God’s Word Leads Step by Step to Victory
I was born in a Chinese Christian family, and my grandmother always used to take me to the church for gatherings and to sing hymns in praise of God when I was young…. After I grew up I obtained some grace of the Lord and experienced some of the Lord’s deeds, and I felt even more that the Lord is trustworthy. The Lord’s love for people is the truest, and the Lord’s word has authority and power and can give people hope. Whenever I would sing hymns, pray to the Lord, and read the word of the Lord, I would feel especially steady and tranquil in my heart. I came to the USA in 2007, and was baptized at church in October of 2010, when I began my service. At that time, my heart was impassioned. Because my house was far away from the church, I had to get up at 5:00 to take the subway there. But I felt a sweetness in my heart and that as long as I could satisfy God then suffering these hardships would be worth it. I took part in everything in the church, big or small, and I gained a lot of enlightenment from reading the Bible. But after a few years, without knowing why, when I listened to pastors I would doze off. I didn’t get any clear enlightenment from reading the Bible, and my spirit often sank down into weakness. When the pastor preached, I thought it was the same old cliches, without any new light. Every time I was at a gathering, as soon as it was over, the brothers and sisters would start chatting about things that had nothing to do with believing in the Lord. Some would be selling insurance, some would act as matchmakers, and still others talked about where they were going to go on vacation…. Seeing all this, I couldn’t help but be reminded of what was recorded in the Bible about how at the end of the Age of Law, when Jesus came to carry out His work, the Jews were doing business in the temple selling oxen and sheep and doves. When Jesus saw this, he overturned the moneychangers’ tables and the stools of those selling doves. He reprimanded them for having turned a temple for worshiping God into a den of thieves. Seeing the churches of today having become just like the temple was at that time was something that especially caused me to feel pain and helplessness in my heart. I was also perplexed and couldn’t understand how the church could have changed like this. For this reason, I would often come into the presence of God and lament bitterly, “Oh Lord! Where are You? The churches are already no longer churches, and most people just say they believe in You, but their hearts are actually very far from You. All that they do does not receive Your praise. Lord! Where are You? When will You come to receive us? …”
Just when I was in pain and perplexed, I came to know a sister who bore witness for me about’s work in the last days. Through the fellowship about the word of Almighty God, I finally understood that the desolation of the church was because of an increase of things within it that went against the law. Mainly, it was that the pastors and elders were not carrying out the word of the Lord, not observing the commandments of the Lord, leading the believers to deviate from the way of the Lord, following along with worldly trends, shunning and betraying the Lord, and bringing about the hatred and loathing of the Lord. Another thing was that God had long since become incarnate to do a new stage of work, which is none other than the work of judging and cleansing people in the last days. Subsequently, through God having done a new work, the work of the Holy Spirit has also transmitted from the church of the Age of Grace to the people keeping up with God’s new work. In the churches there is no work of the Holy Spirit anymore, so now there is every kind of appearance of disorder. The sisters went from speaking about the significance of God working to lead mankind in living their lives in the Age of Law of the Old Testament, to talking about the significance of the work of the in being crucified for the salvation of mankind, and then to discussing the intended results of the judgment work of Almighty God in the last days for thoroughly cleansing and saving people. She spoke with remarkable thoroughness about each stage of God’s work, always on the basis of Scripture. After I heard this, I was convinced in both heart and mind, and right then and there I happily accepted the work of Almighty God in the last days. In August of 2012, I began to participate in the life of the church, and to fellowship about the word of God together with the brothers and sisters as well as to share knowledge of experience of . Gradually, the problem of my spirit being thirsty was resolved. In order to let more people be able to hear God’s voice quickly, and to return to the presence of the throne of God, after three months I began to preach the gospel to the brothers and sisters of my original church. I never thought I would face attacks from my family members who were believers and from the pastors and preachers of the church. Fortunately, having the guidance of the word of God, I gradually triumphed over Satan’s temptations, and I stood the witness for God.
