Sermons and Fellowship About God’s Word “You Should Seek the Way of Compatibility With Christ”
Let us read God’s words, “You Should Seek the Way of Compatibility With Christ.”
You Should Seek the Way of Compatibility With Christ
I have done much work among man, during which time I have also expressed many words. These words are all for the sake of man’s salvation and were expressed so that man might become compatible with Me. However, I have gained only a few people on earth who are compatible with Me, and so I say that man does not treasure My words—it is because man is not compatible with Me. In this way, the work I do is not merely so that man can worship Me; more importantly, it is so that man can be compatible with Me. Man has been corrupted and lives in Satan’s trap. All people live in the flesh, live in selfish desires, and there is not a single one among them who is compatible with Me. There are those who say that they are compatible with Me, but such people all worship vague idols. Although they acknowledge My name as holy, they tread a path that runs contrary to Me, and their words are full of arrogance and self-confidence. This is because, at root, they are all against Me and incompatible with Me. Every day, they seek traces of Me in the Bible and find “suitable” passages at random which they read endlessly and recite as scriptures. They do not know how to be compatible with Me nor what it means to be against Me. They merely read scriptures blindly. Within the Bible, they constrain a vague God that they have never seen, and are incapable of seeing, and take it out to look at at their leisure. They believe in My existence only within the scope of the Bible, and they equate Me with the Bible; without the Bible there is no Me, and without Me there is no Bible. They pay no heed to My existence or actions, but instead devote extreme and special attention to each and every word of Scripture. Many more even believe that I should not do anything I wish to do unless it is foretold by Scripture. They attach too much importance to Scripture. It can be said that they see words and expressions as too important, to the extent that they use verses from the Bible to measure every word I say and to condemn Me. What they seek is not the way of compatibility with Me or the way of compatibility with the truth, but the way of compatibility with the words of the Bible, and they believe that anything that does not conform to the Bible is, without exception, not My work. Are such people not the dutiful descendants of the Pharisees? The Jewish Pharisees used the law of Moses to condemn Jesus. They did not seek compatibility with the Jesus of that time, but diligently followed the law to the letter, to the extent that—after having charged Him with not following the law of the Old Testament and not being the Messiah—they ultimately nailed the innocent Jesus to the cross. What was their essence? Was it not that they didn’t seek the way of compatibility with the truth? They obsessed over each and every word of Scripture while paying heed neither to My will nor to the steps and methods of My work. They were not people who sought the truth, but people who rigidly clung to words; they were not people who believed in God, but people who believed in the Bible. Essentially, they were watchdogs of the Bible. In order to safeguard the interests of the Bible, to uphold the dignity of the Bible, and to protect the reputation of the Bible, they went so far as to nail the merciful Jesus to the cross. This they did merely for the sake of defending the Bible, and for the sake of maintaining the status of each and every word of the Bible in people’s hearts. So they preferred to forsake their future and the sin offering to condemn Jesus, who did not conform to the doctrine of Scripture, to death. Were they not all lackeys to each and every word of Scripture?
And what of people today? Christ has come to release the truth, yet they would rather expel Him from this world so that they may gain entry into heaven and receive grace. They would rather completely deny the coming of the truth in order to safeguard the interests of the Bible, and they would rather nail the Christ returned to flesh to the cross again in order to ensure the everlasting existence of the Bible. How can man receive My salvation when his heart is so malicious and his nature so antagonistic toward Me? I live among man, yet man does not know of My existence. When I shine My light upon man, he still remains ignorant of My existence. When I unleash My wrath upon man, he denies My existence with even greater vigor. Man searches for compatibility with words and compatibility with the Bible, yet not a single person comes before Me to seek the way of compatibility with the truth. Man looks up to Me in heaven and devotes particular concern to My existence in heaven, yet no one cares about Me in the flesh, for I who live among man am simply too insignificant. Those who only seek compatibility with the words of the Bible and who only seek compatibility with a vague God are a wretched sight to Me. That is because what they worship are dead words, and a God that is capable of giving them untold treasures; what they worship is a God that would lay Himself at the mercy of man—a God who does not exist. What, then, can such people gain from Me? Man is simply too lowly for words. Those who are against Me, who make limitless demands of Me, who have no love of the truth, who are rebellious toward Me—how could they be compatible with Me?
Those who are against Me are those who are not compatible with Me. Such is also the case among those who do not love the truth. Those who rebel against Me are even more against Me and incompatible with Me. I deliver into the hands of the evil one all those who are not compatible with Me, and I relinquish them to the corruption of the evil one, give them free rein to reveal their maleficence, and ultimately hand them over to the evil one to be devoured. I care not how many worship Me, which is to say, I care not how many people believe in Me. All that concerns Me is how many are compatible with Me. That is because all those who are not compatible with Me are evil ones who betray Me; they are My enemies, and I shall not “enshrine” My enemies in My home. Those who are compatible with Me shall forever serve Me in My home, and those who go against Me shall forever suffer My punishment. Those who only care about the words of the Bible and are concerned neither with the truth nor with seeking My footsteps—they are against Me, for they limit Me according to the Bible, constrain Me within the Bible, and so are blasphemous in the extreme toward Me. How could such people come before Me? They pay no heed to My deeds, or My will, or the truth, but instead obsess over words—words that kill. How could such people be compatible with Me?
