4. What is the work of evil spirits? What are the manifestations of the work of evil spirits?
Relevant Words of God:
What is the work that comes from Satan? In the work that comes from Satan, the visions within people are vague; people are without normal humanity, the motivations behind their actions are wrong, and although they wish to love God there are always accusations within them, and these accusations and thoughts cause constant interference within them, constraining the growth of their life and stopping them from coming before God in the normal condition. This is to say, as soon as the work of Satan is within people, their hearts cannot be at peace before God. Such people do not know what to do with themselves—when they see people gathering together, they want to run away, and they are unable to close their eyes when others pray. The work of evil spirits wrecks the normal relationship between man and God, and upsets people’s previous visions or their former path of life entry; in their hearts they can never draw close to God, and things always happen that cause disruption to them and shackle them. Their hearts cannot find peace and they are left with no strength to love God and with their spirits sinking. Such are the manifestations of the work of Satan. The manifestations of the work of Satan are: being unable to stand your ground and stand witness, causing you to become someone who is at fault before God and who has no faithfulness toward God. When Satan interferes, you lose the love and loyalty toward God within you, you are stripped of a normal relationship with God, you do not pursue the truth or the improvement of yourself; you regress and become passive, you indulge yourself, you give free rein to the spread of sin and are not hateful of sin; furthermore, the interference of Satan makes you dissolute; it causes God’s touch to disappear within you and makes you complain about God and oppose Him, leading you to question God; there is even the risk that you will abandon God. All of this comes from Satan.
Excerpted from “The Work of the Holy Spirit and the Work of Satan” in The Word Appears in the Flesh
There are today some evil spirits that deceive man with supernatural things; that is nothing but imitation on their part, to deceive man through work that is not presently done by the Holy Spirit. Many people perform miracles and heal the sick and drive out demons; these are nothing but the work of the evil spirits, for the Holy Spirit no longer does such work in the present day, and all those who have imitated the work of the Holy Spirit from that time onward are evil spirits indeed. All the work carried out in Israel at that time was work of a supernatural nature, though the Holy Spirit does not now work in such a manner, and any such work now is the imitation and disguise of Satan and its disturbance. But you cannot say that whatsoever is supernatural comes from evil spirits—this would depend on the age of God’s work.
Excerpted from “The Mystery of the Incarnation (1)” in The Word Appears in the Flesh
If, during the present day, there is to emerge a person who is able to display signs and wonders, cast out demons, heal the sick, and perform many miracles, and if this person claims that they are Jesus who has come, then this would be a counterfeit produced by evil spirits which imitate Jesus. Remember this! God does not repeat the same work. Jesus’ stage of work has already been completed, and God will never again undertake that stage of work. The work of God is irreconcilable with the notions of man; for example, the Old Testament foretold the coming of a Messiah, and the result of this prophecy was Jesus’ coming. This having already happened, it would be wrong for another Messiah to come again. Jesus has already come once, and it would be wrong if Jesus were to come again this time. There is one name for every age, and each name contains a characterization of that age. In the notions of man, God must always display signs and wonders, must always heal the sick and cast out demons, and must always be just like Jesus. Yet this time, God is not like that at all. If, during the last days, God still displayed signs and wonders, and still cast out demons and healed the sick—if He did exactly the same as Jesus—then God would be repeating the same work, and the work of Jesus would have no significance or value. Thus, God carries out one stage of work in every age. Once each stage of His work has been completed, it is soon imitated by evil spirits, and after Satan begins to follow on the heels of God, God changes to a different method. Once God has completed a stage of His work, it is imitated by evil spirits. You must be clear about this.
