Fellowship About the Hymn "For Love" (Part Three)

Looking at the next line: “For love, God’s judgment and chastisement enables us to break away from Satan’s influence and attain salvation.” Is there any problem with this? It is still that the two words “for love” are an inappropriate premise. There is nothing wrong with the phrase “God’s judgment and chastisement enables us to break away from Satan’s influence and attain salvation,” as this is the result of God’s work—but why must the hymnwriter always add the words “for love” in front? What lesson have you learned from this? When it comes to commenting on, defining, or delimiting God’s disposition essence, you must be particularly careful and adopt an attitude of humility and prudence. If you are capable of talking unbridled rubbish, and if everything that you say is nonsense and empty words, tall talk, and blasphemy, then you will offend God’s disposition and cause Him to loathe and hate you. Compared with the essence of God, to put it somewhat inadequately, man’s knowledge of God can only be said to be a drop in the ocean or a grain of sand on the beach. The gulf between the two is huge, and if people still dare to delimit things and draw conclusions at will, arbitrarily treating their own notions as truths and formulating them into words, then there will be a major issue. What major issue is that? (Blasphemy against God.) To blaspheme against God is troublesome and serious in nature. If you do not want to blaspheme against God in terms of your subjective will, then you should hold fast to what I have just told you all, that is, be cautious and guard your tongues. What does it mean, to guard one’s tongue? (Do not comment at will on God and delimit Him.) That’s right. For matters involving visions, “involving visions” is just a general expression; more specifically, it relates to matters involving God’s management plan, work, and disposition essence. So, speak and act cautiously on matters relating to these visions, and do not arbitrarily delimit or judge. Some people say, “That is just what I thought,” but is it accurate for you to think it is just like that? Do not be too arrogant and self-righteous. If what you think is inaccurate and you still talk nonsense and delimit things arbitrarily, then that is to judge, to condemn, and to blaspheme—and you may get more than you bargained for. Some people cannot take this in, and say, “That’s just how I see things, and if You don’t let me speak, You’re asking me to disguise myself.” How is that asking you to disguise yourself? It is advising you to be cautious and not to say anything that you have not thought through and sought to confirm. It is to your benefit; it is for your protection. If what you think is wrong, do you know what the consequences will be once you have spoken? You will have to bear responsibility for your words. Whoever is an antichrist has committed many evil deeds; and what have the ultimate consequences for them been? They have had to bear responsibility for their deeds, and the church has had to handle them. Therefore, if you have an idea or a certain understanding, it is best to have it confirmed before you speak it. You need a sufficient factual basis and theoretical support before you can write it into an article, form it into a text, or compose it as a hymn. If you have insufficient facts and theoretical support, then the facts that you want to establish or what you believe to be the “truth” are too impractical; they are just empty theories and misleading words. It could be said that you are audaciously reckless, and you are speaking blasphemous words.

God has expressed so many truths from the beginning of His work until now, and there are so many words that involve the various states and corrupt dispositions of people, as well as the various needs of people. What do I mean by this? It means that there are so many hymns that can be written about topics involving people’s experience, people’s knowledge of God’s word, and people’s knowledge of God’s requirements. You can write about whichever aspect you have experience in; if you have no experience, do not write randomly. If you have experience but are not good at writing hymns, then you can find someone who understands hymns to get guidance before writing. People who do not understand hymns should definitely avoid recklessly writing them just to fill up space. People who write hymns must have experience and also grasp the principles; they must speak from the heart and say practical words, so that the hymn that is written can be of use to people. Some hymns say things that are not at all practical but are just words and doctrines that do not do anything for people; it is better not to write these kinds of hymns. Some people write hymns and get other people to modify them, and those who modify the hymns have no experience but feign experience and literary talent. Isn’t this deceiving? They have no experience of their own, yet they still want to modify a hymn for others—they lack self-knowledge. Therefore, those who have no experience or true knowledge should never write hymns. In one regard, they will do absolutely no good to anyone, and in another, they will be making a fool of themselves.