I have expressed so many words, and have also expressed My will and disposition, yet even so, people are still incapable of knowing Me and believing in Me. Or, it could be said, people are still incapable of obeying Me. Those who live within the Bible, those who live within the law, those who live on the cross, those who live according to doctrine, those who live amid the work I do today—who among them is compatible with Me? You only think of receiving blessings and rewards, but have never spared a thought as to how to actually be compatible with Me, or to how to prevent yourselves from being against Me. I am so disappointed in you, for I have given you so much, yet I have gained so little from you. Your deception, your arrogance, your greed, your extravagant desires, your betrayal, your disobedience—which of these could escape My notice? You are slipshod with Me, you fool Me, you insult Me, you deceive Me, you exact Me and extort Me for sacrifices—how could such maleficence elude My punishment? All this evildoing is proof of your enmity against Me and is proof of your incompatibility with Me. Each of you believes yourself to be so compatible with Me, but if that were the case, then to whom would such irrefutable evidence apply? You believe yourselves to possess the utmost sincerity and loyalty toward Me. You think that you are so kindhearted, so compassionate, and have devoted so much to Me. You think that you have done more than enough for Me. But have you ever held this up against your actions? I say you are plenty arrogant, plenty greedy, plenty perfunctory; the tricks with which you fool Me are plenty clever, and you have plenty of contemptible intentions and contemptible methods. Your loyalty is too meager, your earnestness too paltry, and your conscience even more lacking. There is too much maliciousness in your hearts, and no one is exempt from it, not even Me. You shut Me out for the sake of your children, or your husband, or your own self-preservation. Instead of caring about Me, you care about your family, your children, your status, your future, and your own gratification. When have you ever thought of Me as you spoke or acted? On frigid days, your thoughts turn to your children, your husband, your wife, or your parents. On blistering days, I hold no place in your thoughts, either. When you perform your duty, you are thinking of your own interests, of your own personal safety, of the members of your family. What have you ever done that was for Me? When have you ever thought of Me? When have you ever devoted yourself, at any cost, to Me and My work? Where is the evidence of your compatibility with Me? Where is the reality of your loyalty to Me? Where is the reality of your obedience to Me? When have your intentions not been for the sake of gaining My blessings? You fool and deceive Me, you play with the truth, you conceal the existence of the truth, and betray the substance of the truth. What awaits you in the future by going against Me in this way? You merely seek compatibility with a vague God, and merely seek a vague belief, yet you are not compatible with Christ. Will not your maleficence beget the same retribution as that deserved by the wicked? At that time, you will realize that no one who is incompatible with Christ can escape the day of wrath, and you will discover what kind of retribution shall be wrought upon those who are against Christ. When that day comes, your dreams of being blessed for your belief in God and of gaining entry into heaven shall all be shattered. It shall not be so, however, for those who are compatible with Christ. Though they have lost so much, though they have suffered much hardship, they shall receive all of the inheritance I bequeath to mankind. Ultimately, you will understand that I alone am the righteous God, and that I alone am capable of taking mankind into his beautiful destination.
We have just read a piece of God’s word of great importance called “You Should Seek the Way of Compatibility With Christ.” At what level are the words of God in this piece so important? If people cannot enter into the words of God in this piece, if they cannot satisfy what God requires, can they enter the kingdom of heaven? Your belief in Almighty God does not guarantee you a share of the kingdom of heaven, nor does your spoken acknowledgement that Almighty God is the incarnate God, the appearance of Christ, mean that you are saved. You believe in Almighty God, you can do your duty, and you can cast aside everything to follow God, but that does not mean heaven must have a share for you. Hear the words of God, and know that His most fundamental saying is that you must seek to be compatible with Christ. What effect is to be achieved? You experience God’s work in the last days and are judged and chastised before the seat of Christ. But of the greatest importance is whether in the end you are compatible with Christ, whether you are a person who can submit to Christ, a person who can obey God and worship God. When people believed in the Lord Jesus, God was not strict with them, but when He does the work of judgment in the last days, He is serious with man. To what extent is He serious? He looks at whether a person is truly compatible with Christ of the last days. If a person becomes truly compatible, his disobedience, his resistance, his satanic disposition, his viewpoints, all of these will be cleansed. That person can utterly obey Christ, and be obedient to the authority of Christ’s word, and it is only such a person that can survive and be one of the people of the kingdom. Now is this vision clear? There may be some new believers who still do not see this clearly. This is normal. But for those who have been believers for a number of years, if you still cannot see this clearly, your reading of God’s word has been empty of meaning and of no use. You understand nothing!
