10. How to resolve the problem of being guarded against God and misunderstanding God
Words of Almighty God of the Last Days
Today God judges you, chastises you, and condemns you, but you must know that the point of your condemnation is for you to know yourself. He condemns, curses, judges, and chastises so that you might know yourself, so that your disposition might change, and, moreover, so that you might know your worth, and see that all of God’s actions are righteous and in accordance with His disposition and the requirements of His work, that He works in accordance with His plan for man’s salvation, and that He is the righteous God who loves, saves, judges, and chastises man. If you only know that you are of lowly status, that you are corrupt and disobedient, but do not know that God wishes to make plain His salvation through the judgment and chastisement that He does in you today, then you have no way of gaining experience, much less are you capable of continuing forward. God has not come to kill or destroy, but to judge, curse, chastise, and save. Until His 6,000-year management plan comes to a close—before He reveals the outcome of each category of man—God’s work on earth will be for the sake of salvation; its purpose is purely to make those who love Him complete—thoroughly so—and to bring them into submission under His dominion. No matter how God saves people, it is all done by making them break away from their old satanic nature; that is, He saves them by having them seek life. If they do not do so, then they will have no way to accept God’s salvation. Salvation is the work of God Himself, and the seeking for life is something that man must take on in order to accept salvation. In the eyes of man, salvation is the love of God, and the love of God cannot be chastisement, judgment, and curses; salvation must contain love, compassion, and, moreover, words of solace, as well as boundless blessings bestowed by God. People believe that when God saves man, He does so by moving them with His blessings and grace, so that they can give their hearts to God. That is to say, His touching man is His saving them. This sort of salvation is done by striking a deal. Only when God grants them a hundredfold will man come to submit before God’s name and strive to do well for Him and bring Him glory. This is not what God intends for mankind. God has come to work on earth in order to save corrupt mankind; there is no falsehood in this. If there were, He would certainly not have come to do His work in person. In the past, His means of salvation involved showing the utmost love and compassion, such that He gave His all to Satan in exchange for the whole of mankind. The present is nothing like the past: The salvation bestowed upon you today occurs at the time of the last days, during the classification of each according to kind; the means of your salvation is not love or compassion, but chastisement and judgment, in order that man may be more thoroughly saved. Thus, all that you receive is chastisement, judgment, and merciless smiting, but know this: In this heartless smiting there is not the slightest punishment. Regardless of how harsh My words might be, what befall you are but a few words that might appear utterly heartless to you, and no matter how angry I might be, what rain upon you are still words of teaching, and I do not mean to harm you or put you to death. Is this not all fact? Know that nowadays, whether it be righteous judgment or heartless refinement and chastisement, everything is for the sake of salvation. Regardless of whether today each is classified according to kind or the categories of man are laid bare, the purpose of all of God’s words and work is to save those who truly love God. Righteous judgment is brought to purify man, and heartless refinement is done to cleanse them; harsh words or chastening are both done to purify and are for the sake of salvation. Thus, today’s method of salvation is unlike that of the past. Today, you are brought salvation through righteous judgment, and this is a good tool for classifying you each according to kind. Moreover, ruthless chastisement serves as your utmost salvation—and what have you to say in the face of such chastisement and judgment? Have you not always enjoyed salvation, from start to finish? You have seen God incarnate and realized His omnipotence and wisdom; in addition, you have experienced repeated smiting and discipline. However, have you not also received supreme grace? Are your blessings not greater than those of anyone else? Your graces are more bounteous even than the glory and riches enjoyed by Solomon! Think about it: If My intention in coming were to condemn and punish you rather than save you, could your days have lasted so long? Could you sinful beings of flesh and blood have survived until today? If My goal were merely to punish you, then why would I have become flesh and embarked upon such a great enterprise? Could punishing you mere mortals not simply be done by uttering a single word? Would I still need to destroy you after purposely condemning you? Do you still not believe these words of Mine? Could I save man merely through love and compassion? Or could I only use the crucifixion to save man? Is My righteous disposition not more conducive to making man completely obedient? Is it not more capable of thoroughly saving man?
—The Word, Vol. 1. The Appearance and Work of God. You Should Put Aside the Blessings of Status and Understand God’s Will to Bring Salvation to Man
All of you live in a land of sin and licentiousness, and you are all licentious and sinful. Today you are not just able to look upon God, but more importantly, you have received chastisement and judgment, you have received truly profound salvation, which is to say, you have received God’s greatest love. In all that He does, God is truly loving toward you. He has no ill intention. It is because of your sins that He judges you, so that you will examine yourselves and receive this tremendous salvation. All this is done for the purpose of making man complete. From beginning to end, God has been doing His utmost to save man, and has no desire to completely destroy the men He created with His own hands. Today, He has come among you to work; is this not salvation all the more? If He hated you, would He still do work of such magnitude in order to personally guide you? Why should He suffer so? God does not hate you or have any ill intentions toward you. You should know that God’s love is the truest love. It is only because people are disobedient that He has to save them through judgment; if not for this, saving them would be impossible. Because you do not know how to live and are not even aware of how to live, and because you live in this licentious and sinful land and are yourselves licentious and filthy devils, He cannot bear to let you become even more depraved, He cannot bear to see you living in this filthy land as you do now, trampled on by Satan at will, and He cannot bear to let you fall into Hades. He only wants to gain this group of people and thoroughly save you. This is the main purpose of doing the work of conquest on you—it is just for salvation. If you cannot see that everything done on you is love and salvation, if you think it is just a method, a way to torment man, and something untrustworthy, then you might as well go back to your world to suffer pain and hardship! If you are willing to be in this stream, and to enjoy this judgment and this immense salvation, to enjoy all of these blessings, blessings that cannot be found anywhere in the human world, and to enjoy this love, then be good: Stay in this stream to accept the work of conquest so you can be made perfect. Today, you may suffer a little pain and refinement because of God’s judgment, but there is value and meaning to suffering this pain. Though people are refined and mercilessly exposed by God’s chastisement and judgment—the aim being to punish them for their sins, to punish their flesh—none of this work is intended to condemn their flesh to destruction. The severe disclosures by the word are all for the purpose of leading you onto the right path. You have personally experienced so much of this work and, clearly, it has not led you onto an evil path! It is all in order to make you live out normal humanity, and it is all achievable by your normal humanity. Every step of God’s work is based upon your needs, according to your weaknesses, and according to your actual stature, and no unbearable burden is placed on you. This is not clear to you today, and you feel as if I am being hard on you, and indeed you always believe that the reason I chastise, judge and reproach you every day is because I hate you. But although what you suffer is chastisement and judgment, this is actually love for you, and it is the greatest protection. If you cannot grasp the deeper meaning of this work, it will be impossible for you to continue experiencing. This salvation should bring you comfort. Do not refuse to come to your senses. Having come this far, the significance of the work of conquest should be clear to you, and you should no longer hold opinions about it one way or another!