Singing hymns is partly to praise God, and partly to engage in spiritual devotion and self-reflection, allowing oneself to benefit from it. The key to whether a hymn has value lies in whether the lyrics are beneficial and do people good. If it is a good experiential hymn, there will be many words in it that do people good and that are useful. What do useful words refer to? It refers to lyrics that you can think of each time you encounter something in your experiences. These words can give you a direction and a path of practice; they can give you certain help, inspiration, and guidance, or they can give you some light, so that from these words which come from practical experiences you can find the position in which you should stand, the attitude you should adopt, the standpoint you should take, the faith you should have, and the path you should practice. Or, from those words, you can recognize certain aspects of your own distortions, and recognize certain aspects of your own corrupt state, your revelation of corruption, or your thoughts and ideas. All of these are helpful to people. Why are they helpful to people? Because they are in line with the truth, and they are people’s experiences and realizations. If there are truly practical things in the lyrics that can be beneficial to your life experience, assisting, guiding, enlightening, or warning you with regard to resolving your corrupt disposition, then these words are valuable and practical. Although some lyrics are modest, they are practical; some lyrics may not be so elegantly put, they may not resemble poetry or prose, and they may all be vernacular and heartfelt, but if those words express an understanding of the truth, and if they convey a true experience of the truth, then they are edifying to you, are practical, and are valuable. The greatest difficulty you all have now is that you do not know how to discern; you cannot perceive whether the lyrics are empty words, or words and doctrines. Whatever words are sung is fine to you; you don’t ponder whether the lyrics are practical, whether they have the light of truth, whether they are of any good to people, or whether they are of any benefit to you—none of these considerations come to mind. And you still think the hymns are quite nice and beautiful after you have sung them, but you do not know what kind of effect they have had on you. Isn’t this a person who lacks discernment?

There is a hymn called “No Heart Is Better Than God’s,” and every line in that hymn is a realization that comes from practical experience, it is of great help to people—have any of you ever heard it? The better and more edifying the lyrics, the more unwilling you are to accept them. You do not look at them or pay them any mind, you do not treasure these good things, you do not know how to hold on to something of value—once you have it, it slips from your grasp. How truly impoverished and pitiful you all are! I have recommended this hymn many times during gatherings. Singing such hymns always has a facilitating effect on your entry, on the growth of your faith in God, and on your attainment of true submission to God. These effects are immeasurable. This is a valuable hymn, so I recommend it, yet none of you sing it. You still do not know what is reality and what is just words and doctrines, so you need to sing these hymns more often and truly feel them. Let us analyze this one.

The first line of the hymn reads, “Having chosen to love God, I’d let Him take away whatever He wishes.” Takes what away? One’s status, one’s family, one’s image, and even one’s dignity. What were the elements of the refinements that befell Job? What did God do? (He took away Job’s property and his children.) God took everything from him, and in an instant, he had nothing and his whole body was covered with boils. That is called deprivation. Concretely, it is deprivation, and the general overview of this act was that God wanted to test Job; it was a trial, and one of the specific tasks in the trial was deprivation. Looking further down: “Despite feeling a bit sad, I give no word of complaint.” Is that not a human attitude? (It is.) “Feeling a bit sad.” In your view, do people find it difficult when God takes away from them? (Yes.) They find it difficult, they feel pained, saddened, helpless, and downhearted; they want to cry, throw a tantrum, and rebel. There are many details to this sadness, so is this statement realistic? (Yes.) “I give no word of complaint.” Is man without a single complaint? It is impossible, but people need to strive upward like this; they need to experience this and adopt this sort of attitude. Do these words contain any positive guidance for people? (Yes.) “I give no word of complaint.” Having no complaints is how people ought to be; one should not have complaints. If people have complaints, they should know themselves and not complain about God, they should submit—this is an attitude of man’s submission to God. People should not complain; complaining is a kind of rebellion against God’s work and trials, and it is not true submission. The next line goes: “With corrupt disposition, man deserves judgment and chastisement.” Is this not a fact? (It is.) It is a fact that people have corrupt dispositions, but if they do not recognize this fact, can they utter this statement? If people do not recognize it, then they will not admit it; if they do not admit it, then they will not make such statements, so this line is derived from people’s true experience. The phrase “man deserves judgment and chastisement” looks quite simple, but what is its implied meaning? It is that people have corrupt dispositions, they rebel against and resist God, and they deserve judgment and chastisement. However much suffering it entails is deserved—all that God does is right. Are these words realistic? (Yes.) This is entirely a subjective acknowledgment of having corrupt dispositions while readily accepting judgment and chastisement, acknowledging that God’s judgment and chastisement is salvation for people, and that God should act in this way. This is an attitude of submission toward God’s method of work in judgment and chastisement. Should people have this sort of attitude? (Yes.) They should indeed. So, after singing this hymn, does it benefit people? (Yes.) What benefits does it bring? If you do not sing these words, you will not know this fact, you won’t know what kind of viewpoint you should hold, how you should submit, or what kind of attitude you should adopt to submit to and accept God’s judgment and chastisement. However, if you sing this hymn and ponder its lyrics, you will feel how very good the words are—that they are correct, you can say “amen” to them, and acknowledge that they stem from experience. Do they seem like lofty words? (No.) But they bring you positive guidance, providing a proactive and positive path. When you find that you have a corrupt disposition, and God judges and chastises you, they will give you a correct perspective and a path to practice. First of all, you have to recognize that when people have corrupt dispositions, they should accept God’s judgment and chastisement. There is nothing to say; do not argue with God. Whether you can understand His intentions or not, first you must submit. Who caused you to have a corrupt disposition? Who made you resist God? You deserve to be judged and chastised. Where does this submission come from? Is this not a practical path? It is the path of practice. How would one feel after singing these lyrics? Aren’t they very practical? They aren’t earth-shattering or all that lofty, they are quite ordinary, but they convey a factuality, and at the same time they give all who sing this hymn a path to practice. They may not be that beautifully crafted, but they are practical.