God’s word says: “I have done much work among man, during which time I have also expressed many words. These words are all for the sake of man’s salvation and were expressed so that man might become compatible with Me. However, I have gained only a few people on earth who are compatible with Me, and so I say that man does not treasure My words—it is because man is not compatible with Me.” What does God mean by this? Do you understand? God incarnate has expressed many words in the last days, and these words are for the sake of man’s salvation. But as for the results of this work, God says: “However, I have gained only a few people on earth who are compatible with Me, and so I say that man does not treasure My words—it is because man is not compatible with Me.” What finally does it mean to be compatible with Christ? Which people are not compatible with Christ? Perhaps the majority of people are not really clear about this, and people who have just accepted Almighty God are likely to be especially unsure of the answers. A person who has just accepted Almighty God is likely to think: “I have believed in God for so many years and have already forsaken everything for Him, I have already done so much work for God and endured so much hardship, so of course I am compatible with God.” These are the ideas of a new believer. What do people who have experienced the judgment before the seat of Christ think? “I have been judged and chastised before the seat of Christ. I already know of my corruption, my nature, and my essence. I despise the old me, despise this corrupt flesh. I am willing to love God with all my heart, willing to accept the truth, willing to seek after the truth. I am ready to give my all for God, this is what I aspire to. Is it possible I am not compatible with God?” Are these two ideas correct? Both are incorrect. You can never achieve a genuine understanding of God’s word with no experience. An understanding of the word of God is achieved through experience. Some people say, “I am a person of caliber, I have a sharp intellect, I can understand the word of God quickly, without any problem.” This statement is not tenable. Why is it not tenable? People of caliber who have the ability to comprehend are able to read and understand the word of God, but this understanding is too shallow; it just touches the surface of things. The true meaning of the word of God, the essence of His word, and His intentions, these must be experienced for eight to ten years to be understood. Consider this example. A religious person who believes in the Lord confesses his sins, he confesses all of the sins he has ever committed to the Lord, he pours out everything. But does he really know the essence of sin? Does he know the origin of sin? He often confesses his sins in prayer and, yet, later he sins again. Why isn’t he able to repent? Can anybody figure this out? In fact nobody can, all of the preachers and pastors, even Paul, do not understand. All Paul could do was admit that he was the principal sinner. Did he say what his nature and his substance were? Did he explain the origin of his resistance or why he condemned the Lord Jesus? He could not say. In fact, there was nothing he could say. Why is this? He had not been judged and chastised by God. In the Age of Grace, God basically said nothing about the substance of man’s sinful nature, about the essence of man’s nature, about the fact that man has been corrupted by Satan. Why did the Lord Jesus say nothing and only let people confess their sins? Who can find the origins in the Bible, in the words of the Lord Jesus? The work of God is watertight, a seamless piece of heavenly cloth. The Lord Jesus would do nothing that is not complete, that is not concrete. Then why is it that Jesus said nothing? Why did He say nothing of judgment of the last days? Can you say that the Lord Jesus is of poor caliber? Can you say that the Lord Jesus is not God incarnate? No one can say this. But why didn’t Jesus say anything? Anyone who can make sense of this business really gets the point of the Bible. What did the Lord Jesus say? It is not that we have an explanation, let us find instead a basis in the words of the Lord Jesus. The Lord Jesus spoke thus: “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: for He shall not speak of Himself, but whatever He shall hear, that shall He speak: and He will show you things to come” (Jhn 16:12-13). Is this the basis? The Bible says: “He that believes on the Son has everlasting life: and he that believes not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God stays on him” (Jhn 3:36). What is the meaning of these words? You have experienced the work of the Lord Jesus in the Age of Grace, have spent your life for the Lord Jesus, then why do you not have eternal life? Consider what the Bible says: “He that believes on the Son has everlasting life: and he that believes not the Son shall not see life.” This is not a contradiction. How is it not contradictory? Almighty God has come, but is He the Spirit of the Lord Jesus? If you only accept the work of the Lord Jesus, but do not accept Almighty God, are you really believers in the Son? You are not. In the last days, the words “[h]e that believes on the Son has everlasting life” will be realized and it will be Almighty God that gives them eternal life. This is clear, right? You should not misunderstand the words of the Bible. Now Almighty God has come and you have accepted His work of the last days, but what has the Lord Jesus promised us about this? In the prophecy of the Lord Jesus, can you find any basis to confirm that those who accept Almighty God will have eternal life and be able to enter the kingdom of heaven? The film Who Is My Lord answers these questions, so I will say no more here.
I will continue to fellowship about this piece of God’s word, which was spoken by Christ of the last days. It has been two thousand years since the Lord Jesus completed the work of redemption and was resurrected from the dead and ascended to heaven. At any time during the two thousand years since then, have we heard the voice of God? We have not. During those two thousand years, mankind has spread the name of the Lord Jesus, and has borne witness to Him, living the church life during the Age of Grace. All who believe in the Lord have received God’s grace, and have enjoyed the peace and joy that comes with the forgiveness of sins and the abundance of God’s grace. But after the Lord Jesus appeared in the last days, He has expressed so many words in The Word Appears in the Flesh. Today we read “You Should Seek the Way of Compatibility With Christ,” which can be found in The Word Appears in the Flesh. After hearing this piece, how do you feel? The Lord Jesus, who departed more than two thousand years ago, has returned and He has spoken so many words to us. You feel this is the voice of God. Why do you say this? How are we able to say it is the voice of God? Actually, saying so is no simple matter. There is the feeling that, “Ah, these words are God’s words, people cannot say such things, they cannot completely lay bare the relationship between man and God, the current situation of humanity, and the things inside mankind’s bones.” You just realize that a person cannot say such things, that only God is able to speak such words, and then you acknowledge, “Yes, those are God’s words, that is God’s voice.” But is it really that simple? Do you believe this piece of God’s words is His judgment for all the past generations of saints? These words are God’s judgment of the corrupt mankind, and they are words of judgment spoken before the seat of Christ to all of the historical believers in God’s household.