—The Word, Vol. 1. The Appearance and Work of God. The Inside Truth of the Work of Conquest (4)
Some people are too poor of caliber and do not love the truth. No matter how the truth is fellowshiped about, they’re not up to it. They have believed in God for many years and still cannot talk about any real experiences or understanding. So, they determine that they are not among God’s predestined, chosen people, and that they cannot be saved by God, no matter how many more years they believe in Him. They hold in their hearts, “Only those who are predestined and chosen by God can be saved, and all those who are too poor of caliber and unable to understand the truth are not among God’s predestined, chosen people; they could not be saved, even if they believed.” They think God does not determine people’s outcome based on their manifestations and behavior. If this is your thinking, you greatly misunderstand God. If God truly acted so, would He be righteous? God determines people’s outcome with one principle: Ultimately, people’s outcome will be determined based on their own manifestations and behavior. If you cannot see God’s righteous disposition and are always misunderstanding God and distorting His intentions, such that you’re always pessimistic and disappointed, is that not self-inflicted? If you don’t understand how God’s predetermination works, you should seek truth from God in His words and not blindly determine that you are not among His predestined, chosen people. This is a serious misunderstanding of God! You simply don’t know God’s work at all, and you don’t understand God’s will, much less the painstaking effort behind God’s six thousand years of management work. You give up on yourself, speculate and doubt God, fearing that you are a service-doer who will be cast out once you have finished your service, always ruminating, “Why should I fulfill my duty? Am I rendering service as I perform my duty? Wouldn’t I be falling for a trick, if I were disposed of when I’ve finished rendering my service?” What do you make of this thinking? Can you discern it? You always misunderstand God, categorizing Him among the devil kings that rule in the world, guarding your heart against Him, always thinking He is as selfish and despicable as humans. You never believe that He loves mankind, and you never believe in His sincerity in saving mankind. If you’re always characterizing yourself as a service-doer and fear being cast out after rendering your service, then yours is the deceitful mentality of nonbelievers. Unbelievers don’t believe in God because they don’t admit there is a God, nor that God’s word is the truth. Given that you believe in God, why don’t you have faith in Him? Why don’t you admit that God’s word is the truth? You are unwilling to fulfill your duty, and you undergo no hardships in order to practice the truth, and as a result, you have still not gained the truth, despite your many years of faith in God, and despite all that, you push the blame off onto God in the end, saying that He has not predestined you, that He has not been sincere with you. What problem is that? You misunderstand God’s intentions, and do not believe His words, and neither put the truth into practice nor devote yourself while performing your duty. How can you satisfy God’s will? How can you gain the work of the Holy Spirit and understand the truth? Such people are not even qualified to be service-doers, so how could they be qualified to negotiate with God? If you think God is not righteous, why do you believe in Him? You always want God to say to you, personally, “You are of the people of the kingdom; this will never change” before you exert yourself for His house, and if He doesn’t, you will never give Him your heart. How rebellious and intransigent such people are! I see there are a great many people who never focus on changing their dispositions, much less on practicing the truth. They focus only on asking at every turn whether they’ll be able to obtain a good destination, how God will treat them, whether He has a predestination for them to be His people, and other such matters of hearsay. How can such people, who don’t attend to their proper work, obtain the truth? How can they remain in God’s house? Now, I solemnly tell you: Though a person may be predestined, if they cannot accept the truth and put it into practice to achieve submission to God, then being cast out will be their ultimate outcome. Only those people who sincerely expend themselves for God, and put the truth into practice with all their strength, will be able to survive and enter into God’s kingdom. Though others may see them as someone who is not predestined to remain, they will have a better destination than those supposedly predestined people who have never had loyalty to God, on account of God’s righteous disposition. Do you believe these words? If you cannot believe these words and continue your obstinate straying, then I tell you, you certainly will not be able to survive, because you are simply not someone with true belief in God or a love of the truth. Since this is so, God’s predestination is not important. The reason I say so is because in the end, God will determine people’s outcomes by their manifestations and behavior, whereas God’s predestination only plays a small role objectively, not a leading role. Do you understand this?
—The Word, Vol. 3. The Discourses of Christ of the Last Days. Part Three
When some people read God’s words and see God condemning people in His words, they form notions and feel conflicted. For example, God’s words say that you don’t accept the truth, so God doesn’t like you or accept you, that you are an evildoer, an antichrist, that He gets upset just looking at you and that He doesn’t want you. People read these words and think, “These words are aimed at me. God has determined that He doesn’t want me, and since God has abandoned me, I won’t believe in God anymore either.” There are those who, when reading God’s words, often develop notions and misunderstandings because God reveals people’s corrupt states and says some things condemning people. They become negative and weak, thinking that God’s words were directed at them, that God is giving up on them and won’t save them. They become negative to the point of tears and don’t want to follow God anymore. This is actually a misunderstanding of God. When you do not understand the meaning of God’s words, you should not try to delineate God. You don’t know what kind of person God abandons, or under what circumstances He gives up on people, or under what circumstances He puts people aside; there are principles and contexts to all of this. If you don’t have full insight into these detailed matters, you’ll be very prone to hypersensitivity and you’ll delimit yourself based on one word from God. Isn’t that problematic? When God judges people, what is the chief aspect of them that He condemns? What God judges and reveals are people’s corrupt dispositions and corrupt essences, He condemns their satanic dispositions and satanic natures, He condemns the various manifestations and behaviors of their rebellion and opposition to God, He condemns them for being unable to obey God, for always opposing God, and for always having their own motivations and aims—but such condemnation does not mean that God has abandoned people with satanic dispositions. If this is not clear to you, then you lack comprehension ability, which makes you a bit like people who are mentally ill, always suspicious of everything and misinterpreting God. Such people are devoid of true faith, so how could they follow God to the very end? Hearing a single statement of condemnation from God, you think that, having been condemned by God, people have been abandoned by God, and will no longer be saved, and because of this you become negative, and abandon yourself to despair. This is