16. The Notion of the Religious World That: “When the Lord Returns, He Could Not Possibly Appear and Work in China”
The religious world believes that the work God did in the Old and New Testament ages was all done in Israel, and that when the Lord Jesus returns in the last days it will be in Israel too, and that He could never appear and perform work in China.
Words From the Bible
“For My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways My ways, said Jehovah” (Isaiah 55:8).
“For as the lightning comes out of the east, and shines even to the west; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be. For wherever the carcass is, there will the eagles be gathered together” (Matthew 24:27–28).
“For from the rising of the sun even to the going down of the same My name shall be great among the Gentiles…, said Jehovah of hosts” (Malachi 1:11).
Words of Almighty God of the Last Days
God and man cannot be spoken of on equal terms. His essence and His work are most unfathomable and incomprehensible to man. If God does not personally do His work and speak His words in the world of man, then man would never be able to understand the will of God. And so, even those who have devoted their entire lives to God would not be able to receive His approval. If God does not set to work, then however well man does, it will all be for naught, because God’s thoughts will always be higher than the thoughts of man, and God’s wisdom is beyond man’s comprehension. And so I say that those who claim to “fully understand” God and His work are an inept lot; they are all overweening and ignorant. Man should not define the work of God; moreover, man cannot define the work of God. In the eyes of God, man is as insignificant as an ant; so how can man fathom God’s work? Those who like to spout, “God does not work in this or that way,” or “God is like this or that”—are they not speaking arrogantly? We should all know that man, who is of the flesh, has been corrupted by Satan. Mankind’s very nature is to oppose God. Mankind cannot be on par with God, much less can mankind hope to advise the work of God. As for how God guides man, this is the work of God Himself. It is fitting that man should submit, without professing this or that view, for man is but dust. Since it is our intent to seek God, we should not superimpose our notions onto His work for God’s consideration, still less should we employ our corrupt disposition to its utmost to deliberately oppose the work of God. Would that not make us antichrists? How could such people believe in God? Since we believe that there is a God, and since we wish to satisfy Him and to see Him, we should seek the way of truth, and should look for a way to be compatible with God. We should not stand in stiff-necked opposition to Him. What good could possibly come of such actions?
—The Word, Vol. 1. The Appearance and Work of God. Preface
The appearance of God cannot be reconciled with man’s notions, still less can God appear at the behest of man. God makes His own choices and His own plans when He does His work; moreover, He has His own objectives and His own methods. Whatever work He does, He has no need to discuss it with man or seek his advice, much less to notify each and every person of His work. This is the disposition of God, which should, moreover, be recognized by everyone. If you desire to witness the appearance of God, to follow God’s footsteps, then you must first walk away from your own notions. You must not demand that God do this or that, much less should you place Him within your own confines and limit Him to your own notions. Instead, you should demand of yourselves how you ought to seek God’s footprints, how you ought to accept God’s appearance, and how you ought to submit to the new work of God: This is what man should do. Since man is not the truth, and is not possessed of the truth, he should seek, accept, and obey.
—The Word, Vol. 1. The Appearance and Work of God. Appendix 1: The Appearance of God Has Ushered in a New Age
In many places, God has prophesied that He will be gaining a group of overcomers in the land of Sinim. Since it is in the world’s East that overcomers are to be gained, so the place where God sets foot in His second incarnation is without a doubt the land of Sinim, the exact spot where the great red dragon lies coiled. There, God will gain the descendants of the great red dragon so that it is thoroughly defeated and shamed. God is going to awaken these people, heavily burdened with suffering, to rouse them till they are fully awake, and to make them walk out of the fog and reject the great red dragon. They will wake from their dream, recognize the substance of the great red dragon, become able to give their whole heart to God, rise up from the oppression of the dark forces, stand up in the East of the world, and become proof of God’s victory. Only in this way will God gain glory. For this reason alone, God brought the work that came to an end in Israel to the land where the great red dragon lies coiled and, nearly two thousand years after departing, has come once again into the flesh to continue the work of the Age of Grace. To man’s naked eye, God is launching new work in the flesh. But in God’s view, He is continuing the work of the Age of Grace, but only after an interregnum of a few thousand years, and only with a change in the location and the program of His work.