One day in January of 2013, I took Sister Liu ofto the house of a certain sister of my original church to spread the gospel to her. Just when we were fellowshiping, my mother-in-law and my sister-in-law suddenly stormed in from outside. My mother-in-law pointed to Sister Liu and abused her loudly, saying: “What did you come here for? Why did you come to our church to steal our sheep? …” I was intimidated by this spectacle that erupted all of a sudden, and I didn’t know how my mother-in-law who had been a believer for many years and was always good-natured and humble could have suddenly changed like this. To let Sister Liu continue to bear witness to the work of God in the last days to this sister, I hurriedly urged my mother-in-law and my sister-in-law to leave the sister’s house with me. After returning home, my mother-in-law angrily said to me: “If not for Sister So-and-so’s mother calling me on the phone today, I still wouldn’t know that you went to her house to spread the gospel! The preacher in our church and the other workers all say that if you believe in Almighty God then you have moved away from the Lord Jesus. Our pastors have believed in the Lord for decades, so wouldn’t they understand better than you? You are too young, and you don’t have life experience. You’ve been confused and led astray from the path!” When I heard my mother-in-law’s words, I remembered the truth that I had seen during gatherings about the difference between following God and following man. Almighty God says: “For where there are the new words of God, there is the voice of God, and where there are the footsteps of God, there are the deeds of God. Where there is the expression of God, there is the appearance of God, and where there is the appearance of God, there exists the truth, the way, and the life” (“The Appearance of God Has Brought a New Age” in ). “Those who do not understand the truth always follow others: If people say that this is the work of the Holy Spirit, then you, too, say it is the work of the Holy Spirit; if people say it is the work of an evil spirit, then you, too, become doubtful, or also say it is the work of an evil spirit. You always parrot the words of others, and are incapable of distinguishing anything by yourself, nor are you able to think for yourself. This is someone without a position, who is unable to differentiate—such a person is a worthless wretch!” (“Only Those Who Know God and His Work Can Satisfy God” in The Word Appears in the Flesh). The word of God tells us clearly that in following God one must look for the truth, that only God can express the truth, and that only those who have found the One expressing the truth have found God. I saw the words expressed by Almighty God, knew the three stages of God’s work in saving mankind, and the mysteries of God’s six-thousand-year management plan. I learned what incarnation is, as well as the work of judgment in the last days, the work of the Holy Spirit, Satan’s work, God’s work, man’s work, and so on. All these words are the truth, and what they all speak of is God’s own work and God’s will with respect to mankind. They are God teaching us how to distinguish and forsake Satan and turn back to God. None of these truths can be expressed by a person. From when I was young until I grew up, I heard many pastors and elders preach, and not one of them was able to express these mysteries and truths. I was certain that the words of Almighty God are the voice of God. Almighty God is that “Spirit of truth” who was to come, and I am not wrong in following Almighty God. The word of God also allowed me to understand that on the road of following God, one must have their own views and can’t be a confused and undiscriminating person. Especially in investigating the true way, one must not just go along with what people around him are saying, otherwise it is easy to follow others in resisting and betraying God, and to lose the opportunity to receive salvation. The early Jewish people, because they did not care about being discriminating and didn’t have their own viewpoints, blindly believed what they heard from the priests and Pharisees, and they resisted and accused the Lord Jesus and suffered the punishment of God. My mother-in-law had not read the word of Almighty God, and had not sought to investigate the work of Almighty God, but had blindly and obediently listened to the words of the pastor. Isn’t this following man? By doing this, my mother-in-law is resisting and betraying God! Thinking of this, I said at once to my mother-in-law, “Mom, I have gone through ardent investigation of the work of Almighty God in the last days, and I have confirmed from the word of Almighty God that Almighty God is the returned Lord Jesus. Only then did I believe. In the Age of Law Jehovah proclaimed the laws for people to follow in their lives; in the Age of Grace, the Lord Jesus was crucified to save mankind; and in the last days, Almighty God expresses the truth and does the work of judging and cleansing people. He thoroughly rescues people from sin, allows people to break out of the bondage of their sinful nature, obtains people, and in the end brings people into a beautiful destination. These three stages of work are different kinds of work done in three different ages by one God, but the objective of the work was all for the salvation of mankind. In accepting the work of Almighty God in the last days, I was catching up with the Lamb’s footsteps, and I have not left the Lord Jesus behind. It’s like when at first the Lord Jesus came for work—those people who followed the Lord were not