misinterpreting God. In fact, God has not abandoned people. They have misinterpreted God and abandoned themselves. Nothing is more critical than when people abandon themselves, as fulfilled in the words of the Old Testament: “Fools die for want of wisdom” (Proverbs 10:21). No behavior is more stupid than when people abandon themselves to despair. Sometimes you read God’s words that seem to delineate people; in fact, they are not delineating anyone, but are the expression of God’s will and opinion. These are words of truth and principle, they are not delineating anyone. The words uttered by God during times of anger or rage also represent God’s disposition, these words are the truth, and, moreover, belong to principle. People must understand this. God’s purpose in saying this is to allow people to understand the truth, and to understand the principles; it is absolutely not to delimit anyone. This has nothing to do with people’s ultimate destination and reward, much less are they people’s ultimate punishment. These are merely words spoken to judge and deal with people, they are the result of anger at people not living up to His expectations, and they are spoken in order to wake people up, to prompt them, and they are words from God’s heart. And yet, some people fall down and forsake God because of a single statement of judgment from God. People like this don’t know what’s good for them, they are impervious to reason, they do not accept the truth at all. … There are times when you believe God has given up on you—but in fact, God has not given up on you, He just puts you to one side so that you can reflect on yourself. God may find you detestable, and does not wish to heed you, but He has not truly forsaken you. There are those who make an effort to perform their duty in the house of God, but because of their essence and the various things that are manifested in them, God sees that they do not love the truth and do not accept the truth at all, and so God actually forsakes them; they were not truly chosen, but merely gave service for a time. There are some, meanwhile, whom God does His utmost to discipline, chasten, and judge, and even condemn and curse, employing various ways of treating them that are at odds with the notions of man. Some people do not understand God’s will, and think that God is picking on them and being hurtful. They think that there is no dignity to living before God, they do not wish to hurt God any longer and leave the church. They even think there is sense to doing this, and in this way they turn their backs on God—but in fact, God had not forsaken them. Such people have no inkling of the will of God. They are somewhat oversensitive, going so far as to give up on God’s salvation. Do they really have conscience? There are times when God shuns people, and times when He places them to one side for a time so that they may reflect upon themselves, but God has not forsaken them; He is giving them the opportunity to repent. God only truly forsakes the wicked who commit many evil acts, nonbelievers, and antichrists. Some people say, “I feel devoid of the work of the Holy Spirit and long have I been without the enlightenment of the Holy Spirit. Has God forsaken me?” This is a misconception. There is also a problem of disposition here: People are overemotional, they always follow their own reasoning, are always willful, and are devoid of rationality—isn’t this a problem of disposition? You say that God has forsaken you, that He will not save you, so has He set your end? God has merely said a few angry words to you. How could you say that He’s given up on you, that He doesn’t want you anymore? There are occasions when you cannot feel the work of the Holy Spirit, but God has not deprived you of the right to read His words, nor has He determined your end, or cut off your path to salvation—so what are you so upset about? You are in a bad state, there is a problem with your motives, there are issues with your thought and viewpoint, your state of mind is twisted—and yet you do not try to fix these things by seeking the truth, instead constantly misinterpreting and blaming God, and pushing the responsibility onto God, and even saying, “God doesn’t want me, so I don’t believe in Him anymore.” Are you not being irrational? Are you not being unreasonable? This kind of person is too overemotional, without any sense at all, impervious to all reason. They are the least likely to accept the truth and will find it very difficult to attain salvation.
—The Word, Vol. 3. The Discourses of Christ of the Last Days. Only by Resolving One’s Notions Can One Embark on the Right Track of Belief in God (1)
When things befall you, you always act like cowards, you always act like people-pleasers, always compromising, always taking the middle path, never offending anyone or sticking your nose into things, never going too far—it is like you are standing in your own position, sticking to your duty, doing whatever you are asked to do, standing neither in the front nor in the back, and going with the flow—tell Me, do you think that if you persist in doing your duty this way to the very end you will be able to obtain God’s approval? Are you aware that this kind of state is quite dangerous, that not only will you be unable to obtain God’s perfection, but that you are also likely to offend God’s disposition? Does this kind of lukewarm person pursue the truth? Are they the kind of person who fears God and shuns evil? A person who lives in this kind of state often pours forth the thoughts of a people-pleaser, and they don’t have a God-fearing heart. If one merely feels horror and fright for no good reason, is that a God-fearing heart? (No.) Even if they throw their whole self into their duty, resign from their work, and renounce their family, if they do not give God their heart, and they guard themselves against God, is that a good state? Is that the normal state of entering into the truth reality? Is the future development of this state not terrifying? If a person continues on in this state, can they obtain the truth? Can they gain the life? Can they enter into the truth reality? (No.) Are you aware that you yourselves possess this very state? When you become aware of it, do you think to yourselves: “Why am I always guarded against God? Why do I always think this way? To think this way is so frightening! It is opposing God and rejecting the truth. Guarding against God is the same as resisting Him”? The state of being guarded against God is just like being a thief—you do not dare to live in the light, you are afraid of exposing your demonic faces, and at the same time, you are frightened: “God is not to be trifled with. He can judge and chastise people at all times and places. If you anger God, in mild cases He will prune and deal with you, and in severe ones He will punish you, make you sick, or cause you to suffer. People cannot bear those things!” Do people not have these misunderstandings? Is this a God-fearing heart? (No.) Is this kind of state not terrifying? When a person is in this state, when they guard against God, and always have these thoughts, when they always have this kind of attitude toward God, are they treating God like God? Is this belief in God? When a person believes in God in this way, when they do not treat God like God, is that not a problem? At the very minimum, people do not accept God’s righteous disposition, nor do they accept the fact of His work. They think: “It’s true that God is merciful and loving, but He is also wrathful. When God’s wrath befalls a person, it is disastrous. He can smite people to death at any time, destroying whomever He wishes. Do not invoke God’s anger. It is true that His majesty and wrath permit no offense. Keep your distance from Him!” If a person has this kind of attitude and these ideas, can they fully and sincerely come before God? They cannot.
