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Compulsory Conditions for Entering Onto the Right Track of Believing in God

Classic Selections From Sermons and Fellowship on Entry Into Life

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Compulsory Conditions for Entering Onto the Right Track of Believing in God

Several Aspects of the Truth Must Be Experienced to Enter Onto the Right Track of Believing in God

Several aspects of the truth must be experienced to enter onto the right track of believing in God. First, to be able to eat and drink the words of God. What does being able to eat and drink the words of God refer to? It refers to being able to correctly approach the understanding of the mind when you eat and drink the words of God. What does this mean? It means when you eat and drink the words of God, do not merely be satisfied with what your mind is able to understand. This is not the Holy Spirit’s enlightenment and illumination. Do not think that is what it is. This is a word thing; it is not real. Do not think that your mind understanding some of the words of God equals you being able to eat and drink them. To think so is troublesome. You must first recognize that the essence of the truth is not just restricted to the meaning that your mind can understand from the words. The essence of the words of God is the truth. The reality within the words of God is the truth. The surface of the words of God is doctrine, not the truth. It is ignorance and self-deception to think that you understand the words of God when you only understand them on the surface. To be able to eat and drink the words of God you must understand this first. This is called spiritual knowledge. After reading the words of God twice, then telling others based on your understanding, you think you can preach and can call yourself a pastor, but this is wrong. Does a pastor not explain the words of God in this way? This is just words and doctrine. It is not reality at all. People who have real experience of the words of God can all see one fact clearly, that is, the truth in the words of God can absolutely not be understood literally from the words of God. So what is understanding the truth? What is understanding doctrine? Understanding doctrine is explaining literally according to the common sense of the text. This is called understanding doctrine. What is understanding the truth? Understanding the truth is not something that people can understand by using their heads. Understanding the truth is to obtain the Holy Spirit’s enlightenment and illumination by experiencing and trying to figure out the words of God and through prayer; you realize a true and substantive thing which cannot be understood through cogitation. This is understanding the truth. Understanding some of the meaning of the words of God is not the same as understanding the truth. You first give yourself a warning: “The literal meaning can be understood as soon as I see it. This is not understanding the truth.” And then you continue to try to figure it out, praying at the same time and inside you try to fathom the words of God with a praying heart, thinking: “God, enlighten me. What is the truth in these words?” Then you try to figure out the words of God again, trying to figure them out with a praying heart, seeking to grasp the actual real things in the words, you first try to figure out one aspect: Why did God say these words? What was God’s intention when he said these words? What kind of result did He wish to achieve? First try to figure this out. All that God says and does will certainly be meaningful. He does not do things without meaning. He does not say words that are of no benefit to us. First be sure of this. Then try to figure out and grasp God’s intention: After all what result does God want to achieve by saying this sentence? What is the meaning of saying this sentence? What kind of truth does this sentence give us as our life? What problems will it resolve? If you have this kind of mentality and try to figure out the words of God, it is easy to grasp God’s meaning. You can pray, seek the truth and grasp God’s intentions in this way in the presence of God. Try to figure out the words of God with this frame of mind and it is easy to grasp the reality of the words of God and to grasp the truth in the words of God. Being able to eat and drink the words of God is putting it into practice in this way. When both people who really can eat and drink the words of God and people who cannot read the words of God, they get different results. The second is to be able to pray. So being able to pray is knowing what true communication with God is, knowing how to open one’s heart to God and knowing how to seek the truth and grasp God’s intentions during prayer. The third is that you who understand the truth from the words of God must learn how to put it into practice and apply it. What truth do you understand from living church life and eating and drinking the words of God and have you actually put it into practice and applied it? Have you applied it to your real life and implemented it in your real life? You must implement and apply the truth that you understand from eating and drinking the words of God, no matter how deep or shallow your understanding is, or whether you just have a little illumination. This is called entering into the experience of putting the words of God into practice and the experience of putting the truth into practice. The fourth is not only being able to put the truth into practice, but also learning to obey God. Obedience to God includes the implementation of several aspects: The first aspect is that you must put into the practice the truth that you understand from the words of God. Before it was often said that only by implementing the truth can we truly obey God. This is not wrong. The second aspect is obedience to the guidance of the Holy Spirit and the Holy Spirit’s work. The third aspect is obedience to God’s sovereignty and arrangements in all environments. The fourth aspect is obedience to the man used by the Holy Spirit or the leadership and guidance of the Holy Spirit’s work, including work arrangements or pruning and dealing by all levels of leadership of God’s family (of course, this refers to positive things only; wrong things are another matter). If you show obedience in all four aspects and are able to practice them all then this is starting to enter into real experience in obeying God and the truth of obeying God. The fifth of entering onto the right track of believing in God is that you must be able to serve in coordination when doing your duty. In doing your duty, you must be able to coordinate with others