Excerpted from “Knowing God’s Work Today” in The Word Appears in the Flesh
Some people say that the Holy Spirit is working in them at all times. This is impossible. If they were to say that the Holy Spirit is always with them, that would be realistic. If they were to say that their thinking and sense are normal at all times, that would also be realistic, and would show that the Holy Spirit is with them. If they say the Holy Spirit is always working within them, that they are enlightened by God and touched by the Holy Spirit at every moment, and gain new knowledge all the time, then this is by no means normal! It is entirely supernatural! Without a shadow of a doubt, such people are evil spirits! Even when the Spirit of God comes into the flesh, there are times when He must eat and must rest—to say nothing of humans. Those who have been possessed by evil spirits seem to be without the weakness of the flesh. They are able to forsake and give up everything, they are free of the emotion, capable of enduring torment and do not feel the slightest fatigue, as if they have transcended the flesh. Is this not extremely supernatural? The work of evil spirits is supernatural—no human could achieve such things! Those who lack discernment are envious when they see such people: They say they have such vigor in their belief in God, have great faith, and never show the slightest sign of weakness! In fact, these are all manifestations of the work of an evil spirit. For, normal people inevitably have human weaknesses; this is the normal state of those who have the presence of the Holy Spirit.
Excerpted from “Practice (4)” in The Word Appears in the Flesh
Are you able to feel your soul? Are you able to touch your soul? Are you able to sense what your soul is doing? You don’t know, do you? If you are able to feel or touch such a thing, then it is another spirit inside of you doing something by force, having you do and say things. That is something outside of yourself, not inherent to you. Those with the work of the evil spirit will have a deep understanding of this.
Excerpted from “How to Understand the Relationship Between God’s Flesh and Spirit” in Records of Christ’s Talks
When people have some understanding of God, they can willingly suffer for Him and devote their lives to Him. However, Satan is still in control of the weaknesses within them, and can still cause them to suffer. Evil spirits can still work in people, interfering with them and causing them to be in a confused state of mind, to take leave of their senses, to feel ill at ease, and to be disturbed in every respect. There are things of the mind or soul in people that can still be controlled and manipulated by Satan. This is why you fall ill and become troubled, and it is possible for you to commit suicide, and at times you also feel that the world is desolate or that life has no meaning. In other words, these human sufferings are still under Satan’s command; they comprise one of man’s fatal weaknesses. Satan is still able to use those things that it has corrupted and trampled; they are weapons Satan can use against humanity. … Evil spirits latch onto every opportunity to do their work; they can speak to you from within or whisper into your ear, or they can throw your thoughts and mind into disarray. They can even suppress the Holy Spirit’s touch so that you cannot feel it. After that, they begin to interfere with you by confusing your thinking and addling your brain, leaving you restless and unhinged. Such is the work that evil spirits do on people. If they cannot discern it, then they will find themselves in great danger.
Excerpted from “The Significance of God’s Tasting of Worldly Suffering” in Records of Christ’s Talks
Sermon and Fellowship Excerpts for Reference:
The most obvious characteristic of the work of evil spirits is that it is supernatural. The words evil spirits speak or the things they ask people to do are abnormal and illogical, and even betray the basic morals and ethics of normal humanity, and that the nature of their words and actions is such that they do nothing but deceive, disturb, and corrupt people. It makes them only capable of harming, tormenting, and devouring people, and means they are never beneficial or helpful for people. When evil spirits possess people, they feel anxious and uneasy. Some even become abnormal, while others fall into a daze, and still others find themselves incredibly anxious and appear unable to sit still. At any rate, when evil spirits possess people, those people change into something that is neither human nor demon, and lose their normal humanity and reason. This is sufficient proof that the essence of evil spirits is one of evil and ugliness, which is precisely the essence of Satan.
The main manifestations of those in whom evil spirits are working (those who are possessed by demons) are:
1. People in whom evil spirits are at work often tell others to do this and that, or tell someone something, or often speak false prophecies.
2. People in whom evil spirits are at work often speak in so-called “tongues” in prayer, in a way that no one understands, and even the speakers themselves do not understand. Some of the speakers can even “interpret these tongues” themselves.
3. People in whom evil spirits are at work are always receiving revelations with great frequency; the evil spirits send them in one direction one minute, and in another direction the next, causing these people to be in a state of constant anxiety.