—The Word, Vol. 3. The Discourses of Christ of the Last Days. Only by Practicing the Truth Can One Cast Off the Shackles of a Corrupt Disposition
If you feel you can fulfill a certain duty, but you also fear making a mistake and being cast out, and so you are timid, stagnant, and can’t make progress, then is that a submissive attitude? For example, if your brothers and sisters choose you as their leader, then you may feel obligated to perform this duty because you were chosen, but you don’t regard this duty with a proactive attitude. Why are you not proactive? Because you have thoughts about it, and feel that, “Being a leader isn’t a good thing at all. It’s like walking on a knife’s edge or treading on thin ice. If I do a good job then there will be no reward, but if I do a bad job then I will be dealt with and pruned. And being dealt with isn’t even the worst of all. What if I get replaced, or cast out? If that were to happen, isn’t it all over for me?” At that point, you start to feel conflicted. What is this attitude? This is being guarded and misunderstanding. This is not the attitude that people should have toward their duty. It is a demoralized and negative attitude. So, what should a positive attitude be like? (We should be open-hearted and forthright, and have the courage to take up burdens.) It should be one of obedience and proactive cooperation. What you say is a bit empty. How can you be open-hearted and forthright when you are so afraid like this? And what does it mean to have the courage to take up burdens? What mentality will give you the courage to take up burdens? If you’re always afraid that something will go wrong and you won’t be able to handle it, and you have many internal hindrances, then you will fundamentally lack the courage to take up burdens. The “being open-hearted and forthright,” “having the courage to take up burdens,” or “never retreating even in the face of death” you speak of, sounds a bit like the slogans shouted by angry young people. Can these slogans solve practical problems? What is needed now is a correct attitude. To possess a correct attitude, you must understand this aspect of the truth. This is the only way to resolve your internal difficulties, and allow you to smoothly accept this commission, this duty. This is the path of practice, and only this is the truth. If you use terms like “being open-hearted and forthright” and “having the courage to take up burdens” to address the fear that you feel, will this be effective? (No.) This indicates that these things are not the truth, nor are they a path of practice. You may say, “I am open-hearted and forthright, I am of indomitable stature, there are no other thoughts or contaminants in my heart, and I have the courage to take up burdens.” Outwardly you take up your duty, but later, after pondering it for a while, you still feel that you cannot take it up. You may still feel afraid. In addition, you may see others being dealt with, and become even more afraid, like a whipped dog terrified of the strap. You will increasingly feel like your stature is too small, and that this duty is like a vast, uncrossable abyss, and ultimately you will still be unable to take up this burden. This is why chanting slogans cannot solve practical problems. So how can you actually solve this problem? You should actively seek the truth and adopt a submissive and cooperative attitude. That can completely solve the problem. Timidity, fear, and worry are useless. Is there any relationship between whether you will be revealed and cast out and being a leader? If you are not a leader, will your corrupt disposition disappear? Sooner or later, you must resolve the problem of your corrupt disposition. In addition, if you are not a leader, then you will not have more opportunities to practice and will make slow progress in life, with few chances to be perfected. Although there is a bit more suffering in being a leader or worker, it also brings about many gains, and if you can walk the path of pursuing the truth, you can be perfected. What a great blessing that is! So you should submit and actively cooperate. This is your duty and your responsibility. No matter the road ahead, you should have a heart of obedience. This is the attitude with which you should perform your duty.
—The Word, Vol. 3. The Discourses of Christ of the Last Days. What Is the Adequate Performance of Duty?
Some people do not believe that God’s house can treat people fairly. They do not believe that God reigns in His house, and that the truth reigns there. They believe that no matter what duty a person performs, if a problem arises in it, God’s house will handle that person immediately, stripping them of their right to perform that duty, sending them away, or even clearing them out of the church. Is that really how things work? It certainly is not. God’s house treats every person according to the truth principles. God is righteous in His treatment of every person. He does not look only at how a person behaves in a single instance; He looks at a person’s nature essence, at their intentions, at their attitude, and He looks in particular at whether a person can reflect on themselves when they make a mistake, whether they are remorseful, and whether they can penetrate the essence of the problem based on His words, come to understand the truth, hate themselves, and truly repent. If someone lacks this correct attitude, and they are entirely adulterated by personal intentions, if they are filled with cunning schemes and outpourings of corrupt dispositions, and when problems arise, they resort to pretense, sophistry, and self-justification, and stubbornly refuse to acknowledge their actions, then such a person cannot be saved. They don’t accept the truth at all and have been completely exposed. People who aren’t right, and who can’t accept the truth in the slightest, are nonbelievers in essence and can only be cast out. How can nonbelievers who serve as leaders and workers not be exposed and cast out? A nonbeliever, regardless of what duty they perform, is exposed most quickly of all, because the corrupt dispositions that they pour forth are too numerous and too obvious. Moreover, they don’t accept the truth at all and act recklessly and arbitrarily. In the end, when they have been cast out, and have lost the opportunity to fulfill their duty, they start to worry, thinking, “I’m done for. If I’m not allowed to perform my duty, I can’t be saved. What should I do?” In reality, Heaven will always leave a way out for man. There is one final path, which is to genuinely repent, and to hurry to spread the gospel and gain people, making up for their faults by doing good deeds. If they don’t take this path, then they are truly done for. If they possess some reason and know that they don’t have any talent, they should properly equip themselves with the truth and train to spread the gospel—this is also performing a duty. This is entirely feasible. If someone acknowledges they were cast out because they didn’t perform their duty well, yet they still do not accept the truth and don’t have the slightest heart of remorse, and instead abandon themselves to despair, isn’t that foolish and ignorant? Tell Me, if a person has made a mistake, but they are capable of true understanding and willing to repent, would God’s house not give them a chance? As God’s six-thousand-year management plan draws to a close, there are so many duties that need to be performed. But if you have no conscience or reason, and don’t attend to your proper work, if you have gained the opportunity to perform a duty but do not know to treasure it, do not pursue the truth in the least, letting the best time pass them by, then you will be revealed. If you are consistently careless and perfunctory in performing your duty, and you do not submit at all when faced with being pruned and dealt with, will God’s house still use you to perform a duty? In God’s house, it is the truth that reigns, not Satan. God has the final say over everything. It is He who is doing the work of saving man, it is He who rules over everything. There is no need for you to analyze what is right and wrong, you just need to listen and obey. When faced with being pruned and dealt with, you must accept the truth and be able to correct your mistakes. If you do, God’s house will not strip you of your right to perform a duty. If you are always afraid of being cast out, always giving excuses, always justifying yourself, that is a problem. If you let others see that you do not accept the truth in the least, and that you are impervious to reason, you are in trouble. The church will be obliged to handle you. If you do not accept the truth at all in performing your duty and are always afraid of being exposed and cast out, then this fear of yours is tainted with human intent and a corrupt satanic disposition, and with suspicion, guardedness, and misapprehension. None of these are attitudes that a person should have. You must begin by resolving your fear, as well as your misunderstandings of God. How do a person’s misunderstandings of God arise? When things are going well for a person, they certainly do not misunderstand Him. They believe that God is good, that God is honorable, that God is righteous, that God is merciful and loving, that God is right in everything that He does. However, when they are faced with something that does not conform to their notions, they think, “It seems God is not very righteous, at least not in this matter.” Is this not a misunderstanding? How is it that God is not righteous? What was it that gave rise to this misunderstanding? What was it that made you form this opinion and understanding that God is not righteous? Can you say for sure what it was? Which sentence was it? Which matter? Which situation? Say it, so that everyone can work it out and see if you have a leg to stand on. And when a person misunderstands God or faces something that does not conform to their notions, what attitude should they have? (One of seeking the truth and obedience.) They need to obey first and consider: “I do not understand, but I will obey because this is what God has done and not something that man should analyze. Moreover, I cannot doubt God’s words or His work because God’s word is the truth.” Is this not the attitude a person should have? With this attitude, would your misunderstanding still pose a problem? (It would not.) It would not affect or disturb your performance of your duty. Who do you think is capable of loyalty—a person who harbors misunderstandings while performing their duty or one who does not? (A person who does not harbor misunderstandings in performing their duty is capable of loyalty.) So, firstly, you must have an obedient attitude. What’s more, you must at least believe that God is the truth, that God is righteous, and that everything God does is right. These are the preconditions that determine whether you can be loyal in performing your duty. If you meet both of these preconditions, can the misunderstandings in your heart affect the performance of your duty? (No.) They can’t. This means that you won’t bring these misunderstandings into the performance of your duty. Firstly, you should resolve them from the outset, ensuring they remain only in their embryonic state. What should you do next? Resolve them at the root. How should you resolve them? Read several relevant passages of God’s words with everyone regarding this matter. Then, fellowship about why God acts in such a way, what God’s will is, and what results can be achieved from God working in this way. Fellowship thoroughly on these matters, then you will have an understanding of God and be able to submit. If you don’t resolve your misunderstandings about God and carry notions into the performance of your duty, saying, “In this matter, God acted incorrectly, and I will not submit. I’ll contest this, I’ll argue things out with God’s house. I don’t believe this is God’s doing”—what disposition is this? This is a typical satanic disposition. Such words should not be uttered by humans; it is not the attitude that an object of creation should have. If you can oppose God in this way, are you worthy of performing this duty? You are not. Because you are a devil, and you lack humanity, you are not worthy of performing a duty. If a person possesses some reason, and misunderstandings about God arise in them, they will pray to God, and they will also seek the truth in God’s words, and sooner or later, they will see the matter clearly. This is what people should do.