—The Word, Vol. 1. The Appearance and Work of God. Work and Entry (6)
One stage of the work of the two previous ages was carried out in Israel, and one was carried out in Judea. Generally speaking, neither stage of this work left Israel, and each was performed upon the first chosen people. As a result, the Israelites believe that Jehovah God is only the God of the Israelites. Because Jesus worked in Judea, where He carried out the work of the crucifixion, the Jews view Him as the Redeemer of the Jewish people. They think that He is solely the King of the Jews, not of any other people; that He is not the Lord who redeems the English, nor the Lord who redeems the Americans, but the Lord who redeems the Israelites; and that it was the Jews whom He redeemed in Israel. In actuality, God is the Master of all things. He is the God of all creation. He is not only the God of the Israelites, nor of the Jews; He is the God of all creation. The previous two stages of His work took place in Israel, which has created certain notions in people. They believe that Jehovah did His work in Israel, that Jesus Himself carried out His work in Judea, and, furthermore, that He became flesh to work—and whatever the case, this work did not extend beyond Israel. God did not work in Egyptians or Indians; He only worked in the Israelites. Thus do people form various notions, and delineate God’s work within a certain scope. They say that when God works, He must do so among the chosen people, and in Israel; save for the Israelites, God works upon no others, nor is there any greater scope to His work. They are especially strict when it comes to keeping God incarnate in line, and do not permit Him to move beyond the bounds of Israel. Are these not all just human notions? God made all of the heavens and earth and all things, He made all of creation, so how could He restrict His work to only Israel? If that were the case, what would be the point of Him making all creation? He created the whole world, and He has carried out His six-thousand-year management plan not only in Israel, but upon every person in the universe. Regardless of whether they live in China, the United States, the United Kingdom or Russia, every person is a descendant of Adam; they are all made by God. Not one of them can escape the bounds of creation, and not one of them can separate themselves from the label of “descendant of Adam.” They are all God’s creatures, they are all the offspring of Adam, and they are also all the corrupted descendants of Adam and Eve. It is not only the Israelites who are God’s creation, but all people; it is just that some have been cursed, and some have been blessed. There are many agreeable things about the Israelites; God worked upon them in the beginning because they were the least corrupt. The Chinese do not bear comparison to them; they are far inferior. So, God initially worked among the people of Israel, and the second stage of His work was only carried out in Judea—which has led to a lot of notions and rules among man. In fact, if God were to act according to human notions, He would only be the God of the Israelites, and would thus be incapable of extending His work to the Gentile nations, for He would only be the God of the Israelites, and not the God of all creation. The prophecies said that Jehovah’s name would be magnified among the Gentile nations, that it would spread to the Gentile nations. Why was this prophesied? If God were only the God of the Israelites, then He would only work in Israel. Moreover, He would not spread this work, and He would not make such a prophecy. Since He did make this prophecy, He will surely extend His work among the Gentile nations, among every nation and all lands. Since He said this, He must do it; this is His plan, for He is the Lord who created the heavens and earth and all things, and the God of all creation. Regardless of whether He works among the Israelites, or throughout the whole of Judea, the work He does is the work of the entire universe, and the work of all humanity. The work He does today in the nation of the great red dragon—in a Gentile nation—is still the work of all humanity. Israel could be the base for His work on earth; likewise, China can also be the base for His work among the Gentile nations. Has He not now fulfilled the prophecy that “the name of Jehovah shall be magnified among the Gentile nations”? The first step of His work among the Gentile nations is this work, the work He does in the nation of the great red dragon. That God incarnate should work in this land, and work among these cursed people, is particularly at odds with human notions; these are the lowliest people of all, they have no worth, and they were initially forsaken by Jehovah. People can be abandoned by other people, but if they are abandoned by God, then no one is more devoid of status, no one is of lower worth. For a creature of God, being possessed by Satan or being abandoned by people is something that feels very painful—but for a creature to be forsaken by the Creator means that they could have no lower status. The descendants of Moab were cursed, and they were born in this backward country; without a doubt, of all the people under the influence of darkness, the descendants of Moab have the lowest status. Because these people have heretofore been of the lowest status, the work done upon them is best able to shatter human notions, and is also most beneficial to the whole of God’s six-thousand-year management plan. Doing such work among these people is the best way of shattering human notions, and with this God launches an era; with this He shatters all human notions; with this He ends the work of the entire Age of Grace. His first work was carried out in Judea, within the bounds of Israel; among the Gentile nations, He did not do any work to launch the new era. The final stage of work is not only carried out among the Gentiles, but even more so among those who have been cursed. This one point is the evidence most capable of humiliating Satan, and thus, God “becomes” the God of all creation in the universe, the Lord of all things, the object of worship for everything with life.
