How I Came to Welcome the Lord
In 1991, I put my faith in the Lord Jesus. After joining the faith, I’d often read the Bible. I was deeply moved when I read of how the Lord Jesus was crucified to redeem mankind and began actively attending gatherings and eagerly expending myself for the Lord. One time, during a gathering, a preacher said: “The prophecies of the Lord’s coming have all been fulfilled now, and the Lord will come with the clouds to rapture us into the kingdom of heaven. We must be alert and pray to prepare for the Lord’s coming.” I was incredibly excited when I heard this. What an amazing blessing it would be to welcome the Lord and be raptured into the kingdom! This is what every believer hopes for! But by 1997, we still hadn’t welcomed the Lord and the church was growing desolate. The preachers’ sermons were all cliched, they didn’t provide any new light, believers weren’t nourished and their faith weakened. Some preachers even returned to the secular world to do business. Seeing all this happen was really upsetting for me. I knew that I was also sinning by day and confessing by night, that I wasn’t able to practice the Lord’s words and couldn’t even practice patience and tolerance with my family. When my mother-in-law and husband did things that hurt me or compromised my interests, I would bear grudges. I was really concerned—I was stuck in an endless cycle of sinning and confessing—would the Lord rapture me into the kingdom when He came? But a preacher said: “As long as we live, we all will inevitably sin, but the Lord took on our sins when He was crucified. As long as we confess and repent to the Lord, our sins will be forgiven, and when the Lord comes, we’ll be raptured.” I also had my misgivings, recalling what God said: “You shall therefore be holy, for I am holy” (Leviticus 11:45). God is holy, and the kingdom of heaven is a holy land—if we hadn’t achieved holiness, could we really enter into the kingdom? I felt very confused and worried, but I couldn’t find a path to rid myself of sin.
During that year’s Christmas gathering, Sister Xin Lu gave me a book. I was curious and asked her: “Where is this book from?” She said: “These are the words of God. The Lord Jesus has already returned as Almighty God. These words are the truth expressed by God’s current incarnation.” I was shocked and excitedly asked: “The Lord has returned? These are God’s words?” But then I also felt a bit confused, saying, “How could this be? When the Lord returns, He will come with clouds. How could He incarnate in the flesh?” Xin Lu replied: “The Lord’s coming is no small affair. We shouldn’t delimit it. If you have some confusion, we can seek with the brothers and sisters from The Church of Almighty God.” The Lord Jesus said, “Seek, and you shall find; knock, and it shall be opened to you” (Matthew 7:7). A few days later, I met up with Sisters Wang Qing and Li Xue from The Church of Almighty God and brought up my confusion: “You say that the Lord has incarnated in the flesh, but this can’t be. Our preachers often tell us that God will come down with clouds, just as Revelation prophesies: ‘Behold, He comes with clouds; and every eye shall see Him, and they also which pierced Him: and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of Him’ (Revelation 1:7). How can you say that God has incarnated in the flesh again? Does the Bible support this?” Wang Qing replied: “The Bible has many prophecies of how the Lord will return. His coming with clouds is just one type. There are also many prophecies that state the Lord will incarnate and descend in secret, like: ‘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’ (Matthew 24:27). ‘For as the lightning, that lightens out of the one part under heaven, shines to the other part under heaven; so shall also the Son of man be in His day. But first must He suffer many things, and be rejected of this generation’ (Luke 17:24–25). These two scriptures mention the ‘coming of the Son of man.’ So, who is this Son of man? We all know that the Lord Jesus is the Son of man and God’s incarnation. So the ‘Son of man’ refers to God’s incarnation. The coming of the Son of man refers to the Lord’s incarnation upon His return. Also, if the Lord came with clouds in His spiritual body, all would bow before Him upon seeing this. Would God then suffer and be rejected by this generation? Only when the Lord incarnates as the Son of man will people fail to recognize Him as God incarnate, condemn and reject Him, and only then will God suffer. So, this time, God didn’t come with clouds to do His work, instead opting to incarnate as the Son of man.” I was shocked by what Wang Qing said. What she had fellowshiped accords with the Bible: The Bible prophesies that the Lord will come as the Son of man in the last days. How hadn’t I seen that before? But if God incarnates in the last days to appear and do work, then how will the prophecy in Revelation 1:7 “Behold, He comes with clouds; and every eye shall see Him” be fulfilled? I expressed my confusion to Wang Qing. She continued in her fellowship, saying: “All of these prophecies will certainly be fulfilled, but there is a certain order to them. In the last days, the Lord will come in two ways: He first incarnates and descends in secret to express His words and do the work of judgment to thoroughly purify and save mankind and make a group of overcomers. After this, the disasters will commence and the secret work of God’s incarnation will conclude. When the disasters have passed, God will come openly with clouds, appearing before all nations and all peoples. Then this prophecy from Revelation will be fulfilled: ‘Behold, He comes with clouds; and every eye shall see Him, and they also which pierced Him: and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of Him’ (Revelation 1:7). Why will all kindreds of the earth wail when God comes with clouds? Because when God incarnated to do His work, they didn’t recognize Him, and resisted and rejected Him. Only when God comes with clouds will they realize that the One they were resisting and condemning is Christ of the last days. By then, even if they wanted to accept God’s last days’ work, it would be too late, because when God comes with clouds, His work to save man will already be at a close. He’ll decide people’s outcomes, and punish the wicked and reward the good. Those that resisted God’s work in the last days will succumb to the disasters, wailing and gnashing their teeth for eternity.”
I found Wang Qing’s fellowship to be full of light. The Lord actually has two ways of returning. First He incarnates in secret, then He comes openly with clouds. This accords with the Bible. But as for their testimony that Almighty God is the returned Lord Jesus, I still felt unsure. So I followed up, asking: “I agree that in the last days, God incarnates as the Son of man, but how can we be sure that Almighty God is God incarnate?” First, Li Xue read me a passage of Almighty God’s words: “He who is God incarnate shall possess the essence of God, and He who is God incarnate shall possess the expression of God. Since God becomes flesh, He shall bring forth the work He intends to do, and since God becomes flesh, He shall express what He is, and shall be able to bring the truth to man, bestow life upon him, and point the way for him. Flesh that does not have the essence of God is decidedly not the incarnate God; of this there is no doubt. If man intends to inquire into whether it is God’s incarnate flesh, then he must corroborate this from the disposition He expresses and the words He speaks. Which is to say, to corroborate whether or not it is God’s incarnate flesh, and whether or not it is the true way, one must discriminate on the basis of His essence. And so, in determining whether it is the flesh of God incarnate, the key lies in His essence (His work, His utterances, His disposition, and many other aspects), rather than external appearance. If man scrutinizes only His external appearance, and as a result overlooks His essence, this shows that man is benighted and ignorant” (The Word, Vol. 1. The Appearance and Work of God. Preface). After reading this passage, Li Xue said: “Almighty God’s words are quite clear: We cannot determine if someone is God incarnate based only on outward appearance. The key is to see if they have the substance of Christ. He who is Christ can express the truth and do the work of salvation of mankind. Take the Lord Jesus—outwardly, He seemed like a normal person and it would be impossible to see that He was God. But He had God’s Spirit inside, so He was the incarnation of God Himself. He could express truth to bestow mankind with a way of repentance, and was able to carry out the work of redeeming mankind by being crucified. At the time, the Lord Jesus’ disciples recognized Him as God based on His words and work. But the Pharisees didn’t accept the truth, and just took the Lord Jesus to be a regular person based on His outward appearance. They wantonly resisted and condemned Him and ultimately crucified Him on the cross. So, to determine whether someone is the incarnation of God in the last days, the key is to see if the words they express are