—The Word, Vol. 3. The Discourses of Christ of the Last Days. Part Three
People often worry about and are fearful of the trials of God, yet at all times they are living in Satan’s snare, and living in perilous territory in which they are attacked and abused by Satan—yet they know not fear, and are unperturbed. What is going on? Man’s faith in God is only limited to the things he can see. He has not the slightest appreciation of God’s love and concern for man, or of His tenderness and consideration toward man. But for a little trepidation and fear about God’s trials, judgment and chastisement, and majesty and wrath, man has not the slightest understanding of God’s good intentions. At the mention of trials, people feel as if God has ulterior motives, and some even believe that God harbors evil designs, unaware of what God will actually do to them; thus, at the same time as crying out obedience to God’s sovereignty and arrangements, they do all they can to resist and oppose God’s sovereignty over man and arrangements for man, for they believe that if they are not careful they will be misled by God, that if they do not keep a grip on their own fate then all that they have could be taken by God, and their life could even be ended. Man is in Satan’s camp, but he never worries about being abused by Satan, and he is abused by Satan but never fears being taken captive by Satan. He keeps saying that he accepts God’s salvation, yet has never trusted in God or believed that God will truly save man from the claws of Satan. If, like Job, man is able to submit to God’s orchestrations and arrangements, and can give his entire being to the hands of God, then will man’s end not be the same as Job’s—the receipt of God’s blessings? If man is able to accept and submit to God’s rule, what is there to lose? Thus, I suggest that you be careful in your actions, and cautious toward everything that is about to come upon you. Do not be rash or impulsive, and do not treat God and the people, matters, and objects He has arranged for you depending on your hot blood or your naturalness, or according to your imaginations and notions; you must be cautious in your actions, and must pray and seek more, to avoid inciting the wrath of God.
—The Word, Vol. 2. On Knowing God. God’s Work, God’s Disposition, and God Himself II
At times, God uses a certain matter to lay you bare or discipline you. Does this then mean that you have been cast out? Does it mean your end has come? No. It is like when a child has been disobedient and made a mistake; his parents might chide and punish him, but if he cannot fathom his parents’ intention or understand why they are doing this, he will misunderstand their intent. For example, the parents may tell the child, “Don’t leave the house alone, and don’t go outside by yourself,” but this goes in one ear and out the other, and the child sneaks out alone anyway. Once the parents find out, they give the child a scolding and, as punishment, make him stand in the corner to reflect on his behavior. Not understanding his parents’ intentions, the child starts to have doubts: “Do my parents not want me anymore? Am I really theirs? If I’m not really theirs, would that mean I was adopted?” These are the things he ponders. What are the parents’ actual intentions? The parents said it was too dangerous to do that and told their child not to. But the child did not listen, and it went in one ear and out the other. Therefore, the parents needed to use some form of punishment to properly educate their child and make him learn from his mistakes. What is it that the parents want to achieve by doing this? Is it only to make the child learn from his mistakes? This kind of learning is not what they ultimately want to achieve. The parents’ aim in doing this is to make the child do as he is told, behave in accordance with their advice, and not do anything disobedient to make them worry—this would be the desired effect. If the child listens to his parents, it shows that he has matured in understanding, and then his parents will have less on their minds. Will they not then be satisfied with him? Will they still need to punish him like that? They will not need to anymore. Believing in God is just like this. People must learn to heed God’s words and understand His heart. They must not misunderstand God. In fact, in many cases, people’s concern stems from their own self-interest. Speaking generally, it is the fear that they will have no outcome. They’re always thinking, “What if God lays me bare, casts me out, and rejects me?” This is your misinterpretation of God; these are only your one-sided conjectures. You have to figure out what God’s intention is. When He lays people bare, it is not for the sake of casting them out. People are laid bare in order to expose their shortcomings, mistakes, and their nature essences, to make them know themselves and become capable of true repentance; for this reason, laying people bare is in order to help their lives to grow. Without a pure understanding, people are apt to misinterpret God and become negative and weak. They may even give in to despair. In fact, being laid bare by God doesn’t necessarily mean that you will be cast out. It is to help you get to know your own corruption, and to make you repent. Oftentimes, because people are rebellious, and do not seek to find resolution in the truth when their corruption is exposed, God must exercise discipline. And so, sometimes, He lays people bare, exposing their ugliness and pitifulness, getting them to know themselves, which helps their life to grow. Laying people bare has two different implications: For the wicked, being laid bare means they are cast out. For those who are able to accept the truth, it is a reminder and a warning; they are made to reflect on themselves, to see their true state, and to stop being wayward and reckless, because to carry on like this would be dangerous. Laying people bare in this way is to remind them lest, in performing their duty, they grow muddleheaded and careless, fail to take things seriously, become satisfied with only a few results, and think they have performed their duty to an acceptable standard when, in fact, measured by God’s demands, they have fallen far short, and yet they are still complacent and believe themselves to be doing fine. In such circumstances, God will discipline, caution, and remind people. Sometimes, God lays bare their ugliness—which is patently to serve as a reminder. At such times you should reflect on yourself: Performing your duty like this is inadequate, there is rebelliousness within you, there are too many negative elements, everything you do is perfunctory, and if you still do not repent, by rights you should be punished. Now and then, when God disciplines you, or lays you bare, this does not necessarily mean you will be cast out. This matter should be approached correctly. Even if you are cast out, you should accept it and submit to it, and make haste to reflect and repent. To sum up, whatever meaning lies behind laying you bare, you must learn to submit. If you show passive resistance, and instead of mending your flaws keep on going from bad to worse, you will surely be punished. Therefore, in dealing with matters of being laid bare, one must show obedience, one’s heart must become imbued with fear, and one must become capable of repentance: Only then does one conform to God’s will, and only by practicing in this way can one save oneself and be spared God’s punishment. Rational people should then be able to recognize their own faults and correct them, at the very least attaining to the point where they rely on their conscience to fulfill their duty. In addition, they must also reach up toward the truth, attaining not only to the point where their behavior is principled, but also to the point of giving their whole heart, their whole soul, their whole mind, their whole strength: Only doing it thus is an acceptable way of fulfilling their duty, only doing it thus makes them people who truly submit to God. What should one take as the standard for satisfying God’s will? One must base one’s actions on the truth principles, the major aspect of which is to place emphasis on the interests of God’s house and on the work of God’s house, to keep the whole picture in mind, and not focus on any one aspect at the risk of losing sight of another, and the minor aspect of which is to get one’s own work done properly, and to achieve the desired effect according to what is demanded of one, without going through the motions in a perfunctory manner, without bringing shame on God. If people master these principles, will they not let go of their worries and misconceptions? Once you put aside your worries and misconceptions, and no longer have any unreasonable ideas about God, negative elements will slowly cease to hold a dominant position within you, and you will approach these sorts of matters in the correct manner. Thus, it is important to seek the truth and strive to understand God’s will.