—The Word, Vol. 1. The Appearance and Work of God. God Is the Lord of All Creation
The work of Jehovah was the creation of the world, it was the beginning; this stage of work is the end of work, and it is the conclusion. At the start, God’s work was carried out among the chosen ones of Israel, and it was the dawn of a new epoch in the most holy of all places. The last stage of work is carried out in the most impure of all countries, to judge the world and bring the age to an end. In the first stage, God’s work was done in the brightest of all places, and the last stage is carried out in the darkest of all places, and this darkness will be driven out, the light brought forth, and all the people conquered. When the people of this most impure and darkest of all places have been conquered, and the entire population has acknowledged that there is a God, who is the true God, and every person has been utterly convinced, then this fact will be used to carry out the work of conquest throughout the entire universe. This stage of work is symbolic: Once the work of this age has been finished, the work of six thousand years of management will come to a complete end. Once those in the darkest of all places have been conquered, it goes without saying that it will also be so everywhere else. As such, only the work of conquest in China carries meaningful symbolism. China embodies all forces of darkness, and the people of China represent all those who are of the flesh, of Satan, and of flesh and blood. It is the Chinese people who have been most corrupted by the great red dragon, who have the strongest opposition to God, whose humanity is most base and impure, and so they are the archetype of all corrupt humanity. This is not to say that other countries have no problems at all; the notions of man are all the same, and although the people of these countries may be of good caliber, if they do not know God, then it must be that they oppose Him. Why did the Jews also oppose and defy God? Why did the Pharisees also oppose Him? Why did Judas betray Jesus? At the time, many of the disciples did not know Jesus. Why, after Jesus was crucified and rose again, did people still not believe in Him? Is man’s disobedience not all the same? It is merely that the people of China are made an example of, and when they are conquered they will become models and specimens, and will serve as references for others. Why have I always said that you are an adjunct to My management plan? It is in the people of China that corruption, impurity, unrighteousness, opposition, and rebelliousness are manifested most completely and revealed in all their varied forms. On the one hand, they are of poor caliber, and on the other, their lives and mindset are backward, and their habits, social environment, family of birth—all are poor and the most backward. Their status, too, is low. The work in this place is symbolic, and after this test work has been carried out in its entirety, God’s subsequent work will be much easier. If this step of work can be completed, then the subsequent work goes without saying. Once this step of work has been accomplished, great success will have been fully achieved, and the work of conquest throughout the entire universe will have come to a complete end. In fact, once the work among you has been successful, this will be equivalent to the success throughout the entire universe. This is the significance of why I have you act as a model and a specimen. Rebelliousness, opposition, impurity, unrighteousness—all are found in these people, and in them is represented all the rebelliousness of mankind. They are really something. Thus, they are held up as the epitome of conquest, and once they have been conquered they will naturally become specimens and models for others.