betraying Jehovah, but were catching up with the pace of God’s work. It is the same today, when Almighty God is doing a stage of work that judgment begins with the house of God on the basis of the work of the Lord Jesus. Accepting the work of God in the last days is catching up with pace of the newest stage of the work. How could it be betraying God? Mom, ‘Faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God’ (Rom 10:17). We can’t just blindly listen to and believe in the words of pastors, but must distinguish and investigate for ourselves, and only after that can we know what is true and what is false! Furthermore, at times when we do not understand, we must have hearts that revere God and not sin in our words, in order to avoid being like the Jews at that time in following the Pharisees and resisting God….” Just when I got to this point, my mother-in-law suddenly interrupted me and said, “Fine, enough! As early as 1997, I heard about The Church of Almighty God bearing witness that the Lord Jesus had already returned, and had done the work of judgment in the last days. But the pastors and elders all said this was untrue, and how couldn’t the priests and elders understand the Bible better than you? You shouldn’t believe anymore. If you persist in believing in Almighty God, we will sever relations, and my son will have to divorce you and you will have nothing but leaving the household….” My mother-in-law berated me loudly, and my sister-in-law was also there criticizing me. Since I felt afraid and bad, I continuously prayed to God: “God! You know my stature is small, and I am very scared right now in my heart. I am afraid that my mother-in-law will actually do the things she said. God! I am very weak, and I want You to give me more faith and strength, and let me be able to understand Your will, and to stand witness to You in this environment.” After praying, I felt a lot of peace in my heart, and I thought of the words in the Bible: “These are they which follow the Lamb wherever he goes” (Rev 14:4). I also thought of verses in the of God’s word: “Do not be discouraged. Do not be weak. God will reveal everything to you. The road to the kingdom is not that smooth, nothing is that simple! Blessings won’t be gained easily. Everyone will endure bitter trials and hardships, or your love to God won’t be stronger and you will not have true love for God. Circumstances, even they are minor, everyone needs to get past. It’s just that they differ to some degree. Circumstances are God’s blessings. How many of you have often knelt before God and asked for His blessings?” (“Bitterness Is God’s Blessing” in Follow the Lamb and Sing New Songs). At that time, I understood that when these things befall me it is with God’s permission. God was testing me through the words of my mother-in-law and my sister-in-law, to see if I still had the faith to continue following God. The road to the kingdom is bumpy, but since I was firmly of the opinion that it was the right path, no matter what dangers and obstacles there might be I must carry on following God. This is a loyalty to God that a Christian must be held onto. Having understood God’s will, I was steadfast in my heart. I told myself: I can’t give up on pursuing the truth just because of some suffering of the flesh, and even more so I can’t miss the extremely rare opportunity for God’s salvation for the sake of harmony in my family. God’s word has given me faith, and I have established my will: No matter how my mother-in-law and my sister-in-law compel and obstruct me, I will never give up following God!
Afterward, the matter of my belief in Almighty God reached the pastors, and when the pastors and preachers saw that the sisters of The Church of Almighty God and I had set up a stall in the street for spreading the gospel, they were very angry. After that they made it their mission to come to my house and preach to me, and great disturbance was caused to my life, that was very painful for me in my heart. One time, the preacher came to my house and preached to me, saying: “Sister, how could a person as smart as you be snatched away by? You have to come back quickly….” There was also a coworker who said, “Right! The good sheep in the church have all been snatched away. The Church of Almighty God is really threatening, stealing all the good sheep it can! Sister….” They wouldn’t stop talking, and in my heart I was constantly calling on God to help me. Then I said to them, “Brothers, if you want to seek the way of Almighty God, I am happy to investigate and fellowship about it with you. I can also ask the brothers and sisters of The Church of Almighty God to come and bear witness to the work of God in the last days at the church and let all the brothers and sisters hear it. We will see if the words of Almighty God are the expression of God and whether they are the voice of God. But if you still come to persuade me to give up believing in Almighty God, then stop talking!” The preacher immediately asked me: “You say that the word of Almighty God is the word of God, but what factual basis is there for that? How do you know that is the word of God?” I said, “I have read a lot of the word of Almighty God. The word of Almighty God has as much authority and power as that of the Lord Jesus, and it lays bare all the mysteries that are in the Bible. It reveals all the mysteries of work from the time when God created the world up to the last days, and the word of God also reveals and judges the truth of people’s corruption and their substance. It reveals the false paths that people have followed in believing