Is God’s Judgment for Cleansing and Salvation, or for Condemnation and Annihilation?

November 20, 2021

As disasters spread across the entire globe, believers in the Lord have been waiting with bated breath for the Lord Jesus to come on a cloud and take them up into the sky to meet Him and escape the disasters. However, they still haven’t seen the Lord Jesus come down on a cloud, and instead, Eastern Lightning is constantly bearing witness that He has returned as Almighty God incarnate, expressing truths to do the judgment work of the last days to cleanse and fully save man. This is astonishing for many people. They think, “The Lord is supposed to take believers up into the sky first. It’s important to save us from the disasters first. Why would God express truths to do judgment work in the last days? We’ve all been forgiven of our sins and deemed righteous by God, so what need is there for God’s judgment?” Most people believe that in the last days, God’s judgment will target unbelievers, that judgment is condemnation and destruction, and those of us who are forgiven of sins won’t need to be judged. So then, is God’s judgment of mankind for cleansing and salvation, or is it for condemnation and annihilation? Let’s chat about that today.

But before we delve into that, let’s talk about whether there’s a biblical basis for God’s judgment in the last days. In fact, that is mentioned in many prophecies in the Bible, and most importantly, in prophecies from the Lord’s own mouth: “He that rejects Me, and receives not My words, has one that judges him: the word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day” (John 12:48). “For the Father judges no man, but has committed all judgment to the Son. … And has given Him authority to execute judgment also, because He is the Son of man” (John 5:22, 27). “I have yet many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. However, when He, the Spirit of truth, is come, He will guide you into all truth” (John 16:12–13). “Sanctify them through Your truth: Your word is truth” (John 17:17). “And I saw another angel fly in the middle of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach to them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people, Saying with a loud voice, Fear God, and give glory to Him; for the hour of His judgment is come” (Revelation 14:6–7). These are very clear, aren’t they? The Lord returns in the flesh as the Son of man, expressing truths to do judgment work in the last days. There is no doubt about this. These prophecies mention “the word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day” and “He will guide you into all truth,” so people can clearly see that God uses the truth to judge and cleanse man in the last days, to lead us into all truths, allowing mankind to escape sin and be fully saved by God. 1 Peter 4:17 says, “For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God.” This means that in the last days, God does His judgment work beginning with His house, that it will begin with all those who have accepted God’s judgment of the last days. This is the meaning of judgment beginning at the house of God. All those who accept Almighty God must accept the judgment of God’s words, and can only enter His kingdom once they’ve been cleansed. Those who claim to accept Almighty God, but are not cleansed through judgment will ultimately be eliminated and destroyed in the disasters. Unbelievers will be dealt with through the disasters because those who refuse God’s judgment can never be cleansed or attain salvation. They will be condemned and then destroyed. We can see from this that God’s judgment work in the last days is to save man to the greatest extent possible. Whether they are believers in the Lord or not, as long as they accept Almighty God’s judgment and are cleansed, they are those God fully saves. All who refuse Almighty God’s judgment work will be condemned and eliminated, and can only fall into the disasters. Looking at the outcome of God’s judgment work, is it correct to equate it with condemnation and annihilation? That’s a big mistake. God’s work to take believers up into the kingdom is done by full salvation through judgment and cleansing. Isn’t that incredibly meaningful? Then why can’t so many people see this? If God’s judgment were to condemn and punish people, what would be the significance of that work? God could just directly rain down disasters and wipe people out. Why take the extra trouble? Many people hear about Almighty God’s work of judgment and don’t even look into it, but directly judge and condemn it. Isn’t that arrogant? Believers in the Lord all worship the Bible and base everything on that. Why can’t they see that God’s judgment work of the last days is completely in line with that? There are so many biblical prophecies about God doing judgment work in the last days. Why don’t they notice those prophecies? Any way you look at it, anyone who doesn’t acknowledge God’s work of the last days is blind and foolish and doesn’t understand the Bible. They are all arrogant and unreasonable. They haven’t accepted God’s work of the last days, and have already lost their chance at rapture before the disasters. This fulfills the Lord Jesus’ prophecy: “For to every one that has shall be given, and he shall have abundance: but from him that has not shall be taken away even that which he has. And cast you the unprofitable servant into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth” (Matthew 25:29–30).

