14. The relationship between performing a duty and testifying for God
Words of Almighty God of the Last Days
What you have experienced and seen surpasses that of the saints and prophets from all ages, but are you able to provide testimony greater than the words of these saints and prophets of times past? What I now bestow upon you surpasses Moses and eclipses David, so likewise I ask that your testimony surpass Moses and that your words be greater than David. I give you a hundredfold—so I likewise ask you to repay Me in kind. You must know I am the One who bestows life unto mankind, and it is you who receive life from Me and must bear witness for Me. This is your duty which I send down upon you and which you ought to do for Me. I have bestowed all My glory unto you, I have bestowed unto you the life that the chosen people, the Israelites, never received. By rights, you ought to bear witness to Me and devote to Me your youth and lay down your life. Whomsoever I bestow My glory unto shall bear Me witness and give their life for Me. This has long been predestined by Me. It is your good fortune that I bestow My glory upon you, and your duty is to testify to My glory. If you were to believe in Me only to gain blessings, then My work would bear little significance, and you would not be fulfilling your duty. … What you have received is not merely My truth, My way, and My life, but a vision and revelation greater than that of John. You understand many more mysteries, and have also looked upon My true countenance; you have accepted more of My judgment and know more of My righteous disposition. And so, though you were born in the last days, your understanding is that of the former and the past, and you have also experienced the things of today, and this was all personally done by Me. What I ask of you is not excessive, for I have given you so much, and you have seen much in Me. Thus, I ask you to bear witness for Me to the saints of ages past, and this is My heart’s only desire.
—The Word, Vol. 1. The Appearance and Work of God. What Do You Know of Faith?
Regarding work, man believes that work is to run around for God, preach everywhere, and expend for His sake. Though this belief is correct, it is too one-sided; what God asks of man is not solely to run around for Him; beyond just this, this work is concerned with ministry and provision within the spirit. Many brothers and sisters, even after all these years of experience, have never thought about working for God, because work as conceived by man is incongruous with what God asks. Therefore, man has no interest whatsoever in the matter of work, and this is precisely the reason why the entry of man is also quite one-sided. All of you should begin your entry with working for God, so that you may better undergo every aspect of experience. This is what you should enter into. Work refers not to running around for God, but to whether the life of man and what man lives out are able to give God enjoyment. Work refers to people using their devotion to God and their knowledge of God to testify about God, and also to minister to man. This is man’s responsibility and this is what all men should understand. One could say that your entry is your work, and that you are seeking to enter during the course of working for God. Experiencing God’s work does not merely mean that you know how to eat and drink of His word; more importantly, you must know how to testify about God and be able to serve God and be able to minister to and provide for man. This is work, and it is also your entry; this is what every person should accomplish.
—The Word, Vol. 1. The Appearance and Work of God. Work and Entry (2)
You have experienced so much of God’s work, you have seen it with your own eyes and experienced it personally; when you have reached the very end, you must not be unable to perform the function incumbent upon you. What a pity that would be! In the future, when the gospel is spread, you should be able to speak of your own knowledge, testify to all that you have gained in your heart, and spare no effort. This is what a created being should attain. What is the actual significance of this stage of God’s work? What is its effect? And how much of it is carried out in man? What should people do? When you can speak clearly of all the work God incarnate has done since coming to earth, then your testimony will be complete. When you can speak clearly of these five things: the significance of His work; its contents; its essence; the disposition it represents; and its principles, then this will prove you are capable of bearing testimony to God, that you are truly possessed of knowledge. My requirements of you are not very high, and are attainable by all those who are in true pursuit. If you are resolved to be one of God’s witnesses, you must understand what God loathes and what God loves. You have experienced much of His work; through this work, you must come to know His disposition, understand His will and His requirements of mankind, and use this knowledge to testify about Him and perform your duty.
