Su Jie, China
One day in 1999, after the meeting had ended, the pastor said to me, “Su Jie, here is a letter for you.” As soon as I saw it, I knew that it came fromI established in Shandong. I took the letter and on the way home, I thought as I walked: This letter is so thick, could it be that they have encountered some difficulties? …
When I got home, I couldn’t wait to open the letter and saw that it said: “Sister Su, peace be with you in the Lord! I am writing to tell you some great news: The Lordour Savior whom we yearn for day and night has returned. He has already returned to the flesh in China and has done a step of work of judging and cleansing people through His words; He has ended the Age of Grace and started the Age of Kingdom…. I hope you can accept God’s new work and keep up with God’s footsteps. Whatever you do, do not miss God’s last days’ salvation.” Reading up to here, I felt surprised: They hadn’t actually encountered any difficulties but believed in ! I was eager to know who wrote this letter and turned to the last page. I learned that the letter was written by Brother Meng and at the end of the letter were all the signatures of all the brothers and sisters of the church. After finishing reading the letter I was dumbfounded. I stared at it blankly for a while before I recovered and thought to myself: Eastern Lightning testifies that the Lord has returned and has stolen many good sheep and leading sheep from various denominations. I did not expect Brother Meng from Shandong church to believe in Eastern Lightning too. The brothers and sisters of this church had all been stolen by Eastern Lightning. What could be done? When I thought about this, I felt even more anxious. But it was too far to travel to Shandong and I was tied up with my work here. For the time being I could not go. Helpless, I could only cry and pray to the Lord: “Lord! These brothers and sisters have believed in You for a short time and their foundation is not yet stable. Please guard over them….”
Later, I searched throughand put pen to paper to write the first letter back to them. In the letter I said: “Brothers and sisters, in Jesus Christ, I advise you to be wary. Paul said: ‘I marvel that you are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ to another : Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ. But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel to you than that which we have preached to you, let him be accursed. As we said before, so say I now again, if any man preach any other gospel to you than that you have received, let him be accursed’ (Gal 1:6-9). Brothers and sisters, I only just managed to bring you before the Lord. Why did you betray the Lord so quickly? Your stature is too small to be able to listen to other ways! You must listen to me because what I spread to you is the . Only the Christ is our Savior. You must hold on to His way forever….” Only after I finished writing and looked at the eight-page letter did I feel at ease and thought to myself: I wrote all that I should write, checked all of the scriptures that I should check and wrote all the words of advice and encouragement that I should. I believe that after they read this, they will certainly reply to me and acknowledge their mistake.
Two weeks later, I received a reply which said: “… Sister Su, we cannot not speak of all that we have seen and heard becausewhom we believe in is the returned Lord Jesus. We are keeping and moving forward and have not betrayed the Lord, but are following in the Lord’s footsteps. ‘I marvel that you are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ to another gospel: Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ ’ (Gal 1:6-7). There is a background to these words that Paul spoke. We just need to study the Bible and we can know that ‘another gospel’ that Paul spoke of then referred to the Pharisees asking people to keep to Jehovah’s laws, not the people of spreading the gospel of the kingdom which witnesses the Lord returning to the flesh and doing His work of judgment starting with God’s family. When Paul wrote this letter to the Galatian churches, there was no one at all who preached the gospel of God’s kingdom. Therefore, the ‘another gospel’ that Paul spoke of does not refer to the Lord returning and doing His judgment work of the last days starting with God’s family. This step of judgment work that the Lord has come again to do fulfills the prophecies of the Book of Revelation: ‘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’ (Rev 14:6-7). Here ‘everlasting gospel’ refers to the gospel of the kingdom. Moreover, this last salvation was long ago revealed by the Holy Spirit to the disciples of the Lord Jesus. As Peter said: ‘For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God’ (1Pe 4:17). ‘Who are kept by the power of God through faith to salvation ready to be revealed in the last time’ (1Pe 1:5). Sister Su, isn’t the return of the Lord what we believers yearn for? Now the Lord has indeed returned, we must be humble and seek. We must not be like the Pharisees in their treatment of the Lord Jesus, God’s first incarnation and blindly use knowledge of the Bible and notions and imagination to determine God’s new work, condemn and resist the Lord because of the Lord Jesus not obeying the law and crucify the Lord. The Pharisees just believed in Jehovah God, but they did not accept the incarnation of Jehovah God—the Lord Jesus’ work, and ultimately they were condemned and cursed by the Lord. Isn’t this bloody lesson worthy of our reflection? The Lord Jesus is our Savior and no one can deny it. But if we only accept the Lord Jesus yet do not accept the return of the Lord, are we not the same as the Pharisees? Have we not then become people who yet resist God? Furthermore, Sister Su, we cannot listen to what you say because you preached the Lord’s gospel to us. We believe in God. Peter and the other apostles once said, ‘We ought to obey God rather than men’ (Act 5:29). We can listen to man even less regarding dealing with the coming of the Lord. We have already determined that the word of Almighty God is the voice of God. We hope that you can look into it too.”
I was very angry and very unconvinced when reading what was written in the letter and hurriedly took the Bible Guide out and flipped to the introduction to the Galatians. I looked closely and was so surprised: This really was true! The “another gospel” that Paul spoke of really referred to the Pharisees making people keep to Jehovah’s law and did not refer to the Lord’s work of judgment starting with God’s family upon His return. How had I never noticed that there was this background to this verse for so many years? No wonder they were unconvinced. But thinking about it another way, even if what I said was wrong, that cannot prove that what they preach is the return of the Lord. I read the letter again from start to finish and the more I read it, the angrier I got. I did not expect that they would dare to strike me and dare to say I was a Pharisee. I hate the Pharisees the most. How could I resist the Lord like the Pharisees? I’ve worked hard for so many years, working day and night for the believers. How could you not know? The more I thought about it, the more uncomfortable I felt and I thought: “No, how can I be refuted by these few new believers? How many times have I read the Bible? I don’t believe that I cannot win you over!”
So I put pen to paper and wrote a second letter back to them and said: “Brothers and sisters, may peace be with you in the Lord’s grace! I felt extremely upset to read the letter you sent. I’m not asking you to listen to me. You really do not understand my intention. I am afraid of you leaving the way of the Lord Jesus. Because the Lord Jesus said: ‘Then if any man shall say to you, See, here is Christ, or there; believe it not. For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall show great signs and wonders; so that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect’ (Mat 24:23-24). Paul also said: ‘Now we beseech you, brothers, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together to him, That you be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of Christ is at hand. Let no man deceive you by any means’ (2Ts 2:1-3). Dear brothers and sisters, I advise you in the name of the Lord Jesus that there will be dangerous days ahead, and that you should not believe all those who preach of the Lord’s coming. We must be especially careful and bear the Lord’s words in mind, lest we take the wrong path and displease the Lord!”