Why would believers need to go through God’s judgment and chastisement? That’s another mystery most don’t understand, so let’s see what Almighty God says about that. Almighty God says, “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” (Preface to The Word Appears in the Flesh).

Before man was redeemed, many of Satan’s poisons had already been planted within him and, after thousands of years of being corrupted by Satan, he has within him an established nature that resists God. Therefore, when man has been redeemed, it is nothing more than a case of redemption in which man is bought at a high price, but the poisonous nature within him has not been eliminated. Man that is so defiled must undergo a change before becoming worthy to serve God. By means of this work of judgment and chastisement, man will fully come to know the filthy and corrupt essence within his own self, and he will be able to change completely and become clean. Only in this way can man become worthy to return before the throne of God. All the work done this day is so that man can be made clean and be changed; through judgment and chastisement by the word, as well as through refinement, man can purge away his corruption and be made pure. Rather than deeming this stage of work to be that of salvation, it would be more apt to say it is the work of purification. In truth, this stage is that of conquest as well as the second stage in the work of salvation. It is through judgment and chastisement by the word that man arrives at being gained by God, and it is through the use of the word to refine, judge, and disclose that all of the impurities, notions, motives, and individual aspirations within man’s heart are completely revealed. For all that man may have been redeemed and forgiven of his sins, it can only be considered as God not remembering the transgressions of man and not treating man in accordance with his transgressions. However, when man, who lives in a body of flesh, has not been set free from sin, he can only continue to sin, endlessly revealing his corrupt satanic disposition. This is the life that man leads, an endless cycle of sinning and being forgiven. The majority of mankind sin in the day only to confess in the evening. This way, even though the sin offering is forever effective for man, it will not be able to save man from sin. Only half the work of salvation has been completed, for man still has a corrupt disposition. … running deeper than sin, it is something planted by Satan and deeply rooted within man. It is not easy for man to become aware of his sins; he has no way of recognizing his own deeply rooted nature, and he must rely on judgment by the word in order to achieve this result. Only thus can man gradually be changed from this point onward” (The Word, Vol. 1. The Appearance and Work of God. The Mystery of the Incarnation (4)).