in God, and it also points out the proper path for delivering oneself from sin and reaching salvation for people in believing in God. It allows us to know what we should do to be in accord with God’s will. Also, when I’ve heard you preach at church in the past, in years of listening I didn’t notice a single new light. The more I heard, the less faith I had, but ever since I read the word of Almighty God, my spirit is no longer parched, and my initial faith and love have been restored. Think about it. Besides God Himself, who else could have this kind of power? Who would be able to do this kind of work? So, I am resolutely determined that the word of Almighty God is none other than the word of God! Think back, when the Lord Jesus came to do His work, He too did not say that He was God. The people who followed the Lord at the time all did so because they had simple hearts that sought the truth, and only because of that did they receive the enlightenment of the Holy Spirit from the word of the Lord. They could hear that what the Lord Jesus said was the truth. Like Nathaniel and the Samaritan woman—they recognized from the words of the Lord Jesus that He was the Messiah that was to come, and only then did they follow the Lord Jesus. So today we have heard that there is someone spreading the gospel that the Lord has returned, and the most sensible course of action is to seek the truth and inspect it, and to listen for whether the word of Almighty God is actually the voice of God. Only this way can one be a wise virgin, and only in this way can one have the opportunity to meet the returned Lord and be raptured into the kingdom of heaven! …” When the preacher saw that he couldn’t get the better of me, he said many accusatory words of Almighty God in utter exasperation, but I refuted them all one by one by using the word of Almighty God. Finally, I said: “The Bible says, ‘He that has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit said to the churches’ (Rev 3:13). If there is someone spreading the gospel that the Lord has returned, and you don’t listen or investigate it, but rather make whatever accusations you feel like, this is not in accord with the teaching of the Lord. It is also something that is offensive to the disposition of God, and this is the same as the Pharisees of the time accusing the Lord Jesus and is another case of crucifying God.” When I got to this point, I could see sweat on the preacher’s face. Then, my grandmother sitting nearby, who was nearly sixty years old, said: “You people! You can’t get the better of her. This way that she believes in now must be lofty indeed!” They saw that they couldn’t beat me in the debate, they got up and left in exasperation.
Seeing the angry and ashamed way they left, I thought to myself: The words expressed by Almighty God are all the truth, but you still don’t investigate or accept them, and still block us from accepting them, aren’t you just the blind leading the blind that the Lord Jesus talked about? I was reminded of the Lord Jesus’ words: “But woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for you shut up the kingdom of heaven against men: for you neither go in yourselves, neither suffer you them that are entering to go in” (Mat 23:13). The word of Almighty God also says: “Look at the leaders of every denomination and sect. They are all arrogant and self-right, and they interpret the Bible out of context and according to their own imagination. They all rely on gifts and erudition to do their work. If they were incapable of preaching anything, would those people follow them? They do, after all, possess some learning, and can speak a little of doctrine, or know how to win over others and how to use some artifices, through which they have brought people before themselves and have deceived them. Nominally, those people believe in God—but in reality they follow their leaders” (“Only the Pursuit of the Truth Is the True Belief” in Records of Christ’s Talks). The pastors and elders repeat over and over that they look forward to the return of the Lord Jesus, but when the Lord really has come back, they don’t seek the truth and don’t investigate it. They even distort the facts and deliberately misrepresent the truth in making accusations against the new work of God. This goes as far as to prevent believers from accepting it. They nominally believe in God, and all day they work at preaching, but in reality they are resisting God. This kind of fact that God has exhibited today has made me able to see their true faces, and to see that their substance is the same as that of the Pharisees who at the time made accusations against the Lord Jesus, and that they are all antichrists who hate the truth and make God their enemy. It is the word of Almighty God that allows me to always discriminate and never again to be deceived by the pastors and elders. If I hadn’t read the word of Almighty God, I might be just like my mother-in-law, blindly resisting God alongside them and making accusations against God’s work in the last days. Thinking of this, I thank Almighty God from my heart for saving and taking pity on me. It was God who gave me more courage and wisdom and allowed me to use the word of Almighty God to fight back against their fallacies and heresies. Later, they came back several times, but I already had distinguished who they were, and I wasn’t disturbed by them at all. Every time, I would use the words of Almighty God to refute their fallacies. They saw that I was fixed in my intention to believe in Almighty God, and they failed to disturb me, so they stopped coming.