—The Word, Vol. 1. The Appearance and Work of God. Practice (7)
The first priority of every created being is to spread the gospel, to testify to and spread God’s work across the whole world and to the ends of the earth. This is the responsibility and obligation of everyone who accepts the gospel of God. It is something to which they are honor-bound. It may be the case that you are not currently fulfilling this duty, or that this duty is something far distant from you, or that you have never thought that this is a duty that you must perform. However, your heart must be clear on this: This duty is connected to you. It is not only a responsibility for others, it is your responsibility and your duty as well. Just because you are not currently assigned to perform this duty does not mean that this duty is not your concern, that it is not for you to perform this duty, or that God has not entrusted you to perform this duty. If your comprehension can rise to this level, does this not mean that the perspective on the duty of spreading the gospel that you hold in your heart is in accordance with the truth and with the will of God? When your understanding rises to this level, one day, after you all have finished all the work that you have at hand, God will issue a command to disperse you and distribute you everywhere, even to some places that you find the strangest, most unpleasant, and most difficult. What will you do then? (We will be honor-bound to accept.) That is what you say now, but when the day comes, tears may well fill your eyes. Now, you must prepare in this way: You must come to this awareness, “This is the age in which I was born. I am fortunate to have accepted God’s work of the last days and fortunate to have a share in the work of God’s management plan. Therefore, the value and significance of my life should be to dedicate my entire life’s energy to the expansion of God’s gospel work. I will not think of anything else.” Do you have this aspiration? (Yes.) You should have this aspiration and have made this preparation and plan. Only in this way can you be a true created being, a created being that is loved by God and adequate to Him.
—The Word, Vol. 3. The Discourses of Christ of the Last Days. Spreading the Gospel Is the Duty to Which All Believers Are Honor-Bound
You are all busy performing your duties now, training to preach and bear witness to the word of God, and to God’s work in the last days. Whether it’s making movies or singing hymns to bear witness for God, are the duties that you perform of value to corrupt mankind? (They are.) Where is their value? Their value lies in helping people to embark upon the right path after seeing these words and truths expressed by God, and in helping people to understand that they are part of the creation, and that they should come before the Creator. Lots of people are unable to see through to or comprehend many of the things that they face. They feel helpless and that life is meaningless and empty, and they have no spiritual sustenance. What is the source of all this? The answer to all of this lies in the word of God. Over the years that you have believed in God, you have all read much of His word and you have understood a certain number of truths, so the duty that you ought to fulfill is to use the word of God to enlighten them and solve their erroneous thoughts and views, enabling them to understand the truth within the word of God and to see through to the darkness and evil of the world, as well as helping them to seek the true way, find the Creator, hear God’s voice, and read His words. This will allow them to apprehend some truths and see the work of salvation that God is doing, so that they may turn to Him and accept His work. That is exactly the duty that you ought to perform. You all know in your hearts how many truths you have understood and how many problems you have solved since coming to believe in God. Nowadays, there are many people, both religious people and unbelievers, who are seeking the true way and looking for the Savior. They do not know the answers to specific questions such as why people live and die, what the value and meaning of a person’s life is, or where people come from and where they are going. They are waiting for you to preach the gospel and bear witness for God, and to lead them before the Creator—that is why the duties you’re performing now are very meaningful! In one respect, you yourself are experiencing God’s work, and in another, you are also testifying to others about God’s work. The more you experience this, the more truths you will need to understand and be equipped with, and the more work you will need to do. This is an excellent opportunity for God to perfect people. You should pray to God and look to God no matter what difficulties you encounter when performing your duties; when everyone reads the word of God and seeks the truth together more, there is no problem that cannot be solved. There are many truths in the word of God that you need to understand, so you should ponder and fellowship on them often, then you will have the enlightenment and illumination of the Holy Spirit. There is no problem that cannot be solved by relying on God, in this you must have faith.
After God created this mankind, He formed a management plan. In the past few thousand years, this mankind did not shoulder any major responsibility or commission to bear witness for the Creator, and the work that God did among mankind was relatively hidden and simple. However, in the last days, things are no longer the same. The Creator has begun to utter words. He has expressed so many truths, and revealed the mysteries of His management plan, but corrupt mankind is dull-witted and numb: People see but they don’t know, and they hear but they don’t understand, as though their hearts have waxed gross. Therefore, you all bear a great responsibility! What is so great about it? In addition to spreading these words and truths expressed by God, it is more important still that you bear witness for the Creator to each and every created human being, and that you also bring all those created human beings who have heard the gospel of God before the Creator, so that they may comprehend the significance of God’s creation of mankind, and understand that, as created human beings, they should return before the Creator, listen to His utterances, and accept all the truths that He has expressed. This is how all human beings can be made to submit to the Creator’s sovereignty and