harmoniously. A successful match no matter who you coordinate with, being able to get results in doing your duty no matter who you coordinate with, letting both people feel satisfied, all right and not bad. In this way you can meet God’s intentions in doing your duty. If some people cannot get along with people harmoniously when doing their duty, then they are certainly of poor or problematic humanity. A harmonious match means that your humanity is up to standard and you can get on with people normally and harmoniously. All those who can have normal humanity when coordinating with others in service or doing their duty, that is, who can get on with anyone harmoniously, do their duty well and ensure that they do good work are people who have the truth and humanity. So coordination in service when doing one’s duty is the best way to show whether or not people have humanity. Some people do not get on with anyone and always want to be the boss, control and command others in coordination, make people listen to them and put them at the center. What disposition is this? This is satanic disposition. If you have believed in God for a long time, have stature and are matched with a new believer then you cannot be self-centered. You have to communicate with them, treat them equally and take them as brothers and sisters and say: “Let’s first fellowship about the truth. How should this duty be done appropriately? You say your views and I’ll say my views and we will adopt the ideas of whoever is correct.” This is being able to obey each other. If you say the right thing I will obey you and you obey me about the things that I say right. This way, no matter whether you have believed in God for a long time or for a short time, you have mutual respect. Those who have believed in God for a short time may obey those who have believed in God a long time slightly more and this is normal, but however much one obeys the other, this is not putting either person at the center. There is no control here. Being able to obey each other and listen to whoever is right is called harmony. If you do not know that what you say is wrong, speak out and through fellowshiping with the other person, you discover that what you are saying is wrong and that what the other person is saying is right, then if you are rational, you will say: “I hear what you are saying and you are right and what I have said is wrong, so let’s put into practice as you say.” Is this not finished? One day when a brother or sister who is not as good as you or a new believer says something that is right, then you say: “What you say is right and my view is wrong. I will listen to you.” Try speaking like this and see how it goes. Practice consciously like this and speak this way and you won’t feel ashamed, your heart is quite calm and then when you say it again it will be even easier. People must not try to preserve their face at all cost. If you do not have the truth, then what does face matter? The great red dragon tries to save face at all cost. Trying to save face at all cost is the disposition of Satan. Now are there any people who can lose face and not be constricted by it? Can it be done? Give it a try. Let people laugh. If you are a little braver, then expose yourself: “What I do, what corruption is revealed, what intentions I harbor….” Expose yourself and see how you feel. Put this into practice. Forsaking the flesh and forsaking oneself is putting into practice in this way. If you have met the standard for this aspect, when you really make a mistake it is easy to rectify it and you will be unlikely to brace yourself to be wrong to the end. With regards to doing things for face, you clearly know your mistake but still persevere. You are barely human as a result of corrupt disposition, lacking any normal human sense. There is one thing in normal human sense, that is, if I really see my own mistakes then I admit them and rationally admit: “I made a mistake with this thing. I was wrong.” If a person never admits their mistakes, then this person is definitely not a rational person. You must always admit your mistakes, no matter what you’re wrong about. If wrong, then say it’s wrong. If you feel it right, then do not say it is absolutely right, say: “I feel like I’m not wrong, but I don’t dare guarantee that there will be no mistakes later.” Speak more objectively and realistically. This is called being rational. No matter what truth or what matter, if you understand then say you understand and if you don’t understand then say you don’t and if you don’t fully understand then say: “I don’t fully understand, but just understand a little.” Is it rational to say suchlike? If you do not understand, but you pretend you understand to save face, is it loathly or not? Did you always pretend to understand before? It is all acting beyond one’s means in order to be impressive and fooling oneself. Is that Satan’s corrupt disposition? Speaking and doing everything according to the words of God is called practicing entering the truth. One is one and two is two. Do not tell lies, do not pretend, do not try to save face and do not be stubborn and self-righteous. In coordination in service you learn to obey each other, not to flaunt seniority, not to pull rank, equal treatment, to treat people fairly and equally, the ability to understand, to quickly obey those who speak correctly, to improve their confidence and make them more confident in themselves. By coordinating with people in this way, people feel: “Oh, you are really easy to engage with, I can speak to you without feeling controlled and you do not pull rank.” So the two people are a particularly relaxed and happy match and enjoy themselves, like being at home. If you can have such a harmonious match with brothers and sisters whilst doing your duty, then it shows that your humanity has passed the test, reaches the standard and is normal. If you can experience and put these five into practice, then you have entered onto the right track of believing in God. Tell me whether entering onto the right track of believing in God is easy or not. It is not possible without two to three years of effort. If you really are of good caliber and truly pursuing the truth, then two years really is about right; by the third year results are guaranteed. When you see results, it can be said that you have laid foundations on the true way. Three years of laying foundations is also three years of entering onto the right track and three years of entering onto the right track is equal to laying the foundation. Experience after laying the foundation and that is completely entering the truth and also entering the stage of salvation and being perfected.

