How You Should Walk the Final Stretch of the Path (Part One)
You are now on the final stretch of the path, and it is a critical part of the path. Perhaps you have endured much suffering, done a lot of work, traveled many roads, and listened to many sermons; perhaps it has not been easy to reach where you are now. If you cannot bear the suffering you currently face and if you continue as you did in the past, then you cannot be perfected. These words are not intended to scare you—they are fact. After Peter underwent a lot of God’s work, he gained insight into some things, and also much discernment. He came to understand many things regarding the principle of service, and later he was able to fully devote himself to what Jesus entrusted him with. The great refinement that he received was mostly because, for the things that he had himself done, he felt that he owed God so much, and that he would never be able to repay Him. Peter also recognized that man is very corrupt, which caused him to feel guilty in his conscience. Jesus had said many things to Peter, but at the time when these things were said, he was only capable of a small amount of understanding, and sometimes he still harbored some resistance and rebelliousness. After Jesus was nailed to the cross, he finally experienced something of an awakening, and within him he felt strong pangs of reproach toward himself. In the end, it reached a point where he felt it unacceptable to have any ideas that were incorrect. He knew his own state very well, and he also knew the Lord’s holiness well. As a result, a heart of love for the Lord grew in him even more, and he became more focused on his own life. Because of this he suffered great hardships, and although at times it was as if he had a serious illness and even seemed as if he were dead, after he had been refined in this way many times, he gained more understanding of himself, and developed genuine love for the Lord. It could be said that his entire life was spent in refinement, and even more than that, in chastisement. His experience was different from any other person’s, and his love surpassed that of anyone who has not been perfected. The reason he was selected as a model was because he experienced the most agony in his lifetime, and his experiences were most successful. If you really are able to walk the final stretch of the path just like Peter did, then there is not a single creature that can take away your blessings.
Peter was a man of conscience, but even with a humanity such as he had, he inevitably had many oppositional and rebellious ideas during the time when he first began to follow Jesus. But while he was following Jesus, he did not take these things seriously, believing that this was just the way that people should be. So, at first he did not feel any reproach and nor was he dealt with. Jesus did not treat Peter’s reactions seriously, nor did He pay them any mind, but just continued with the work that He was supposed to do. He never nitpicked with Peter and the others. You might say: “Could it be that Jesus did not know about these ideas they had?” Not at all! It was because He really understood Peter—indeed, it could be said that He had a great understanding of him—that Jesus did not take any measures against him. He hated mankind but also took pity on them. Are there not many people among you now who are resistant just like Paul was, and who have many notions just like Peter had toward the Lord Jesus at that time? I tell you, it would be best if you did not believe too much in your third sense, your sense of perception, which is unreliable and was utterly ruined by Satan’s corruption long ago. Do you think that your perception is perfect and flawless? Paul resisted the Lord Jesus many times, but Jesus had no reaction. Could it be that Jesus was able to cure the sick and cast out demons, yet was unable to expel the “demon” in Paul? Why is it that it was only after Jesus was resurrected and had ascended to heaven, while Paul continued to wantonly arrest Jesus’ disciples, that Jesus finally appeared to him on the road to Damascus and struck him down? Could it be that the Lord Jesus reacted too slowly? Or was it because He did not have any authority while He was in the flesh? Do you think that when you are secretly destructive and resistant behind My back, I do not know? Do you think that the scraps of enlightenment that you derive from the Holy Spirit can be used to resist Me? When Peter was immature, he harbored many ideas regarding Jesus, so why was he not subjected to blame? Right now, many people are doing things without blame, and even when they are clearly told that what they are doing is not right, they still do not listen. Is it not entirely because of man’s rebelliousness? I have said so much now, but you are still lacking even a shred of perception of conscience, so how will you be able to walk the final stretch of the path, to keep walking until the path ends? Do you not feel that this is a question of monumental proportions?
After people have been conquered, they are able to obey God’s orchestration; they have both their faith and their will by which they love God, and they rely on these to follow Him. So how can the final stretch of the path be walked? In your days of experiencing tribulation, you must endure all hardships, and you must have the will to suffer; only in this way can you take this stretch of the path well. Do you think it so easy to take this stretch of the path? You should know what function you should fulfill; you must raise your caliber and equip yourselves with adequate truth. This is not the work of one or two days, and it is not as simple as you think! Walking the final stretch of the path depends on what kind of faith and will you really have. Perhaps you cannot see the Holy Spirit working in you, or perhaps you are not able to discover the work of the Holy Spirit in the church, so you are pessimistic and disappointed and full of despair for the road ahead. In particular, the great warriors of the past have all fallen—is all of this not a blow to you? How should you see these things? Do you have faith, or do you not? Do you fully understand today’s work, or do you not? These things can determine whether you are able to successfully walk the final stretch of the path.
Why is it said that you are now on the final stretch of the path? It is because you have understood everything that you should understand, and because I have told you everything that people should achieve. I have also told you about everything that you have been entrusted with. So, what you are walking now is the last part of the path along which I lead people. I only require that you attain the ability to live independently; you will always and at all times have a road to take, you will increase your caliber as before, read God’s words normally, and lead a normal human life. I am now leading you to live this way, but in the future when I do not lead you, will you still be able to? Will you be able to keep going? This was Peter’s experience: When Jesus was leading him, he had no understanding; he was always carefree like a child, and he was not serious about the things that he did. It was only after Jesus departed that he began his normal human life. His meaningful life only began after Jesus departed. Even though he did possess some of the sense of normal humanity and some of the things that a normal person should possess, nonetheless his true experience and pursuit did not have a new beginning until Jesus departed. What is your current situation? I am now leading you this way, and you think this is wonderful. There are no environments and trials that befall you, yet in this way there is no way to see what kind of stature you actually have, nor is there any way to see whether you truly are someone who pursues the truth. You say with your mouth that you understand your own essence, but these are empty words. Only in the future, when the facts come upon you, will your understanding be verified. Now, you have this kind of understanding: “I understand that my own flesh is very corrupt, and the essence of people’s flesh is to rebel against and resist God. Being able to receive God’s judgment and chastisement is the way that He raises people up. I have understood that now, and I am willing to repay God’s love.” But this is easy to say. Later when tribulation, trials, and suffering come upon you, it will not be easy to undergo these things. You follow this way every day, but you are still unable to continue your experience. It would be even worse if I were to let go of you and no longer pay any mind to you; most people would fall down and turn into a pillar of salt, a mark of shame. Such eventualities are very possible. Are you not worried or anxious about this? Peter underwent that kind of environment and experienced that kind of suffering, but he still stood firm. If you were subject to that environment, would you be able to stand firm? The things that Jesus said and the work that He did while He was on earth gave Peter a foundation, and it was from this foundation that he walked his later path. Can you reach that level? The paths you have walked and the truths you have understood—can they become your foundation upon which you can stand firm in the future? Can these things become your vision for standing firm later? I will tell you the truth—one could say that what people currently understand are all doctrines. This is because they do not have experience of all the things that they understand. That you have been able to continue until now is entirely because you have been led by new light. It is not because your stature has reached a certain level, but rather because My words have led you to the present day; it is not because you have great faith, but rather it is because of the wisdom of My words, which rendered you unable to do anything but follow all the way until today. If I were to not speak now, to not utter My voice, you would be unable to go on and would immediately stop moving forward. Is this not your actual stature? You have no idea from which aspects to enter in and in which aspects to make up for what you lack. You do not understand how to live out a meaningful human life, how to repay God’s love, or how to bear witness in a way that is powerful and resounding. You are totally incapable of achieving these things. You are both lazy and stupid! All you can do is lean on something else, and what you lean on is new light and the One who is in front, leading you. That you have been able to persist until today is because you have been entirely reliant upon new light and the most recent utterances. You are nothing like Peter, who was adept at pursuing the true way, or like Job, who was able to devotedly worship Jehovah and believe that Jehovah was God no matter how Jehovah tested him, and whether or not He blessed him. Are you able to do that? How have you been conquered? One aspect is judgment, chastisement, and cursing, and another aspect is mysteries that conquer you. You are all like donkeys. If what I speak of is not lofty enough for you, if there are no mysteries, then you cannot be conquered. If it were a person preaching and they always preached about the same things for a period of time, all of you would leave and scatter within two years; you would not be able to go on. You do not know how to go deeper, nor do you understand how to pursue the truth or the way of life. All you understand is receiving something that seems novel to you, such as hearing about mysteries or visions, or how God used to work, or Peter’s experiences, or the background to Jesus’ crucifixion…. You are only willing to hear about these things, and the more you listen the more you are energized. You are just listening to all of this to dispel your sorrow and boredom. Your lives are sustained entirely by these novel things. Do you think that you have reached where you are today by your own faith? Is this not the paltry, pitiful bit of stature that you possess? Where is your integrity? Where is your humanity? Do you possess human life? How many of the elements do you possess for being perfected? Is what I am saying not fact? I speak and work in this way, but still you hardly pay any mind. While you follow, you also watch. You always maintain an appearance of indifference, and you are always led by the nose. This is how all of you have proceeded; what has led you to where you are today has exclusively been chastisement, refinement, and chastening. If only some sermons about life entry were preached, would not all of you have slipped away long ago? Each of you is more snobbish than the last, but in reality your bellies are full of nothing but foul water! You have only been able to persist until now because you have come to understand a few mysteries, some things that humans have not understood before. You have no reason to not follow, so you have just about been able to steel yourselves and follow the crowd. This is just the outcome that has been achieved through My words, and it is certainly not a feat that you yourselves have accomplished. You have nothing to brag about. So, in this stage of work you have been led to the present day primarily through words. Otherwise, who among you would be capable of obeying? Who would be able to persist until today? From early on you wanted to leave at the first possible moment, but you did not dare to; you lacked the courage. Until today, you have been following half-heartedly.