect for elders should be demonstrated according to principle, and we should follow principles. If an elder resists God, holds people back from practicing faith or seeking and studying the true way, then is this elder not a demon? Should we respect even those elders that are demons? No matter what aspect of the truth we are carrying out, we must do so according to God’s word. Be it in His work in the Age of Grace or the Age of Kingdom, God has never preached that we must respect our elders or be filial to our mother and father. The call to honor one’s mother and father comes from the Age of Law—it is stated in the Ten Commandments—the commandments in the Age of Grace and the Age of Kingdom do not include such a demand. Have I spoken the facts? Now we must have the correct understanding of the traditions of our forefathers and the commandments of the Age of Law. No matter what age we may be in or what stage in God’s work we are experiencing, we must always act according to God’s word and not according to man’s cultural background and even less so according to traditions. In the Age of Grace, Peter rebelled against his parents and broke from his family to follow Jesus. Did Jesus Christ castigate him? “You were wrong to rebel against your parents, you ought to be filial to your mother and father,” the Lord Jesus never said anything of the kind. The Lord Jesus even said, “Follow Me, you ought to follow Me.” The implication of this statement is that if your parents obstruct you, you needn’t listen to them, you can rebel against them. You need only listen to the word of God. This is God’s will, is it not? So now there are some people here saying, “We Koreans place a lot of importance on etiquette: The young must be respectful of their elders. You Chinese are not really that polite,” is this right? If you’re speaking with unbelievers, then it’s all right to say something like this. However, if you’re directing this comment toward God’s chosen people—some leaders are of the younger generation, they are not elders, should they still obediently follow their elders? So in God’s family there is no such doctrine that “the young must respect and be filial to their elders,” there is no such claim. Did the Lord Jesus ever say anything of this kind? Did Almighty God ever say anything like this? Filial piety is a commandment from the Age of Law! By now, it’s already been scrapped! Peter led the way in breaking off from his family, the Lord Jesus led the way in abandoning His mother and father, is that not how it was? We need to be clear on these issues. We shouldn’t always be understanding the work of God in terms of our own conceptions. If our brothers and sisters were always engaged in filial piety, who would be left to devote themselves to God? Who would still be able to abandon everything to follow God? So when the Lord Jesus asked of man, “So likewise, whoever he be of you that forsakes not all that he has, he cannot be My disciple,” who will fulfill and honor these words? Was the Lord Jesus filial to His parents? Did He recognize His parents in front of others? He did not recognize them before a crowd, He said, “Who is My mother? and who are My brothers? … For whoever shall do the will of My Father which is in heaven, the same is My brother, and sister, and mother.” Would you still call Jesus heretical? Do you dare condemn God? The Lord is the truth, the way, and the life; we ought to obey the Lord. In pursuing the truth and experiencing God’s work, is it not disruptive to God’s chosen people’s experience of God’s work to always be concerned with honoring customs, respecting elders and being polite? This is called moving backward—if you want to adhere to the laws of the Age of Law, then go follow Jehovah and experience the laws of Moses. Some people can’t even get themselves to abandon and distinguish their ancestor’s traditions and Korean culture. How do they expect to accept the truth and the judgment and chastisement of God’s word?