How to Practice True Dependence on God

Now we reach a very critical issue. People who believe in God must learn how to depend on God. This is the most practical lesson for believing in God. What is depending on God? It is that people can only depend on God for many matters because they do not have the truth, they do not know how to act, they do not know where the path is and they do not know how to get through difficulties. But can problems be resolved if you cannot depend on God and only continuously pray? And in the end, what is dependence on God? The main thing is to get through whatever happens with faith and by depending on God, to seek the truth through one’s faith and grasp God’s will and to know what you should do. This is truly depending on God. If you only pray but do not grasp God’s will and do not know where the road is, then that prayer just resolves spiritual emptiness, letting God give you courage. That is also a kind of simple dependence. However, without the truth, people are still unable to resolve problems. No matter what kind of trials and tribulations you face, you must first understand the truth: “How can I stand witness? How can I obey God and not betray God? How do I adhere to God’s will?” First find this path and then act according to the truth and according to God’s demands. Our hearts can then be comforted and satisfied. This is the process of depending on God. Depending on God is not merely achieving a fearless heart through prayer and all being fine by having God with you, but seeking the truth, knowing how to act to adhere to God’s will and finally depending on the faith and strength God has given you to prevail over Satan, shame Satan and glorify God. This is the result of truly depending on God. What does it take to depend on God? Faith and obedience. These two conditions are most critical. Having faith, you know that God is almighty, know that God can lead you through the storm and know that God dominates everything. In this way you have faith in praying to God, are willing to depend on God and able to truly depend on God and not depend on your own smartness. In the process of depending on God, people have to seek the truth and grasp God’s will. Your heart cannot be empty. What use is just depending on God to give you courage? How do you act appropriately? What truths should you put into practice? How should you obey God? You must resolve these issues. Once you have resolved these issues, you will know how to act in obedience to God and which aspects of the truth you should put into practice; these are the results you need to achieve to depend on God! If you depend on God, are victorious in trials, and stand witness, people ask you: “Did you grasp God’s will during trials? How did you stand witness? Which aspects of the truth did you put into practice? According to which of the words of God?” You say: “None of these.” So you lack too much in terms of your dependence and your testimony is not very resounding either! You muddleheadedly depend on God and pass yet you do not achieve great results. Firstly, you do not understand the truth that should be put into practice; secondly, you understand God’s intentions even less; thirdly, you do not know whether what you have done is bearing witness or not, whether or not you have gained the truth and whether or not you know God—you do not know any of these things. This is not too different from vacantly passing the day. So what are the results that you should achieve from truly depending on God? At least having true communion with God during the process of depending on God, being able to get enlightenment, illumination and guidance from the Holy Spirit, understanding the words of God during communion with God, knowing what truths should be put into practice, grasping God’s intention. In this way, what you put into practice and everything that you do has a foundation, your heart is at ease and once you have experienced it, you have truly testified and you know how to depend on God to be victorious during trials, which aspects of the truth were put into practice, which aspects the Holy Spirit enlightened and illuminated you on, how the Holy Spirit guides you, you know which aspects you have developed true knowledge of God in and finally, it gives you greater faith in God leading you through the storm. You are clear about these. You have these results. This is the real process of depending on God. It shows that you have had results from your prayer in this trial, that your communion with God is true, that the enlightenment and illumination you have received from the Holy Spirit is true, that the truth that you understand is true and that you have a true knowledge of God. This is true. This is being experienced. This is true experience. If people gain so much during experience, then are they depending on God to get through difficulties? Let us think back to when Job faced trial. How did he get through it? Did he pray a lot? Of course he did. At that time he had no intimate acquaintances. His wife was not an intimate acquaintance. He and his wife had no common language. So he prayed continuously. What did he say in his prayers? He sought a truth and said, “All these things I have were given to me by God. Why was what God gave me seized by robbers? Why did the robbers want to seize my things? If God did not allow it, then how could the robbers seize what He gave me? If it was permitted by God and the robbers seized it, then why would God permit it? Why did it have to be taken? When did I offend God?” He certainly prayed and communicated to God about this a