People who believe in the Lord, no matter how many years they have believed, have a dream. What is that dream? The dream of the heavenly kingdom. Isn’t the purpose of those who believe in the Lord to enter the kingdom of heaven? Don’t they all dream of entering the kingdom of heaven? One says, “My dream of the heavenly kingdom is like this,” and another says, “My dream of the heavenly kingdom is like that.” And each of them believes he can enter the kingdom of heaven. Thus, people wait for the Lord to come in order to enter the kingdom of heaven, to make their dream come true. The piece of God’s words called “You Should Seek the Way of Compatibility With Christ” gives all those people who dream of the heavenly kingdom an answer and an explanation. After you have read this discourse, how should you treat your dream? Is the dream shattered, does it disappear altogether, or is it just shelved? Can the dream come true? There should be an answer, right? It is here that God gives people a path—“You Should Seek the Way of Compatibility With Christ.” If you accept Almighty God, Christ of the last days, you say, “I accept His judgment and chastisement; no matter what God reveals, I must acknowledge it, I must submit to it. I will do all that God demands, I will eat and drink the words of God, and practice the words of God.” If you can submit to the judgment and chastisement before the seat of Christ, if you submit to all of God’s work, then God will come around to your dream of the heavenly kingdom and make your dream come true. Do you believe this is true? Some say God has come to simply put an end to our dream, deliberately to smash our dream, and finally to condemn us to hell. Is this the case? Why is it that so many people do not dare to accept the judgment and chastisement of Christ of the last days? Some people think subconsciously that if they accept the judgment of Christ of the last days and acknowledge this, then they will be condemned and cast down into hell as a result and their dream of the heavenly kingdom will be shattered. But if they don’t accept this judgment, then the dream will not be shattered and they can still hope it will come true. Aren’t there religious people who think this way? There are. Such a person does not accept the judgment before the seat of Christ, does not accept the judgment of God in the last days. “We believe in the Lord, believe in the forgiveness of our sins, so why must we be judged? Do the words spoken by the Lord not count? If there is forgiveness, why must there be judgment? Isn’t this just settling old scores with us?” So what is the meaning of the judgment in the last days? The Lord Jesus has forgiven our sins, so what is the meaning of the judgment? How do you understand this? Judgment is not turning up old accounts, nor is it condemning us by digging up sins we committed in the past. We are judged primarily because we have been corrupted by Satan; we are judged because of our satanic nature, our satanic essence, and our satanic disposition. We are judged for all that we have inside of us that is not compatible with God. In the final analysis, judgment is meant to cleanse us, the result of judgment is to make us purified; judgment cleanses us of our satanic nature and our satanic disposition, those things of ours that are unclean. Therefore, when God does the work of judgment, He is not settling old accounts or condemning man again for past sins, He is cleansing man of his satanic nature and satanic disposition. In order to cleanse you of your satanic disposition, God judges and God reveals and speaks clearly to you of the essence of the problem. If He did not speak clearly of your corrupt nature and the root cause of this corruption, could you recognize these? Nobody would be able to recognize these. People are clever and they have good minds, but they cannot penetrate the spiritual world and understand the truth directly. This is a fact. Some people say, “Is it true that people really can’t understand the truth? If we cannot understand the truth, why are we asked to eat and drink the words of God, fellowship about the truth? Isn’t this a contradiction?” What do you think? Is this a contradiction? No. Understanding the truth is not a matter of relying on people’s instincts. For people to understand external things like knowledge and science, they must study and then they are able to obtain a result, to understand some things. But when it comes to the mystery of the truth, man is impotent. Therefore, scientists may study science for many years, but they do not discover God, they do not know God. Doctors of theology who believe in the Lord may study the Bible for many years, but they do not understand the truth, they do not know God. What is the one thing this allows us to understand thoroughly? If people depend on themselves to study the Bible and experience human life, they are not able to understand the truth, they are not able to know God. What do people have to depend on to understand the truth? They depend on the work of the Holy Spirit! Why, the Holy Spirit is God Himself! Only by depending on the work of the Holy Spirit can people understand the truth. If the Holy Spirit does not enlighten people and give them inspiration and show them the light, they will never understand the truth. It is inspiration that drives scientific development. Without inspiration, mankind’s work produces sweat, but is otherwise in vain. If scientific development depends on inspiration, then humanity’s understanding of the truth and knowledge of God is even more dependent on inspiration and inspiration is the work of the Holy Spirit. If we do not fellowship these words in this manner, nobody can comprehend. I did not do this on my own. If the Holy Spirit had not enlightened me, I could not have comprehended.
These words of God that we are fellowshiping today, you must pray-read them well. God’s judgment, God’s chastisement, what do they ultimately aim to achieve? Their aim is to allow us to become truly compatible with Christ. If we should become compatible with Christ, then we are also compatible with God. To be compatible with Christ is to be compatible with God, because Christ is the embodiment of God, which is God Himself speaking and uttering His own voice. Regardless of the many notions with which you view this incarnation, seeing how ordinary this incarnation is, seeing how this is only a normal person, this incarnation is still the embodiment of the Spirit of God, the embodiment of the truth. As Christ is clothed in normal humanity on the outside, no one can see through to His essence, saying: “Your humanity is all too normal. No matter how I look, You appear to be merely a person, You appear to be an ordinary person! You are only an ordinary and normal person, how can You be God? How can I not comprehend?” This is a general question that those who believe in God incarnate have. If such a question should exist, then such a notion must also exist inside of you, therefore are you someone who is compatible with Christ? You can only see the normal humanity of Christ, you do not know the divine essence of Christ, and this shall be the end of you. God says: “The Two Incarnations Complete the Significance of the Incarnation.” What do these words mean? Even with ten years of experience, you would not be able to comprehend these words. Although I have twenty, thirty years of experience, even I have only attained this degree of comprehension. Someone says: “So many people believed in the Lord during the stage of the Lord Jesus. Wasn’t believing in the Lord an acknowledgement that the Lord Jesus is God, that He is God incarnate? Didn’t they all acknowledge that the Lord Jesus is Christ, the Son of God?” Were there people who treated the Lord Jesus as God? Did anyone know that the Lord Jesus is the appearance of the true God? Was there such an understanding? No. Therefore, when they pray to the Lord Jesus, “Lord Jesus, You are the Lord, You are the Son of God, You are Christ,” that is all that they say. They do not say “You are God. Lord Jesus Christ, You are Father God. You are Jehovah God.” There are very few prayers like this, and even for those who can say such words, they still do not have such comprehension in their hearts. So, during the Age of Grace, when God incarnate completed the work of redemption, did