If we were to go along according to people’s conceptions and illusions when selecting leaders and workers in the church, we would naturally select parents and elders—would this be the right thing to do? Because we know that it is Korean custom to respect the old and cherish the young; to respect the older generation. So, when selecting leaders, we select elders—whoever is the oldest or has the most white hair or who already has grandchildren, that’s who we pick—is this in keeping with God’s will? The standard by which God’s family selects leaders is to choose those who pursue the truth, have experience and knowledge of God’s work, regardless of age. This is in keeping with God’s will. Now does God decide a man’s fate based upon his age? He does not. If the leaders we selected were all young, and yet they were always being held up by their parents and elders, always hesitant and afraid to speak up because one should be polite in front of the elders and hold to the rule that if the elders haven’t spoken then the children shouldn’t speak—if they were to follow by these rules, would they still be able to carry out their work as leaders? Would they still be able to fulfill their duties? They certainly would not be able to fulfill their duties. Regardless of whether the customs and traditions of every nation are right or wrong, good or bad, they are not the truth. What’s more, these are the product of people’s conceptions and illusions, knowledge and reasoning—they should all be abandoned, right or wrong, good or bad. They should all be suppressed and relinquished. Now what is God’s will? Some question: “Even the good things should be done away with?” That’s right, the good things too. These “good” or “right” things, are they the truth? No matter how right or good they are, they are not the truth. Only God’s word is the truth. Just focus on living by God’s word—however God’s word tells you to live, that is how you ought to live. Whatever God’s word says, that is what you should do. Whatever God asks of you, make good on His request, see things through as such. That’s right! Some people ask, “It is right to be filial to one’s parents and respect one’s elders, so how does God’s word dictate that we should practice?” God’s word tells you to follow the truth, and to obey God is the most important. Live according to God’s word—those who do not live according to God’s word are not commended by God. Before God, all men are equal: He does not discriminate based upon age, or who is junior and who is senior—we are all brothers and sisters. Is there any mention of distinguishing between elders and the younger generation within God’s word? No, there is not. Some people say, “This is plain fact, there are the elders and then there is the younger generation.” Even if it is fact, it’s not acceptable. It’s a mere matter of being born earlier or later. The flesh distinguishes based upon position in family hierarchy, but the soul does not. So we should see through this issue and live according to God’s word. The traditional cultures of every nation, no matter whether people say they are good or bad, are not truth. Don’t follow these traditions, there is no point and no meaning in doing so. Is there anything to back up what I’m saying? I’m speaking on the basis of God’s word, on the basis of what God actually did in the two instances in which He became flesh. When God became flesh, He abandoned everything to obey God, even abandoning His parents. Peter was perfected by the Lord Jesus—he was a lover of God and received God’s commendation—and yet he too rebelled against his parents. His parents suppressed him and did not allow him to follow Jesus. They wanted him to make it big, to get a position in government and strike it rich to win honor for his ancestral family. Peter, however, refused to do so and insisted upon following Jesus. After graduating from high school he didn’t go on to college but began following Jesus. In the end, Peter was perfected, while his parents were cast down into hell. Now, if Peter had been filial to his parents and honored his parents, would he have been able to follow Jesus? He certainly wouldn’t have been able to. So, before God, one must first obey God. There is no truth in obedience to or respect for one’s elders—so don’t practice or keep to this. Keeping to this tradition is useless, if you keep to it you’ll end up in hell. Anyone who keeps to these cultural traditions will go to hell. So, the person who raised this question, he said, “We Koreans place high importance on etiquette, the younger generation must respect the elders.” He respects elders and wants his brothers and sisters to follow his example in respecting elders. In so guiding others, is he going against God’s word? Is he resisting God? One aspect of God’s judgment and chastisement of people, is exposing each country’s cultural background and exposing people’s conceptions. Satan uses human culture and all kinds of fallacies to corrupt mankind. Korean culture is no exception: Just like Chinese culture, Korean culture is a tool which Satan uses to corrupt mankind. It uses those cultures which most conform to people’s conceptions and illusions to bind and fetter men, to prevent them from seeking God and the truth, thereby attaining its evil purpose. In the end, these people receive God’s judgment and chastisement and are destroyed. Is this not Satan’s evil plot? The person who raised this question still respects and follows Korean culture. He didn’t mention a single word about how God’s chosen should rebel against culture, receive God’s judgment and chastisement, and accept all of truths from God. Why didn’t he mention any of this? On the surface, everything he said is right and in keeping with people’s notions. But isn’t the substance of what he was saying misleading to people? Is it not counterproductive? Is it not a step backward? As for me, I might be a little too direct—I say what I want to say—I speak too candidly. Some people like it, some people don’t. But does God like people to speak candidly? Peter spoke very candidly, he was very forthright. So, if some of the things I say don’t seem suitable, I ask that you excuse me. We’re communicating the truth here: As long as you can realize the truth then that’s just fine. If some of the things I say seem too candid and make you feel uncomfortable, then I ask that you excuse me. I can get a little anxious! I hope that my brothers and sisters can have a clear understanding right away, and that everyone may be capable of making distinctions. Whatever you do, don’t be misled, this is my desire.