—The Word, Vol. 3. The Discourses of Christ of the Last Days. Only by Practicing the Truth and Obeying God Can One Achieve a Change in Disposition
God saves people who have been corrupted by Satan and have corrupt dispositions, not perfect people without flaws or those who live in a vacuum. Some people, upon displaying a little corruption, think, “I have resisted God again. I have believed in God for many years and still haven’t changed. Surely God doesn’t want me anymore!” They then resign themselves to hopelessness and become unwilling to pursue the truth. What do you think of this attitude? They themselves have given up on the truth, and believe that God no longer wants them. Isn’t this a misunderstanding of God? Such negativity is the easiest way to be exploited by Satan. Satan mocks them, saying, “You fool! God wants to save you, but you are still suffering like this! So, just give up! If you give up, God will cast you out, which is just like Him handing you over to me. I will torment you to death!” Once Satan succeeds, the consequences will be unthinkable. Consequently, no matter what difficulties or negativity a person faces, they must not give up. They should seek the truth for solutions, and they must not passively wait. During the process of life’s growth and the course of human salvation, people may sometimes take the wrong path, deviate, or have times where they exhibit states and behaviors of immaturity in life. They may have times of weakness and negativity, times when they say the wrong things, stumble, or experience failure. All of this is normal in the eyes of God. He does not hold it against them. Some people think their corruption is too deep, and that they can never satisfy God, so they feel sorrowful and despise themselves. Those who have a repentant heart like this are precisely the ones that God saves. On the other hand, those who believe they do not need God’s salvation, who think they are good people and there is nothing wrong with them, usually are not the ones God saves. What is the meaning behind what I’m telling you? Whoever understands, speak up. (To properly handle your own displays of corruption, focus on practicing the truth, and you will receive God’s salvation. If you consistently misunderstand God, you will easily resign yourself to hopelessness.) You must have faith and say, “Though I am weak now, and I have stumbled and failed. I will grow, and one day I will understand the truth, satisfy God, and achieve salvation.” You must have this resolve. No matter what setbacks, difficulties, failures, or trip-ups you encounter, you must not be negative. You must know what kind of people God saves. Moreover, if you feel that you are not yet qualified to be saved by God, or if there are occasions where you are in states which God hates or is displeased with, or there are times you behave poorly, and God doesn’t accept you, or God detests and rejects you, it doesn’t matter. Now you know, and it is not too late. As long as you repent, God will give you a chance.
… God is righteous and fair to everyone. God doesn’t look at how you were before or at your current stature, He looks at whether you pursue the truth and whether you walk the path of pursuing the truth. You must never misunderstand God and say, “Why can those who can be saved by God still lie and display corruption? God should save those who don’t lie.” Isn’t this a fallacy? Are there any among corrupt mankind who do not lie? Do people who do not lie still need God’s salvation? Mankind, who has been corrupted by Satan, is who God saves. If you can’t even understand this fact clearly, then you are ignorant and foolish. Just as God said, “There are no righteous upon this earth, the righteous are not in this world.” It is precisely because mankind has been corrupted by Satan that God became incarnate on earth to save these corrupted humans. Why doesn’t God say anything about saving angels? It’s because angels are in heaven, and have not been corrupted by Satan. God has always said from the beginning, that “The mankind that I save is the mankind that has been corrupted by Satan, the mankind that has been taken back from the hands of Satan, the mankind that possesses Satan’s corrupt disposition, the mankind that opposes Me, that resists Me and rebels against Me.” Then why don’t people face this fact? Do they not misunderstand God? Misunderstanding God is the easiest path to resistance against Him and must be resolved immediately. Failing to resolve this issue is very dangerous as it could easily result in you being set aside by God. People’s misunderstandings are rooted in their notions and imaginings. If they always cling to their notions and imaginings, then they are most likely to refuse to accept the truth. When you misunderstand God, if you don’t seek the truth for resolution, you know the consequences. God allows you to stumble, to fail, and to make mistakes. God will give you opportunities and time to understand the truth, practice the truth, gradually understand His will, do everything in accordance with His will, truly obey God, and achieve the truth reality that God requires people to possess. However, who is the person that God hates the most? It is the one who, despite knowing the truth in their heart, refuses to accept it, let alone put it into practice. Instead, they still live by Satan’s philosophies, yet consider themselves to be pretty good and obedient to God while also seeking to deceive others and gain a position in God’s house. God hates this kind of person the most, they are antichrists. Although everyone has a corrupt disposition, these actions are of a different nature. It is no ordinary corrupt disposition nor a normal revelation of corruption; rather, you consciously and stubbornly resist God to the end. You know that God exists, you believe in God, yet you deliberately choose to resist Him. This is not having notions about God and a problem of misunderstanding; instead you deliberately resist God to the end. Can God save someone like this? God does not save you. You are an enemy of God, therefore you are the devil Satan. Can God still save the devil Satan?