the truth and if they can do the work of salvation of mankind. This is the only way to recognize Christ and welcome the Lord’s return.” After saying this, Wang Qing asked us: “Why is it that the prophets Isaiah, Ezekiel, Jeremiah and Daniel can’t be called Christs, but Jesus can be called Christ?” This question had me stumped. I didn’t have an answer and hurriedly asked them to fellowship. Wang Qing said: “We were just saying how Christ is the incarnation of God Himself. Outwardly, He might look like a normal person, but He is the embodiment of God’s Spirit and is essentially different from created beings. He not only has normal humanity, He also has complete divinity. This manifests in the fact that God’s incarnation can express truth and reveal mysteries at any time, and can express God’s disposition, all that He has and is, His thoughts and ideas, His love and His almightiness and wisdom, allowing all of mankind to understand and recognize God. This is adequate to prove that Christ has complete divinity. Prophets are just created beings—they have humanity but lack divinity. They can convey God’s words, but can’t express the truth. So, only God’s incarnation can be called Christ. Just as Almighty God says, ‘The incarnate God is called Christ, and Christ is the flesh donned by the Spirit of God. This flesh is unlike any man that is of the flesh. This difference is because Christ is not of flesh and blood; He is the incarnation of the Spirit. He has both a normal humanity and a complete divinity. His divinity is not possessed by any man. His normal humanity sustains all His normal activities in the flesh, while His divinity carries out the work of God Himself’” (The Word, Vol. 1. The Appearance and Work of God. The Essence of Christ Is Obedience to the Will of the Heavenly Father). Through Almighty God’s words and the sisters’ fellowship I learned that Christ has both normal humanity and complete divinity, and only Christ can express the truth that no mere prophet or esteemed person can express. These were truths and mysteries that I had never heard in my many years of faith. Could it be that Almighty God was the returned Lord? Otherwise, who besides God could express such truths and reveal such mysteries?
At the time, I still had some confusion. I had heard them say that in the last days God is doing the work of judgment to thoroughly save mankind, but I had previously heard preachers say that the Lord Jesus did the work of redemption and took on our sins, we were all forgiven and no longer of sin, and would be directly raptured into the kingdom when the Lord came. So why would God incarnate again to do the work of judgment and purification? I brought up this confusion with the sisters. Wang Qing replied: “We believe that we are not of sin, but have we been freed of sin and attained purity? Can we be sure we won’t sin again?” The sister’s question left me speechless. We’ve been redeemed by the Lord Jesus, but we still sin by day and confess by night. We really haven’t broken free from the fetters of sin! Wang Qing continued, saying: “Despite the Lord Jesus being crucified to take on our sin and redeem us, in our lives it’s undeniable that we still commit sins. We can’t help but lie and deceive, and after making some sacrifices and expending for God, we flaunt our seniority. When God’s work doesn’t accord with our notions, we blame God and even judge Him. While we believe in God, we still worship and follow mere men. Clearly, we still haven’t broken free from sin’s fetters. The Bible says, ‘You shall therefore be holy, for I am holy’ (Leviticus 11:45). ‘Truly, truly, I say to you, Whoever commits sin is the servant of sin. And the servant stays not in the house for ever: but the son stays ever’ (John 8:34–35). God’s words are as clear as day. Those that live in sin still often sin and resist God—they are of Satan’s ilk and cannot enter His kingdom. In the last days, to resolve mankind’s sinfulness, save them and deliver them from sin, God incarnated once again, expressing truths and doing the work of judgment to thoroughly purify and save mankind, impart people with complete salvation, qualifying them to enter into the kingdom.” After that, Wang Qing read another two passages of Almighty God’s words for me: “You only know that Jesus shall descend during the last days, but how exactly will He descend? A sinner such as you, who has just been redeemed, and has not been changed, or been perfected by God, can you be after God’s heart? For you, you who are still of your old self, it is true that you were saved by Jesus, and that you are