Question 4: In the Age of Grace we were all pastors and elders, all possessed of great experience. We are aware how to work, how to spread the gospel and are all guided by the Holy Spirit. We’re not used to taking orders and not used to this kind of arrangement. We grew up in a free and democratic country and place a lot of importance on democratic freedom. We’re not used to being lectured about principles and being suppressed by principles.
Answer: What kind of statement is this? Is this the kind of thing that someone who accepts the truth would say? “We all place great importance on democratic freedom,” so should the church also stress the importance of democratic freedom? Is democratic freedom truth? Then, what is democratic freedom? It’s just a more progressive social system, it’s not the truth and does not represent God’s will. God’s final work is not to have all countries become free democracies. God saves and purifies man—His intention and the goal of His final work is to destroy all the countries of the earth and set up His own kingdom. So would it be suitable for us to adopt a democratic system within the church? Can democratic freedom produce truth? Can democratic freedom produce God’s work? Does the adoption of democracy represent that man has entered into the reality of the truth? Does respect for democratic freedom equate to obedience to God? I imagine you can see to the bottom of these things! They say they are “all pastors and elders, all possessed of great experience, and are aware how to work, how to spread the gospel and are all guided by the Holy Spirit.” If that’s really the case, then great. Are there really pastors and elders who have the work of the Holy Spirit? If they really had the work of the Holy Spirit, we would have to promote and use them. Are there really such people? If in the past you had the work of the Holy Spirit and now you accept the work of God in the last days, but you haven’t even experienced God’s judgment and chastisement—don’t even have an understanding, then could you really have the work of the Holy Spirit? If you don’t have the work of the Holy Spirit now, then should we select you to be a pastor or an elder? The Lord Jesus has said: “But many that are first shall be last; and the last shall be first.” What does this mean? The first to accept God’s work in the last days, and experience and understand the truth shall be first. These people are selected as church leaders. You were a pastor or an elder, but you are among the last to accept God’s work in the last days, so no one has selected you as a leader because you are too late. Is that not how it is? In the Age of Grace, you were the first, you were at the top, you were in the front of the pack and so you were a pastor or an elder—this makes perfect sense. Now in the Age of Kingdom, when God performs His work, are you among the first to accept? Are you among the first to enter into the reality of the truth of God’s word? No, you are not. And yet you still dare say you have the work of the Holy Spirit, you still brag unblushingly. How arrogant could you be? Do you understand what it means to be arrogant and conceited? You think that because you were an elder or pastor during the Age of Grace, that means you will also be an elder or pastor in the Age of Kingdom, in the Millennial Kingdom? Did you make the rules? Does this statement have God’s word to back it up? The main issue here is the last part of his statement, “I’m not used to taking orders and I’m not used to this kind of arrangement.” What’s the problem here? Is he truly obediently following? Is he obediently following the man used by the Holy Spirit? The arrangements of the family of God are made by the man used by the Holy Spirit. If he fails to obediently follow, can he be said to be obediently following God’s work? “I’m not used to it”—your inability to get used to it shows that you’re already in grave rebellion. This is not an average, every day “not used to it,” this is utter resistance and opposition! Below, he said, “we were born and raised in a democratic nation”—you were born and raised in a democratic nation, then why don’t you obey the truth? Why don’t you obey God’s work? What’s the issue here? Did God tell you, “Because you were born and raised in a democratic nation you don’t have to obey God’s work, you are people of the kingdom of heaven”? People from democratic nations don’t have to obey God’s work—they are qualified to or have reason not to obediently follow God’s work? Who made up this rule? You’re not used to taking orders, you’re not used to this kind of arrangement—this shows that you’re rebellious, that you’re opposing God! Do you dare say that the arrangements of the family of God are not in keeping with principles of truth? Do you dare say that the arrangements of God’s family are not in line with God’s word? If you don’t dare, then when you say, “We’re not used to taking orders, we’re not used to this kind of arrangement,” this means that you’re not obedient, you’re way out of line and arrogant. You think yourself unexcelled in all the world! If you’re not used to taking other people’s order, if you’re not used to this kind of arrangement, then what are you used to? Used to being in charge? You’re used to being up on your high horse, giving out orders, suppressing others? Used to others worshiping and obeying you! Are you the truth? There’s another thing he said that even further reveals