The Commandments of the New Age
In experiencing God’s work, you must read God’s words carefully and equip yourselves with the truth. But regarding what you want to do or how you want to do it, there is no need for your earnest prayer or supplication, and indeed these things are useless. Yet at present, the problems currently facing you are that you do not know how to experience God’s work, and that there is much passivity in you. You know many doctrines, but you do not have much reality. Is this not a sign of erroneousness? Much erroneousness is visible in you, this group. Today, you are incapable of achieving such trials as “service-doers,” and you are incapable of imagining or achieving other trials and refinement related to the words of God. You must adhere to the many things you should put into practice. This is to say that people must adhere to the many duties that they should perform. This is what people should adhere to, and this is what they must carry out. Let the Holy Spirit do what must be done by the Holy Spirit; man can play no part in it. Man should adhere to what ought to be done by man, which bears no relation to the Holy Spirit. It is nothing but that which ought to be done by man, and should be adhered to as commandment, just like adherence to the law in the Old Testament. Although now is not the Age of Law, there are still many words that should be adhered to which are of the same kind as words spoken in the Age of Law. These words are not carried out merely by relying on the touch of the Holy Spirit, but rather, they are something that man should adhere to. For example:
You shall not pass judgment on the work of the practical God.
You shall not oppose the man who is testified to by God.
Before God, you shall keep your place and shall not be dissolute.
You should be moderate in speech, and your words and actions must follow the arrangements of the man testified to by God.
You should fear the testimony of God. You shall not ignore the work of God and the words from His mouth.
You shall not imitate the tone and aims of God’s utterances.
Externally, you shall not do anything that manifestly opposes the man who is testified to by God.
These are what each person should adhere to. In each age, God specifies many rules that are akin to the laws and are to be adhered to by man. Through this, He constrains man’s disposition and detects his sincerity. Consider the words “Honor your father and your mother” of the Old Testament age, for example. These words do not apply today; at the time, they merely constrained some of man’s external disposition, were used to demonstrate the sincerity of man’s belief in God, and were a mark of those who believed in God. Although now is the Age of Kingdom, there are still many rules that man must adhere to. The rules of the past do not apply, and today there are many more fitting practices for man to carry out, and which are necessary. They do not involve the work of the Holy Spirit and must be done by man.
In the Age of Grace, many of the practices of the Age of Law were discarded because these laws were not particularly effective for the work at that time. After they were discarded, many practices were set out that were suitable for the age, and which have become the many rules of today. When the God of today came, these rules were dispensed with and it was no longer required that they be adhered to, and many practices were set out that are suitable for the work of today. Today, these practices are not rules, but are instead intended to achieve effects; they are suitable for today—tomorrow, perhaps they will become rules. In sum, you should adhere to that which is fruitful for the work of today. Pay no heed to tomorrow: What is done today is for the sake of today. Maybe when tomorrow comes, there will be better practices which you will be required to carry out—but do not pay too much attention to that. Rather, adhere to that which should be adhered to today so as to avoid opposing God. Today, nothing is more crucial for man to adhere to than the following:
You must not try to wheedle the God that stands before your eyes, or conceal anything from Him.
You shall not utter filthiness or arrogant talk in front of the God before you.
You shall not deceive the God before your eyes by honeyed words and fair speeches in order to gain His trust.
You shall not act irreverently before God. You shall obey all that is spoken from the mouth of God, and shall not resist, oppose, or dispute His words.
You shall not interpret as you see fit the words spoken from the mouth of God. You should guard your tongue to avoid it causing you to fall prey to the deceitful schemes of the wicked.
You should guard your footsteps to avoid transgressing the boundaries set out for you by God. If you transgress, this will cause you to stand in the position of God and speak words which are conceited and pompous, and thus you will become loathed by God.
You shall not carelessly spread the words spoken from the mouth of God, lest others mock you and the devils make a fool of you.
You shall obey all of the work of the God of today. Even if you do not understand it, you shall not pass judgment on it; all you can do is seek and fellowship.
No person shall transgress God’s original place. You can do nothing more than serve the God of today from the position of man. You cannot teach the God of today from the position of man—to do so is misguided.
No one may stand in the place of the man testified to by God; in your words, actions, and innermost thoughts, you stand in the position of man. This is to be abided by, it is the responsibility of man, and no one may alter it; attempting to would violate the administrative decrees. This should be remembered by all.
The long time that God has spent speaking and uttering has caused man to consider reading and memorizing the words of God to be his primary task. No one pays attention to practice, and even that which you ought to abide by you do not. This has brought many difficulties and problems to your service. If, prior to practicing the words of God, you have not adhered to that which you should adhere to, then you are one of those who are detested and rejected by God. In adhering to these practices, you should be earnest and sincere. You should not treat them like shackles, but adhere to them as commandments. Today, you ought not to concern yourself with what effects are to be achieved; in short, this is how the Holy Spirit works, and whoever commits an offense must be punished. The Holy Spirit is without emotion, and heedless of your present understanding. If you offend God today, then He will punish you. If you offend Him within the scope of His jurisdiction, then He will not spare you. He does not care how serious you are in your adherence to the words of Jesus. If you violate God’s commandments of today, He will punish you, and condemn you to death. How could it be acceptable for you not to adhere to them? You must adhere, even if it means suffering a little pain! No matter what religion, sector, nation, or denomination it is, in the future they must all adhere to these practices. None are exempt, and none will be spared! For they are what the Holy Spirit will do today, and no one may violate them. Although they are no great thing, they must be done by every person and they are the commandments set for man by Jesus, who was resurrected and who ascended to heaven. Does “The Path … (7)” not say that Jesus’ definition of whether you are righteous or sinful is according to your attitude toward God today? No one may overlook this point. In the Age of Law, generation after generation of the Pharisees believed in God, but with the arrival of the Age of Grace they did not know Jesus, and opposed Him. So it was that all they did came to nothing and was in vain, and God did not accept their deeds. If you can see through to this, then you will not easily sin. Many people, perhaps, have measured themselves against God. How does it taste to oppose God? Is it bitter or sweet? You should understand this; do not pretend that you do not know. In their hearts, perhaps, some people remain unconvinced. Yet I advise you to try it and see—see what it tastes like. This will prevent many people from always being suspicious about it. Many people read the words of God yet secretly oppose Him in their hearts. After opposing Him like this, do you not feel like a knife has been twisted in your heart? If it is not family disharmony, it is physical discomfort, or the afflictions of sons and daughters. Although your flesh is spared death, the hand of God will never leave you. Do you think it could be that simple? In particular, it is even more necessary for the many who are near to God to focus on this. As time passes, you will forget it, and, without realizing it, you will be plunged into temptation and become heedless of everything, and this will be the start of your sinning. Does this seem trivial to you? If you can do this well, then you have the chance to be made perfect—to come before God and receive His guidance from His own mouth. If you are careless, then there will be trouble for you—you will be defiant of God, your words and actions will be dissolute, and sooner or later you will be carried away by great gales and mighty waves. Every one of you should take note of these commandments. If you violate them, then although the man who is testified to by God may not condemn you, the Spirit of God will have unfinished business with you, and He will not spare you. Can you bear the consequences of your offense? Thus, no matter what God says, you must put His words into practice, and must adhere to them by any means you can. This is no simple matter!