Only by Resolving One's Notions Can One Embark on the Right Track of Belief in God (3) Part Four

There are four conditions for accepting God’s chastisement and judgment: adequate performance of duty, having a mentality of submission, being basically honest, and having a repentant heart. Remember these four conditions and compare yourselves against them when you encounter situations. If a situation involves submission, then practice submission. God’s word requires people to have a submissive attitude; if you compare yourself to God’s words and find a big disparity, what should you do? Do as God says, follow God’s words without analyzing or arguing. If you try to argue, God will be disgusted with you. What will you do if God is disgusted with you? There’s one remedial measure, which is to immediately reverse course. Don’t hurt God’s heart over a trivial matter and then continue to hurt God’s heart and ignore Him. Humans are nothing; if you ignore God, He will not want you anymore. What do you do if God ignores you and does not want you? You say, “I’ll reverse course. Don’t abandon me, God, I can’t make it without You.” But just saying this is useless. God doesn’t need your sweet talk; He’ll look at your attitude, your practice, the path you’ll walk afterward, and your performance. Don’t think God is an ordinary person, whom you can move with a few sweet words; God isn’t like that, He looks at your attitude. Once you’ve reversed course, God sees that you’ve gone from being intransigent to submissive, and can accept the truth, no longer contending with God. Your intransigence has undergone a change, you know who you are, and you recognize your God; closely following this, God will start to carry out some work on you. Some people say: “I haven’t felt that God intends to do anything.” Don’t rely on your feelings. Are your feelings accurate? God has done so much work on you—have you felt any of it? Did you feel it when God was heartbroken? You didn’t know anything—perhaps you were even feeling happy somewhere else. So, don’t interpret God’s feelings based on your own feelings, and don’t measure God’s feelings by your own feelings; it’s useless. If God ignores you, and you feel nothing, and don’t receive enlightenment or acknowledgment, what should you do? Remember one thing: You must continue to fulfill the responsibilities and duties a created being should fulfill, and you must still speak truthfully as you should. Don’t revert back to your previous lies just because God ignores you or doesn’t want you anymore, speaking now as you spoke back then; if you do this, you’re completely done for. This is contending with and opposing God. You need to hold fast to your duty, and submit as you should. What’s the benefit in this? When God sees you’ve reversed course, His heart will soften, and His wrath and anger toward you will gradually withdraw. Isn’t the withdrawal of God’s wrath a good sign for you? It means your turning point has arrived. When you stop living based on feelings, stop trying to observe God’s expressions, and stop making extravagant demands of God to make His position known, but instead live according to the words spoken by God, the duties and the principles of practice God has entrusted to you, and according to the path God has told you to practice and walk; if you live according to all of these, and regardless of how God treats you or whether He pays attention to you, you continue to do as you should—then God will approve of you. Why will He approve of you? Because no matter what God does to you, whether or not He pays attention to you, whether or not He grants you grace, blessings, illumination, enlightenment, care, or protection, and no matter how much of this you feel, you can still follow Him to the end. You have held fast to the position that a created being should hold without any change; you’ve taken God’s words as the goal and direction of your life, and taken God’s words as the truth and as the highest words of wisdom in your life. What is the essence of such behavior? It’s recognizing in your heart that the Creator is your life, that He is your God. In this way, God is reassured, and you become a normal person living in the presence of God; one such as this possesses the basic conditions for a change in disposition. On this basis, can the understanding and changes achieved by people be considered a change in disposition? They still fall short. Therefore, you must possess an acknowledgment of the identity of the Creator, and also have a responsible attitude toward your own duty. Additionally, you need to have an attitude that can accept and submit to the truth. After possessing these qualities, God will then begin the work of judgment and chastisement on you. Being saved starts from this point. Some people say: “If we possess these qualities, does it mean our disposition has already changed? Having changed so much, what else is there for God to judge and chastise?” What does God judge and chastise? It is people’s nature essence, which is their corrupt disposition. If one possesses these four conditions and is able to satisfy them, which aspect of their corrupt disposition has thoroughly changed? None of them. There has merely been a slight behavioral change, but it’s not enough. There has not been a fundamental change. That is to say, before God begins His work of judgment and chastisement on you, your self-knowledge will always be superficial and surface-level. It will not match your corrupt essence; it is far from it, the gap is quite significant. Therefore, before God starts His work of judgment and chastisement, no matter how good, guileless, rule-abiding you think you are, or how submissive an attitude you think you have, you must know one thing: Your disposition has not yet formally begun to change. Your ways of practice and those methods of yours only indicate behavioral change, and constitute the basic humanity that a person who will be saved by God ought to possess. Honesty, submission, the ability to reverse course, loyalty—these are things that should exist within one’s humanity. Of course, this also includes conscience and reason; you must possess these qualities before God carries out His work of judgment and chastisement. Once someone has all these four conditions—adequate performance of duty, a submissive mentality, being basically honest, and a repentant heart—God will commence His work of judgment and chastisement on that person.

Now, you should have some concept in your mind about how God specifically carries out the work of judgment and chastisement on people. For example, concerning wickedness, people often test God, inexplicably want to scrutinize Him, and harbor suspicions, doubts, and questions about God’s words. They speculate about what God’s attitude toward people truly is, always wanting to know this. Is this not wicked? Do people currently know which of their states or behaviors display this kind of disposition? People are not clear. During the period of judging and chastising you, God will make you open up and lay bare yourself and your various states so that you gain clarity about them in your heart. Of course, when laying yourself bare, you may not feel too ashamed; at the very least, it will let you know why God is judging and chastising you. You will see that God’s words of judgment and His exposure are factual, convincing you completely and making you see they are accurate without exception. Then, it will be clear to you that all these are things that exist within yourself; they are not just behaviors or momentary revelations, but your very disposition. Next, during the period when God is carrying out His work of judgment and chastisement, you will be revealed continuously and be pruned due to your corrupt disposition, causing you to suffer and endure refinement. For instance, being suspicious of God is an expression of wickedness. People are often suspicious of God but never realize that this is wicked; this issue must be resolved. When God judges and chastises you, if you are suspicious of God, He will let you know that this is wicked. You live within a wicked disposition, using that wicked disposition to treat the God you believe in, to compete against your God, and to cast suspicion on your God—and your heart will feel agony. You don’t want to do this, but you can’t help it. Since you have this corrupt disposition, God will arrange circumstances to refine you, making you unknowingly abandon your notions and imaginings, your logical thinking, and your thoughts and ideas. At that point, you will suffer; this is true refinement, and it is due to this corrupt disposition that you are refined. How does refinement come about? If you think it is not a corrupt disposition, believe you don’t have such manifestations or states, and are not that kind of person, and if you feel this aspect of a corrupt disposition does not reside within you, then when God judges you, will you be refined? (No.) When you admit that you’ve revealed a corrupt disposition, and you know that God has judged you, and you can match your corrupt disposition up to His judgment, but you still rationalize and still live within that corrupt disposition, unable to break free—this is how refinement comes about. You know that God dislikes and loathes your corrupt disposition, and you are far from meeting God’s requirements; you clearly know that you’re wrong and God is right, but you cannot put the truth into practice, nor can you follow God’s way—your pain arises at that moment. Do you now have such pain? (No.) Then at the very least, you haven’t endured refinement in terms of your corrupt disposition; you only experience some pain from being reproached and disciplined when you make mistakes or transgressions, but this is absolutely not refinement. Suppose you can enter into such a life, embark upon such a path, and you say: “I am no longer suffering affections or status, but am truly enduring refinement. I have realized that I really am incompatible with God, my corrupt disposition is deeply rooted, and I can’t shed it. Let God refine and reveal me.” When you live within such a state, you are on the path to being saved. Saying this now, you may all yearn for and look forward to the arrival of that day, but I don’t know how many of you can actually be blessed enough to enjoy such treatment. This is a monumentally good thing and an enormous blessing. Being saved is not easy. If the Creator truly values you, chooses you, and lets you be His follower, that’s only the first step to being saved. If the Creator values you and says that you are qualified to receive His judgment and chastisement, that’s only the second step. If you can emerge from God’s judgment and chastisement, reach a state where your disposition changes, and become compatible with the Creator, taking up the path of fearing God and shunning evil, that is the final outcome. Now, who among you will be blessed enough to reach that day, who will be blessed to receive such salvation? Can it be discerned from one’s appearance? From one’s caliber? From one’s level of education? (It cannot.) Can it be determined by what duties one performs now? Or the family one was born into? None of these factors can reveal it. Some people say, “My family has believed in the Lord for three generations; I believed while still in my mother’s womb, so I will surely be saved.” This is foolish talk and incredibly ignorant; God does not look at such things. The Pharisees believed in God for generations, and what has become of them now? God does not even want them as His followers; they have been thoroughly eliminated; they are irrelevant to God’s work of salvation and have no part in it.

Whether or not one can accept God’s judgment and chastisement is directly related to the key issue of dispositional change. However, people tend to have many notions about God’s judgment and chastisement. It is essential to frequently fellowship the truth according to God’s words to resolve these issues. This is most necessary. Why does God judge and chastise people? To what extent has humankind become corrupt? What issues do judgment and chastisement aim to resolve, and what outcomes do they achieve? What are the standards that God demands of people? If these truths are not understood, it is not easy for one to accept judgment and chastisement; they will easily develop notions about God, as well as rebelliousness and resistance, and they may even blaspheme God and become hostile toward Him. How does God save people? Who can accept God’s judgment and chastisement? Who can embark on the path of pursuing the truth and being perfected? Who will be eliminated by God’s work of the last days? If these truths are clearly fellowshipped, won’t people’s notions about judgment and chastisement be resolved? At the least, they will be basically resolved—any issues that remain can only be resolved through one’s own experience; they will naturally be resolved when the truth is understood. Some people say: “Our sins have been forgiven, so why do we still need to experience judgment and chastisement?” Being forgiven of sins is God’s grace; it qualifies people to come before God. However, judgment and chastisement aim to thoroughly save people from sin and from Satan’s influence; the two are not contradictory. In the Age of Grace, God redeems people and forgives their sins; in the Age of Kingdom, God judges people and purifies their corrupt disposition. These are two stages of God’s work. Many ridiculous individuals in religion always have notions about judgment and chastisement; they rigidly cling to the phrase “justification through faith once sins are forgiven,” and absolutely refuse to accept God’s judgment and chastisement. Should one argue with such people? If you encounter such people, and if they can accept God’s words and the truth, you can fellowship the truth with them and read God’s words to them. If they absolutely refuse to accept the truth, there’s no need to bother with them; they are absolutely not the recipients of God’s salvation. God only saves those who can accept His words and the truth; for those who absolutely cannot accept God’s words and the truth, God will absolutely not save them. Those who can accept the truth can easily resolve their notions, no matter how many they may have; they just need to read more of God’s words and seek the truth more. People who can accept the truth are those with humanity and those with conscience and reason. Before people accept God’s judgment and chastisement, they will develop many notions and many incorrect thoughts, as well as some negative states. The most common negative state is, “I have expended myself for God and performed my duties; I should be protected and blessed by God in all things. Why have calamities befallen me?” This is the most common state. There is also another kind of state: Upon seeing others living in good conditions and enjoying themselves, while finding oneself living in difficulty and poverty, they complain about God being unrighteous. It could even be that they see others achieving better results in performing their duty, and they become envious and negative. They are also negative if others’ families are harmonious and united, if others have a higher caliber than them, if performing their duty is tiring, or if something does not go as they wish. In short, under any circumstances that do not align with their notions and imaginings, they become negative. If this person has some caliber and can accept the truth, they should be helped. As long as they understand the truth, the issue of their negativity can be easily resolved. If they do not seek the truth and remain negative, always harboring notions about God, then God will set them aside and pay them no mind, for the Holy Spirit does not do futile work. Such people are too self-willed, do not accept the truth, always have notions about God, and always have their own demands; this is highly lacking in sense and makes them somewhat impervious to reason. They can understand the truth but do not accept it. Is this not a bit like knowingly committing offenses? Therefore, God pays them no mind. Some people say: “I am often negative, and God ignores me. This means God doesn’t love me!” Such a statement is absurd. Do you know whom God loves? Do you know how God’s love is manifested? Do you know whom God does not love and whom God disciplines? God’s love has principles; it’s not as humans imagine, constantly enduring people and showing mercy and grace to them, saving everyone no matter who they are, forgiving everyone regardless of the sins they commit, and ultimately bringing everyone into the kingdom of God without exception. Are these not just people’s notions and imaginings? If it were so, there would be no need for God to perform the work of judgment. There are principles to how God behaves toward people who are often negative. When people are constantly negative, there is a problem here. God has said so much, expressed so many truths, and if a person truly believes in God, then after reading God’s words and understanding the truth, the negative things in them will grow ever fewer. If people are always negative, it is certain that they do not accept the truth at all, and so as soon as they encounter something at odds with their own notions, they will become negative. Why do they not seek the truth in God’s words? Why do they not accept the truth? It is surely because they have notions and misunderstandings about God, and furthermore never seek the truth. So will God still pay them any attention when they approach the truth in this way? Are such people not impervious to reason? What is God’s attitude toward those who are impervious to reason? He casts them aside and ignores them. Believe in whatever manner you wish; whether or not you believe is up to you; if you truly believe and pursue the truth, then you shall gain the truth; if you do not pursue the truth, then you shall not obtain it. God treats every person fairly. If you do not have an attitude of acceptance of the truth, if you do not have an attitude of submission, if you do not strive to meet God’s requirements, then you may believe however you wish; also, if you would rather leave, you may do so at once. If you do not wish to do your duty, the house of God will not force you to; you can go wherever you like. God does not urge such people to stay. That is His attitude. You are clearly a created being, yet you never want to be a created being. You always want to be the archangel, unwilling to submit to God, and you always desire to be on equal footing with God. This is brazenly resisting God; this is something that offends God’s disposition. You are obviously just an ordinary person, yet you always wish for special treatment, to have status and to be someone, wanting to be better than others in every way, receive great blessings, and surpass everyone. This shows a lack of reason. How does God view people who lack reason? How does God appraise them? Such people are impervious to reason. Some say: “If You say I’m impervious to reason, then I won’t labor anymore!” Who asked you to labor? If you are unwilling to do it, God won’t force you; hurry up and leave—God’s house won’t keep you. Even if you are willing to labor, God’s house has requirements. If your laboring is substandard and your performance of duty brings too much trouble to God’s house, doing more harm than good, God’s house will certainly eliminate you; even if you wish to labor, God’s house will not want you. If people are willing to labor, can accept the truth, and accept being pruned, then they are qualified to stay in God’s house. If they can pursue the truth, accept God’s judgment and chastisement, and are able to be saved and perfected, this is an immense blessing. Don’t think God is begging you and that He needs to judge and chastise you; God will not beg you. God saves and perfects people selectively, with a specific target in mind, and with principles; not all who believe in God can achieve being saved by Him—many are called, but few are chosen. You have to meet several of God’s standards—performing your duty adequately, having a submissive mentality, being basically honest, and possessing a repentant heart—and only then will God formally begin to judge and chastise, purify and perfect you. Some say: “Experiencing judgment and chastisement means suffering!” While it’s true that you will suffer, you have to be qualified for it. If you’re not qualified, you’re not even fit to suffer! Do you think God’s work and His perfecting of people are that simple? Those who refuse to accept judgment and chastisement, or who flee from judgment and chastisement, will ultimately be held accountable for their actions. Regardless of who someone is or what their attitude toward God is, if this attitude doesn’t align with what God requires, God will not intervene and will let them go their own way. God’s words are all right there; if you can do what He says, then do it. If you’re willing to do it, then do it. If you’re unwilling to do it or can’t do it, God won’t force you. Do you think God will beg you? Do you think God will discipline you? Rest assured, God absolutely will not do that. God will say: “If you do not like accepting the truth, if you are averse to God’s judgment and chastisement, then fine. You have already enjoyed some grace, so hurry back to the world, hurry up and leave; you won’t be forced. You are not qualified to enjoy the blessings of the kingdom of heaven, and you can’t obtain them even if you wish to.” What does it mean that God does not force people to accept His judgment and chastisement? It means that if people do not accept God’s judgment and chastisement, God neither disciplines, chastens, reminds, nor exhorts; there will be no enlightenment or illumination from the Holy Spirit. On the surface, these people appear to live quite comfortably. They aren’t disciplined for performing their duty perfunctorily, nor for their negative slackening at work, nor for their casually judging God. Even for misunderstanding God, complaining about God, and resisting God, they feel nothing in their hearts, until they commit a great evil like stealing or misusing offerings, yet they remain unaware. People who commit such great evils go for years without reflecting on themselves, without the slightest bit of repentance, without any premonition of what punishment or outcome will come their way. A normal person should have some kind of premonition, but they do not because God does absolutely nothing in them. God’s inaction is a kind of attitude. What does it represent? Can you imagine what God is thinking in His heart? He has utterly given up on such people. Why does God give up on such people? He despises such people; they are less significant than a feather, than an ant, they are not worth mentioning, and their outcome is thus decided. One day, when such a person says, “I want to be a created being of God, I accept You as my Lord, my God,” will God want them? God will not. Some say, “I regret it, I am turning back now.” Is it too late for them? It’s too late. Because their nature is that of a devil and will never change, God does not save such people. No matter how regretful they are, no matter how pathetically they cry, can they change? Can they truly repent? Absolutely not. So, whether or not you pursue the truth, as long as you genuinely believe in God, you should understand the administrative decrees of God’s house. You absolutely cannot have designs on God’s offerings; even having thoughts of stealing or using them is unacceptable. Once you take such actions, you will bring about great calamity, affecting your outcome. Once your outcome is determined, thinking back on what God has said or what God’s requirements are, and feeling regretful will be useless. Right now, God’s work has not yet concluded, but some people’s outcomes have already been determined. God has not proclaimed this matter, nor has He told anyone. These people still think they are doing well, still idling away their time. Even with death knocking at the door, they are completely unaware; they are a pack of muddled people and good-for-nothings.

I’ll proceed with another two cases. The previous case discussed a man, while the two main characters in these cases are two female leaders. Upon hearing this appellation, one can immediately understand that their statuses are not low; and yet, people of such status can commit great evils. One of these two women had dealings with a nonbeliever whose business was on the brink of collapse due to insufficient capital. Since this woman served as a leader in the church and had control over financial resources, the nonbeliever asked to borrow money from her. Without seeking from the Above, she unilaterally agreed to lend out hundreds of thousands of yuan. Money belonging to people can be loaned, but God’s money is an offering, and anyone who touches God’s offering must face punishment. She privately misappropriated the offerings, and the sum was not insignificant. Following the misappropriation, the church took action against her, requiring her to work to repay the money. This is how the church handled it; it was a human method. She was able to repay the money and outwardly appeared to have a decent attitude. Does this signify that she turned herself around? (No.) Her actions were quite audacious, much like a reckless blockhead, indicative of her disposition and her attitude toward God. Can such a person comprehend the truth purely? Can she be able to act with reason? She dared to tamper with God’s offerings, treating it as her own money. Without God’s instruction on how to allocate the funds, or stating that it should not be touched, she had neither principles nor boundaries in her heart. She believed that as a leader, she had the right to control this money, and dared to misappropriate it. After the misappropriation, how did God handle it? God didn’t even have to lift a finger; the church punished her. Just these hundreds of thousands of yuan determined her outcome: She was forever cut out by God and cast aside. Why would God do this? This represents God’s wrath; of course, it is also an aspect of God’s disposition. God tolerates no offense; if you offend God’s disposition, you have crossed a line. Is this stipulated in the administrative decrees? (Yes.) God’s chosen people are clear on this: Misappropriating offerings is an offense against God’s disposition. When this woman misappropriated the offering, did God intervene? God did not intervene, did not stop her, and did not say anything; nor did He restrain, reprimand, or warn her when she was taking action—the money was loaned out just like that. She was feeling quite pleased with herself before the issue was exposed, and the church handled her. She began to cry and snivel, and then immediately started working to repay the money. In fact, was it the money that God cared about? No; what He cared about was not the money, but the attitude the woman revealed to Him in this matter. This was what God cared about. Offending God’s disposition precisely because of money—is this not deserving of death? This is called getting what you deserve! If you’re a bit negative or weak, or sometimes have some adulterations while performing your duty, or sometimes stand in the position of a certain status and indulge in its benefits, God sees this as a revelation of a corrupt disposition. But when you tamper with God’s offerings without consulting Him, or misuse it without obtaining His permission, what kind of problem is that? This is stealing offerings. And what kind of disposition does this indicate? It’s the disposition of the archangel, the disposition of Satan. Is it not betrayal to steal God’s offerings? (It is.) What did Satan do that God deemed betrayal? (It sought to become God.) As for the woman we’re discussing, she wanted to control God’s offerings. Who did she think she was? (She thought she was God.) Exactly, she saw herself as God, and that was where she erred. That’s why we say she offended God’s disposition. Is the nature of this serious? (Yes.) Is our characterization accurate? (It is accurate.) She no longer has an outcome. She has no outcome—that’s how it appears now. In terms of God’s definition, in terms of what punishments she will experience afterward, these are matters for the future. This is the story of the first woman. She was truly audacious, capable of deceiving those above and below her, acting recklessly without considering the consequences, both foolish and insolent. Did she possess any modicum of submission or desire to seek? (No.) She wanted to control God’s offerings, God’s possessions, without anyone’s consent and without discussing or fellowshipping the matter with anyone else. She took it upon herself to handle this matter unilaterally, and these were the consequences. Some may say: “Does merely touching God’s offerings mean one is offending His disposition?” Is that so? No. The church has principles for allocating God’s offerings, and if you act according to those principles, God will not intervene. If you already have the principles and you don’t follow them, but rather insist on acting recklessly and doing things your own way, privately handling these matters yourself, then you are offending God’s disposition. That is the story of the first woman.

The story of the second female leader also pertains to offerings. Here’s how it goes: The church bought a house to serve as a place of worship, which required some renovation. Renovation involves designing and buying materials, which costs money. Since this is the work of God’s house, involving God’s management, the money spent is naturally from God’s house, and it is God’s offering. This money is used legitimately and rightfully according to the principles of God’s house. At the time, this woman was a leader and was responsible for this project. She chose a new believer, unfamiliar to anyone, to come and oversee the project. This man was like a nonbeliever. Later on, she colluded with this nonbeliever, buying many high-end items and wasting a lot of money. Isn’t this swindling money from God’s house? This is defrauding and squandering God’s offerings! This nonbeliever made quite a bit of money from it. Did this have anything to do with the woman? (Yes.) She facilitated this, allowing the nonbeliever to do such things. When someone discovered the issue and wanted to report it, she vehemently obstructed and threatened them. She betrayed the interests of God’s house, harming these interests and causing considerable loss of the offerings as well. During this period, did God reprimand her? (No.) She was unaware. How can we tell she was unaware? There are some facts that prove it; she could clearly see what the nonbeliever was planning to do from the beginning but did not stop him, instead indulging and tacitly approving of it, continuously pouring money in. As a result, the costs ballooned, and the final work was subpar. She saw this clearly but kept sinking in more money. Did God act at this time? God didn’t. What are people’s notions and imaginings about this matter? People think that God should be responsible for His own money and should have stopped her. This is a human notion, but God didn’t act this way. After the renovation was completed and upon investigation, God’s house discovered that much of the offerings were lost. What should be done with this woman? God did nothing; the church took care of her, and another woman began to repay the money. What was the nature of her actions? As a leader, she was not only irresponsible and failed to check the expenditures of offerings but also colluded with an outsider to deceive God’s house and embezzle God’s offerings. This case is even more severe than the previous one. So what is such a person’s outcome in the eyes of God? Destruction; whether she is punished or not is a matter for the future. Such a person may one day be placed by God in a dwelling of evil spirits and filthy demons, her physical body destroyed in this life, and her soul defiled and desecrated by filthy demons and evil spirits; as for the next life, that’s too far off to speak of. This is the outcome. Why does God handle such a person in this way? Because she offended God’s disposition. Having offended God’s disposition, could God still love her? No love remains, nor mercy, nor lovingkindness—only wrath. When her actions are mentioned, God hates and detests her. Why does He detest to this extent? It’s because she knowingly committed sins despite being aware of the true way. Not only is there no more sin offering for her, but she must also face the punishment of God’s wrath. No outcome, destination, or chance at salvation—she has none of these. This is what it means to offend God’s disposition; this is what happens when one offends God’s disposition.

Tell Me, is it easy to offend God’s disposition? In reality, there aren’t that many opportunities, nor that many situations where this can happen. The opportunities are few, the chances slim; yet why can people still manage to offend God’s disposition with such scarce opportunities and low probabilities? These two women each believed in God for more than twenty years, listened to many years’ worth of sermons, and long served as leaders and workers. Why could they make such serious mistakes? From the perspective of humanity, they lacked humanity, conscience, and rationality; from the perspective of their faith in God, they didn’t possess genuine faith, they didn’t have God in their hearts. How was this absence of God in their hearts manifested? In their actions, there was no sense of fear, no bottom line; they didn’t consider, “What will happen to me after I do this? Will there be repercussions? People may not know about it, but what will happen if God knows? I must take responsibility for this matter, as it concerns my outcome.” They didn’t think about these things—isn’t that troublesome? If they didn’t think about these things, did they have conscience or reason? (No.) Thus, they were capable of offending God’s disposition, capable of making such major mistakes. If one possesses normal human thinking, they will have this mentality; when someone asks to borrow money, they would consider: “Borrow money? This is God’s money. If I lend out God’s money just to win a moment’s esteem, what if they can’t pay it back? How will I make up for this money? Even if I can, what kind of behavior is it to lend out this money? Can God’s money be touched so casually? It can’t be touched casually; if I touch it, what would the nature of this action be?” They would consider these things, and wouldn’t lend the money out on an impulse just because someone asks. If they don’t consider it, or even if they do but haven’t considered the consequences, what does that say about their view of God? How do they believe? They fundamentally do not acknowledge the existence of God, which is terrifying! Since they don’t acknowledge God’s existence, they don’t acknowledge that God will determine their outcome, and don’t acknowledge that God will mete out retribution upon them; they are not afraid of this, they don’t believe in retribution. Generally, if someone has fifty to sixty percent belief, they would act cautiously and demonstrate restraint. If they have thirty percent belief, they might also be somewhat restrained, but once the opportunity presents itself they will still go through with it; or, if the opportunities are few or not mature, they will be able to restrain and limit themselves a bit. However, those who lack any component of belief would dare to do all sorts of bad things, acting recklessly without considering the consequences; this is akin to a beast. On the surface, they appear human, but what they do is not what humans should do; at the least, it can be said they are beasts, and more seriously, they might be filthy demons and evil spirits who come to disrupt and disturb God’s work, who specialize in sabotaging the work of God. Is God’s classification of such people accurate? (Yes.) It’s extremely accurate; there’s nothing wrong in what God does, everything God does is precise. Moreover, God’s actions, God’s determination of people’s outcomes are not based on a moment’s performance. These two women believed in God for twenty years and yet somehow ended up at this point, sealing their own outcomes in this manner. How did this come about? It’s not something that happened overnight. From the perspective of their pursuit in faith and the path they chose, they were not people who pursued the truth; that’s one aspect. The other is that they had no interest whatsoever in the truth. If they had had even a modicum of interest, their humanity would have undergone change. And what would such change in humanity have brought them? It would mean they would act with restraint and observe boundaries, have a standard for evaluation, and gauge things with the reason and thought processes of a normal human. If they saw that doing something was inappropriate, they would abstain. However, these two women never pursued the truth; they lacked even this basic boundary and way of thinking. They dared to do anything, and it was this very nature that led them to their ruin, even to their death. This is the reason why their journey of believing in God ended in such a way.

After hearing these two cases, what are your thoughts? Some people say: “I’ve gained a lot today. I’ve obtained the highest truth, which is don’t mess with God’s things; don’t even entertain the idea, don’t go tampering with them. If you tamper with them, nothing good will come of it.” Is this really the case? Is this the truth? (No.) What matters is not whether you tamper with God’s things, but what your attitude toward God is in your heart. If you fear God and feel a sense of dread toward Him, truly believe in His existence, and genuinely consider your own outcome, there are things you won’t do; you won’t even think about them. Therefore, you won’t be subjected to this kind of temptation; it will never come upon you. Is fright useful? Fright is useless. What did God do while these two women were doing these things? God let things take their course, placing these two devils—these two non-humans whose hearts were not frightened of God whatsoever—into Satan’s temptation, so that they could be completely revealed and destroyed. Isn’t this God’s attitude? This is the righteous disposition of God, and it is not to be taken lightly! People make use of human means for handling others and meting out retribution toward others, reciprocating evil with evil. But God doesn’t do that; God has His own bottom line, principles, and His own ways. When God metes out retribution upon someone, He makes it so that they feel nothing; they’re unaware, but in God’s eyes, the issue has already been resolved. Years later, the subsequent suffering will surface bit by bit. After God has stripped that person of His grace, blessings, enlightenment, illumination and all the treatment that God affords to a normal human, they are thoroughly dehumanized; in God’s eyes, they are no longer a created being but a beast, they are something else entirely. God says, “He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good.” Are these people good or evil? They are neither. In God’s eyes, in His records, these kinds of people have been removed; they are gone, they are non-human. What is the definition of non-human? (Brutes, beasts in human clothing.) Some may even envy them, saying, “They work and make money outside, living with nonbelievers; their lives are much more comfortable than suffering in the church, performing duty from dawn to dusk.” I tell you, their days of suffering are yet to come. If you envy them, you’re welcome to emulate them; God’s house imposes no restrictions. Suffering is not limited to physical pain from illness; if one’s internal suffering reaches a certain extent, it’s indescribable, such as blows to one’s psyche, especially when subjected to God’s punishment—it’s worse than death, it’s more agonizing; it’s a kind of mental anguish. These two women ended up in such a situation because they offended God’s disposition through their reckless actions. In people’s notions, it seems that no matter what mistakes people make or what they do, as long as they can come back before God to confess and repent, God can forgive them; this would prove that God’s love is vast, that He truly loves humankind. This is a human notion, and it shows that people’s understanding of God is filled with too many imaginings and too much human will. If God were delimited by human notions, then God’s actions would be without principles and God would be without any disposition; such a God does not exist. It is precisely because God truly exists, is living and vibrant, and is undeniably and concretely real, that He has different manifestations. These manifestations are apparent in His various deeds and attitudes toward people, and they stand as evidence of His genuine existence. Some say: “These people themselves are not aware when they are being handled, so how can we see God’s existence?” Just the cases I’ve mentioned allow people to see God’s attitude and disposition, and also let people see God’s principles in doing things and handling people. Isn’t this evidence of God’s real existence? (Yes.) If this God didn’t exist, if He were really just air, then whatever He does would be without principles or boundaries; it would be undetectable, untouchable, hollow, not implemented in people’s lives, and irrelevant to people’s lives, actions, and any of their manifestations. It would only be a theory, an argument, empty talk. Precisely because this God exists, the many things He does allow people to see His attitude.

The main part of the various notions and imaginings people have about God’s work has basically been covered in our fellowship. What is the main part focused on? It’s about the various notions, imaginings, and ideas people have concerning God’s judgment and chastisement, as well as their various notions and imaginings about what constitutes dispositional change. In addition, people also have numerous imaginings about the principles behind God’s work of judgment and chastisement and the standards God requires of people. For people, these concepts are generally muddled and unclear. What does this lack of clarity represent? It means that people still do not understand the truth, nor do they understand the truths involved in the work that God is doing upon them. Through the fellowship today, do you now basically have an outline definition of judgment and chastisement, as well as the standards God requires of people? (Yes.) With this understanding, what should you do next? First of all, you need to recognize that God has such standards. Are these standards flexible? Can they be higher or lower than they actually are? (No.) Why not? From the Age of Grace up to now, we can see from those whom God has perfected that these standards are strict and well-defined; God will never change them. He didn’t change them two thousand years ago, and He hasn’t changed them up to now. It’s just that now there will be more people who are perfected because God has spoken so much. Back then, He worked on a smaller scale and didn’t explicitly tell people more truths. Now, He has told people more truths and made them aware of more of His intentions, and God has expressed all of the standards He requires and the truths for people to know. At the same time, God’s Spirit is also working in concert among people in this way. These two aspects combined prove that during this period, God intends to perfect more people—it’s a group of people, not just one or two. Judging from this information, do most of you have hopes of being perfected? Some say they are not certain, but even if we are uncertain, let’s try; it’s better to fail than to beg for mercy now. What kind of behavior is it to beg for mercy at this moment? It is cowardly, worthless, incompetent, despicable behavior, it is disgracing God. You mustn’t be cowards! The conditions and standards for being perfected have been clearly and plainly told to people; what remains is how to practice and how to cooperate with God’s work. No matter how many times you fail during this period, as long as you do not offend God’s disposition, you should not get discouraged or give up; keep striving upward. Some say their caliber is poor. Doesn’t God know that their caliber is poor? Their admission of their poor caliber is already good in God’s eyes because corrupt humankind is arrogant and self-righteous, and very few admit that their caliber is poor. Acknowledging this is a good thing, a good expression. Some talk about their experiences, realizing that their humanity is poor and bad. Why do others not have this realization? Acknowledging your poor humanity, your bad humanity, indicates that you’ve understood God’s words and linked them to yourself; it shows that you have faith in God’s work of salvation, that you have the resolve to satisfy God—at the very least, you were able to admit this truthful statement. Who among the nonbelievers says they are bad now? Even when they are bad, they claim to be good; they claim their evil deeds are grand good deeds and virtuous behavior, blatantly distorting right and wrong. Therefore, no matter what setbacks you encounter, no matter what failures or stumbles, you must be able to see that hope lies ahead. Who is ahead? It is God! With God’s words guiding and leading, people can embark on the right path.

Today, three case studies were fellowshipped, clarifying people’s various notions and imaginings about God’s work. Did you all understand what was conveyed? (Yes.) Your ability to understand demonstrates that you possess the caliber and faculties to accept the truth—there is hope for you to understand and obtain the truth. Why can’t these truths be explained clearly in just one or two hours, or two or three hours? It’s because a lot of preliminary content must be laid out in order to talk about the details that follow. Without laying some groundwork beforehand, you won’t be able to keep up with the subsequent content. If I were to speak concisely without any preliminary content, it would be difficult for you to follow. So I talk about some examples, then discuss them from both positive and negative perspectives to help you understand and discern, know what exactly is going on with these matters, and how one should purely comprehend them. If you can achieve this, then My speaking has not been in vain. From the moment you begin to have some concept of these truths upon hearing them, to a point where you have a thorough understanding, where you realize from deep within your heart why God says these things, which part of your own corrupt disposition is involved in these truths spoken by God, and why God wants to tell you these things, a certain stage is required to reach this level of understanding. You need to link these truths with your own corrupt disposition, speech, behavior, thoughts, and ideas—that is, apply them to your actual situation—and, unconsciously, you will gradually come to understand and grasp these truths. If you don’t compare them to your own case, but take notes today, review and memorize them tomorrow, and then proclaim them to those who have never heard them, you might think you have obtained them, but you actually haven’t. From the day you can spout doctrines, these truths are no longer truths for you, and it becomes difficult for you to grasp the truth, as if the truth has completely disappeared. Once the truth turns into mere doctrine for you, it becomes difficult for it to produce effects on you. You have to turn the truth into your own reality, gradually implement the practical aspect of each truth on yourself by means of seeking and fellowship, and finally come to understand which states this truth includes, and what it encompasses, to understand the meanings behind God saying these words. This is the beginning of understanding the truth. What do you understand now? (Doctrines.) When people first come into contact with the truth, what they understand is a kind of doctrine. However, understanding doctrine is not simple; it also requires a certain caliber and ability to comprehend. It also requires you to have a quiet and focused heart, so you can listen to sermons with undivided attention. I have found that some people, when listening to sermons, think, “What You’re talking about is worthless, I’m not willing to listen. I want to listen to sermons, not hear about events.” They believe that it’s right and wrong that I’m talking about. Because they carry this viewpoint, they can’t take in what they hear; they get drowsy, can’t understand, and can’t keep up. Such people don’t possess the ability to comprehend the truth; their caliber is lacking. Some who call themselves spiritual, when they hear Me recounting stories, are unwilling to listen. They drink water or yawn, and are always fidgeting. They think, “The stories You’re telling are about external matters; it’s too shallow, I can’t take it in. You should talk more about the spiritual realm; that would suit my taste.” This is the exact attitude some people have. When they’ve acted as a leader for many years, they like to talk about lofty sermons, grand theories, and words of the third heaven; the more they talk, the more enthusiastic they get. But if we talk about matters in the church, practical experiences, or especially dissecting the dynamics of the human psyche, they always find it shallow and boring. What kind of disposition is this? Do these people have the truth reality? Can such people solve real problems in their work? Do you like such people? Fellowshipping the truth cannot be detached from reality. Can people who aren’t interested in the reality love the truth? I don’t think so; such people are averse to the truth, and that’s very dangerous.

November 8, 2018

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