Looking at the next line: “God’s word is the truth; I must not misconstrue His intentions.” Is this statement correct? (Yes.) What is correct about it? Some people say, “‘God’s word is the truth,’ doesn’t that go without saying? Isn’t that doctrine?” This line serves as a foundation for the next one: “I must not misconstrue His intentions.” How did this phrase come about? What mood and what state gave rise to it? (If people truly believe that God’s word is the truth, they will not misconstrue God.) Since you maintain that God’s word is the truth, you should not misconstrue God’s intentions. Then, what should you do if a misunderstanding arises? Quickly put aside your own intentions and seek the truth. In terms of doctrine, if you know that God’s words are the truth, yet you still misconstrue God’s intentions, where is the mistake here? (It is in not accepting the truth.) That is correct. Therefore, people should be submissive and not misconstrue God’s intentions. Since you maintain that God’s word is the truth—this is a theory you understand—then why do you misconstrue God’s heart when actual events befall you? This proves that you have not truly accepted the fact that God’s word is the truth. Does this line then not serve as a hint? What does it suggest to you? (We must believe that God’s word is the truth, we must firmly recognize this fact.) You must believe that God’s word is correct, it is the truth. Since you maintain that God’s word is the truth, do not take your own intentions as the truth or as the objective when events befall you; instead, you must look to what God’s intentions are. Furthermore, is it the truth that God wants to test you? (Yes.) If you maintain that it is the truth, then can you misconstrue God’s intentions? Suppose you internally ponder such phrases as, “Is God going to condemn me? If I’m condemned, will I be punished? Is it that God finds me displeasing and will destroy me?” Are these not all misunderstandings? (They are.) They are all misunderstandings. So, does the sentence “God’s word is the truth; I must not misconstrue His intentions” not lead you all to realize something? Isn’t it that you should emerge from your misunderstandings, and accept the trials God gives you, His judgment, and His chastisement? (Yes.) What is the basis for acceptance? It is your firm acknowledgment that God’s words are right, that they are the truth. People have corrupt dispositions, and it is they who are wrong. People cannot use their own intentions to speculate about God’s intentions; God is not wrong. Having established that God is not wrong, people should therefore accept all that He does.

Further down: “In self-reflection, I often find too much impurity.” How is this impurity identified through self-reflection? (When people reveal their corruption.) It is identified when people reveal their corruption; that is one side of it. When God tests people, when the circumstances He arranges for people are not to their liking, people often wonder, “Does God no longer love me? Isn’t God righteous? He isn’t righteous in doing this—His actions don’t conform to the truth and He isn’t being considerate of people’s difficulties.” People are always scheming against God, giving rise to all kinds of corrupt dispositions, thoughts, ideas, viewpoints, and suspicions concerning Him. Are these not impurities? (They are.) Of course, this is also an indicator of people’s corruption. In the next line, “If I don’t strive with all my might, it may be difficult to be perfected,” these words are the hymnwriter’s thoughts, which they have recognized through reflection. You do not self-reflect on your own impurity, always misunderstanding God and only verbally acknowledging that He is the truth, yet when events befall you, you insist on sticking with your own ideas, rebel against God, complain about Him, misconstrue Him, and do not accept His judgment and chastisement. If you do not let go of these, it will be very difficult for you to be made perfect; that is, it will be impossible to be made perfect, and there will be no hope, because you are unable to accept the truth. In your view, is there not a practical side to these lyrics? (There is.) Each line of this hymn includes the language and the descriptions of actual states that emerge when people actually experience situations.