He truly allow men to know God? No. No one knew God. Therefore, during that stage, the Holy Spirit was only able to witness thus, “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased; hear you Him” (Mat 17:5). If He should have said “The Lord Jesus is God,” would it be easy for people to believe? During that stage, the Holy Spirit was only able to witness thus. Why must the Holy Spirit witness thus? Because that stage of the Holy Spirit’s work was to complete the work of redemption, therefore the demands placed on men were not too high. “You must know the Lord Jesus: He is the Father, He is the one true God who has created the heavens and earth and all things, He is the Creator.” This was not what that stage aimed to fulfill, it only aimed to fulfill the work of redemption. It was sufficient that you knew the redemption of the Lord Jesus, that you acknowledged it, then you were able to pray to the Lord Jesus and confess, to repent and return to Him, to bear witness for Him, and God has completed His work. During that stage, God’s demands on men were not high, but they are different during this stage. During this stage, when God utters His voice, has He said words such as “Almighty God is the Son of God, He is Christ incarnate”? The Holy Spirit is no longer witnessing thus; He is directly witnessing that Almighty God is the appearance of the one true God. He is the First and the Last, He is Almighty God, He is the Master that created the heavens and earth and all things. Direct witnessing. Therefore, when Christ of the last days arrives, what is it that God wants to fulfill? All of humanity must be under God’s authority. When God arrives in the last days, He arrives with the kingdom, He shall make perfect a group of people, to have the kingdom of Christ appear on earth. All men who attend the feast with Christ and with God will receive God’s cleansing and God’s perfection. These men will then be brought within the kingdom, to become people of the kingdom. This is the vision for God’s work of judgment during the last days, which is also the purpose of God’s work, the fact that God shall achieve in the end—to have the kingdom of Christ appear on earth.
Why are Satan’s evil forces attacking God’s work so much, judging God’s work so? Why are the evil forces of the great red dragon frenziedly attacking and condemning God, and oppressing His church? Why do all evil forces belonging to Satan, including the antichrist groups within religious circles, condemn Almighty God? It is because Satan knows that its end is near, that God has already gained His kingdom and the kingdom has arrived on earth, and that it shall immediately perish if it does not engage in a decisive battle with God. Have you grasped this fact? Once they have heard the Chinese Communist government’s frenzied condemnations of the work of Almighty God, many confused people think that this could not possibly be the true way. Once they have seen the widespread condemnation from the pastors and elders of religious circles, they think that this is surely not the true way. In what ways are these people confused? Are they able to see through the dark and evil essence of the world? The Bible states, “And the light shines in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not” (Jhn 1:5). Do they truly understand these words? “[T]he whole world lies in wickedness” (1Jn 5:19). Can they comprehend the true meaning of these words? They are unable to see through anything. They think that if this were the true way, if God had arrived, then the Chinese government should be welcoming, religious circles should be welcoming, and only then could it be the true way. What kind of logic is this? Is this not the logic of Satan? When some people investigate the work of God, they first look at whether the world welcomes and approves of The Church of Almighty God, Eastern Lightning, and whether religious circles welcome and approve of it. “Only if the world is welcoming, and particularly, if the CCP government declares that it is the true way, can we believe in it. If all the pastors and elders from religious circles declare that this is the true way, that this is the return of the Lord Jesus, only then can we accept it.” Are there many confused people like this? Some people, just as they are on the verge of expending themselves for God, the great red dragon, Satan, comes to test them: “The Church of Almighty God kidnaps people. If you believe in Almighty God, then you won’t be able to leave, otherwise they will gouge out your eyes, cut off your ears, and break your legs.” Tell me, if this truly were the case, how many people across the world would already have their eyes gouged out and their ears cut off? Have you seen even one such case? Of all the people who have expended themselves for God, have you seen any who was forced to do so because they were kidnapped and couldn’t leave? If they truly had been kidnapped, would their work and their preaching be effective? Anyone with a brain would ponder this and think: “That’s right. This is a rumor made up by the CCP, a lie told by the CCP. The devil Satan is really good at spreading rumors—how come I didn’t see the truth?” Some people do not believe these words of the great red dragon, while others are frightened and no longer dare to expend themselves for God when they hear these things. “I can no longer dedicate myself to this. It’s dangerous; I could lose my life!” Then, they retreat. Do these people possess the ability of understanding? They do not; they lack discernment. Some also say: “I see that the words of Almighty God are the words of God, that they are the voice of God. I have basically determined that the words of Almighty God are the truth, but what is this organization, The Church of Almighty God? I haven’t fully looked into this—I don’t have an understanding of this church. Are they actually capable of kidnapping people? If they kidnapped me, would they gouge out my eyes and cut off my ears?” This is where their confusion lies. They say: “I can’t join them. What if they did gouge out my eyes and cut off my ears? Wouldn’t I be disabled for life? The Church of Almighty God is still an unknown quantity for me; I don’t have an understanding of it. However, I have basically been certain about Almighty God’s words. They are the voice of God, and they possess the truth.” They are very careful in their examination: First they examine the words of Almighty God to see if they are God’s words. Once they accept that they truly are the words of God, then they further look into whether The Church of Almighty God is a real church. They think: “Wouldn’t it be problematic if The Church of Almighty God were a criminal organization but the words of Almighty God are real?” Would you say that that is even possible? If that were the case, then The Church of Almighty God would not be a true church. If things were as they imagined, that The Church of Almighty God that is spreading God’s words and bearing witness for Almighty God is a human organization, but doesn’t consist of people belonging to God, then wouldn’t the work of Almighty God just be a sham? Then who are preaching and bearing witness to God’s words? Who are bearing witness for Almighty God? How could God allow people from a criminal organization, an organization of human beings, to exalt Him and bear witness for Him? Would that not be a humiliation of God? Could God humiliate Himself? Some people are unable to see through this matter. They have acknowledged the words of God, yet they are unable to see clearly what kind of church The Church of Almighty God really is—they do not dare to believe in it. They are thinking: “I don’t want to be in contact with you people. What would I do if you kidnapped me?” These people cannot come close to comparing with those saints who have martyred themselves for the Lord through the ages. When the Lord Jesus sent those saints out to preach, it was like throwing sheep into a pack of wolves, yet they all dared to go. Now these people clearly know the words of Almighty God are the truth and the voice of God, but are timid and fearful, not daring to come into contact with The Church of Almighty God because of rumors. Isn’t this disappointing to God? People’s pathetic faith, people listening to and believing the devil Satan are tragedies of mankind.