the substance of his nature. He said, “I’m not used to being lectured on principles, to being suppressed with principles.” What about this statement? This shows he has no interest in truth and principles. He is not willing to accept the truth and principles. “We refuse to obey!” Isn’t this what he’s saying? So, from his statement it’s clear that he has no understanding of God’s work and doesn’t obediently follow in the least. He is not a true believer in God. Is this fair to say? So how is it that others obediently follow? There are many that are obedient. Now, in Korea, more and more brothers and sisters are willing to abandon their families and withdraw from society. Some even quit their jobs to follow God. Do they not do so because they have understood the truth and understood God’s will? They say, “I must abandon all this—if I don’t fulfill my duties I’d be doing a disservice to God. Even if my parents object, I still must follow God, I must be like Peter in loving and obeying God.” As a result, these people gain in life with every coming day. They have deeper and deeper faith in God. Only these people are truly followers of God who obey God’s work.
Now that the family of God is continuously communicating the truth, some of our Korean brothers and sisters have become more and more fervent in their pursuit of the truth. They see that this is the true way and thus obediently follow and experience—their corrupted aspects become more and more pure, and they have more and more of the truth within their hearts. They have more and more love for God and are increasingly obedient to Him. Experiencing God’s work in this way will definitely lead to perfection and the attainment of truth. They have a clear conception of the way in which to experience God’s work. These kind of people are in the majority. Though I haven’t yet met up personally with our Korean brothers and sisters, but from watching videos I’ve seen the wholehearted smiles on their faces as they fulfill their duties. They’ve begun to gain experience and comprehend the truth—their faith has grown greater. What does this mean? Regardless of whether God’s work is in line with people’s conceptions and cultural backgrounds, they experience His work just the same. They hear the truth and say “I’m just following God, and obeying the truth and God’s work”—as a result they grow in life with each coming day. These people don’t have all those conceptions I’ve just mentioned—respect your elders, be filial to your parents, traditional culture, national pride—they don’t think about these things. “I follow God, God is my one and only Lord, my country is no Lord to me. I am not seeking for traditional culture: Such things can’t bring me into the reality of the truth and certainly cannot endow me with eternal life—I abandon them!” These are those who have truly cast off everything, each and all. Those who follow God abandon their cultural backgrounds, national cultural heritage, filial piety and all such traditional notions. They have no need for them. They just accept the truth and Christ. Only this kind of person qualifies as a seeker of the truth and only such people will be saved, perfected and earn God’s commendation.
You see, in these few years in which God has worked, in churches all over the world, people who pursue the truth become better and better, while those that don’t seek the truth become disempowered, cast into darkness and are eventually eliminated. Some people don’t love the truth: The more they hear the family of God commune the truth, the less they absorb—they feel unhappy, consumed by their own notions and imaginations, and before long they falter and withdraw. Those that love the truth become clearer with every truth they hear. The more they hear the truth, the more practical and precious the truth becomes for them. As a result, they have more and more energy and keep progressing until eventually, when they gain the truth, understand the truth and come to know God, their resoluteness is sealed and they stand firm. The Korean church has yet to go through such things, but the Chinese church has had their fair share: antichrists and false leaders holding reign over the church—even committing some immoral acts and suppressing God’s chosen. How many left the church at that time? Not many, very few left at that time. Why was it, that even when these antichrists and false leaders came into power, very few people left? For this, one must have the truth of the vision. Faith is put in God, not man. When an antichrist or a false leader appears within the church, it is as if a dark cloud obfuscates the sun—but all clouds eventually dissipate and there will always come a day when the sun shines again. They seek the truth, and when they seek the truth they find that, “God has allowed some evil persons and evil spirits, into our church, but when God sees fit He will cast them asunder and eliminate them. Also, God has said that He will use the work of evil spirits to perfect God’s people and cause God’s people to be capable of discerning evil spirits and Satan.” You see, when such things happen, people seek the truth and touch God’s intention with respect to that which transpires. In God’s word, they find the path by which to pursue the truth and their faith becomes firm and unbending. So, in the Chinese churches today, many of God’s chosen have been exposing antichrists and false leaders and eliminating and expelling them.
