Words on Performing a Duty (Excerpt 32)

Many people perform their duties in a perfunctory way, never taking it seriously, as if they are working for nonbelievers. They do things in a crude, superficial, indifferent and negligent way, as if everything is a joke. Why is this? They are nonbelievers laboring; disbelievers performing duties. These people are exceedingly roguish; they are dissolute and unrestrained, and they are no different to nonbelievers. When they do things for themselves, they are certainly not perfunctory, so why then are they not in the least bit earnest or diligent when it comes to performing their duties? Whatever they do, whatever duty they perform, there is a quality of playfulness and mischief. These people are always perfunctory and have a quality of deceit about them. Do people like this have humanity? They certainly do not have humanity; neither do they have the least degree of conscience and reason. Like wild donkeys or wild horses, they require constant management and supervision. They deceive and trick God’s house. Does this mean they possess any sincere belief in Him? Are they expending themselves for Him? They certainly fall short and are not qualified to labor. If such people were employed by anyone else, they would be fired within a few days. In God’s house it is entirely accurate to say that they are laborers and hired workers, and they can only be eliminated. Many people are frequently perfunctory while performing their duties. When faced with being pruned, they still refuse to accept the truth, stubbornly argue their point, and even complain that God’s house is unfair to them, lacking mercy and tolerance. Is this not unreasonable? To put it more objectively, this is an arrogant disposition, and they lack the slightest conscience and reason. Those who truly believe in God must at least be able to accept the truth and do things without violating conscience and reason. People who are unable to accept or submit to being pruned, are too arrogant, self-righteous, and simply unreasonable. To call them beasts is not an exaggeration because they are utterly indifferent to everything they do. They do things exactly as they please and without any regard for the consequences; if problems arise, they do not care. People like this are not qualified to labor. Because they treat their duties in this way, others can’t stand to watch them and lack confidence in them. Is God then able to have confidence in them? By not even meeting this minimum standard, they are unqualified to labor and can only be eliminated. How arrogant can some people get? They always think they can do anything; regardless of what has been arranged for them, they say, “This is easy; it’s no big deal. I can handle it. I don’t need anyone to fellowship with me about the truth principles; I can keep an eye on myself.” By always having this kind of attitude, both leaders and workers can’t stand to watch these people and lack confidence in the things they do. Are these not arrogant and self-righteous people? If someone is overly arrogant and self-righteous, this is shameful behavior, and if there is no change, they will never perform their duties adequately. What attitude should one have toward performing their duties? At the very least, one should have an attitude of responsibility. No matter the difficulties and problems that befall one, one should seek the truth principles, understand the standards required by God’s house, and know what results one ought to achieve by performing their duties. If one can grasp these three things, they can easily perform their duties adequately. No matter what duties one performs, if they first understand the principles, understand the requirements of God’s house, and know what results they ought to achieve, don’t they have a path for performing their duties? Therefore, one’s attitude to performing duties is very important. Those who do not love the truth perform their duties in a perfunctory way—they do not have the correct attitude, they never seek the truth principles, and they don’t think about the requirements of God’s house and what results they ought to achieve. How can they perform their duties adequately? If you are someone who sincerely believes in God, when you are perfunctory, you must pray to Him and reflect on and know yourself; you must rebel against your corrupt dispositions, work hard on the truth principles, and strive to meet His required standards. By performing your duty in this way, you will gradually satisfy the requirements of God’s house. The truth is, it is not very hard to perform your duty well. It is just a matter of having conscience and reason, of being upright and diligent. There are many nonbelievers who work earnestly and become successful as a result. They do not know anything about the truth principles, so how do they do so well? It is because they’re deliberate and diligent, so they can work earnestly and be meticulous, and in this way, they get things done easily. None of the duties of God’s house are very difficult. As long as you put your whole heart into it and try your best, you can do a good job. If you are not upright, and are not diligent in anything you do, if you are always trying to save yourself trouble, if you are always perfunctory and muddle through everything, if you don’t perform your duty well, make a mess of things and bring harm to God’s house as a result, that means that you are doing evil, and it will become a transgression that is detested by God. During the key moments of spreading the gospel, if you don’t achieve good results in your duty and don’t play a positive role, or if you cause disruptions and disturbances, naturally you will be detested and eliminated by God and lose your chance at salvation. This will be an eternal regret of yours! God exalting you for doing your duty is your only chance at salvation. If you are irresponsible, treat it lightly and are perfunctory, that is the attitude with which you are treating the truth and God. If you are not the least bit sincere or submissive, how can you obtain God’s salvation? Time is so precious right now; every day and every second are crucial. If you do not seek the truth, if you do not focus on life entry, and if you are perfunctory and deceive God in your duty, that is truly unreasonable and dangerous! As soon as you are detested and eliminated by God, the Holy Spirit will no longer work in you, and there is no coming back from that. Sometimes, what a person does in a single minute can ruin their life. Sometimes, because of a single word that offends the disposition of God, a person is revealed and eliminated—is this not something that can happen in the matter of a few minutes? It is just like some people, who, despite performing their duties, consistently act irresponsibly, behave recklessly, and act without any restraint. They are essentially nonbelievers and disbelievers, and no matter what they do, they mess things up. Not only do such people bring loss to God’s house as a result, but they also forfeit their chance of salvation. In this way, they have their qualifications to perform their duties revoked. This means they have been revealed and eliminated, which is a sad affair. Some of them want to repent, but do you think they will get the chance? Once eliminated, they will have lost their chance. And once abandoned by God, it will be almost impossible for them to redeem themselves.

What kind of person does God save? You could say that they all have conscience and reason and can accept the truth, because only those with conscience and reason are able to accept and treasure the truth, and so long as they understand the truth, they can practice it. Those unconscientious and unreasonable people are ones that lack humanity; colloquially we say they lack virtue. What is the nature of lacking virtue? It is a nature without humanity, unworthy of being called human. As the saying goes, a person can lack anything except virtue—they are no longer human, but rather a beast in human form. Look at those demons and devil kings who only do things to resist God and harm His chosen people. Are they not lacking virtue? They are; they truly lack it. People who do too many things that lack virtue will undoubtedly face retribution. Those who lack virtue are without humanity; how can they perform their duties well? They are unworthy to perform duties because they are beasts. Those who lack virtue do not perform any duties well. Such people are unworthy of being called human. They are beasts, beasts in human form. Only those with conscience and reason can handle human affairs, be true to their word, trustworthy, and qualify as an “upright gentleman.” The term “upright gentleman” is not used in God’s house. Instead, God’s house requires people to be honest, for that is the truth. Only honest people are trustworthy, have conscience and reason, and are worthy to be called human. If one can accept the truth while performing their duties and can act according to principles, performing their duties adequately, then this person is truly honest and is indeed trustworthy. And those who can obtain God’s salvation are honest people. Being an honest person who is trustworthy is not about your abilities or appearance, and even less about your caliber, competence, or gifts. So long as you accept the truth, act responsibly, and you have conscience and reason and can submit to God, that is enough. No matter the capabilities a person possesses, the real concern is whether they lack virtue or not. Once someone is without virtue, they can no longer be considered human, but rather a beast. Those who are eliminated by God’s house are eliminated because they are without humanity and virtue. Therefore, people who believe in God must be able to accept the truth, be an honest person, at least possess conscience and reason, be able to perform their duties well, and be able to fulfill God’s commission. Only these people can obtain God’s salvation; they are the ones who sincerely believe in Him and the ones who sincerely expend themselves for Him. These are the people who God saves.

Do you frequently examine your behavior and intentions as you are doing things and performing your duties? (Rarely.) If you rarely examine yourself, can you recognize your corrupt dispositions? Can you understand your true state? If you truly reveal corrupt dispositions, what will be the consequences? You must be very clear about all these things. If one does not examine oneself, consistently doing things in a perfunctory way and without the slightest principle, it will result in one committing many evils and being revealed and eliminated. Is this not a serious consequence? Examining oneself is the way to resolve this problem. Tell Me, as human corruptions run deep, is it acceptable to reflect on oneself only rarely? Can one perform duties well without seeking the truth to resolve one’s corrupt dispositions? If corrupt dispositions are not resolved, it is easy to do things wrong, violate the principles, and even do evil. If you never examine yourself, then this is troublesome—you are no different than a nonbeliever. Are not many people eliminated for just this reason? When pursuing the truth, how must one practice in order to attain it? The important thing is to frequently examine oneself while performing one’s duty, reflecting on whether one has violated the principles and revealed corruption, and whether one has wrong intentions. If you reflect on yourself in accordance with God’s words and see how they apply to yourself, it will be easy to know yourself. If you reflect on yourself in this way, you will gradually resolve your corrupt dispositions and easily resolve your wicked ideas and harmful intentions and motivations. If you only examine after something has gone wrong, only examine after making a mistake, or only examine after committing an evil, then it’s a bit too late. The consequences have already occurred, and this constitutes a transgression. If you do evil too much and you only examine yourself once you have been eliminated, it will be too late and all you will be able to do is to weep and gnash your teeth. Those who truly believe in God can perform their duties—this is God’s exaltation and blessing, and it is an opportunity that you ought to cherish. Therefore, it is all the more important that you frequently reflect on yourself as you perform your duties. One must examine often, examining all things. One must examine one’s intentions and one’s state, looking at whether one lives before God, whether the intentions behind one’s actions are proper, and whether both the motives for, and the source of, one’s actions can withstand God’s inspection and have been subjected to God’s scrutiny. Sometimes, people feel that seeking the truth when they face difficulties in the performance of their duties is burdensome. They think, “This will do. It’s good enough.” This reflects a person’s attitude toward matters and a mentality toward their duties. This mentality is a kind of state. What is this state? Is it not approaching duties without a sense of responsibility, a kind of perfunctory attitude? (Yes.) Given the existence of such a serious problem, to not examine oneself is very dangerous. Some people are indifferent to this state. They think, “It’s normal to be a little perfunctory, that’s just how people are. What’s the problem?” Aren’t these muddled people? Isn’t it too dangerous for someone to see things this way? Look at those who are eliminated. Do they not always perform their duties in a perfunctory way? This is what happens when one is perfunctory. Sooner or later, people who are easily perfunctory will ruin themselves, and they refuse to change their ways until they are right at death’s door. Performing duties in a perfunctory way is a serious problem, and if you cannot reflect well on yourself and seek the truth to resolve problems, this is indeed extremely dangerous—you could be eliminated at any time. If such a serious problem exists and you still do not examine yourself and seek the truth to resolve it, you will harm and ruin yourself, and when the day comes when you are eliminated and you begin to weep and gnash your teeth, it will all be too late.

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