lot. Besides prayer and communication, there is persistent figuring out and reflection: “What was I guilty of that provoked God’s anger? Why did God allow these robbers to seize all of my possessions?” We do not know how many times he thought about this question and prayed. Finally he got a verdict and the verdict was: “Jehovah gave, and Jehovah has taken away; blessed be the name of Jehovah.” Even this “blessed be the name of the LORD,” we do not know how long a time he prayed and figured it out. Tell me, during his communion with God, is this the process of seeking the truth? So he finally figured this question out: No matter how God treats us created beings, no matter whether God gives or takes away, we should all obey and thank God. This is the reason that people ought to possess. There is no other choice. He figured this out, got the truth and finally spoke these kinds of words, offered prayers, praise and thanks to God and this experience ended victoriously! Satan was humiliated and God glorified. Tell me can people deviate from prayer during the trial process? If they are people who pursue the truth, can they not seek the truth? Can they not find a correct answer? If the person who is facing this problem has no humanity, then what will he do? What will he say? He will complain a lot and say blasphemous things and attack God. Job’s humanity was so good. He was not someone who had been perfected by God but he could still stand witness. This shows that his original humanity was so good! He had so much conscience and reason, not a word of complaint was made and he could also praise God. Is it not clear how much better than us Job’s humanity was? Can we show such testimony when we face that kind of trial? You see that is truly depending on God! Finally the truth has been gotten and there is a real understanding of God and witness has been stood. The process of depending on God must be a process of true communion with God and must be a process of seeking the truth. Only then can one stand witness. If you do not depend on God in this way, then your dependence on God has no significance, is void and is unrealistic. Will you depend on God now? Some people say: “I pray to God as soon as I face difficulties, but I do not know if I will depend on God.” Prayer alone is not enough. You must also get results. So how will you resolve problems when you have difficulties if you do not seek the truth? Merely praying and then not being able to resolve the problem is not good enough. You must find the path to resolve the problem and eventually fully resolve the problem. This is the result of depending on God. Do you have any experience of depending on God now? You say you depend on God one time, this experience is extremely real and complete and in the end the result is very good and you have great enjoyment. This is the experience of depending on God. Do you have a best experience of depending on God since believing in God until now? Have you had such testimony? If you have then write down this type of testimony of experience. What is the benefit of writing it down? It has the benefit of making you depend on God even more in the future, learn to obey God even more and bear even better and more complete testimony. Write down your most successful experience of depending on God and say: “There was no adulteration in depending on God that time! It was not using God nor only letting God protect us through the difficulty and then it was over. I got the truth. I adhered to God’s intentions!” There is such a little comfort. That is a result of the Holy Spirit’s work. Write down this kind of experience and afterward you will know how to depend on God and will in the end achieve glorious testimony. Some people face trials—great difficulties, continuously pray to God, get the work of the Holy Spirit and can finally act as God’s intended. No corruptions were revealed, no complaints were made, there was no betrayal of God, things were satisfactorily resolved and the storm finally passed. This is a glorious experience. Some people say: “There are still some less than ideal times during this experience. The truth was not fully understood and people’s testimony in terms of cooperation was too little. I can only say that it is all God’s protection.” Being able to see this is also progress and later when you face difficulties again, if you depend on God again you can achieve: Firstly, understand the truth a little; secondly, know how to stand witness; thirdly, reach a true understanding and knowledge of God and God’s intentions. Is this not an even greater result? This is an even better experience. Some people say: “I only prayed when I faced difficulties. By praying, God saw me praying very earnestly and that I was anxious. The Holy Spirit worked and comforted me and finally, I did not suffer too much and it passed.” This is merely enjoying the grace of God. The truth has not been understood and God’s intentions have not been grasped. Is this people’s imperfection? God leads us through the storm and we hold God’s hand like a child, but we have not gotten to know God and have not satisfied God! The storm has passed and we did not fall nor complain. That is all the grace of God. But we are indebted to God. So at every true experience we must be able to see our shortcomings and by seeking the truth know what we should do to satisfy God and to stand witness. Work hard on these aspects and afterward our experience of depending on God will be even better, even more real and the gains will be even greater.

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