4. People in whom evil spirits are at work always urgently want to do this or that, too impatient to wait and giving no consideration to whether or not conditions permit; they even run out in the middle of the night, exhibiting particularly abnormal behavior.
5. People in whom evil spirits are at work are wildly arrogant, they lack reason, and their speech all tends to be condescending and they lord it over others. They put others at a loss of what to do, and like demons, they force them to do things.
6. People in whom evil spirits are at work do not know how to fellowship about the truth, much less pay attention to God’s work. They have no regard for Him and are always trying to be a law unto themselves, and are capable of committing all kinds of outrages to disturb and destroy the normal order of the church.
7. People in whom evil spirits are at work inexplicably pass themselves off as someone else, claiming to be someone’s spirit or sent by someone and that people should listen to them.
8. People in whom evil spirits are at work usually have no normal sense. They cannot understand any truth at all; they absolutely do not possess any capacity for understanding, nor are they enlightened by the Holy Spirit, and their thoughts are chaotic. When understanding things, these people are exceptionally absurd.
9. People in whom evil spirits are at work pay particular focus to lecturing others while working. Everything they do and say is meant to attack, bind, and corrupt other people, and they even go as far as to break people’s resolve and cause them to become negative to the point that they cannot lift themselves back up; only then will they lay off. Their actions are all about causing disturbances and disruptions, and committing all kinds of outrages. They are devils, pure and simple, who harm, toy with, and devour others, and as soon as they get their way, they feel happy. This is the primary goal of the work of evil spirits.
10. People in whom evil spirits are at work live utterly abnormal lives. There is an ominous glint to their eyes, and the words they utter are extremely gruesome, as if a demon had descended to the world. There is no order to this kind of person’s daily life, they are as erratic as undomesticated beasts. They are extremely repulsive and odious to others. This is precisely how people bound by demons express themselves.
These are the ten main ways in which the work of evil spirits manifests. Any person who displays any one of these expressions is certainly one in whom evil spirits are at work. To be exact, all those who manifest any of the aforementioned expressions of the work of evil spirits, regardless of which one, are people in whom evil spirits are at work. A person in whom evil spirits are at work often hates and deliberately distances themselves from people in whom the Holy Spirit is at work and who can fellowship about the truth. Often, the better someone is, the more they want to attack and condemn them. The more foolish someone is, the more they try to fawn upon and flatter them, and desire especially to come in contact with them. When evil spirits work, they always confuse black and white, portraying positive as negative and negative as positive. This is precisely how evil spirits act.
Excerpted from Work Arrangements
Most people can identify the work of evil spirits when it is supernatural, but struggle to do so when it is not. This requires people to equip themselves with the truth, and to use the truth to identify the myriad fallacies born of evil spirits; then it is easy to identify the true face of the work of evil spirits. In fact, all fallacies and heresies originate from evil spirits, and all of the demon kings of Satan are the incarnations of evil spirits. But are their words and actions supernatural? Not at all; outwardly, some people even appear highly rational—which is precisely what makes Satan so cunning. Thus, the most fundamental principle for identification is the use of the words of God and the truth to measure all theoretical arguments. All that does not accord with the truth is heresy and fallacy, and it all originates from evil spirits. All who dupe people and meddle with the work of God are evil spirits; all false Christs and antichrists are evil spirits; and all who do not testify to the true God, who do not exalt the true God, who do not worship the true God, who do not obey the true God, and instead testify that they are God or they want to be made into God—they are all evil spirits, no matter how great the signs and wonders they perform. God’s chosen people should understand that performing signs and wonders is not a true power; only being able to express the truth and using words to perfect people and accomplish all is a true power. And so, all who fixate on signs and wonders and pursue the supernatural work of spirits are absurd, and not possessed of the truth. All who are unable to accept the truth, and invariably accept evil spirits that are able to perform signs and wonders and whose work is supernatural—these people are all evil spirits; all whose hearts brim