arrangements. Is it possible to achieve these results by reading just a few passages from the word of God? Or by learning to sing just a few hymns? Or by doing only one aspect of the work? No. Therefore, if you are to perform your duties well, you must bear witness for the Creator’s actions and His sovereignty and arrangements using various methods and different forms. In this way, you will be able to bring more people before the Creator and help them to accept and submit to His sovereignty and arrangements. Isn’t this a great responsibility? (It is.) What attitude should you adopt toward your duties, then? Is it alright to be muddleheaded? Is it alright to turn a blind eye to things? Is it alright to do things halfheartedly and perfunctorily? To procrastinate and go about things casually? (No.) So what should you do? (Commit wholeheartedly.) You should commit yourselves wholeheartedly, using whatever bit of energy, experience, and insight you have. Unbelievers don’t understand what the most meaningful thing a person can do in their life is, but you do understand something about this, don’t you? (Yes.) Accepting what God has entrusted you with and fulfilling your own mission—these are the most important things. The duties you’re performing now are valuable! You may not see the effects right now, and you may not be getting great results from them right now, but it will not be long until they bear fruit. In the long run, if this work is done well, money will not suffice to measure the contribution it makes to mankind. Such true testimonies are more precious and valuable than anything else, and they will last for all eternity. These are the good deeds of every person who follows God, and they are something worth commemorating. Everything in man’s life is empty and unworthy of commemoration, apart from believing in God, pursuing the truth, and fulfilling their duty as a created being. Even if you have accomplished the most earth-shaking of feats; even if you have been to the Moon and back; even if you have made scientific advances that have been of some benefit or help to mankind, it is futile and all of it will pass away. What is the only thing that will not pass away? (The word of God.) Only the word of God, testimonies to God, all of the testimonies and works that bear witness for the Creator, and people’s good deeds will not pass away. These things will last forever, and they are so valuable. So, cast off all your restrictions, carry out this great endeavor, and don’t let yourselves be constrained by any people, events, and things; sincerely expend yourselves for God, and pour all your energy and effort into performing your duties. This is the thing that God blesses most of all, and it is worth any amount of suffering!
—The Word, Vol. 3. The Discourses of Christ of the Last Days. Only in Performing the Duty of a Created Being Well Is There Value in Living
If you acknowledge that you are a created being, you must prepare yourself to suffer and pay a price for the sake of fulfilling your responsibility to spread the gospel and for the sake of doing your duty properly. The price might be suffering some physical ailment or hardship, or suffering the persecutions of the great red dragon or the misunderstandings of worldly people, as well as the tribulations one undergoes when spreading the gospel: being sold out, being beaten and scolded, being condemned—even being mobbed and put in mortal danger. It is possible, in the course of spreading the gospel, that you will die before God’s work is completed, and that you will not live to see the day of God’s glory. You must be prepared for this. This is not meant to frighten you; it is a fact. Now that I have made this clear, and you have understood it, if you still have this aspiration and are sure it will not change, and you stay faithful unto death, this proves you possess a certain stature. Do not assume that spreading the gospel in these overseas nations with religious freedoms and human rights will be free from danger and that everything you do will go smoothly, that it will all have God’s blessings and be in company with His great power and authority. This is the stuff of human notions and imaginings. The Pharisees also believed in God, yet they took the incarnate God and crucified Him upon the cross. So what bad things is the current religious world capable of doing to the incarnate God? They have done so many bad things—judging God, condemning God, blaspheming God—there is no bad thing of which they are not capable. Do not forget that those who took the Lord Jesus and crucified Him upon the cross were believers. Only they had the opportunity to do this sort of thing. The unbelievers did not care about those things. It was these believers who colluded with the government to take the Lord Jesus and crucify Him upon the cross. Moreover, how did those disciples of the Lord Jesus die? Among the disciples, there were those who were stoned, dragged behind a horse, crucified upside down, dismembered by five horses—every sort of death befell them. What was the reason for their deaths? Were they lawfully executed for their crimes? No. They were condemned, beaten, scolded, and put to death because they spread the Lord’s gospel and were rejected by the people of the world—that is how they were martyred. Let us not speak of the final end of those martyrs, or of God’s definition of their conduct, but ask this: When they arrived at the end, did the ways that they met the end of their lives accord with human notions? (No, it did not.) From the perspective of human notions, they paid such a great price to spread the work of God, but were ultimately killed by Satan. This does not accord with human notions, but this is precisely what happened to them. It is what God allowed. What truth can be sought in this? Was God allowing them to die this way His curse and condemnation, or was it His plan and blessing? It was neither. What was it? People now reflect on their deaths with much heartache, but that was how things were. Those who believed in God died that way, how is this to be explained? When we mention this topic, you put yourselves in their position, so are your hearts sad, and do you feel a hidden pain? You think, “These people did their duty to spread God’s gospel and should be considered good people, so how could they come to such an end and such an outcome?” Actually, this was how their bodies died and passed away; this was their means of departure from the human world, yet that did not mean their outcome was the same. No matter what the means of their death and departure was nor how it happened, it was not how God defined the final outcomes of those lives, of those created beings. This is something you must see clearly. On the contrary, they used precisely those means to condemn this world and to testify to God’s deeds. These created beings used their most precious lives—they used the last moment of their lives to testify to God’s deeds, to testify to God’s great power, and to declare to Satan and the world that God’s deeds are right, that the Lord Jesus is God, that He is the Lord, and God’s incarnate flesh. Even down to the final moment of their lives, they never denied the name of the Lord Jesus. Was this not a form of judgment upon this world? They used their lives to proclaim to the world, to confirm to human beings that the Lord Jesus is the Lord, that the Lord Jesus is Christ, that He is God’s incarnate flesh, that the work of redemption He did for all humanity allows humanity to live on—this fact is forever unchanging. Those who were martyred for spreading the gospel of the Lord Jesus, to what extent did they perform their duty? Was it to the ultimate extent? How was the ultimate extent manifested? (They offered their lives.) That’s right, they paid the price with their lives. Family, wealth, and the material things of this life are all external things; the only thing that is related to the self is life. To every living person, life is the thing most worthy of being treasured, the most precious thing and, as it happens, these people were able to offer their most precious possession—life—as confirmation of and testimony to God’s love for mankind. Until the day they died, they did not deny God’s name, nor did they deny God’s work, and they used their last moments of life to testify to the existence of this fact—is this not the highest form of testimony? This is the best way of doing one’s duty; this is what it is to fulfill one’s responsibility. When Satan threatened and terrorized them, and, in the end, even when it made them pay the price of their lives, they did not abandon their responsibility. This is what it is to fulfill one’s duty to the utmost extent. What do I mean by this? Do I mean to have you use the same method to testify of God and to spread His gospel? You do not necessarily need to do so, but you must understand that this is your responsibility, that if God needs you to, you should accept it as something you are honor-bound to do. People today have fear and worry inside them, but what purpose do those feelings serve? If God does not need you to do this, what is the use in worrying about it? If God needs you to do this, you should not shirk this responsibility nor reject it. You should cooperate proactively and accept it without worry. No matter how one dies, they should not die before Satan, and not die in Satan’s hands. If one is going to die, they should die in God’s hands. People came from God, and to God they return—such is the sense and attitude that a created being should possess. This is the final truth one should understand in spreading the gospel and performing their duty—one must pay the price of their life to spread and testify to the gospel of God incarnate’s performance of His work and salvation of mankind. If you have this aspiration, if you can bear testimony in this way, that is wonderful. If you still do not possess this sort of aspiration, you should, at least, properly fulfill the responsibility and duty that lie before you, entrusting the rest to God. Perhaps then, as the months and years pass and your experience and age increase, and your understanding of the truth deepens, you will realize that you have an obligation and a responsibility to offer your life to the work of God’s gospel, even until the last moment of your life.
—The Word, Vol. 3. The Discourses of Christ of the Last Days. Spreading the Gospel Is the Duty to Which All Believers Are Honor-Bound
Someone who has believed in God for many years without any life entry, who cannot speak about their experiential testimony, much less testify of God, who cannot successfully spread the gospel to anyone—they are unworthy to be called a witness of God. So, someone who is of immature stature and has no life entry can never testify of God. The unspoken implication is that this kind of person does not live in the presence of God. If you do not live in the presence of God, do not have life entry, and are not a witness of God, then will He acknowledge you as one of His followers? He will not. God has given you an opportunity to do your duty, and you are willing to do it, but through your behavior He has seen that you cannot testify of Him, even after believing in Him for so long. Not only do you not have true experiential knowledge, you also live according to your notions and imagination, you have no truth reality, and you do not live in the presence of God. … If you want God to approve you as one of His followers, then you must first focus on life entry. You must start by understanding yourself, being able to cast off your corrupt disposition, achieving the ability to hold to your duty, and doing your duty according to God’s requirements—that is first. Focusing on life entry is for the sake of doing your duty well, which is what this is all fundamentally about. You should start pursuing life entry from doing your duty, and from life entry, you should understand and obtain the truth one drop at a time, until you reach a point where you have stature, where your life gradually grows and you have real experiences with the truth. Then you should master all kinds of principles of practice, so that you are able to do your duty without being constrained or disturbed by any person, event, or thing. In this way, you will gradually live in God’s presence. You will not be disturbed by any kind of person, event, or thing, and you will have experience with the truth. As your experience becomes more abundant, you will be more able to testify of God, and as you are more able to testify of God, you will gradually become a useful person. When you become a useful person, you will be able to do your duty to an acceptable standard in the house of God, you will be able to stand in the place of a created being and submit to God’s arrangements and orchestrations, and you will be able to stand firm. Only this kind of person is an acceptable created being who has God’s praise. Then you will be worthy of all God has given you.
