What Is the Adequate Performance of Duty? (Part One)

During the last gathering, the main topic of fellowship was the four basic conditions for a person to be perfected through accepting judgment and chastisement. What are these four basic conditions? (The first condition is adequate performance of duty. The second is having a mentality of submission to God. The third is being basically an honest person. And the fourth is having a repentant heart.) There are some details within each of these four conditions, as well as concrete practices and specific references. In fact, these four topics have been discussed for years. If we talk about them again today, would that be considered retreading old ground? (No.) Why would it not be considered that? Because the contents of each of these four conditions involve the reality of the truth and life entry, which are inexhaustible topics. Most people have not yet reached the point of entering the reality of the truth; they only understand the surface meaning of the truth, they only understand some simple doctrines. Although they are able to fellowship some realities, they fall short of entering the truth realities. So, no matter which aspect of the truth is involved, it must be frequently fellowshipped and frequently listened to. In this way, people’s understanding of various truths will deepen through their real experience, and their experiences will become increasingly precise.

We just summarized the four basic conditions for being made perfect through accepting judgment and chastisement. Next, let us begin our discussion from the first condition: adequate performance of duty. Some people say: “The discussions these past two years have all been about performing duty; specifically, how to perform duty, how to perform it well, which principles to abide by while performing it—in my heart, I know these things like the back of my hand, they could not be any clearer. And over the past few years, my daily life has been all about the truths related to performing my duty. Ever since I began performing my duty, I’ve sought, eaten and drunk, and listened to truths related to it, and even now this topic is still being discussed. I’ve understood it in my heart for a long time already; isn’t it really just doing your duty well? Isn’t performing duty adequately just about following those principles mentioned before? Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength; seek the principles, do not rely on your own inclinations, and coordinate harmoniously while performing your duty; synchronize performing your duty with life entry—that’s all there is to it.” The things you encounter and experience in your daily lives are just these topics, so that is all you understand. No matter how much you understand, we still need to discuss this truth today. If anything gets repeated, that will be of benefit to you as well, and you can contemplate it again; if it’s something that hasn’t been discussed before, then take it in. Whether it’s repetitive or not, you should listen carefully. Consider what truths are involved here, whether these truths have any benefits for your life entry, and whether they can help you perform duty adequately. So, it is indeed necessary to revisit the topic of adequate performance of duty.

Regarding adequate performance of duty, let us first put aside the meaning of “adequate” and instead talk about what duty is. By the end, you will know what duty is, what is considered adequate, and how duty should be performed; you will have a path of practice for performing duty up to standard. So, what is duty? (Duty is what God entrusts man to do, it is what a created being should do.) This statement is only half-correct. In theory, there is nothing wrong with it, but upon closer examination, this explanation is incomplete; there should be a precondition. Let’s delve into this topic. For every believer and unbeliever, how they live their lives, what they do in this human world, and the destiny of their life—are these not all things that God has preordained? (Yes, they are.) For instance, some people engage in music in this world. Making music is their mission in life; can this mission be considered their duty? (No.) Some people have done extraordinary things in the world, impacting all of humankind, making contributions, and even changing an era; this is their life’s mission. Can this life’s mission be called their duty? (No.) But isn’t this life’s mission and what they have done in their lifetime something entrusted to them by God? Isn’t it something a created being should do? (Yes.) That’s correct. God has given them a mission, entrusted them with this commission, and, within the entirety of humankind, as a part of humankind itself, they