Almighty God’s words are clear. In the Age of Grace, the Lord Jesus did the work of redemption, completing just the first half of His salvation work. Faith in the Lord means people’s sins have been forgiven and they won’t be condemned under the law, and they are allowed to come before the Lord to pray and commune with Him, to enjoy His grace and blessings. This is what the work of redemption achieved. But even with their sins forgiven, people can’t help but keep telling lies and sinning, with struggles for personal gain, jealousy and infighting, being judgmental and hateful. They want to practice the Lord’s words, but can’t. They are living in a vicious cycle of sinning, confessing, and sinning again, completely unable to escape. This shows that although the Lord forgave man’s sins, our sinful nature remains within us. This is our satanic nature and disposition that drives us to sin. If the root of sin isn’t resolved, no matter how many times someone’s sins are forgiven, they’ll never escape sin and become holy. They can’t help but sin and resist God. Think of the Pharisees. They worshiped God in the temple and were always offering sacrifices, but they wouldn’t accept the Lord Jesus when He appeared and worked. They madly resisted and condemned Him, and even got Him crucified, committing a heinous sin. What does this show us? With a satanic nature, no matter how many sin offerings someone makes for forgiveness, they keep doing evil. Almighty God has appeared and expressed millions of words of truth, doing the work of judgment starting with God’s house. He’s completed a group of overcomers before the disasters, fully displaying God’s authority and power, and rocking the whole world. So many religious people don’t seek or investigate at all, but cling to their notions, doing all they can to condemn, resist, and blaspheme God’s new work, just dying to crucify Christ who expresses the truth all over again. This shows that though man’s sins are forgiven, because of their satanic nature, they still madly resist God and see Him as an enemy, incompatible. God’s righteous, holy disposition will tolerate no offense, so would He take anyone into His kingdom who has been absolved, but keeps on sinning and resisting Him? Absolutely not. Just as the Lord Jesus said, “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). “You shall therefore be holy, for I am holy” (Leviticus 11:45). “Without holiness no man shall see the Lord” (Hebrews 12:14). “For if we sin willfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remains no more sacrifice for sins” (Hebrews 10:26). God’s holy, righteous disposition is inviolable. Those who resist God will be punished and destroyed, and never allowed into God’s kingdom. That’s why, when the Lord Jesus promised He’d return in the last days, it wasn’t to take us into heaven, and it wasn’t to directly condemn and destroy unbelievers with the disasters. It was to express truth and do judgment work for man’s satanic nature and disposition, to first save mankind from evil and Satan’s forces, so we can entirely turn toward God and be gained by Him, and then be taken into His kingdom. Then God’s work of salvation will be complete. If God’s judgment were just to condemn and destroy mankind as people imagine, then who would be left from corrupt humanity? Wouldn’t everyone end up wiped out by God for sinning and opposing Him? If that were the case, wouldn’t God’s plan for man’s salvation come to nothing? That’s why God has incarnated again in the last days according to His plan to save mankind. Almighty God has humbly hidden among man and expressed so many truths, doing the work of judgment beginning with God’s house to purify and save all those who accept God’s judgment of the last days. It’s so we can escape evil and be cleansed, becoming worthy of being taken into God’s kingdom. God’s judgment work of the last days absolutely isn’t about condemning or destroying people, but entirely about cleansing and salvation. It’s important to understand God’s will. God’s last days’ work of judgment for man’s salvation is His most important step, and accepting Almighty God’s judgment is the only way we can escape corruption, be cleansed, and saved from the disasters.

Someone may raise a question: How does Almighty God purify and save mankind through His judgment work? We can find the answers in Almighty God’s words. Almighty God says, “Christ of the last days uses a variety of truths to teach man, to expose the substance of man, and to dissect the words and deeds of man. These words comprise various truths, such as man’s duty, how man should obey God, how man should be loyal to God, how man ought to live out normal humanity, as well as the wisdom and the disposition of God, and so on. These words are all directed at the substance of man and his corrupt disposition. In particular, the words that expose how man spurns God are spoken in regard to how man is an embodiment of Satan, and an enemy force against God. In undertaking His work of judgment, God does not simply make clear the nature of man with a few words; He exposes, deals with, and prunes over the long term. All these different methods of exposure, dealing, and pruning cannot be substituted with ordinary words, but with the truth of which man is utterly bereft. Only methods such as these can be called judgment; only through judgment of this kind can man be subdued and thoroughly convinced about God, and moreover gain true knowledge of God. What the work of judgment brings about is man’s understanding of the true face of God and the truth about his own rebelliousness. The work of judgment allows man to gain much understanding of the will of God, of the purpose of God’s work, and of the mysteries that are incomprehensible to him. It also allows man to recognize and know his corrupt essence and the roots of his corruption, as well as to discover the ugliness of man. These effects are all brought about by the work of judgment, for the essence of this work is actually the work of opening up the truth, the way, and the life of God to all those who have faith in Him. This work is the work of judgment done by God” (The Word, Vol. 1. The Appearance and Work of God. Christ Does the Work of Judgment With the Truth).

By what means is God’s perfection of man accomplished? It is accomplished by means of His righteous disposition. God’s disposition primarily consists of righteousness, wrath, majesty, judgment, and curse, and He perfects man primarily by means of His judgment. Some people do not understand, and ask why it is that God is only able to make man perfect through judgment and curse. They say, ‘If God were to curse man, wouldn’t man die? If God were to judge man, wouldn’t man be condemned? Then how can he still be made perfect?’ Such are the words of people who do not know the work of God. What God curses is the disobedience of man, and what He judges are the sins of man. Although He speaks harshly and relentlessly, He reveals all that is within man, revealing through these stern words that which is substantive within man, yet through such judgment, He gives man a profound knowledge of the substance of the flesh, and thus man submits before God” (The Word, Vol. 1. The Appearance and Work of God. Only by Experiencing Painful Trials Can You Know the Loveliness of God).