—The Word, Vol. 3. The Discourses of Christ of the Last Days. Life Entry Begins With the Performance of Duty
Although your faith is very sincere, none among you is able to give a full account of Me, none can give full testimony to all of the facts you see. Think about it: Today, most of you are derelict in your duties, instead pursuing the flesh, satiating the flesh, and greedily enjoying the flesh. You possess little truth. How, then, can you bear testimony to all that you have seen? Are you really confident that you can be My witnesses? If a day comes when you are unable to testify to all that you have seen today, then you will have lost the function of created beings, and there will be no meaning whatsoever to your existence. You will be unworthy of being human. It could even be said that you will not be human! I have done immeasurable work on you, but because you are currently learning nothing, aware of nothing, and ineffective in your labors, when it is time for Me to expand My work, you will just stare blankly, tongue-tied and utterly useless. Will that not make you a sinner for all time? When that time comes, will you not feel the deepest regret? Will you not sink into dejection? All of My work today is not done out of idleness and boredom, but to lay a foundation for My future work. It is not that I am at an impasse and need to come up with something new. You should understand the work I do; it is not something done by a child playing in the street, but is a work done in representation of My Father. You should know that it is not Me doing all this Myself; rather, I represent My Father. Your role, meanwhile, is strictly to follow, obey, change, and testify. What you should understand is why you should believe in Me; this is the most important question for each of you to understand. My Father, for the sake of His glory, predestined all of you for Me from the moment He created the world. It was for the sake of My work, and for the sake of His glory, that He predestined you. It is because of My Father that you believe in Me; it is because of My Father’s predestination that you follow Me. None of this is of your own choosing. Even more important is that you understand that you are the ones My Father bestowed upon Me for the purpose of testifying to Me. Because He granted you to Me, you should abide by the ways I bestow upon you, as well as the ways and the words I teach you, for it is your duty to abide by My ways. This is the original purpose of your faith in Me. Therefore, I say to you this: You are merely people that My Father bestowed upon Me to abide by My ways. However, you only believe in Me; you are not of Me because you are not of the Israelite family, and are instead ilk of the ancient serpent. All I am asking you to do is to bear witness for Me, but today you must walk in My ways. All of this is for the sake of future testimony. If you function only as people who listen to My ways, then you will be without value, and the significance of My Father’s having bestowed you upon Me will be lost. What I insist on telling you is this: You should walk in My ways.
—The Word, Vol. 1. The Appearance and Work of God. What Is Your Understanding of God?
Now do you truly know why you believe in Me? Do you truly know the purpose and significance of My work? Do you truly know your duty? Do you truly know My testimony? If you merely believe in Me, yet there is no sign of My glory or testimony in you, then I have long ago cast you out. As for those who know it all, they are even more thorns in My eye, and in My house, they are nothing more than obstacles in My way, they are tares to be completely winnowed out in My work, they have no use, they are worthless, and I have long abhorred them. Often does My wrath befall all who are bereft of testimony, and never does My rod stray from them. I have long since turned them over to the hands of the evil one; they are bereft of My blessings. When the day comes, their chastisement will be more grievous even than that of foolish women. Today, I do only the work that is My duty to do; I will bind all the wheat into bundles, together along with those tares. This is My work today. Those tares shall all be winnowed out in the time of My winnowing, then the grains of wheat shall be gathered into the storehouse, and those tares that have been winnowed out shall be placed in the fire to be burned to dust. My work now is merely to bind all men into bundles; that is, to utterly conquer them. Then shall I begin winnowing to reveal the end of all men. And so you ought to know how you should satisfy Me now, and how you ought to set upon the right track in your faith in Me. What I desire is your loyalty and obedience now, your love and testimony now. Even if you do not know at this moment what testimony is or what love is, you should bring to Me your all, and turn over to Me the only treasures you have: your loyalty and obedience. You should know that the testimony to My defeat of Satan lies within the loyalty and obedience of man, as does the testimony to My complete conquest of man. The duty of your faith in Me is to bear witness to Me, to be loyal to Me and none other, and to be obedient to the end.
—The Word, Vol. 1. The Appearance and Work of God. What Do You Know of Faith?
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