have something they should do, a responsibility they should perform. Regardless of the field they are involved in—be it arts, business, politics, economics, scientific research, and so on—these are all predestined by God. There is one point of difference, however; no matter how God has ordained it, these people are outside of God’s management work. They are considered unbelievers, and that which they do is external to God’s management work. So, can their responsibilities, the commission they’ve accepted, and their life’s mission be called duty? (No.) They are not performing duty, because that which they do is unrelated to God’s work of saving humankind. All humans in this world passively accept the Creator’s commission and the mission He has given, but the mission those who do not believe in God accept, and the responsibilities they fulfill, are not duty, because they are unrelated to and have no part in God’s management plan of saving humankind. They do not accept God, and God does not work on them, so no matter what responsibilities they undertake, and no matter what commission they accept or what mission they accomplish in this life, it cannot be said that they are performing their duty. So just what is duty? What kind of prerequisites should be added in order to clearly, accurately, and comprehensively explain this concept and the truth in this regard? Have you understood a concept from our fellowship just now? What concept? That for any individual among humankind, regardless of how great a mission they’ve accepted, or the level of change they’ve effected, or the extent of their contribution to humankind, such mission and commissions cannot be called duties. This is because they are unrelated to God’s management plan of saving humankind; they are merely missions. Whether they act actively or passively, all they’re doing is completing a mission; this is preordained by God. In other words, as long as their actions have nothing to do with God’s management plan, and nothing to do with God’s work of saving humanity, then the fulfillment of such missions cannot be called performing duty. This is certain beyond all doubt. So what is duty? This is how it should be understood: Duty is the commission and mission given by God within the scope of His management work to save humankind. Isn’t putting it this way complete and precise? Only what’s precise is the truth; what’s imprecise and one-sided is not the truth, but mere doctrine. Without fully comprehending and thoroughly recognizing what duty is, you won’t know just what the truths related to duty are. Previously, people may have had many misconceptions in their understanding of duty. That is because they did not understand the truth, which led to all sorts of notions and ambiguities. People then used these notions and ambiguities to explain duty, and subsequently treated it based on these ideas. For example, some people think that since one’s entire life is preordained by God—that what kind of family one is born into, whether one is rich or poor in life, and what career one pursues are all preordained by God—then whatever one does in one’s lifetime and the things they accomplish are all commissions given by God and are one’s mission. Just because it involves a mission, they think it is therefore duty. This is how they haphazardly stumble along in their conception of duty. Isn’t this a misunderstanding? Some people, who get married and have children, say: “Having kids is God’s commission that He entrusted to us, it’s our mission. It is our duty to raise our kids to adulthood.” Isn’t this a wrong understanding? And there are others who say: “We were put on this earth to farm. Since that is our fate, we’d better do a good job of it, because it is our God-given commission and mission. No matter how poor we become or how hard it gets, we can’t complain. Farming well in this lifetime is our duty.” They equate one’s fate with their mission and duty. Is this not a misunderstanding? (It is.) It is indeed a misunderstanding. And there are also some people who do business in the world, who say: “I didn’t succeed in anything before, but after doing business, life has been pretty good and stable. It seems that God has destined me to do business in this lifetime, to support my family through it. So, if in this lifetime I do well in business and expand my operations, providing for every member of my family, then this is my mission, and perhaps this mission is my duty.” Isn’t this a misunderstanding? People consider their everyday affairs, the way they make a living, the lifestyle they attain, and the quality of life they enjoy—all things related to their mission—as their duty. This is incorrect; it is a distorted understanding of what duty is.