—The Word, Vol. 1. The Appearance and Work of God. The Vision of God’s Work (2)
God’s work is directed at all of creation; it is not dependent on whether someone is cursed after they were created. His management work is directed at all of creation, not those chosen people who have not been cursed. Since God wishes to carry out His work among His creation, He will certainly carry it out to successful completion, and He will work among those people who are beneficial to His work. Therefore, He shatters all conventions when He works among people; to Him, the words “cursed,” “chastised” and “blessed” are meaningless! The Jewish people are good, as are the chosen people of Israel; they are people of good caliber and humanity. In the beginning, it was among them that Jehovah launched His work, and performed His earliest work—but to perform the work of conquest on them today would be meaningless. They, too, may be part of creation, and there may be much that is positive about them, but to carry out this stage of work among them would be pointless; God would not be able to conquer people, nor would He be able to convince all of creation, which is precisely the point of switching His work to these people of the nation of the great red dragon. Of greatest significance here is His launching an era, His shattering of all rules and all human notions and His ending of the work of the entire Age of Grace. If His current work were carried out among the Israelites, by the time His six-thousand-year management plan comes to a close, everyone would believe that God is only the God of the Israelites, that only the Israelites are God’s chosen people, that only the Israelites deserve to inherit God’s blessing and promise. God’s incarnation during the last days in the Gentile nation of the country of the great red dragon accomplishes the work of God as the God of all creation; He completes the whole of His management work, and He ends the central part of His work in the nation of the great red dragon. The core of these three stages of work is the salvation of man—namely, making all of creation worship the Creator. Thus, there is great meaning to each stage of work; God does nothing that is without meaning or value. On one hand, this stage of work ushers in a new era and ends the previous two eras; on the other hand, it shatters all human notions and all the old ways of human belief and knowledge. The work of the previous two ages was carried out according to different human notions; this stage, however, completely eliminates human notions, thereby utterly conquering humanity. Through conquering the descendants of Moab, through the work carried out among the descendants of Moab, God shall conquer all people throughout the universe. This is the deepest significance of this stage of His work, and it is the most valuable aspect of this stage of His work. Even if you now know that your own status is lowly and that you are of low worth, you will still feel that you have met with the most joyous thing: You have inherited a great blessing, received a great promise, and you can help accomplish this great work of God. You have beheld God’s true countenance, you know God’s inherent disposition, and you do God’s will. The previous two stages of God’s work were carried out in Israel. If this stage of His work during the last days were also carried out among the Israelites, not only would all of creation believe that only the Israelites were God’s chosen people, but God’s entire management plan would fail to attain its desired effect. During the period in which the two stages of His work were carried out in Israel, no new work—nor any work of launching a new era—was carried out among the Gentile nations. Today’s stage of work—the work of launching a new era—is first carried out among the Gentile nations, and is, furthermore, initially carried out among the descendants of Moab, thus launching the entire era. God has shattered any knowledge contained within human notions, permitting none of it to remain. In His work of conquest, He has shattered human notions, those old, earlier human ways of knowledge. He lets people see that with God there are no rules, that there is nothing old about God, that the work He does is entirely liberated, entirely free, and that He is right in all He does. You must fully submit to any work that He does among creation. All of the work He does has meaning, and is carried out according to His own will and wisdom, and not according to human choices and notions. If something is beneficial to His work, He does it; and if something is not beneficial to His work, He does not, no matter how good it is! He works and selects the recipients and location of His work in accordance with the meaning and purpose of His work. He does not adhere to past rules when He works, nor does He follow old formulas. Instead, He plans His work according to the work’s significance. Ultimately, He will attain a genuine effect and the anticipated goal. If you do not understand these things today, this work will have no effect in you.
—The Word, Vol. 1. The Appearance and Work of God. God Is the Lord of All Creation
According to human notions, I would have to be born in a nice country to show that I am of high status, to show that I am of great worth, to show My honor, holiness, and greatness. If I had been born in a place that recognizes Me, in an elite family, and if I were of high position and status, then I would be treated very well. That would not benefit My work, and could such great salvation still be revealed then? All those who see Me would obey Me, and they would not be polluted with filth. I should have been born in this kind of place. That is what you believe. But think about it: Did God come to the earth for enjoyment, or for work? If I worked in that kind of easy, comfortable place, could I gain My full glory? Would I be able to conquer all of My creation? When God came to the earth, He was not of the world, and He did not become flesh in order to enjoy the world. The place where working would reveal His disposition and be most meaningful is the place where He was born. Whether it is a holy or a filthy land, and no matter where He works, He is holy. Everything in the world was created by Him, though it has all been corrupted by Satan. However, all things still belong to Him; they are all in His hands. He comes to a filthy land and works there in order to reveal His holiness; He only does this for the sake of His work, which means He endures great humiliation to do such work in order to save the people of this filthy land. This is done so as to bear witness, for the sake of all of mankind. What such work shows people is God’s righteousness, and it is better able to display God’s supremacy. His greatness and uprightness are manifested in the salvation of a group of lowly people whom others scorn. Being born in a filthy land does not at all prove that He is lowly; it simply allows all of creation to see His greatness and His true love for mankind. The more He does so, the more it reveals His pure love, His flawless love for man. God is holy and righteous. Even though He was born in a filthy land, and even though He lives with those people who are full of filthiness, just as Jesus lived with sinners in the Age of Grace, is every bit of His work not done for the sake of all mankind’s survival? Is it all not so that mankind can gain great salvation? Two thousand years ago, He lived with sinners for a number of years. That was for the sake of redemption. Today, He is living with a group of filthy, lowly people. This is for the sake of salvation. Is all His work not for the sake of you humans? If not to save mankind, why would He have lived and suffered with sinners for so many years after being born in a manger? And if not to save mankind, why would He return to the flesh a second time, born in this land where demons congregate, and live with these people who have been deeply corrupted by Satan? Is God not faithful? What part of His work has not been for mankind? What part has not been for your destiny? God is holy—this is immutable! He is unpolluted by filth, though He has come to a filthy land; all of this can only mean that God’s love for mankind is extremely selfless and the suffering and humiliation He endures is extremely great!