—The Word, Vol. 3. The Discourses of Christ of the Last Days. In Believing in God, What Is Most Important Is to Practice and Experience His Words
From the beginning, I have often exhorted you that each of you must pursue the truth. So long as there is a chance to do so, do not give up; pursuing the truth is the obligation, responsibility, and duty of each person, and the path that each person should walk, as well as the path all who would be saved must walk. Yet no one heeds this—no one thinks it a matter of import, believing it to be mere cant, each person thinking what they will. From the beginning unto today, though there have been many who clutch books of God’s words in their hands and read them, who listen to sermons, who all seem to have accepted God’s judgment and chastisement and His guidance in the course of performing their duties, a relationship between man and God has not, in fact, been established, and all people live by their imaginings, notions, misunderstandings, and speculations, such that they live each day in doubt and negativity in how they treat God’s words and work, as well as His guidance. If you live in such states, how can you cast off negativity? How can you cast off rebelliousness? How can you cast off the mindset and attitude of deceit and evil or speculation and misunderstanding with which you approach the commission and duty that God has given you? Certainly, they cannot be cast off. Therefore, if you wish to embark on a path of pursuing and practicing the truth and entering the truth reality, you must come at once before God, pray to Him, and seek His will—and figuring out His will is what matters most. It’s too impractical to always live in notions and imaginings; you should learn to reflect on yourself in all matters, and to recognize which corrupt dispositions you still have that need to be cleansed, which things are preventing you from putting the truth into practice, what misunderstandings or notions you have about God, and which things He does that don’t accord with your notions, but cause you to doubt and misunderstand. If you reflect on yourself in this way, you can discover which problems you still have that need to be solved by seeking the truth, and if you practice like this then your life will grow quickly. If you don’t reflect on yourself but always harbor notions and misunderstandings in your heart about God, always insist on your own ideas, always think that God lets you down or isn’t fair to you, and always hold onto your own reasoning, then your misunderstanding of God will only get deeper and your relationship with Him more and more distant, while your heart’s rebelliousness and opposition to Him grow greater and greater. It’s dangerous if your state gets this bad, as it will already seriously affect how effectively you perform your duty. You can only treat your duty and responsibility with a slipshod, perfunctory, irreverent, rebellious, and resistant attitude, and what is the end result? It will lead you to be slipshod and perfunctory in doing your duty, deceptive and resistant to God. You won’t be able to gain the truth, nor enter the truth realities. What is the root cause of this result? It is because people still have notions and misunderstandings about God in their hearts, and these practical problems have not been solved. So, there will always be a gulf between people and God. Therefore, if people want to come before God, they must first reflect on what misunderstandings, notions, imaginings, doubts, or speculations they have about Him. These things must all be examined. Truly having notions or misunderstandings about God is not a simple matter, as it touches upon people’s attitude to God as well as their nature essence. If people don’t seek the truth to solve these notions and misunderstandings, it’s not like these things will just vanish into thin air. Even if they don’t affect you performing your duty or pursuing the truth, when something happens or under special circumstances they will still appear to disturb your mind and your performance of your duty. Therefore, if you have notions and misunderstandings, then you must come before God and reflect on yourself, seek the truth, and understand clearly the root cause and essence of why these notions and misunderstandings arise in people. Only then can they disappear, your relationship with God can be normal, and your life can gradually grow. That people have too many notions and misunderstandings about God proves that mankind resists and is incompatible with Him. Only by continuously resolving these notions and misunderstandings can the gulf between people and God gradually close. They will be able to obey God, and have greater faith in Him; with greater faith, their practice of the truth will be much less adulterated, and there will be much fewer adulterations and obstacles in their pursuit of the truth.
—The Word, Vol. 3. The Discourses of Christ of the Last Days. Only by Pursuing the Truth Can One Resolve Their Notions and Misunderstandings of God
If you have an honest attitude, one of accepting and obeying the truth, and no matter what happens, no matter how much pain there is in your heart, or how humiliated you are, you’re always able to accept and obey the truth, and you’re still able to pray to God, saying, “Everything God does is right, and I must accept it,” then this is an obedient attitude. However, during the process of acceptance you must continuously reflect on yourself, reflect on where the errors lie in your actions and behavior, and which aspects of the truth you have violated. You must also dissect your own intentions, so you can clearly see your own true state and stature. If you then seek the truth, you’ll know how to practice the truth in accordance with the principles. If you practice and experience in this way, then you’ll make progress before you know it. The truth will take root inside you; it’ll blossom, bear fruit, and become your life. All of the problems of your revelations of corruption will gradually be solved. When things happen, your attitude, views, and states will tend more and more toward the positive. Will you still be estranged from God then? Perhaps you will still be estranged from Him, but less and less so, and the doubts, speculations, misunderstandings, complaints, rebelliousness, and resistance you harbor toward God will also diminish. When they diminish, it’ll be easier for you to quiet yourself before God when things happen, and to pray to Him, seek the truth, and seek a path of practice. If you can’t see through things when they befall you, if you are instead utterly confused, and still don’t seek the truth, then there will be trouble. You’re sure to handle matters using human solutions, and your philosophies for dealing with the world, slippery methods, and clever techniques will all come out. This is how people first react to things in their hearts. Some people never put their hearts into striving toward the truth when things happen, and instead always think about handling those things by human means. As a result, they flounder around for a long time, they torment themselves until their faces become wan with exhaustion, but they still do not put the truth into practice. This is how pitiful those who do not pursue the truth are. Though you may now perform your duty willingly, and you may make sacrifices and expend yourself willingly, if you still have misunderstandings, speculations, doubts, or complaints regarding God, or even rebelliousness and resistance against Him, or if you use various methods and techniques to oppose Him and reject His sovereignty over you—if you do not resolve these things—then it will be nigh impossible for the truth to be master of your person, and your life will be exhausting. People often struggle and are tormented in these negative states, as if they had sunk into a quagmire, and they are always preoccupied with the idea of right and wrong. How can they discover and understand the truth? To seek the truth, one must first submit. Then, after a period of experience, they will be able to gain some enlightenment, at which point it is easy to understand the truth. If one is always trying to work out what is right and wrong and gets caught up in what is true and false, they have no way to discover or understand the truth. And what will come of it if one can never understand the truth? Not understanding the truth gives rise to notions and misunderstandings about God; when one has misunderstandings about God, they are likely to complain about Him. When these complaints burst forth, they become opposition; opposition to God is resistance against Him, and a serious transgression. If one has committed many transgressions, then they have committed manifold evils, and should be punished. This is the sort of thing that comes of being forever unable to understand the truth. So, the pursuit of truth is not merely meant to have you perform your duty well, to be obedient, to behave by the rules, to appear devout, or to have saintly decorum. It is not merely meant to achieve these things; principally it is meant to resolve the various incorrect views you harbor toward God. The purpose of understanding the truth is to resolve people’s corrupt dispositions; when those corrupt dispositions are resolved, people will no longer have misunderstandings about God. These two things are linked. At the same time as people resolve their corrupt dispositions, the relationship between them and God will gradually improve and become increasingly normal. Once their corrupt dispositions are resolved, therefore, people’s misgivings, suspicions, testing, misunderstandings, questions, and grievances regarding God, and even their resistance, will all be resolved, bit by bit. What immediate manifestation occurs when a person’s corrupt dispositions are resolved? Their attitude toward God changes. They can face everything with a God-obeying heart, and then their relationship with Him will improve. If they understand the truth then they will be able to put it into practice. They have a God-obeying heart so they won’t be perfunctory in the performance of their duty, let alone will they deceive God. In this way, they will have fewer and fewer notions and misunderstandings about God, their relationship with Him will become more and more normal, and they’ll be able to fully obey God when performing their duty. If they don’t solve the issue of their corrupt dispositions, they’ll never be able to attain a normal relationship with God, and never have an obedient heart toward Him. Just like unbelievers, they will be too rebellious, always denying and resisting God in their heart, and it will be impossible for them to perform their duty well. This is why pursuing and practicing the truth is so critical! You don’t pursue the truth, but still want to resolve your notions, misunderstandings, and complaints about God—can you achieve this? Definitely not. Some people say: “I’m just a simple person, I don’t have anything like notions, misunderstandings, or complaints. I don’t think about these things.” Can you guarantee that you don’t have any notions if you don’t think about it? Can you avoid revealing your corrupt dispositions by not thinking about it? No matter what corruption someone reveals, it is always determined by their nature. People all live by their satanic nature; their satanic dispositions are deeply rooted within them, and have become their nature essence. People have no means by which to eradicate their satanic dispositions, it is only by using the truth and God’s words that they can gradually solve all the issues of their corrupt dispositions.