So just what is duty then? Most people have some warped and distorted comprehension of this matter. If the house of God arranges for you to go plant grains and vegetables, how do you treat this arrangement? Some people might not be able to understand it, saying: “Farming is for supporting one’s family; it’s not duty. The concept of duty does not include this aspect.” Why do they comprehend things this way? It is because they do not understand the truths related to performing duty, and they do not understand what duty is. If one does understand this aspect of the truth, they will be willing to go and work the land. They will know that in God’s house, farming is not done for the sake of supporting their family, but for the sake of allowing those who perform duty full-time to continue performing it normally. In fact, this is also a God-given commission; the work itself might not be any more significant than a sesame seed, or perhaps even a speck of sand, but regardless of its significance, it is a job produced within the scope of God’s management work. God says now that you are required to complete this job—how do you understand it? You should accept it as your duty, and you should accept it without making any excuses. If you just submit in a passive manner and go do farmwork because that’s what was arranged for you, that won’t do. There is a principle here that you must understand: The church arranging for you to do farmwork and plant vegetables is not so you can become wealthy, nor is it so you can get by and support your family; it’s to meet the needs of work in God’s house during times of disaster. It is to ensure that all those who perform duty in God’s house full-time have their daily sustenance, so they can perform their duties normally without holding up the work of God’s house. So, some of the people farming at a farm church are considered to be performing their duty; this is different in nature from ordinary farmers farming. What is the nature of farming for ordinary farmers? Ordinary farmers farm to provide for their families and survive; this is what God has ordained for them. This is their destiny, so they farm generation after generation; it has nothing whatsoever to do with their duty. Now, you’ve come to God’s house and are also farming, but this is a requirement of the work in God’s house; it’s a form of expenditure for God. This is different in nature from farming on your own land. This is about fulfilling your responsibilities and obligations. This is the duty a person should perform; it is the commission and responsibility entrusted to you by the Creator. This, for you, is your duty. So, when comparing this duty to your worldly mission, which is more important? (My duty.) Why is that the case? Duty is what God requires you to do, it is what He has entrusted to you—this is part of the reason. The other, primary, reason is that when you take up duty in God’s house and accept God’s commission, you become relevant to God’s management work. In God’s house, whenever something is arranged for you to do, be it a hardship or tiring work, and whether you like it or not, it is your duty. If you can consider it a commission and responsibility that God has given you, you are then relevant to His work of saving man. And if what you do and the duty you perform are relevant to God’s work of saving man, and you can earnestly and sincerely accept the commission God has given you, how will He regard you? He will regard you as a member of His family. Is that a blessing or a curse? (A blessing.) It is a great blessing. Some people complain when they face a little hardship while performing duty, blithely unaware of the immense blessings they’ve received. Isn’t it simply foolish to complain about God after having gained so many advantages? At this point, it’s crucial to understand the truth, to recognize that this is your duty and it must be accepted from God. Now, do you have a new understanding or a new insight into what duty is? Have you deeply understood it? Is duty important for receiving salvation? (Yes.) How important is it? It can be said that there is a direct connection between performing duty and receiving salvation. Regardless of what missions you complete in this life, if you did not perform your duty, you have nothing to do with receiving salvation. In other words, no matter how grand the feats you’ve accomplished in this life among other humans, you were simply completing a mission; you haven’t fulfilled the duty of a created being, so you have nothing to do with receiving salvation or God’s work of managing humankind.

In the house of God, there is constant mention of accepting God’s commission and performing one’s duty properly. How does duty come into being? To speak broadly, it comes into being as a result of God’s management work of bringing salvation to humanity; to speak specifically, as God’s management work unfolds among mankind, various work appears that requires people to cooperate and complete it. This has given rise to responsibilities and missions for people to fulfill, and these responsibilities and missions are the duties God bestows upon mankind. In God’s house, the various tasks that require people’s cooperation are the duties they should perform. So, are there differences between duties in terms of better and worse, lofty and lowly, or great and small? Such differences do not exist; as long as something has to do with God’s management work, is a requirement of the work of His house, and is required by spreading God’s gospel, then it is a person’s duty. This is the origin and definition