—The Word, Vol. 1. The Appearance and Work of God. The Significance of Saving the Descendants of Moab
Regardless of whether you are American, British, or any other nationality, you should step outside the confines of your own nationality, transcending your own self, and view the work of God from the identity of a created being. In this way, you will not place limitations on the footprints of God. This is because, nowadays, many people conceive it to be impossible that God will appear in a particular nation or among a certain people. How profound is the significance of God’s work, and how important is the appearance of God! How can man’s notions and thinking possibly take their measure? And so I say, you should break through notions of nationality and ethnicity in order to seek the appearance of God. Only thus will you not be constrained by your own notions; only thus will you be qualified to welcome the appearance of God. Otherwise, you will remain in eternal darkness, and never gain the approval of God.
God is the God of the entire human race. He does not consider Himself the private property of any nation or people, but goes about doing His work as He has planned it, without being confined to any form, nation, or people. Perhaps you have never imagined this form, or perhaps your attitude to this form is one of denial, or perhaps the nation where God reveals Himself and the people among whom He reveals Himself just happen to be discriminated against by everyone and just happen to be the most backward on earth. Yet God has His wisdom. With His great power, and by means of His truth and His disposition, He has truly gained a group of people who are of one mind with Him, and a group of people that He wished to make complete—a group, conquered by Him, who, having endured all manner of trials and tribulations and all manner of persecution, can follow Him to the very end. The aim of God’s appearance, which is not limited to any form or nation, is to enable Him to complete His work as He has planned it. This is just as when God became flesh in Judea: His aim was to complete the work of the crucifixion in redeeming the entire human race. Yet the Jews believed that it was impossible for God to do this, and they thought it impossible that God could become flesh and assume the form of the Lord Jesus. Their “impossible” became the basis on which they condemned and opposed God, and ultimately led to the destruction of Israel. Today, many people have committed a similar error. They proclaim with all their might the imminent appearance of God, yet at the same time condemn His appearance; their “impossible” once more confines the appearance of God within the limits of their imagination. And so I have seen many people break into wild and raucous laughter after coming upon the words of God. But is this laughter any different from the condemnation and blasphemy of the Jews? You are not reverent in the presence of the truth, still less do you possess an attitude of yearning. All you do is study indiscriminately and wait with blithe unconcern. What can you gain from studying and waiting like this? Do you think you will receive personal guidance from God? If you cannot discern God’s utterances, in what way are you qualified to witness the appearance of God? Wherever God appears, there the truth is expressed, and there the voice of God will be. Only those who can accept the truth will be able to hear the voice of God, and only such people are qualified to witness the appearance of God. Let go of your notions! Quiet yourself and give these words a careful reading. If you yearn for the truth, God will enlighten you and you will understand His will and His words. Let go of your opinions about the “impossible”! The more that people believe something is impossible, the more likely it is to occur, because the wisdom of God soars higher than the heavens, God’s thoughts are higher than man’s thoughts, and the work of God transcends the limits of man’s thinking and notions. The more that something is impossible, the more it has truth that can be sought; the more something lies beyond man’s notions and imagination, the more it contains the will of God. This is because, no matter where He reveals Himself, God is still God, and His essence will never change on account of the location or manner of His appearance. The disposition of God remains the same regardless of where His footprints are, and no matter where the footprints of God are, He is the God of all mankind, just as the Lord Jesus is not only the God of the Israelites, but is also the God of all the people of Asia, Europe, and America, and even more than that, He is the one and only God in the entire universe. So let us seek God’s will and discover His appearance in His utterances, and keep pace with His footsteps! God is the truth, the way, and the life. His words and His appearance exist concurrently, and His disposition and footprints are open to mankind at all times. Dear brothers and sisters, I hope that you can see the appearance of God in these words, begin following His footsteps as you stride forward into a new age, and enter into the beautiful new heaven and earth that God has prepared for those who await His appearance!