with every manner of fallacy and heresy—they are all evil spirits; all who invariably embrace every manner of heresy and fallacy, yet are incapable of accepting the truth—they are all evil spirits; all who are forever incapable of the pure understanding of God’s words, who forever pervert God’s words and espouse fallacies—they are unquestionably all evil spirits; and all who are especially absurd and ridiculous are evil spirits. This is absolute. In fact, everyone has a past, they all have a spirit inside them that directs what they say and do—this is beyond question. The spirit of Satan was in the ancient serpent, and is in the great red dragon, too; and evil spirits are within all of the demon kings that oppose God. As soon as they are held up against God’s word the truth, their true colors are exposed. Some people’s understanding is particularly absurd, as is their perspective on things. Can you claim their spirit is without issue? Some people are particularly partial to various heresies and fallacies, and do not accept the truth. Can you claim their spirits are without issue? Some people particularly fixate on and love pursuing supernatural things. They invariably claim that the supernatural work of evil spirits is the work of the Holy Spirit, and do not even turn back after they are tricked. Can you say their spirits are without issue? Some people have accepted the true way for several years, and have heard many sermons and fellowships, and are capable of recounting many letters and doctrines, yet they are incapable of truly understanding the essence of the truth, and there is not the slightest change in their life disposition. Can you say their spirits are without issue? In fact, the work of the Holy Spirit is absent from such people, and they lack any means of understanding the truth and entering into reality. Of this there is no doubt. So just how can the various work of evil spirits be identified? Of chief importance is identifying people’s essence, for only when you can identify their essence can you tell which kind of spirit’s work they are. If people are especially evil, insidious, and venomous, they unquestionably lack a human spirit; if they have a spirit, then it is an evil one. If people consistently accept and espouse all manner of fallacies, there is unquestionably some absurd—and evil—spirit inside them. The understanding of those who possess the work of the Holy Spirit is relatively pure, their humanity is relatively untainted and honest, and so the knowledge they fellowship is relatively pure, and of benefit to people. Only such people are God’s chosen ones, and beloved of God’s chosen ones, and those whom people are willing to engage with, and capable of being of one heart and mind with. If people are especially deceitful, insidious, and venomous, then they absolutely do not possess the work of the Holy Spirit, for God does not save those who are evil. Those predestined and chosen by God are people who love and pursue the truth. Even if they are service-doers, they are unquestionably of relatively good humanity; only people of relatively good humanity are faithful in the performance of their duty, and conscientious and reasonable in their interactions with others. In the churches, only when those who love the truth gather is there the work of the Holy Spirit, and the true life of the church. If people’s words and fellowship are particularly absurd, if they lack pure understanding no matter how many sermons and fellowships they hear, and show no signs of progress, and their humanity is especially ignoble, especially bad, and they have not changed at all, and they are abhorred and despised by others, then there is no question that they shall be eliminated by the Holy Spirit. There is no benefit to living and interacting with such people; they will only have a bad impact on you and disturb you. It can be said the humanity of all who do not love the truth is relatively deceitful, venomous, selfish, and ignoble; they believe in God only in order to be blessed, and have never known to be mindful of God’s will and repay God’s love and satisfy God; they lack any conscience or reason. Such people are not likely to gain the work of the Holy Spirit. It should be clear to God’s chosen people that of all who are bereft of the work of the Holy Spirit, most suffer from the meddling of the work of evil spirits. People who have long been without the work of the Holy Spirit are highly dangerous, and should be guarded against. If people are forsaken by the Holy Spirit, all manner of evil spirits take the opportunity to enter them, at which time these people’s conditions become ever more dire, to the extent that they fall into their old ways, and even become no different from the unbelievers. This is the devil Satan showing itself. Clearly, being able to identify different kinds of people is of the utmost importance. Only when you can identify people can you identify spirits. If you cannot identify people, then you will surely be unable to identify the various work of evil spirits.
Excerpted from Work Arrangements