of duty. Without God’s work of management, would people on earth—regardless of how they live—have duties? No. Now you see clearly. What is one’s duty related to? (It is related to God’s management work of the salvation of mankind.) That is right. There is a direct relationship between the duties of mankind, the duties of created beings and God’s management work of the salvation of mankind. It can be said that without God’s salvation of mankind, and without the management work the incarnate God has launched among man, people would not have any duties to speak of. Duties arise out of God’s work; it is what God demands of people. Looking at it from this perspective, duty is important for every person who follows God, is it not? It is very important. Speaking broadly, you are taking part in the work of God’s management plan; more specifically, you are cooperating with the various types of jobs of God that are required at different times and among different groups of people. Regardless of what your duty is, it is a mission God has given you. Sometimes you may be required to look after or safeguard an important object. This might be a comparatively trivial matter that can only be said to be a responsibility of yours, but it is a task God has given you; you accepted it from Him. You accepted it from God’s hands, and this is your duty. Speaking to the root of the matter, your duty is entrusted to you by God. It includes mainly spreading the gospel, bearing testimony, making videos, being a leader or worker in the church, or it might be work that is even more dangerous and more important. Regardless, as long as it has to do with God’s work and the necessity of the work of disseminating the gospel, people should accept it as a duty from God. Duty, to put it in even broader terms, is a person’s mission, a commission entrusted by God; more specifically, it is your responsibility, your obligation. Given that it is your mission, a commission entrusted to you by God, and is your responsibility and obligation, performing your duty has nothing to do with your personal affairs. Duty has nothing to do with personal affairs—why is this topic being brought up? Because people must understand how to treat and how to comprehend their duty. Duty is the commission created beings accept and the mission they must complete within God’s management work. People know the overall premise, but what about the finer details? How should one approach their duties to be considered as having correct understanding? Some people treat their duty as their personal affairs; is this the right principle? (No.) Why is it wrong? Doing things for yourself is not performing your duty. Performing your duty is not about doing things for yourself, but rather doing the work that God entrusted to you—there is a difference between the two. What’s the principle when it comes to doing things for yourself? It is doing whatever you feel like without consulting others, and without praying to or seeking God; it is acting according to your own whims and without regard for consequence as long as it benefits you. Is this principle acceptable for performing your duty in God’s house? (No.) Some people say: “I don’t even take my own affairs as seriously or put in as much effort. I treat my duty as if it’s my own business, and this principle is surely appropriate.” Is this the correct way to receive duty? Definitely not. What should one’s attitude toward duty be then? (Accept it from God.) “Accept it from God.” These four words are easy to say, but how to actually put the truth contained within them into practice depends on how you treat your duty. Just now, we defined what duty is. Duty comes from God, it is a commission entrusted by God, it is related to the work of His management plan and man’s salvation. From this point of view, does duty have anything to do with your personal principles of conduct? Does it have anything to do with your personal preferences, your life habits, or your life routines? Not in the slightest. So what is duty related to then? It is related to the truth. Some people say: “Since this duty is assigned to me, then it is my own affair. And I have the highest principle for performing duty, which none of you have. God demands people fulfill their duty with all their heart, soul, mind, and strength. But, in addition to this, I have an even higher principle, which is to treat my duty like it’s my own major concern, and to do it diligently and strive for the best result.” Is this principle correct? (No.) Why is it wrong? If you accept your duty from God and in your heart you are clear He entrusts it to you, how should you treat this commission? This relates to the principles of performing duty. Isn’t it much loftier to treat one’s duty as God’s commission rather than as one’s own business? These are not the same, are they? If you treat your duty as a matter of God’s commission, as performing your duty before God, and as satisfying God through the performance of duty, then your principle for performing duty is not merely to treat it as your own business. What is the attitude you should have toward your duty, that can be called correct and in line with the will of God? First, you cannot analyze who it is arranged by, which level of leadership it is assigned by—you should accept it from God. You cannot analyze this, you should accept it from God. This is a condition. Furthermore, whatever your duty, do not discriminate between high and low. Suppose you say, “Though this task is a commission from God and the work of God’s house, if I do it, people might look down on me. Others get to do work that lets them stand out. I’ve been given this task, which doesn’t let me stand out but makes me exert myself behind the scenes, it’s unfair! I will not do this duty. My duty has to be one that makes me stand out in front of others and allows me to make a name for myself—and even if I don’t make a name for myself or stand out, I still have to benefit from it and feel physically at ease.” Is this an acceptable attitude? Being picky is not accepting things from God; it is making choices according to your own preferences. This is not accepting your duty; it is a refusal of your duty, a manifestation of your rebelliousness against God. Such pickiness is adulterated with your individual preferences and desires. When you give consideration to your own benefit, your reputation, and so on, your attitude toward your duty is not submissive. What attitude should you have toward your duty? First, you must not analyze it, trying to ascertain who it was that assigned it to you; instead, you should accept it from God, as a duty entrusted to you by God, and you should obey the orchestration and arrangements of God, and accept your duty from God. Second, do not discriminate between high and low, and do not concern yourself with its nature, whether it lets you stand out or not, whether it is done in public view or behind the scenes. Do not consider these things. There is also another attitude: submission and active cooperation. If you feel you can perform a certain duty, but you also fear making a mistake and being eliminated, and so you are timid, stagnant, and can’t make progress, then is that a submissive attitude? For example, if your brothers and sisters choose you as their leader, then you may feel obligated to perform this duty because you were chosen, but you don’t regard this duty with a proactive attitude. Why are you not proactive? Because you have thoughts about it, and feel that, “Being a leader isn’t a good thing at all. It’s like walking on a knife’s edge or treading on thin ice. If I do a good job then there will be no reward, but if I do a bad job then I will be pruned. And being pruned isn’t even the worst of all. What if I get replaced or eliminated? If that were to happen, isn’t it all over for me?” At that point, you start to feel conflicted. What is this attitude? This is being guarded and misunderstanding. This is not the attitude that people should have toward their duty. It is a demoralized and negative attitude. So, what should a positive attitude be like? (We should be open-hearted and forthright, and have the courage to take up burdens.) It should be one of submission and proactive cooperation. What you say is a bit empty. How can you be open-hearted and forthright when you are so afraid like this? And what does it mean to have the courage to take up burdens? What mentality will give you the courage to take up burdens? If you’re always afraid that something will go wrong and you won’t be able to handle it, and you have many internal hindrances, then you will fundamentally lack the courage to take up burdens. The “being open-hearted and forthright,” “having the courage to take up burdens,” or “never retreating even in the face of death” you speak of, sounds a bit like the slogans shouted by angry young people. Can these slogans solve practical problems? What is needed now is a correct attitude. To possess a correct attitude, you must understand this aspect of the truth. This is the only way to resolve your internal difficulties, and allow you to smoothly accept this commission, this duty. This is the path of practice, and only this is the truth. If you use terms like “being open-hearted and forthright” and “having the courage to take up burdens” to address the fear that you feel, will this be effective? (No.) This indicates that these things are not the truth, nor are they a path of practice. You may say, “I am open-hearted and forthright, I am of indomitable stature, there are no other thoughts or contaminants in my heart, and I have the courage to take up burdens.” Outwardly you take up your duty, but later, after pondering it for a while, you still feel that you cannot take it up. You may still feel afraid. In addition, you may see others being pruned, and become even more afraid, like a whipped dog terrified of the strap. You will increasingly feel like your stature is too small, and that this duty is like a vast, uncrossable abyss, and ultimately you will still be unable to take up this burden. This is why chanting slogans cannot solve practical problems. So how can you actually solve this problem? You should actively seek the truth and adopt a submissive and cooperative attitude. That can completely solve the problem. Timidity, fear, and worry are useless. Is there any relationship between whether you will be revealed and eliminated and being a leader? If you are not a leader, will your corrupt disposition disappear? Sooner or later, you must resolve the problem of your corrupt disposition. In addition, if you are not a leader, then you will not have more opportunities to practice and will make slow progress in life, with few chances to be perfected. Although there is a bit more suffering in being a leader or worker, it also brings about many gains, and if you can walk the path of pursuing the truth, you can be perfected. What a great blessing that is! So you should submit and actively cooperate. This is your duty and your responsibility. No matter the road ahead, you should have a heart of submission. This is the attitude with which you should perform your duty.

The topic of performing one’s duty is not unfamiliar to anyone; it is not a new subject. However, for those who believe in God, this topic is very important; it is a truth that must be understood and entered into. Created beings must perform their duty well before being approved by the Creator. Therefore, it is very important that people understand what it means to perform duty. Performing duty is not a kind of theory, nor is it a slogan; it is an aspect of the truth. So what does it mean to perform duty? And what problems can be solved by understanding this aspect of the truth? At the very least, it can resolve the matter of how you should accept and treat God’s commission, and what sort of attitude and resolution you should have when completing the commission God entrusted to you. You can also say that it will resolve some abnormal relationships between people and God at the same time. Some people see performing their duties as capital, some see performing their duties as their own personal tasks, and some see performing their duties as their own work and enterprises, or see a duty as a sort of pastime, entertainment, or hobby to kill the time. In short, no matter what sort of attitude you have toward your duty, if you do not accept it from God, and if you do not treat it as a task that a created being within God’s management work should do or with which they should cooperate, then what you are doing is not performing your duty. Is it right for you to treat your duty as your family business? Is it right for you to treat it as part of your own job or hobby? Is it right to treat it as a personal matter? None of these are right. Why is it necessary to mention these topics? What problem will be solved by fellowshipping on these topics? It will solve the problem of people having incorrect attitudes toward their duty, and the myriad ways they perform their duty perfunctorily. Only by understanding the aspect of truth which pertains to performing one’s duty will people’s attitude toward their duty change. Their attitude will gradually become compatible with the truth, and meet God’s demands and His will. If people do not understand the aspect of truth which pertains to performing one’s duty, problems will come up in their attitude toward their duty and the principles behind their duty, and they will be unable to achieve the result of performing duty. Duties are tasks entrusted to people by God; they are missions for people to complete. However, a duty is certainly not your personal management, nor is it a stepping stone for you to stand out from the crowd. Some people use their duties as opportunities to engage in their own management and form cliques; some to satisfy their desires; some to fill the voids they feel inside; and some to satisfy their trust-to-luck mentality, thinking that as long as they perform their duties, they will have a share in God’s house and in the wonderful destination God arranges for man. Such attitudes about duty are incorrect; they are loathed by God and must be urgently resolved.

Regarding what duty is, how people should treat their duty, and the attitudes and views they should have toward duty, these matters have been largely fellowshipped already. You all should carefully ponder these; understanding the truths in these aspects is most crucial and urgent. What is the truth that you most need to understand right now? In one respect, you need to understand the truths related to the visions in this aspect; in another, you need to understand where you have misunderstandings and distorted comprehension of these truths in practice and in real life. When you encounter issues involving the truths of performing duty, if these words and truths can resolve your inner state, this proves that you have truly and thoroughly understood the content that has been fellowshipped; if they can’t resolve the difficulties you face daily in matters of performing your duty, it shows that you have not entered into these truths. After listening to these truths, have you summarized and reflected on them? Is it that each time you take notes you understand at the moment, but as time passes you forget, as if you have never heard them? (Yes.) This is because you yourselves lack even the slightest bit of entry; what you practice fundamentally has nothing to do with these truths and is completely unrelated to the truth. In fact, these truths about performing duty are the most basic truths that one should understand and enter into in the process of believing in God. If after hearing the words of truth you are still confused and muddled, then your caliber is simply too poor, and you lack all stature. You can only read God’s words, only pray and attend gatherings; you do whatever you are asked to, just like one engaged in religious belief. This means you have no life entry and no stature whatsoever. What does having no stature mean? It means that in the process of believing in God and performing your duty, as soon as someone misleads you, you follow them and stop believing in God; if you do something wrong and someone prunes you a little bit, speaking to you in a somewhat stern manner, you might give up your belief; if you encounter setbacks or various difficulties in your life, you might complain about God, and seeing that He is not granting you grace or resolving your difficulties, you could turn away and leave God’s house, ceasing to believe. If you have entered into some aspects of the truth of performing duty—this most fundamental of truths—it proves that you are already connected with the truth; you are already connected with the truth reality, and have made some entry. If you have nothing of this truth reality, not even a bit, it proves that the truth has not yet taken root in your heart.

I just fellowshipped about what duty is, as well as the origins and generation of duty, to let people understand what exactly duty is. What benefits are there in knowing this? Once people understand the truth about what duty is, they’ll know the importance of duty. At the very least, deep down inside, they will feel that they should have a correct attitude toward duty and that they cannot act arbitrarily. At least this concept will be there in their minds. Though duty is what you should perform, and is the commission and mission given to you by God, it is not your personal affair, nor is it your own work. This may sound contradictory, but it is indeed the truth. Whatever is the truth has its practical side, related to people’s practice and entry, as well as God’s requirements. It is not empty. This is how the truth is; only through experiencing and entering into the reality of this truth can you increasingly understand this aspect of the truth. If you always question the truth, keep raising doubts, and keep scrutinizing and analyzing, then the truth will never be truth to you. It will be unrelated to your real life and won’t be able to change anything about you. If one accepts the truth from the depths of their heart and takes it as a guide for living and acting, as a guide for conducting themselves and believing in God, then the truth will change their life. It will change their life’s goals, their life’s direction, and the way they interact with the world. This is the effect of the truth. Understanding what duty is will certainly be of great benefit and help to people in performing their duty. At the very least, one will know that duty is very important for everyone who believes in God, and that it holds even greater importance for those who are interested in or have specific requirements or aspirations for being saved and perfected. This is the most fundamental truth that anyone should understand to be saved, and it is also the most fundamental truth into which one should enter. If you do not understand what duty is, then you won’t know how to fulfill your duty properly, nor will you know the right attitude with which to receive and regard your duty. This is dangerous—on the one hand, you won’t possibly be able to fulfill your duty well, and you will act arbitrarily and perfunctorily; on the other hand, you might do things that disrupt and disturb the work of the church, or even commit evil deeds that violate God’s administrative decrees. To put it somewhat conservatively, you might be isolated for reflection, and in severe cases, you could be eliminated. Therefore, understanding what duty is, although a very basic aspect of the truth, is related to one’s salvation; it’s not irrelevant—this is very important. After understanding what duty is, it’s not just about being familiar with a doctrine; the intended result is to allow people to comprehend God’s intentions and to treat their duty with the correct attitude. In performing any duty, no result can be achieved by simply exerting effort; always thinking that duty can be properly fulfilled just by exerting effort shows a lack of spiritual understanding. In fact, performing duty involves many details, including having the right mindset, principles of practice and genuine submission, as well as possessing spiritual wisdom. Only when someone has these aspects of the truth can they fulfill their duties well and fully resolve the problem of performing duty in a perfunctory manner. Those who do not have the right attitude toward their duties are people lacking in the truth reality; they are people who lack a God-fearing heart, and are devoid of conscience and reason. Thus, to follow God, one must understand the significance of performing duty; this is crucial for following God.

After understanding what duty is and its origins, you will differentiate between the nature of duty and the nature of work in society. What is the distinguishing point between treating the work entrusted to you by God’s house as a duty and treating it as worldly work? If you treat it as a duty, then you need to seek God’s will and the truth. You will say, “This is my duty, so how should I go about it? What does God require? What are the church’s regulations? I need to be clear about the principles behind it.” Only practicing this way is the correct attitude toward treating your duty; only this is the attitude people should have toward their duty. But what kind of attitude should people have when dealing with worldly work or matters in their personal lives? Is there any need to seek the truth or principles then? You might also seek principles, but those would only be about making more money, living a good life, accumulating wealth, achieving success, and obtaining both fame and gain—only principles such as these. These principles are entirely worldly, belonging to current trends; they are the principles of Satan and this wicked humankind. What are the principles of performing duty? They must definitely meet God’s requirements; they are intimately related to, and inseparable from, the truth and God’s requirements. In contrast, the professions or jobs that people engage in in the world have nothing to do with the truth or God’s requirements. As long as you are capable, willing to endure hardship, and diligent, evil, and audacious enough, you can stand out in society and may even build a major career. However, these principles and philosophies are not needed in God’s house. In God’s house, no matter what kind of duty you perform, no matter the nature of that duty, whether it is seen as high or low, noble or humble, whether it’s high-profile or low-key, whether it’s entrusted to you by God or assigned to you by a church leader—no matter what work the house of God assigns to you, the principles you adhere to in doing your work should not exceed the principles of the truth. They should be connected with the truth, connected with God’s requirements, and connected with the regulations and work arrangements of God’s house. In short, duty and the work one engages in the world should be distinguished from each other.

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