—The Word, Vol. 1. The Appearance and Work of God. Appendix 1: The Appearance of God Has Ushered in a New Age
I gave My glory to Israel and then took it away, thereby bringing the Israelites to the East and all of humanity to the East. I have brought them all to the light so that they may be reunited with it, and be in association with it, and no longer have to search for it. I shall let all who are searching see the light again and see the glory I had in Israel; I shall let them see that I have long ago come down upon a white cloud into the midst of mankind, let them see the countless clouds of white and fruits in their abundant clusters, and, what is more, let them see Jehovah God of Israel. I shall let them look upon the Master of the Jews, the longed-for Messiah, and the full appearance of Me who have been persecuted by kings throughout the ages. I shall work upon the entire universe and I shall perform great work, revealing all My glory and all My deeds to man in the last days. I shall show My glorious countenance in its fullness to those who have waited many years for Me, to those who have longed for Me to come upon a white cloud, to Israel that has longed for Me to appear once again, and to all mankind who persecute Me, so that all will know that I have long ago taken away My glory and brought it to the East, and it is no longer in Judea. For the last days have already come!
Throughout the universe I am doing My work, and in the East, thunderous crashes issue forth endlessly, shaking all nations and denominations. It is My voice that has led all men into the present. I cause all men to be conquered by My voice, to fall into this stream, and submit before Me, for I have long since reclaimed My glory from all the earth and issued it forth anew in the East. Who does not long to see My glory? Who does not anxiously await My return? Who does not thirst for My reappearance? Who does not pine for My loveliness? Who would not come to the light? Who would not look upon the richness of Canaan? Who does not long for the return of the Redeemer? Who does not adore Him who is great in power? My voice shall spread throughout the earth; I will face My chosen people and speak more words to them. Like the mighty thunders that shake the mountains and rivers, I speak My words to the whole universe and to mankind. Hence the words in My mouth have become man’s treasure, and all men cherish My words. The lightning flashes from the East all the way to the West. My words are such that man is loath to give them up and at the same time finds them unfathomable, but rejoices in them all the more. All men are glad and joyful, celebrating My coming, as if an infant had just been born. By means of My voice, I shall bring all men before Me. Thenceforth, I shall formally enter into the race of men so that they will come to worship Me. With the glory that I radiate and the words in My mouth, I shall make it such that all men come before Me and see that the lightning flashes from the East and that I have also descended unto the “Mount of Olives” of the East. They will see that I have already long been on earth, no longer as the Son of the Jews but as the Lightning of the East. For I have long since been resurrected, and have departed from mankind’s midst, and then reappeared with glory among men. I am He who was worshiped countless ages before now, and I am also the infant forsaken by the Israelites countless ages before now. Moreover, I am the all-glorious Almighty God of the present age! Let all come before My throne and see My glorious countenance, hear My voice, and look upon My deeds. This is the entirety of My will; it is the end and the climax of My plan, as well as the purpose of My management: to have every nation worship Me, every tongue acknowledge Me, every man repose his faith in Me, and every people be subject unto Me!
—The Word, Vol. 1. The Appearance and Work of God. The Seven Thunders Peal—Prophesying That the Gospel of the Kingdom Shall Spread Throughout the Universe
Related Experiential Testimonies
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