Let’s look at the next line: “Though today’s hardships are many, it is an honor to enjoy God’s love.” Here, hardships are connected with God’s love and with honor. Is this not something born out of actual experience? Is it not a kind of true faith and attitude developed from one’s actual actions and experiences? These words are not plucked out of thin air, they are produced against the backdrop of a mood, an environment, an event. What do you think of this attitude? People endure many hardships, and these hardships cause a loss of integrity and dignity, depriving people of their status and interests, among other hardships, causing them a great deal of pain. But having made it this far, they develop a true faith in and knowledge of God; they feel that all of this is enjoying God’s love, is a special favor from God, that it’s not God giving them a hard time. They think it is an honor and that it is God loving them, and therefore God works in this way, depriving and testing them so, and judging and chastising them so. This is a real, positive state of mind that people should have, developed from a real-life context. What kind of person would say “Though today’s hardships are many, it is an honor to enjoy God’s love”? Not the kind of person who wrote the hymn “For Love.” All they could say were muddled, empty words, high-sounding phrases, and slogans. Would they be able to say, “Though today’s hardships are many, it is an honor to enjoy God’s love”? Would they be able to utter those words from the bottom of their heart? No. All they said were empty words, exaggerated words, and words that people are willing to listen to, and in the end, they cobbled together a hymn and thought themselves quite capable and clever. In My view, not a single word in those lyrics is worth anything. They are all nonsense, they should be scrapped, and no one should be allowed to sing such hymns in the future. If you want to sing, you should sing hymns like “No Heart Is Better Than God’s,” which contains genuine, heartfelt words—these words are edifying for people.

The last line of the first verse reads: “Through hardship, I learn submission,” meaning it is hardship that teaches people submission. It then reads, “No heart is better than God’s.” This line is really relevant to the theme. This is the final understanding and experience gained by undergoing all these things, namely that God’s intention is to save people. What people should understand is that God’s heart for people could not be better, and that everything He does is beneficial to them; what He does is not to trouble or vex people, but rather to purify them. That is why the hymnwriter can say from the bottom of their heart: No heart is better than God’s. This is the language of humanity. Without a certain amount of experience and understanding, without a certain amount of experience and understanding of God’s work and His way of saving people, and these specific details can someone utter words such as “No heart is better than God’s”? They absolutely cannot. Look again at the phrase, “Through hardship, I learn submission.” Does this line have a practical side to it? Isn’t it something that people gain or reap after entering into the truth reality? (Yes.) Then what is hardship? Does it mean not having enough to eat, not having enough to wear, or experiencing the hardships of imprisonment? It does not refer to physical suffering in these ways; rather, it is a battle that people experience in their hearts regarding the truth, God’s work, God’s salvation, and God’s painstaking care. After experiencing this, people feel that they have suffered a lot in their hearts in terms of their hope; they finally understand God’s intentions, know that they should submit to God, learn how to submit to God, and acquire a deep experience of what God does, and only then can they say, “No heart is better than God’s.” Most people cannot utter such a sentence. I like this hymn; I like this kind of hymn. It will absolutely be of help to you if you often sing this hymn. Every line in it has a restraining effect on the corrupt disposition revealed in your daily life, it is both a guide and an aid to your practical experience and your entry into the truth reality. How good it would be for you to read these lyrics more often when you are free! Is there any line in this hymn that is not uttered in a certain state or context? Is there any line that does not involve entering into some aspect of the truth? Every line does—none of them contain empty words. Look at the last few lines: “Though I choose to love God, my love is adulterated with my own ideas.” Choosing to love God is a broad, general, theoretical statement. It actually means accepting God’s commission, doing one’s duty, and expending one’s life for God, which is encapsulated here in the phrase “to love God.” People feel that they are still adulterated with their own ideas; without knowing themselves and having any experience of the truth, who could utter a phrase such as that? You definitely couldn’t utter it, because you lack that experience. Continuing on: “I must strive to attain a spirit like Peter’s”—the hymnwriter’s aim is to be like Peter. You, too, have set a benchmark and a goal, you too want to be like Peter—so what is your path? You also have to strive, but can you utter the phrase “My love is adulterated with my own ideas”? How will you attain a spirit like Peter’s if you do not even know what it means for your love to be adulterated with your own ideas? There is a practical side to this phrase. It gets even better further down: “No matter how God receives my love, my only wish is to satisfy Him.” This is what people require of themselves after experiencing hardships and trials; it is an attitude of satisfying God’s intentions, an attitude of submitting to God and pursuing the truth; that is, to be able to satisfy God is to have achieved one’s aim, regardless of the extent one can achieve. There is a practical side to these words. Do you feel encouraged and motivated after reading them? (Yes.) They give people a goal, an impetus, a direction after reading them. Sometimes people feel that no matter how they act, they cannot do it well, and they lapse into negativity. But once they read these words and see that God does not ask much of people, they think, “All I have to do is satisfy God. I don’t ask for anything else; I seek only to let go of my fleshly desires and preferences, and satisfy God—that is sufficient.” In the end, it all comes down to the words, “Though today’s hardships are many, it is an honor to enjoy God’s love. Through hardship, I learn submission. No heart is better than God’s.” These words are quite practical.