Adam and Eve were quite happy in the Garden of Eden, obeying God and heeding God’s voice, but what caused them to sin in the end? After God had spoken to them, Satan said a few words to tempt them—they believed in those words and then committed sins. They were immediately cut off from God—God no longer spoke to them, and He hid His face from them. Is this not a tragedy of humanity? After listening to the words of Almighty God, quite a few people say, “Oh, this is truly the voice of God; this is really the truth. These words are so practical, there were not so many words uttered during the work of the Lord Jesus.” It’s as if they have once again returned to the embrace of God in the blink of an eye—they feel blissful and content. Who would have thought that Satan’s temptation should come at this very moment: “Have you heard of Eastern Lightning? It is a criminal organization. If you do not believe in the gospel that they preach, they will gouge out your eyes and cut off your ears. They are horrible! If you come into contact with them, you must be careful. No matter what, don’t fall into their trap.” This temptation from Satan deludes and controls them, so they no longer dare to expend themselves for God. This is called “being clever your entire life, but ruined by a moment of foolishness.” They don’t consider whether there is a single case of someone having their eyes gouged out and ears cut off in all of mainland China. If there ever had been, would the CCP ever relent? It would have mobilized the entire media to announce it to the entire world, and they would have thrown everything spreading the news for days. But not even one such case can be found—it is sheer fiction. The CCP never gives up any opportunities in doing such things, yet those tempted by Satan do not recognize it for what it truly is. They are unable to see through all the evil that the CCP has committed for so many years, all the terrible things that it has done. There is not one single grain of truth in the things said by the CCP media, yet these people are unable to see through this. You say that it is not easy to know God, because God is Spirit, because God is mysterious; but to know the CCP, to know Satan, this should be something that man is capable of, is this not? I heard some words spoken by several God’s elects from the United States (Americans), they said: “We are all concerned with the fate of the United States. The rise and decline of the Unites States are intimately relevant to us. We must speak up during the US elections, we must go out and vote. If we should allow the villains and Satan’s evil forces to come into power, then we will also be threatened, therefore we must participate in the election and speak up. Is this participating in politics?” The God’s elects from the United States put forth such a question, and I was so moved once I heard this. I told them that the Chinese people do not have such rights. Citizens of China, do you have the right to vote? You want to elect government officials, but do you have the rights? You do not have such rights. Therefore, the Chinese people only have the right to pay taxes, but they do not have the right to vote. They have no rights as citizens, they do not even have the right to religious freedom. If you should say that you are seeking the true way, that you accept Almighty God, that you bear witness to the work of God, that you spend for bearing witness of God, then Satan shall condemn you. Americans have their rights as citizens, have their right to vote, they have the right to the freedom of speech. The United States is different in the eyes of the Chinese people, the United States is a truly democratic country, while we Chinese people do not have such rights. However, the Americans say, our citizens participating in the election, and doing all the things that we do in accordance with the rights of being a citizen, are those things participating in politics? These things are not participating in politics, these things are themselves the rights of citizens. Citizens exercising their rights and fulfilling their duties, these are not participating in politics, is that not correct? During the Age of Grace, the Lord Jesus said that we must be the light and the salt of the earth, what does that mean? To be the light and the salt of the earth is to bear witness for God, to live out the decency of saints, to live out the so-called reality that God has demanded, in accordance with God’s words. That is being the light and the salt of this earth. Those God’s elects from the United States have a sense of justice, therefore they demand so, therefore they have this responsibility to bear. With such people accepting God’s work, they can certainly understand many truths, and they shall be able to bear witness for God in the future. Many things done in the name of the political powers of the world are not approved by God; yet the much work done in the name of bearing witness for God, in the name of carrying out God’s will, such work shall gain the approval of God. Have you fully grasped this issue by now? Exercise the rights as a citizen, as well as fulfill the responsibilities and duties as a citizen, but don’t become a politician, and be a person who bears witness for God, this is key. Do you understand now?