I’ve thought about this issue: If an anti-Christ or false leader were to appear every so often in the Korean church, would Korea’s chosen people be able to stand firm? I believe that most people would be able to stand their ground. Only a very small number would be deceived, develop certain conceptions towards God’s work and end up leaving the church. We have some proof of this in our own experiences in the Chinese church. Now, a member of the Korean church has brought up his issues. Now, who is this person that is bringing up these issues? This person opposes and has conceptions toward God’s work and the arrangements of the family of God. This person certainly does not love the truth. He’s not willing to be disciplined by truth and principle, he’s not used to it and feels helpless. As a result, these questions have come to the surface today. However, disregarding who it is that holds these conceptions and coming back to the main point, would you say that these conceptions are normal for someone who has yet to understand the truth? You could say they are normal. You can’t just eliminate someone just because he expresses a few of his conceptions. That’s not right. You’ve got to give him a chance to repent: don’t blindly condemn him! Only if he stubbornly sticks to his ideas and interferes with things should he be condemned. It’s normal to have these kinds of conceptions and illusions. Which person doesn’t have a little bit of baggage before they attain the truth? Every person has some conceptions and illusions which are not in line with God’s intentions, right? So what we’re seeing here with this situation in the Korean church is not a one-off thing. Thirty years ago this kind of thing happened all the time in the Chinese church. Isn’t the fact that the Chinese church has stubbornly survived through all of the cruel suppression and persecution of the CCP and is still able to bear resounding witness just the result of God’s omnipotence? This is the power of God’s word–God’s word conquers mankind.
Question 5: I have some issues with this kind of meeting style. I think once a month there should be a time allotted for Koreans to meet amongst themselves.
Answer: Aren’t Koreans meeting on their own now? Are they meeting along with Chao-xian and Han people? It’s ok for the Koreans to ask to meet by themselves. Why don’t we have the Koreans meet with Chao-xian people? Look at the meetings in Taiwan: In those meetings, Taiwanese and mainland Chinese all attend. They get along great, very harmonious, just great—they’re all Chinese people. If you look abroad, in God’s family, people from every province of China meet together. Take Korea, people from every province of China participate, in America it’s the same way. No matter where they’re from, when people come together they are one family. There’s no distinguishing where people are from when the family gets together. There’s no separating people of democratic countries from those of autocratic nations—we’re all sisters and brothers. People all hope that “we can get someone with experience, someone who has believed in God for a long time, to lead and communicate truth to us who are mostly new believers.” Isn’t this what we all hope to see happen? If, as some people have suggested, we now let Koreans have their own meetings, group Chao-xian people and northern Chao-xian people in their own meetings, and group Chinese people into their own meetings, this would not be in keeping with God’s will. Why is this? If you don’t believe me, then just try for yourselves. When you try it out, you’ll see there’s something wrong, “This won’t do, people shouldn’t be grouped like this. If we group people into such specific groupings we won’t get what we need. We still hope to get some experienced people, people not of our nationality, to fellowship with us. That way we can learn some new things, gain new illumination, and obtain some things we haven’t had before.” Is this not what people wish for? People always want to learn new things, they get bored of the same thing all the time within groups of people of their own nationality. Everyone is the same, they all have the same kind of illumination and so there is no novelty and enjoyment. So, we like for people of different nationalities to meet together—you discuss your experiences, I offer my insights—in this way we all learn more and receive more. We needn’t speak in spiritual terms, even in everyday life, in what we eat, what we wear, where we live, it’s the same. Doing things in this way (mixing different nationalities) allows us to learn new things. So I like for people of all different nationalities to meet together, because, on the one hand, people can broaden their horizons, on the other hand, it allows for people to see the best things about each country, to learn more and become clearer. This is good. People of different countries all have their merits and shortcomings. We ought to learn from people’s merits—this is right—we all learn from each other’s strengths to offset our weaknesses, no?
Question 6: Chinese brothers and sisters don’t greet anyone when they arrive at their house. As soon as they arrive, they just begin fellowshiping. It feels too rigid and formal. If you ask them out for coffee or a meal they refuse … They adhere too strictly to regulations.
Answer: This is true. Most Chinese people are just like this. Now, when they go abroad, they widen their knowledge: Some learn to be more polite, to act with etiquette—but are these the most important things? These are shortcomings in their humanity, they should be improved, but they are not of chief importance. No matter how great your humanity may be, if you don’t accept the truth you will eventually be destroyed. So on what should we place importance in our interactions with others? We should help others improve their shortcomings, but we should also accept and study from the merits of others. We shouldn’t look down on others as backward and ignorant just because they have a few shortcomings. No matter how backward or ignorant he may be, he is regarded by God as advanced. He’s so backward and yet he accepts God’s work, so why is it that you’re so progressive but you don’t accept God? His backwardness is a condemnation of the sin of your progressiveness, is it not? You say he’s naïve and ignorant, so how is it that he first accepted God’s work? You have intelligence and wisdom, so why didn’t you accept? How do you explain this? When Chinese people encounter this kind of thing, when they travel abroad and observe that the humanity, knowledge, politeness and etiquette of foreigners is greater than their own, they unwittingly absorb and learn from them. We study the merits of others, the virtues in their humanity. This is our attitude.
Question 7: I’m having trouble with the request that we go and look for gospel targets in religion. I worry that if we ask brothers and sisters to look for gospel targets there, people of religion will say we’re stealing sheep. This isn’t a good way of spreading the gospel.
Answer: Having trouble with the request that we go and look for gospel targets in religion—what do we think about this question? Is he being considerate of God’s will? So he means that we shouldn’t look for gospel targets in religion, shouldn’t spread the gospel to religious people, and should let them realize and seek God’s work on their own. When someone finally accepts God is their own business and it is thus not necessary for us to go and spread the gospel to them. Is this the right way of thinking about things? The fact that this person could say such things shows that he hasn’t even the slightest foundation of faith in God, no vision: this question was probably asked by a new convert. As for members of religions, we can say with confidence, if we don’t spread the gospel to them, they won’t be able to accept it, they really won’t accept it. If you make only a minor effort to spread the gospel, they also won’t accept it—you’ve got to make a major effort. Right now many say the process for converting an average Korean takes about a month from when they first receive the gospel to finally accepting God, to formally accepting God. This is all fact, not counting exceptions. In some cases, people only take half a month or even a week? Perhaps there are these kinds of exceptions, but very few. Now, do you think if they study the true way by themselves, this will be enough to get them to accept? That has never happened in the past. So we can say with confidence, if we don’t look for gospel targets in the religions and spread the gospel, they’re as good as dead to us, that’s it. Some people say, “I don’t believe it, the Lord Jesus said those that believe in Him will be saved.” You don’t believe—the great calamities are imminent, even scientists and politicians all acknowledge that the great calamities are coming fast upon us—if you don’t believe then you’re a fool. There are some people within religions who say, “The church of the last days will be caught up before the calamities,” but now that they see that they haven’t been caught up before the calamities, that four blood moons have occurred and the great calamities are imminent, they’ve changed their position, saying they will be caught up during the calamities. They don’t say before the calamities, because they weren’t caught up before the calamities. However, in reality, were people caught up before the calamities? Indeed, we have all been caught up prior to the calamities. Most of us have come from other branches and denominations, we’ve converted to Almighty God before the calamities, and so the prophecy of being caught up prior to the calamities has been fulfilled. The prophecy that some people will be caught up during the calamity has yet to be fulfilled because the calamities have not yet fallen down, right? So, what do you say, were the exegetes accurate or not? They couldn’t even see that God’s word has been fulfilled, fulfilled through the people of The Church of Almighty God. These are those that have truly been caught up and made overcomers before the calamities! They saw that none of the denominations had been caught up, thinking according to their own conceptions and illusions that being caught up was like some magic “poof” that suddenly lifts you into the air. They didn’t believe our being wrested from the denominations and brought before God constituted being caught up—how blind are they! The great calamities are impending—they acknowledge this fact, just as the politicians of every country and all the prophets acknowledge as well. The four blood moons have appeared, the great calamities are fast upon us. As soon as the calamities rain down, most people in religion will die, will be wiped out. How could this be? This is destined to happen. How is it expressed in God’s word? “[T]hat is, except for those now within the stream, the rest will be turned to ashes.” They will all be destroyed: that is to say, they all must die. If you are a follower of religion, no matter how many years you’ve been faithful or how much torment you’ve gone through, you must die. Now when the calamities strike, will any members of religions be caught up? Being caught up does not mean being suddenly lifted into the air. Just acknowledging and accepting Almighty God constitutes being caught up. Being caught up into the air to meet with God—what is meant by “the air”? The Church of Almighty God now performs its missionary work, testifies to God and spreads God’s word online and people accept God online—this is what is meant by “the air.” So if we don’t look for gospel targets and spread the gospel to them, all these people will die. Could you bear to see them all die? The religious world curses and hates us and blasphemes God—do we not despise them? We might despise them in our hearts, but despite that hate, we still must be considerate of God’s will. We can’t act toward them based on our own feelings, like Jonah, who said, “Don’t save the Ninevites. I won’t spread the gospel to them. I’ll spread the gospel to anyone but the Ninevites.” Can we act like this? We must be considerate of God’s will. Spread the gospel to them: If we can save one, then that’s one we’ve saved. After we put aside our own ideas, what happened? As soon as we began looking for gospel targets and preaching the gospel in the religious world, we were able to convert quite a few people and were very effective. What does this prove? It proves that we can do this and be in line with God’s will. We don’t act according to our own will, or with regard to our personal feelings for these people. Hate is hate, but no matter what, we still must spread the gospel to those members of the religions that love the truth. That is, we must act in keeping with God’s request to save as many people as possible. If we save one more, that’s one more we’ve saved. We shouldn’t consider our own feelings in this matter, in this way we are considerate of God’s will. Now, here it says that he still can’t accept going into religions to look for gospel targets. He’s not willing to let members of religions convert to Almighty God—is this not what he means? If this is what he means, then perhaps he believes that the religion is right. “By believing in God in religion one can also attain salvation, so why must we bring them over to our side? What if we bring him to our side and he doesn’t attain salvation? He can attain salvation right where he is!” Is this not his belief? If this is truly his belief, then it shows that this person is not yet certain of God—he has yet to achieve certainty with regard to the last stage of God’s work. So this person has a problem.
Question 8: When we were in the Local Church, we always had blending and big meetings. Now we don’t get to enjoy blending any more in our small meetings. You should organize one big meeting for the Koreans every month and invite some talented members to sing first. You’ve got to give people a sense of release.
Answer: The Local Church always had blending and big meet-ups, so how well did they blend? Did the blending yield the working of the Holy Spirit? Did it yield the reality of the truth? Did their blending result in their being caught up and meeting with the Lord? Did they attend the feast of the Lamb? Their blending resulted in no such things! Their blending resulted in nothing less than the creation of a legion of antichrists! So what came out of their blending? Did they have fellowship with the Lord? This one just loves the blending of the Local Church—is this not fallacy? “Invite some talented members to sing first. You’ve got to give people a sense of release.” If people feel a sense of release, does this mean they have obtained the truth? Does it mean they have knowledge of God? Maybe they enjoy the feeling of being relaxed and free from worry, but does that mean they have understood the truth? Does this yield any real results? If meetings in which there was first singing and enjoyment for 10-20 minutes resulted in people understanding the truth and entering into the reality, then we could adopt this meeting style. However, in the many years that the Local Church conducted meetings in this way, was there ever attainment of the reality of the truth? During such meetings there was enjoyment, the flesh was satisfied, but was the spirit cultivated? Did you enter into the reality of the truth, did you attain the truth and life? Such meetings have no practical results—what use is there in enjoyments of the flesh? It’s not practical, it’s not a good way forward. Some say, “Can we sing songs first?” Fine, but the main point of our meetings is to commune with the truth: If we are still able to come into an understanding of the truth in such meetings, then fine. However, if we only sing or dance but no one knows how to commune with the truth, then it wouldn’t matter if we sang or danced for a hundred years—there’s just no point in it if we’re not attaining the truth! Useless and impractical: Is that not what these things are? Now the house of God has song and dance and all kinds of videos, you see? Our brothers and sisters feel a great sense of release after watching. I also hold a meeting every week and commune a little, just through listening a bit you gain a little every day. Over time these little gains add up!
You see, through my communion today, don’t you feel that you can better discern people’s conceptions and illusions? We didn’t sing any songs, but just began talking and, yet, everyone has understood quite a bit of truth and seen through a number of issues. Is this not all beneficial and effective? Now it seems from what this person says that he is mostly concerned with outward things, with enjoyment, big meet-ups, and atmosphere—calling out “woo-woo.” You can call out “woo-woo” all day, but is there any practical result? Our Korean brothers and sisters live in a free democracy, so they can hold big meet-ups—but you still must act in accordance with the chosen people’s requests. If everyone says, “We’re willing to meet up together, we’re willing to take a bit of a trip to wherever, we’re not worried about travel costs,” in that case it’s fine. You should keep everyone’s requests in mind, right? In the future, the Korean church can hold big meet-ups. As long as the chosen people are willing, then it’s fine. If they say, “I’m willing to make an extra trip to wherever so that we can have a big meet-up once a week and sing and dance,” then fine! I’d just imagine that most brothers and sisters wouldn’t be willing as they’re already busy enough with their own family life. They have to keep things in order in their families, do chores etc., they don’t have that much free time. You can decide based upon the requests, needs and actual situation of God’s chosen people. You see, the house of God has not required of people that “you must abandon everything, quit your jobs, leave your families.” You can’t make that kind of request—you can’t make someone do what they are unable to, you’ve got to work with what you have.
Question 9: We don’t like Chinese songs. The melody and lyrics are so foreign to us. How are we supposed to study these songs? It’s too hard and too tiring.
Answer: Everything related to China is bad it seems—isn’t this a bit troublesome? God is incarnated as a Chinese person, alright? The man used by the Holy Spirit is also Chinese, ok? Now they say even Chinese songs are no good. Are all Chinese songs bad? Is that a legitimate thing to say? Some Chinese songs arise from the illumination and enlightenment of the Holy Spirit. When people sing these songs there is an instant atmosphere, people are moved and brought to tears—can you really say such songs are bad? The point is, do the songs that you sing bring you enjoyment, do they have the working of the Holy Spirit, and do they move people? You should base your judgment according to these things, not whether you like the melody. Don’t say that any one country’s songs are bad or any one country’s songs are good. Every country’s songs have their merits and drawbacks—no country’s songs are perfect. Are Russian songs all good? Some songs are good, and some songs are just so-so. What about Indian songs? Some songs are truly beautiful, but not all of them. All over the world people listen to Indian music and traditional Indian dance is very beautiful—even people in Israel study it. Now is Israeli music good? Some of it’s pretty good, but not necessarily. This is how you ought to weigh things, in a fair way.
That’ll wrap up our communion for the day. Those who understand the truth will see clearly with regard to these matters. Those who do not understand the truth are easily swayed by certain conceptions and fallacies. They are confused—this is a big problem! I hope that not only the Korean church, but churches all over the world may see through these matters and distinguish the true substance of these notions, the core of their fallacies, and finally abandon them. Don’t be suppressed by such notions—don’t let these fallacies influence our seeking of the truth and experience of God’s work. That would be foolish and you’d be holding yourself back. Also, with regard to those who brought up these issues, we shouldn’t condemn them. They might be recent converts and haven’t yet understood the truth. We should help them with a loving heart. If they don’t accept our help, if no matter how we talk to them they just won’t budge, then there’s nothing we can do. But it’s right for us to show them love and do everything possible to help them. Understood?