All in all, the hymn “No Heart Is Better Than God’s” speaks of genuine experience. After experiencing God’s work, His chastisement, judgment, and trials, people learn to submit, come to understand God’s intentions, and know that no heart is better than His. This is God’s lovely aspect, and it is what people experience; it is also what people should have knowledge of. If you make tunes of these lyrics of practical experience and knowledge, and sing them often, they will do you much good. In one sense, singing hymns of God’s words can help people better understand the truth and enter the truth reality more quickly; in another, by singing these experiential hymns written by people who have reality, your experiences and understanding will progress more quickly. These are insights and understandings written down after people have had some experiences, and they also include the path and direction of entry that people ought to have. They are available ready-made for you, and will be of tremendous help to you. Why don’t you write music to accompany such experiential lyrics? Why do you always compose music for lyrics that are empty, impractical, and banal? You are too undiscerning, you don’t know what makes a good hymn—you are so disappointing! These experiential hymns do people so much good; singing these practical words regularly imprints them in one’s heart, significantly aiding their life entry and dispositional change. If you are forever stuck at the stage of the Age of Grace—praising God’s grace, His love, His blessings, and His mercy and lovingkindness—will you ever be able to enter into the truth reality? Your stature and state remain so pitifully small, always stuck at a superficial stage; without some good hymns to guide you, it will be too strenuous to enter into the truth reality on your own. Look at the hymn “No Heart Is Better Than God’s,” pray-read this hymn in your free time. It contains a path that will guide you and help you enter into the truth reality; it can give you a correct direction, so that you have a correct perspective. What are some correct perspectives? “With corrupt disposition, man deserves judgment and chastisement.” Is this not the kind of correct and pure perspective that people should have? In addition, are the words “God’s word is the truth; I must not misconstrue His intentions” correct? (They are correct.) Indeed, you have to accept them, you have to go engage with and experience them, and when events befall you, there will be a path for you to tread; these words will become a direction for your actions and comportment. And then there is, “If I don’t strive with all my might, it may be difficult to be perfected.” This also represents a correct perspective. What about, “Through hardship, I learn submission. No heart is better than God’s”? Is this a perspective that one should have? (Yes.) Look carefully: Not one sentence here is just empty talk or mere words and doctrines; they all speak to understanding and insight born from genuine experience. Compared with the hymn “For Love” from just before, which do you think is practical? What is practical should be retained, while what is hollow should be eliminated and discarded; it should not be promoted. Some say, “I’ve become accustomed to singing those hymns; they’ve entered my heart and I cannot do without them.” If you cannot do without them, then go on and keep singing them. I will see what you’ve gained after you’ve sung them for twenty years, whether you can enter the truth reality. If you sing the hymn “No Heart Is Better Than God’s,” it will capture your heart once you have sung it once or twice. After singing it for a month or two, your state will be turned around to some extent, and if you truly accept its words from the bottom of your heart, your inner state will be different, and you will have turned it around completely. You can sing those hymns of empty theories and nonsense all your life, but it will be of no use. Just like people in the Age of Grace who sang those empty and superficial hymns, and who sang all their lives but did not gain the truth—it is just a waste of time.

January 12, 2022

Would you like to learn God’s words and rely on God to receive His blessing and solve the difficulties on your way? Click the button to contact us.

Connect with us on Messenger