Now we want to become compatible with Christ, where do we find this path? How should we put it into practice? If you are someone who came from the Age of Grace, isn’t “how should we treat the Bible” the first question that we should ask? You must watch the movie Who Is My Lord, as well as the movie Disclose the Mystery About the Bible. Both of these movies fellowshiped about the truths regarding the treatment of the Bible in a very thorough manner. Now we seek to become compatible with Christ, which is to become someone truly obedient to God, someone who truly worships God. All of the obstacles, problems, and confusions within us have already been revealed by God. If these problems have not been resolved, we are unable to attain compatibility with Christ. Many people say: “I acknowledge that Christ is God incarnate, I acknowledge that the expressions of Christ are the words of God, voices of God, is this not sufficient to become compatible with God?” This does not make sense. Why does it not make sense? Is this a simple matter? Can you really resolve the notions that you have within you? Inside of you, if the satanic nature of resisting God, the way of thinking that resists God, the disposition that resists God have not been resolved, can you guarantee that you will not do anything which resists God? Can you guarantee that you will obey God in all things? Can you guarantee that you will fulfill all your duties and be completely loyal to God? So, what problems have to be resolved in order for man to attain compatibility with God? Where do all the corruption, all the rebellion and resistance within man come from? Where do they originate? What is the source of these problems? It is the satanic nature of man. How is this satanic nature of man formulated? Can you see through it? Those who understand the Bible, come forward and tell us, can you see through this practical problem? Even those who wrote the Bible were unable to see through this problem, can those who study the Bible see through it? Even Paul was unable to see through it, even Moses was unable to see through it, is that not the case?
There was once a new believer in Taiwan, and he was listening to me preach. I was talking about the dark and evil political powers of the world: “Look at Taiwan. One person became the president, and the masses were full of confidence in him, looking to him to fix Taiwan. But in just a few years, he turned into a prodigious embezzler, looting everywhere from his people, and keeping all this loot in his bank accounts. Eventually, he was removed and ousted.” Just because I casually said this in passing, this person quit: “What you are saying is an attack on our Taiwanese president, this won’t do, I am against it!” and he stopped believing in God. He got tripped over from just this one thing I said. I never thought that an ordinary Taiwanese president held such an important position in his mind, and I said, I didn’t think this would happen. How could someone who believed in God champion a president of the world? It seemed that the words of this president held more value than what I said. This man would rather believe in the words of a president than believe in my words, words of an ordinary person. Could he have believed in the words of God? Who did he believe in, Almighty God, or the president? It is not easy to tell, is it? This is an accident. Such things do not happen often, but are you able to say that men hold no notions of God? Just such simple words were able to incite a person to strike back, resulting in people not believing. I never thought that it was possible. Tell me, what problem is this? Therefore, it is far from easy for someone who believes in God to become compatible with God. You did not realize that you cannot be careless with any of your words. Like me, I talk a lot in God’s house. After God has done His work and given us His words, I have to take over the majority of the work. Tell me, I tell things as they are, how would I know which words I say would incite the opposition and condemnation of which person, and cause notions in people? I know not how many people have notions of me. Can someone tell me what this problem is? Some people get notions and rise up in opposition from just what I said. What would their attitude be toward the words of God? Can they obey all His words? Can they accept all of them? Are there difficulties? There are difficulties. While some people have not got notions from what I say, yet just one tempting word that their friend or family says could trip them over, such that they can no longer stand on their own. Look at all the people in The Church of Almighty God. Those who have joined for over two years, they have seen through all the negative publicity from the unbelievers. In general, to those who have joined for one year, I would ask: “Are you able to distinguish the lies and rumors from Satan?” “I cannot distinguish all of them, but I can see through them, and I won’t accept them.” I would say: “Can Satan’s evil forces, the great red dragon, and the forces of religious antichrists still confuse you?” “They won’t confuse me, that is for sure.” Therefore, for these people it can be said that, to some extent, they have truly broken through the obstruction, control, and bondage of Satan’s evil forces. If they can understand some more truths, if their disposition can change a little more, then they will be able to completely break away from the influence of Satan. These are the true people of the kingdom. Then how far away are you still from this result, this level? Would you say that it is quite a distance away? You do not believe me? If I say “This certain Taiwanese, the devil; that certain someone, that one is pure Satan,” some of you would say “Oh? You are saying that such good people of ours are Satan the devil? I am not listening to you, your way is not right!” and these people would rebel against God. What does this say? While you are able to accept and acknowledge that Almighty God is the second coming of the Lord Jesus, that He is God incarnate, you are still very far from attaining compatibility with God. Maybe someday you might even turn your back to God. I look at the several of you today, with smile on your faces, feeling you have accepted the true way, that you have returned to stand in front of God. This bliss, this relief, such a gratification, this is so wonderful. This truly feels like supping with Christ. Yet who knows that, maybe someday, one of you could be gone, returning to the mundane world, pursuing physical comfort and enjoyment of the flesh. Because of what? Because of notions of God, because of notions regarding God’s work, you would turn your back to God. There are some few people from Taiwan who have also turned their backs to God. I know some of these people. Look at them, are they missing any eyes or ears? They haven’t even lost any hair. Can you see how exaggerated are the lies being told by the great red dragon?