But Satan had not stopped besieging me, and my mother-in-law was all along forbidding me from believing in Almighty God, and indeed her resistance became more and more serious. She kept a close eye on me every day, and when I just went out for a while, she would call to see where I was. Every day I lived under the gaze of my mother-in-law, my spirit was stretched taut, and I felt especially under pressure and in pain.
One time, I had just returned home from spreading the gospel, and my mother-in-law came to block me. She cried and attacked me, and wouldn’t let me believe in Almighty God. When she saw I wasn’t listening to her, she wept with one hand on her knee and hit herself in the breast with the other hand, and said to me: “Why don’t you listen to me? Just let me stop worrying!” Seeing my mother-in-law weeping, I felt a wave of pain come over my heart, and unwittingly had a moment of weakness. I suddenly became aware that my state was wrong, and quickly came into the presence of God to pray: “God! I ask of You to preserve my heart from straying from You. I had a moment of weakness because of my mother-in-law disturbing me, and I want God to help me, to open up the way for me. I want to stand witness for God’s sake in these circumstances.” When the time came for a gathering, I told the sisters about my own difficulties. The sisters read to me some passages from the word of God: “In every step of work that God does within people, externally it appears to be interactions between people, as if born of human arrangements, or from human interference. But behind the scenes, every step of work, and everything that happens, is a wager made by Satan before God, and requires people to stand firm in their testimony to God. Take when Job was tried, for example: Behind the scenes, Satan was making a bet with God, and what happened to Job was the deeds of men, and the interference of men. Behind every step that God does in you is Satan’s wager with God—behind it all is a battle” (“Only Loving God Is Truly Believing in God” in The Word Appears in the Flesh). “You shouldn’t be afraid of this and that. No matter how many difficulties and dangers you face, you shall remain steady before Me; do not be obstructed by anything, so that My will can be carried out. … Be not afraid; with My support, who could ever block the road? Remember this! Remember!” “You must have My courage within you and you must have principles when facing relatives who do not believe. But for the sake of Me, you must also not yield to any of the dark forces. Rely on My wisdom to walk the perfect way; do not allow the conspiracies of Satan to take hold. Put all your efforts into placing your heart before Me and I shall comfort you and give you peace and happiness in your heart” (“The Tenth Utterance” in The Word Appears in the Flesh). After finishing reading the word of God, the sisters fellowshiped to me, saying: As for the things that we are faced with today, when you look at them on the outside, it might seem that it is our family compelling us, but it’s actually a battle in the spiritual realm. God comes to save us, but Satan thinks up every possible way to block us from coming into the presence of God. It uses people, events, and objects around us to harass us, or uses our weaknesses (like our emotions and reputation) to control us. It makes our spirits sink down, and the goal of Satan in disturbing us like this is to make us grow distant from and betray God, and to lose thein the last days. So if we want to see through Satan’s schemes, we must see things on the basis of God’s word, and come ever more often to pray in the presence of God. We must ask God to lead us to stand witness, and make Satan be ashamed…. Hearing what the sisters fellowshiped, I pondered God’s word, and felt as if God was speaking to me face to face. God’s word comforted me, and gave me more faith and strength. No longer would I suffer the control of the dark influence of Satan. I had the faith to stand witness to God. At that time, I thought again of Job when he was being tested. He would rather curse the day of his birth without complaining to and abandoning God in order to stand witness to God. Finally, God appeared to Job and granted him great blessing. The things we are faced with today are allowed by God, and are all the arrangements and sovereignty of God. Through these things, God allows us to always discriminate, and at the same time to inspect our faith in God. Even more than that, it is to purify our love. Understanding God’s will, I wouldn’t ever be negative or complain to God again. I wanted to stand up and cooperate with God, and even if my pain increased I would stand witness to God and comfort God’s heart. When I thought this, my heart no longer felt any pressure or anguish, but instead felt that I had a limitless share of energy.
Not long after that, I was faced again with Satan’s temptations. By relying on God’s word I stood witness, and in fact saw the miraculous ways in which God works. One day, my mother-in-law and my sister-in-law came and said to me: “You have misplaced your faith, and have moved away from the name of the Lord Jesus. …” At that time, I was at peace in the presence of God, and cried out to God to preserve my heart and thought of God’s word: “From the work of Jehovah to that of Jesus, and from the work of Jesus to that of this current stage, these three stages cover the entire breadth of God’s management, and are all the work of one Spirit. From when He created the world, God has always been managing mankind. He is the Beginning and the End, He is the First and the Last, and He is the One who begins an age and the One who brings the age to an end. The three stages of work, in different ages and different locations, are surely carried out by one Spirit. All those who separate these three stages oppose God. Now, you must understand that all the work from the first stage until today is the work of one God, the work of one Spirit, of which there is no doubt” (“The Vision of God’s Work (3)” in The Word Appears in the Flesh). Afterward, I said serenely: “I have not misplaced my faith, nor did I betray the Lord. Almighty God I believe in today is the one true God who created heaven, earth, and everything therein, and is the returned Lord Jesus. Almighty God has laid bare the mysteries of the six-thousand-year management plan, and has told us that God’s work of saving mankind is in three stages. The content, means, and place of each stage of work are different, and God’s name is not the same in each one, but God’s substance does not change and is still God Himself. God’s name has changed, and that depends on the needs of God’s work. God uses His name to change the age, uses a name to divide the ages, and the name of every age represents an age. But the three stages of work are all done by one and the same God, and this is certain and without doubt.” As soon as my words had been spoken, my mother-in-law pulled a long face and threatened me, saying: “If you really want to believe in Almighty God, then there’s no way we can accept you. Figure it out yourself!” I wasn’t afraid at all, because I believed that everything was being ruled and orchestrated by God’s hands. Very calmly, I said, “Mom, Mary, all these years you’ve known what kind of person I am, and since I married into your family, I’ve done my duty all along. Now, because I believe in Almighty God and walk on the right path, there’s no way you’ll accept me. So I have nothing to say, because I can look into my heart without shame. Mom, don’t call me to stop me from believing in Almighty God anymore, and don’t call the pastor and preacher to come to my house. There is freedom of belief in America, so you have no right to stop me from believing in God. One more thing, no matter whether you let me believe or not, I am determined to be with Almighty God, and this is something that will never change.” I never thought that when I was standing witness to God, my mother-in-law and my sister-in-law wouldn’t cut themselves off from me. It was as if they had forgotten that I believed in Almighty God, and they never tried to stop me again. My life went back to being at peace like it had been before. Almighty God’s word says: “The heart and spirit of man are held in the hand of God, and all the life of man is beheld in the eyes of God. Regardless of whether or not you believe this, any and all things, living or dead, will shift, change, renew, and disappear according to God’s thoughts. This is how God rules over all things” (“God Is the Source of Man’s Life” in The Word Appears in the Flesh). From this practical experience, I knew even more that Almighty God is the one true God. Man’s heart and spirit are all within the control and sovereignty of Almighty God. My faith in God was even greater.
After experiencing these things, I learned from practical experience the authority and power of Almighty God, and I saw God’s almightiness and wisdom as well as His miraculous deeds. Although many things that befall us do not conform to our notions, they are all permitted by God, and God’s beautiful intention is in them. When the temptations of Satan that are permitted by God befall me, they cause me to discriminate Satan’s sinister motives and ugly appearance. They have perfected my faith and loyalty. I have seen that as long as I rely on God’s word in what I do, want to satisfy God’s requirements, and do not follow fleshly emotions in my action, then God will open up the way for me and lead me triumph over Satan’s temptations to stand witness to God. In the course of this, although I have been faced with many difficulties and suffered many hardships, and have also at times been negative and weak, I still see that God is a helper for people at all times. What God finally grants people is knowledge of the truth and of God, and tranquility, joy, steadfastness, and sweetness of spirit. Such gain, enjoyment, happiness, and blessing cannot be expressed in words.
Thanks and praise be to Almighty God! It is God’s word that has led me step by step to triumph over Satan’s temptations, and in fact I have triumphed over them. I have established my will: My motive is to repay God’s love, to spread the gospel and bear witness to God, and to let those people who live like me under the dark influence of Satan all be able as early as possible to catch up with Almighty God’s work in the last days and to obtain the work and leading of the Holy Spirit, and to be like me, and face to face to enjoy the living water of life that God supplies and to obtain true blessing and happiness.