not counted as a sinner because of the salvation of God, but this does not prove that you are not sinful, and are not impure. How can you be saintly if you have not been changed? Within, you are beset by impurity, selfish and mean, yet you still wish to descend with Jesus—you should be so lucky! You have missed a step in your belief in God: You have merely been redeemed, but you have not been changed. For you to be after God’s heart, God must personally do the work of changing and cleansing you; if you are only redeemed, you will be incapable of attaining sanctity. In this way you will be unqualified to share in the good blessings of God, for you have missed out a step in God’s work of managing man, which is the key step of changing and perfecting. You, a sinner who has just been redeemed, are therefore incapable of directly inheriting God’s inheritance” (The Word, Vol. 1. The Appearance and Work of God. Concerning Appellations and Identity). “Though Jesus did much work among man, He only completed the redemption of all mankind and became man’s sin offering; He did not rid man of all his corrupt disposition. Fully saving man from the influence of Satan not only required Jesus to become the sin offering and bear the sins of man, but it also required God to do even greater work to rid man completely of his satanically corrupted disposition. And so, now that man has been forgiven of his sins, God has returned to the flesh to lead man into the new age, and begun the work of chastisement and judgment. This work has brought man into a higher realm. All those who submit under His dominion shall enjoy higher truth and receive greater blessings. They shall truly live in the light, and they shall gain the truth, the way, and the life” (The Word, Vol. 1. The Appearance and Work of God. Preface). After reading God’s words, Wang Qing fellowshiped, saying: “The Lord Jesus just did the work of redemption. He didn’t perform the work of thoroughly purifying and saving mankind. If we seek to break free from sin, attain salvation and enter God’s kingdom, we must accept God’s last days’ work of judgment and purification. Almighty God is doing the work of judgment in the last days on the foundation of the Lord Jesus’ work of redemption. He expresses millions of words, revealing the mysteries of God’s six-thousand-year management plan, as well as the mysteries of God’s incarnations, and the inside story of the Bible. God has also exposed how Satan corrupts mankind, how God performs the work of judgment and purification in the last days, how He determines each kind of person’s outcome and destination, etc. The Word Appears in the Flesh is an expression from God during His work in the last days and a testimony to His work of judgment. Through experiencing God’s last days’ work of judgment and Almighty God’s own shepherding and watering, God’s chosen all see how God incarnate’s work is truly practical. God really lives among mankind and expresses truths related to people’s practical situations to support and sustain them, exposing the errors in their faith, their improper viewpoints on pursuit, and all manner of satanic dispositions, which allows them to understand and transform. God has also informed people about His intentions and demands, giving people the most practical and precise goals for their pursuit and principles of practice, allowing them to enter into the reality of truth, attain salvation, and break free of sin and Satan’s influence. All that follow Almighty God feel deeply that if not for God’s incarnation expressing truth to judge and purify mankind, man would never recognize their sinful nature, much less would they be able to break free from the fetters and constraints of sin. Only by accepting God’s judgment and chastisement, can man be purified of their corrupt dispositions and attain salvation. Based upon Almighty God’s words, work and what His work has achieved, can we be certain that Almighty God is the incarnation of God and Christ of the last days?”
Only after hearing Almighty God’s words and the sister’s fellowship did I realize that the Lord Jesus had only pardoned our sins, but hadn’t thoroughly resolved our sinful natures. This is why we still live in sin and are unable to break free from its fetters. Only by accepting Almighty God’s work of judgment in the last days can we thoroughly break free from sin, attain salvation and enter the kingdom of heaven. After that, Wang Qing read me some other passages of Almighty God’s words, which brought me even more clarity. I felt that Almighty God really might be the returned Lord Jesus.
But soon after, the pastor from my original church found out I was investigating Eastern Lightning. He came to my house with over ten other co-workers to obstruct and disturb me. They told me not to host the two sisters and even tried to make me kick them out. I told my pastor: “The Bible says we should treat strangers with love and care. If we not only don’t host them, but kick them out in the middle of the night, is that being loving and caring? This brings no glory to the Lord! What’s more, Revelation clearly states: ‘He that has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches’ (Revelation 2:7). In the last days, the Holy Spirit will speak to all the churches—if people fail to listen and investigate, how will they be able to hear the Lord’s voice and welcome His return?” But the pastor wouldn’t listen and insisted I kick the sisters out. Seeing how they weren’t relenting, I became worried that the sisters might be in danger if they stayed there, so I quickly saw them off. After that, the pastor split me and Xin Lu up and said lots of things slandering The Church of Almighty God to deceive us. He also said that there wouldn’t be any other work of salvation, and if we believed in another faith, we’d be betraying the church and the Lord. I fellowshiped with them on the truth I had heard over the last few days, but no matter what I said, they wouldn’t listen. For the next several days, the pastor and preachers took turns harassing us, telling us we were believing in the wrong faith, leaving us worked up and our heads spinning. They also openly criticized us during a co-worker gathering and told us to say we had set foot on the wrong path in front of everyone. I shot back, saying: “I’m investigating the true way just like the Lord says to do. I’m doing no wrong! The Lord Jesus said, ‘And at midnight there was a cry made, Behold, the bridegroom comes; go you out to meet him’ (Matthew 25:6). The Church of Almighty God testifies that the Lord has returned. Why shouldn’t we investigate something so important? Why do you continually obstruct us?” Xin Lu then said: “Yes, we’ve heard many of Almighty God’s words these days and learned many truths that we hadn’t understood before from reading the Bible. I also believe that this is the voice of God and should be investigated. With something as big as the Lord’s return, how could you not investigate and seek at all, and even stand in our way?” The pastor disdainfully replied: “There’s no need to investigate, you’ve certainly set foot on the wrong path. You’d better repent to the Lord soon! You lack stature, know little of the Bible and are easily deceived. I’m not letting you investigate for your own good. If you were to set foot on the wrong path and be abandoned by the Lord, all your sacrifices and efforts would be in vain, but it would be too late for regrets!” Hearing this, I thought: “If I really did set foot on the wrong path like my pastor said, wouldn’t all my years of faith be in vain?” But then I thought: “Almighty God’s words are truly extraordinary and seem to be God’s voice. If I don’t investigate, won’t I be missing the opportunity to welcome the Lord?” I felt a bit conflicted. After that, they meticulously planned and launched a month-long “Loyalty Training Seminar,” which aimed to get us to quit investigating Almighty God’s last days’ work. Every day, there were people monitoring us, preachers repeatedly came to explain the Bible, and they told us that in the last days lawlessness has increased, and many have gradually lost their sense of love and caring. When they said that, I suddenly realized: “Yes, even though we have received the Lord Jesus’ redemption, everyone still lives in sin and is caught up in sinning and confessing. No one can break free from the fetters and constraints of sin. Even amongst the pastor and elders, there is constant infighting. The behavior of some of our co-workers is even worse than many unbelievers’. If we don’t accept God’s last days’ work of judgment, how can we expect to be freed from sin and attain purity? If we aren’t purified, how will we enter God’s kingdom? Won’t that bring us to ruin?” Having realized this, I made up my mind: I couldn’t miss the opportunity to welcome the Lord and had to continue investigating. So I prayed to God, beseeching Him to open up a way for us. After that, we found an opportunity to escape from the host house.
When I returned, I continued investigating Almighty God’s work and read many passages of His words. Through the brothers’ and sisters’ fellowship, I came to understand the mysteries of the Bible, God’s names and incarnations, the purpose of God’s six-thousand-year management plan, the mysteries of God’s three stages of work, how mankind has developed to this point, the root cause of man’s corruption by Satan and the outcomes of every kind of person. The more I read of Almighty God’s words, the clearer I became—I was completely convinced that Almighty God is the returned Lord Jesus. The pastor’s and preachers’ actions reminded me of what the Lord Jesus said to the Pharisees: “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” (Matthew 23:13). When the Lord Jesus was working, the Pharisees became worried that everyone would follow Him and they’d lose their status and livelihood, so they tried to find flaws in the Lord, wantonly resisted and condemned Him, prevented believers from following Him, and finally conspired with the Roman government to have Him crucified. In essence, the Pharisees were God-hating, God-resisting antichrists. These pastors and elders were just like the Pharisees. They saw that God had incarnated and appeared to do His work in the last days, rocking the entire religious world with His expressions of truth, but not only did they not investigate it, they did everything they could to keep believers from investigating the true way, and were intent upon driving the sisters who were sharing God’s last days’ gospel away. They were just the same as the Pharisees that resisted the Lord Jesus, evil servants preventing people from entering the kingdom. Through their obstruction and disruption, I gained discernment of the true essence of the pastors and elders. No matter how they obstructed me after that, I didn’t feel constrained anymore. Soon after, I accepted Almighty God’s work in the last days and began following the footsteps of the Lamb.
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