To accept Almighty God’s work, one must experience the judgment and chastisement of God, and the pruning and dealing. This is critical. If you truly acknowledge that the words of Almighty God are the truth, are the medicine that cleanses us, are the life that perfects us, then you will have to suffer a little, be wronged a little, even be shamed a little. Can you take on such hardship? It is easy to answer to this with enthusiasm, but it is not easy to put this into practice. Once you have been shamed in the real world, once you have been abandoned by your relatives, friends, and your generation in the real world, are you still willing to turn to God, willing to obey God, from the bottom of your heart? Can you truly let go of all the splendor and riches, honor, position, including wealth, family, and family happiness? The family of God does not demand you to do so. If you say that the family of God has made such demands, you stand with the great red dragon. The Chinese Communist Party says: “The Church of Almighty God asks people to leave behind everything in order to follow God. This is breaking up families.” In Christianity, didn’t the Lord Jesus demand such things from man? Have not the saints through the ages been doing so? These kinds of testimonies have all been performed starting long ago, so why does the CCP condemn The Church of Almighty God? Didn’t the Lord Jesus say such words? Have not the saints through the ages left their marriages, their families, and the world in the name of God, to follow God, to preach and bear witness for the Lord Jesus? There have been so many. Which law from which country condemns this as a crime? Is it fair for the CCP to say this? Is this the reality? To follow God, to pursue the truth, to devote themselves for the sake of righteousness—these are things people happily choose to do. Has the house of God ever forced anyone? Wasn’t this also a requirement of the Lord Jesus’ work during the Age of Grace? What did the Lord Jesus say? “[W]hoever he be of you that forsakes not all that he has, he cannot be My disciple” (Luk 14:33). The Lord Jesus called on the twelve disciples Himself, and said, “Come you after Me” (Mak 1:17). He also said, “Go you into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature” (Mak 16:15). Could the Lord Jesus really have been wrong in saying so? This is recorded in the Bible. This has been the practice of all of the religious communities, those who serve the Lord and all the saints through the ages. Why does the CCP come here and vilify The Church of Almighty God by saying that it breaks up families? Is this not a pack of lies told by Satan? You are following God, yet you are unable to see through this. You can’t differentiate between true and false, or tell black from white.
To expend for God, to become compatible with Christ, it is easy to understand these words of God, but they are not easy to practice. This is a journey. You believe in Almighty God, and you say: “Great, Almighty God is the second coming of the Lord Jesus. God has arrived to perform His work of the last days, to carry out His judgment work of the last days to cleanse us, and eventually bring us into the kingdom of heaven. The talk of being raptured and brought into the kingdom of heaven shall come true in the judgment work of the last days performed by Almighty God.” It is your wish to be raptured and brought into the kingdom of heaven, is it not? We must all appear before the seat of Christ to receive judgment such that we may be cleansed, and this is the path to enter the kingdom of heaven. Do you see it clearly now? The Lord Jesus prophesied, “And at midnight there was a cry made, Behold, the bridegroom comes; go you out to meet him” (Mat 25:6). What follows after these words? Those who have taken oil with them are ready to sup with him. What is this “supper”? It is called “the marriage supper of the Lamb,” it is also called the “supper in heaven.” It is this “supper” that none of those who study the Bible are able to understand. What is the meaning of “the marriage supper of the Lamb”? There are no men eating and drinking with God at this supper, enjoying themselves. The reality on earth is men appearing before the seat of Christ to receive judgment, men eating and drinking God’s words, face to face with God. Eating and drinking God’s words, you will be face to face with God, looking upon God; eating and drinking God’s words, pondering God’s words, you will understand God’s will; eating and drinking God’s words, you will understand the truth, know God’s words, and know God’s disposition. Therefore, the more one eats and drinks God’s words, the more one comes face to face with God. During the Age of Grace, men’s belief in God happened in a fog, as if looking through the mist, unable to see things clearly. Now, the more we eat and drink God’s words, the more this fog clears up, and the clearer we see things. The more we eat and drink God’s words, the more we understand the truth, the more we know God’s disposition, the more we understand God’s will, and eventually, we come face to face with God. This is the supper. The result that this “supper” has achieved is to attain the understanding of truth and to know God, through eating and drinking God’s words and experiencing God’s words, and eventually to come face to face with God. This is coming face to face with God, this is how we sup with God. Just as the Lord Jesus said: “Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear My voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with Me” (Rev 3:20). “I … with him,” God now acknowledges us; “he with Me,” we now know God. If those who have not attended this supper should pray to the Lord one day: “Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name? and in Your name have cast out devils? and in Your name done many wonderful works?” what did the Lord Jesus say? “I never knew you: depart from Me, you that work iniquity” (Mat 7:23). Why would He say such a thing? Not having attended this supper. Why do many people not accept God’s work of the last days? They say: “The promises of the Lord Jesus shall be fulfilled. What the Lord says counts. We cannot betray the Lord. His second coming is to take us to heaven, His return to heaven was to prepare our place. He shall prepare our place, then come and take us. We shall await the Lord to come take us to the kingdom of heaven, and meet with the Lord in the air.” Is this not in conflict with the Lord’s work, with the Lord’s appearance? They are awaiting the Lord to take them to the air to meet with the Lord, and they believe that to attend the supper is to meet the Lord in the air. That which The Church of Almighty God is bearing witness for, is the work of God as He arrives on earth. After men have accepted the work of Almighty God, appearing before the seat of Christ to receive judgment and be cleansed, those who remain shall be brought into the kingdom of God. “This path is not right, this is different from what we have understood from the Bible,” therefore they do not accept. Tell me, which path is correct? Which one is real? Is this matter simple? That is to say, once the truth is involved, once God’s words are involved, true understanding does not come easily. Just one truth can take you half a month to experience, even fellowshiping shall take ten days or so for you to say “I now understand,” from the bottom of your heart. If you have not put in the work of ten days or so, then what is it that you have understood? You are merely in the clouds, and you are looking through the mist. It seems like you have an understanding, but that is not the case. This is not true understanding. Is this not the case? Which one of those who interpret the Bible is able to truly grasp this matter? Who has clearly grasped this? No one can truly grasp God’s words. Therefore, all those who interpret the Bible are false prophets, those who claim themselves as Christ are all false Christs, can this be understood? Don’t say that you understand, you still have a trace of doubt in your heart.
Today I’ve fellowshiped about some truths of the vision, directed toward new believers. Now, open the book Christ Is the Truth, the Way, and the Life. Let’s read two passages of God’s words.
634. All those who cannot accept God’s work, or who accept God’s work but are unable to meet His demands, are people living under the influence of darkness. