Words on Knowing God's Work and Disposition (Excerpt 19)

Most people do not understand God’s work, so their faith is too lacking. Knowing God’s work is not easy; one must first know that there is a plan to all God’s work and it is all done on God’s timing. Man can never fathom what and when God works; God does certain work at a certain time, and He does not delay; no one can destroy His work. To work according to His plan and according to His intention is the principle by which He does His work, and no person can change this. Therein, you should see God’s disposition. God’s work waits for no one, and when it is time to do some work, it must be done. You have all experienced God’s work in the last few years. Who can destroy the way in which He provides for people, prevent Him from saying His words when He needs to say them and carrying out work when it needs to be done? When they first started to spread the gospel, most people gave out books of God’s words to those in the churches and religious people. What was the result of this? Very few of these people investigated God’s words; most of them were slanderous, judgmental, and full of hostility. Some burned the books, some confiscated them, some beat those who were spreading the gospel and forced them to admit their guilt, and some even called the police to arrest and persecute them. At that time, all the denominations resisted frantically, but in the end, the gospel of the kingdom was still disseminated all over the mainland of China. Who can disrupt the carrying out of God’s will? Who can stop the spread of God’s kingdom gospel? God’s sheep listen to God’s voice, and those who should be gained by God will be gained sooner or later. This is something that no one can destroy. It is like the sentence in Proverbs which states, “The king’s heart is in the hand of Jehovah, as the rivers of water: He turns it wherever He will” (Proverbs 21:1). This is even more so the case for those insignificant people, right? God has His own plans and arrangements about when He will do what work. Some people always judge that it is impossible for God to do this or that, but such ideas are only people’s imaginings. No matter how much damage people do and how much trouble Satan stirs up, it will come to nothing, and they will not be able to stop God’s work. The work of the Holy Spirit determines everything, and people can accomplish nothing without the work of the Holy Spirit. What kind of reason should people possess regarding this? When a person realizes that the Holy Spirit is not working, they should let go of their own notions and be careful not to do anything blindly. The wise choice is to seek God’s intention and wait for God’s timing. Some people always rely on their own human notions and imaginings and preempt God, and the result is that the Holy Spirit does not work and their efforts are futile. However, people must do what they ought to do, and they must fulfill their duty. You cannot wait passively for fear of doing something wrong, and you certainly cannot say, “God has not yet done it, and God has not yet said what He wants me to do, so I will not do anything for now.” Is this not a failure to do your duty? You must think this through, for it is not a small matter, and a single error in thinking can damage your prospects or ruin you.

In God’s management plan, whatever work God does is done on schedule, at the right time, very precisely, and absolutely not according to the imagination of people who say, “This won’t work, that won’t work, this will get you nowhere!” God is almighty, and nothing is difficult for God. From the Age of Law to the Age of Grace to the Age of Kingdom, every step of God’s work has been done contrary to the notions of people, who think it is all unfeasible. Nonetheless, in the end it all works out, and Satan is completely disgraced and fails, and people cover their mouths. What can people do? They cannot even practice the truth, but they can still be arrogant and conceited and think that they can do anything, and their hearts are full of extravagant desires, and they don’t bear true witness at all. There are even people who think, “God’s day is coming soon, we won’t have to suffer anymore, we will have a good life, and the end is in sight.” Let Me tell you, such people are just going along for the ride and fooling about, and in the end they will only be punished and gain nothing! Can believing in God for the sake of seeing the day of God and escaping the great disaster help one gain the truth and life? Anyone who believes in God to escape disaster and to see the day of God will perish. However, those who believe to pursue the truth, and to be saved through a change in disposition will survive. These are the true believers in God. Those muddled believers will ultimately gain nothing, only work in vain, and will be punished more heavily. All people have a severe lack of insight. Those who believe in God but don’t see to their tasks and are always thinking about wicked things are evildoers, they are nonbelievers and can only harm themselves. Aren’t believers and unbelievers both in God’s hands? Who can escape the hands of God? No one can escape! Those who escape must ultimately return to God and be punished. This is obvious, why can’t people see it clearly?

Some people do not have the slightest knowledge of God’s almightiness, even though they believe in Almighty God. They are continually confused about the following question: “Since God is almighty, has authority, and is able to hold sovereignty over all things, why did He still create Satan, allow it to corrupt mankind for 6,000 years and throw the world into a state of chaos? Why doesn’t God destroy Satan? Wouldn’t people have a good life if Satan was eliminated?” This is the way most people think. Can you now explain this issue? This involves the truth in regard to visions. This question has been considered by many, but now that you have something of a foundation, you will not doubt God because of it. However, the confusion about this must be cleared up. There are some people who ask, “Why did God allow the archangel to betray Him? Could it be that God did not know the archangel was capable of betraying Him? Did God fail to control it, did He allow it, or did God have some purpose?” It is normal for people to raise this question, and they should know that this question involves God’s entire management plan. God arranged for there to be an archangel and this archangel’s betrayal of God was both permitted by God and arranged by Him—it most definitely falls within the scope of God’s management plan. God permitted the archangel to corrupt mankind that He had made, after it had betrayed Him. It is not that God failed to control Satan, so that mankind was seduced by the serpent and corrupted by Satan, but that it was God who permitted Satan to do this. Only after He had given His permission for this to happen did God begin His management plan and His work of saving mankind. Can man fathom out the mystery here? Once mankind had been corrupted by Satan, God then began His work of managing mankind. First, He did the work of the Age of Law in Israel. After two thousand years had passed, He performed the work of the crucifixion in the Age of Grace, and all mankind was redeemed. In the time of the last days, He is incarnated to conquer and save a group of people in the last days. What kind of people are those who have been born in the last days? They are those who have undergone thousands of years of Satan’s corruption, who have been so deeply corrupted that they no longer have the human likeness. After experiencing the judgment, chastisement, and exposure of the words of God, after being conquered, they attain the truth from within God’s words and are sincerely convinced by God; they achieve an understanding of God, and they can submit to God absolutely and satisfy His will. In the end, the group of people gained through God’s management plan will be people like this. Do you think that those who have not been corrupted by Satan will satisfy God’s will, or will it be those who have been corrupted by Satan and eventually saved? The people to be obtained throughout the course of the entire management plan are a group who can understand God’s will, who attain the truth from God, and who possess the kind of life and human likeness which God requires. When humans were first created by God, they merely had human likeness and human life. However, they did not possess the truth that God requires of men and they could not live out the likeness God has always hoped men would have. The group of people who will ultimately be gained are those who will remain to the last, and these are the ones whom God gains, with whom He is pleased, and who satisfy Him. Over the several-thousand-year course of the work of management, these people who He has finally saved have gained the most; the truth these people have gained has been precisely the watering and sustenance given to them by God through His war with Satan. The people in this group are better than those whom God created in the very beginning; even though they were corrupted, this was inevitable, and it is a matter that falls within the scope of God’s management plan. This fully reveals His almightiness and wisdom, as well as the fact that everything God has arranged, planned, and achieved is the absolute greatest. If you are afterward asked again: “If God is almighty, how could the archangel still betray Him? Then God cast it down to earth where He allowed it to corrupt mankind. What is the significance of this?” you can say this: “This matter falls within the preordination of God and it is most significant. Man cannot entirely fathom it, but from the level that man can comprehend and reach, it can be seen that what God did is very meaningful. This is certainly not to say that God has a temporary lapse, or that He loses control and has no way to manage things, and then He turns Satan’s tricks against it, saying ‘The archangel engaged in betrayal anyway so I may as well just get on with it, and I’ll just save mankind after it has corrupted them all.’ This is absolutely not the case.” People should know at the very least that this matter falls within the scope of God’s management plan. What plan? In the first stage, there was an archangel; in the second stage, the archangel betrayed; in the third stage, after the archangel’s betrayal, it came amongst mankind to corrupt them, and then God began His work of managing mankind. When people believe in God they must understand the vision of God’s management plan. Some never understand this aspect of the truth, feeling always that there are many unsolvable contradictions. With no understanding they feel unassured, and if they are unassured, they have no energy to move forward. Without the truth it is hard to make any progress, so it is really difficult for those who do not seek the truth when they are faced with an issue. Has this fellowship helped you understand? It was only after the betrayal of the archangel that God had the management plan to save mankind. When did the archangel begin its betrayal? There were definitely some things which revealed its betrayal, there was a process to the betrayal by the archangel, it certainly can’t be as simple as the text makes it out to be. It’s like Judas’ betrayal of Jesus—there was a process. He didn’t just betray Jesus shortly after following Him. Judas didn’t love the truth, he coveted money, and was always stealing. God gave him to Satan, Satan gave him ideas, and then he began to betray Jesus. Judas became depraved step by step and in some specific circumstances, when the time came, he betrayed Jesus. There is a regular pattern to people’s depravity, and it is not as simple as people imagine it to be. At the moment, people can only understand the things in God’s management plan to this extent, but they will be able to comprehend its significance more deeply when they grow in stature.

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