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” (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).

After reading God’s words, aren’t we clearer on how God carries out His judgment work? Many don’t understand God’s work, so when they see the words judgment and chastisement, they think of God’s condemnation and punishment. This couldn’t be more wrong. Under the law, judgment was just restricting behavior through punishment, but it wasn’t addressing people’s sinful nature. But God’s judgment is mainly about expressing the truth to judge and reveal our inner satanic nature and disposition, and then using all sorts of ways, like dealing with, disciplining, and testing us to expose us. It’s so we can truly see our corrupt essence, the reality of our corruption, then we hate ourselves, turn our backs on the flesh, practice the truth, and really repent. Almighty God’s words incisively reveal the manifestations of man’s satanic disposition, our base motives, corrupt adulterations, and ridiculous viewpoints. Faced with God’s words’ judgment, we see that we are just hungry for blessings in our faith without any sincerity toward God. We sacrifice a tiny bit, pay a bit of a price and think we’re entitled to God’s grace and entry into the kingdom. But faced with trials, we blame God and reason with Him, and don’t even want to work for Him anymore. We have no obedience to Him. We clearly lack the reality of the truth, but just go on about doctrines to show off and gain admiration. We’re always protecting our reputation and status, and refuse to agree with others even when we know their views are in line with the truth. We’re arrogant, headstrong, and lacking all humanity and reason. Through the judgment of God’s words, we see how deeply Satan has corrupted us, that we’re arrogant, cunning, and evil, and we’re living manifestations of the devil. We have nowhere to hide and feel ashamed. Filled with regret, we pray and curse ourselves, and want to stop living within our satanic corruption. We also experience God’s righteousness and holiness, that God will examine and expose any corruption we may have, that His disposition is inviolable, and we’re sure to be punished if we don’t repent and change. Then we develop reverence for God. After being judged, chastised, pruned, dealt with, tested and refined many times, our corrupt dispositions are gradually cleansed and changed. We become much more humble, more reasonable in word and deed. We accept and submit to anything according with the truth, no matter who it comes from and we have far fewer adulterations in our duty. With or without God’s blessings, and no matter our ultimate outcome and destination, we are happy to submit to God and do the duty of a created being. Through Almighty God’s judgment, we can finally be freed from sin, live out a true human likeness, and gain true freedom. God’s judgment and chastisement really is His greatest love and salvation for mankind! Without this, we’d never know ourselves, and we’d never be able to see the truth of our corruption. We’d keep living in our dreams, thinking we’d have right to the kingdom because our sins were forgiven, waiting for the Lord to rapture us to bask in His blessings. That’s truly ignorant and shameless. We’ve truly experienced that Almighty God’s judgment and chastisement are the only way to cast off corruption, be cleansed, and enter the kingdom. You could say that Almighty God’s judgment is our only path to being freed from sin, fully saved by God, and then entering the kingdom. Just as Almighty God’s word says, “In his life, if man wishes to be cleansed and achieve changes in his disposition, if he wishes to live out a life of meaning and fulfill his duty as a creature, then he must accept God’s chastisement and judgment, and must not allow God’s discipline and God’s smiting to depart from him, in order that he may free himself from the manipulation and influence of Satan, and live in the light of God. Know that God’s chastisement and judgment is the light, and the light of man’s salvation, and that there is no better blessing, grace or protection for man” (The Word, Vol. 1. The Appearance and Work of God. The Experiences of Peter: His Knowledge of Chastisement and Judgment).

It’s been three decades since Almighty God began the work of judgment in the last days. Many of God’s chosen people are undergoing this, gradually freed from corruption and cleansed, and a group of overcomers have been completed before the disasters. They have beautiful testimony of escaping sin and being saved, like defeating Satan through persecution and hardship, truly repenting through the judgment and chastisement of God’s words, practicing the truth and becoming honest, submitting to God through trials and refinements, and more. These testimonies have been made into videos that are available online, bearing witness to the world of God’s work of the last days, so everyone can open their eyes and be fully convinced. More and more people who love the truth from every country and denomination recognize God’s voice in Almighty God’s words and are coming before God’s throne. The kingdom gospel has been traveling the world and is about to come to fruition spectacularly. Clearly, God’s judgment of the last days beginning with His house is being fulfilled. Disasters are already raining down, and anyone with their eyes open can see that the great disasters have begun. Those who accept Almighty God’s judgment and have their corruption cleansed will be protected through the disasters and enter God’s kingdom. Those who only think of blessings and entering the kingdom without accepting the truth, and God’s judgment or cleansing, are the tares, the nonbelievers exposed by God’s work of the last days. God has already condemned them, and they’ll descend into hell and be punished when disasters come. This fulfills Almighty God’s words: “When you see Jesus descend from the heaven upon a white cloud with your own eyes, this will be the public appearance of the Sun of righteousness. Perhaps that will be a time of great excitement for you, yet you should know that the time when you witness Jesus descend from the heaven is also the time when you go down to hell to be punished. That will be the time of the end of God’s management plan and it will be when God rewards the good and punishes the wicked. For the judgment of God will have ended before man sees signs, when there is only the expression of truth. Those who accept the truth and do not seek signs, and thus have been purified, shall have returned before the throne of God and entered the Creator’s embrace. Only those who persist in the belief that ‘The Jesus who does not ride upon a white cloud is a false Christ’ shall be subjected to everlasting punishment, for they only believe in the Jesus who exhibits signs, but do not acknowledge the Jesus who proclaims severe judgment and releases the true way and life. And so it can only be that Jesus deals with them when He openly returns upon a white cloud. They are too stubborn, too confident in themselves, too arrogant. How could such degenerates be rewarded by Jesus?” (The Word, Vol. 1. The Appearance and Work of God. By the Time You Behold the Spiritual Body of Jesus, God Will Have Made Heaven and Earth Anew).

Those who are able to stand firm during God’s work of judgment and chastisement during the last days—that is, during the final work of purification—will be the ones who will enter into the final rest alongside God; as such, all those who enter into rest will have broken free of Satan’s influence and been obtained by God after having undergone His final work of purification. These humans, who will have been finally obtained by God, will enter into the final rest. The essential purpose of God’s work of chastisement and judgment is to purify humanity and to prepare them for their ultimate rest; without such cleansing, none of humanity could be classified into different categories according to kind, or enter into rest. This work is humanity’s only path to enter into rest. Only God’s work of purification will cleanse humans of their unrighteousness, and only His work of chastisement and judgment will bring to light those disobedient elements of humanity, thereby separating those who can be saved from those who cannot, and those who will remain from those who will not. When this work ends, those people who are allowed to remain will all be cleansed and enter a higher state of humanity in which they will enjoy a more wonderful second human life upon the earth; in other words, they will commence their human day of rest, and coexist with God. After those who are not allowed to remain have been chastised and judged, their true colors will be entirely exposed, after which they will all be destroyed and, like Satan, will no longer be permitted to survive upon the earth. The humanity of the future will no longer include any of this type of people; such people are not fit to enter the land of the ultimate rest, nor are they fit to join in the day of rest that God and humanity will share, for they are the targets of punishment and are wicked, unrighteous people. … The entire purpose behind God’s ultimate work of punishing evil and rewarding good is to thoroughly purify all humans so that He may bring a purely holy humanity into eternal rest. This stage of His work is the most crucial; it is the final stage of the whole of His work of management” (The Word, Vol. 1. The Appearance and Work of God. God and Man Will Enter Into Rest Together).

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