—The Word, Vol. 3. The Discourses of Christ of the Last Days. Only by Pursuing the Truth Can One Resolve Their Notions and Misunderstandings of God
I take pleasure in those who are not suspicious of others, and I like those who readily accept the truth; toward these two kinds of people I show great care, for in My eyes they are honest people. If you are deceitful, then you will be guarded and suspicious toward all people and matters, and thus your faith in Me will be built upon a foundation of suspicion. I could never acknowledge such faith. Lacking true faith, you are even more devoid of true love. And if you are liable to doubt God and speculate about Him at will, then you are, without question, the most deceitful of all people. You speculate whether God can be like man: unpardonably sinful, of petty character, devoid of fairness and reason, lacking a sense of justice, given to vicious tactics, treacherous and cunning, pleased by evil and darkness, and so on. Is not the reason that people have such thoughts because they lack the slightest knowledge of God? Such faith is nothing short of sin! There are even some who believe that the ones who please Me are precisely those who flatter and bootlick, and that those lacking in such skills will be unwelcome in the house of God and will lose their place there. Is this the only knowledge you have acquired after all these years? Is this what you have gained? And your knowledge of Me does not stop at these misunderstandings; even worse is your blasphemy against God’s Spirit and vilification of Heaven. This is why I say that such faith as yours will only cause you to stray further from Me and be in greater opposition against Me. Throughout many years of work, you have seen many truths, but do you know what My ears have heard? How many among you are willing to accept the truth? You all believe you are willing to pay the price for the truth, but how many of you have truly suffered for the truth? There is nothing but unrighteousness in your hearts, which makes you think that everyone, no matter who they are, is equally deceitful and crooked—to the point that you even believe that God incarnate could, like a normal person, be without a kind heart or benevolent love. More than that, you believe that a noble character and a merciful, benevolent nature exist only within the God in heaven. You believe that such a saint does not exist, that only darkness and evil reign on earth, while God is something with which people entrust their longing for the good and beautiful, a legendary figure fabricated by them. In your minds, the God in heaven is very upstanding, righteous, and great, worthy of worship and admiration; this God on earth, meanwhile, is but a substitute, and an instrument, of the God in heaven. You believe this God could not be the equal of the God in heaven, much less be mentioned in the same breath as Him. When it comes to the greatness and honor of God, they belong to the glory of the God in heaven, but when it comes to the nature and the corruption of man, they are attributes in which the God on earth has a part. The God in heaven is eternally lofty, while the God on earth is forever insignificant, weak, and incompetent. The God in heaven is not given to emotion, only righteousness, while the God on earth only has selfish motives and is without any fairness or reason. The God in heaven has not the slightest crookedness and is forever faithful, while the God on earth always has a dishonest side. The God in heaven loves man dearly, while the God on earth shows man inadequate care, even neglecting him entirely. This erroneous knowledge has long been kept within your hearts and may also be perpetuated in the future. You regard all deeds of Christ from the standpoint of the unrighteous and evaluate all His work, as well as His identity and essence, from the perspective of the wicked. You have made a grave mistake and done that which has never been done by those coming before you. That is, you serve only the lofty God in heaven with a crown upon His head, and never attend to the God whom you regard as so insignificant that He is invisible to you. Is this not your sin? Is this not a classic example of your offense against the disposition of God? You worship the God in heaven. You adore lofty images and esteem those distinguished for their eloquence. You are gladly commanded by the God that fills your hands with riches, and crave the God who can fulfill your every desire. The only One you do not worship is this God who is not lofty; the only thing you hate is association with this God whom no man can regard highly. The only thing you are unwilling to do is to serve this God who has never given you a single penny, and the only One who is unable to make you yearn for Him is this unlovely God. This God cannot enable you to broaden your horizons, to feel as if you have found a treasure, much less fulfill what you wish. Why, then, do you follow Him? Have you given thought to questions like this? What you do does not merely offend this Christ; more importantly, it offends the God in heaven. This is not, I think, the purpose of your faith in God!
… I wish for you one day soon to understand this truth: To know God, you must know not only the God in heaven but, even more importantly, the God on earth. Do not get your priorities confused or allow the secondary to supersede the principal. Only in this way can you truly build a good relationship with God, become closer to God, and bring your heart closer to Him. If you have been of the faith for many years and have long associated with Me, yet remain distant from Me, then I say it must be that you often offend the disposition of God, and your end will be very difficult to reckon. If the many years of association with Me have not only failed to change you into a person possessed of humanity and the truth, but, moreover, have ingrained your evil ways into your nature, and you not only have twice as much arrogance as before, but your misunderstandings of Me have also multiplied, such that you come to regard Me as your little sidekick, then I say that your affliction is no longer skin deep but has penetrated to your very bones. All that remains is for you to wait for your funeral arrangements to be made. You need not beseech Me then to be your God, for you have committed a sin deserving of death, an unforgivable sin. Even if I could have mercy on you, the God in heaven will insist on taking your life, for your offense against the disposition of God is no ordinary problem, but one of a very grave nature. When the time comes, do not blame Me for not telling you beforehand. It all comes back to this: When you associate with Christ—the God on earth—as an ordinary person, that is, when you believe that this God is nothing but a person, it is then that you shall perish. This is My only admonishment to you all.
—The Word, Vol. 1. The Appearance and Work of God. How to Know the God on Earth
Related Experiential Testimonies
Finally Free of Misunderstandings
Judgment and Chastisement Reveal God’s Salvation
The Purpose Behind God’s Arrangements for Man
God’s Intention of Saving Man Will Not Change
God Likes Those With Resolve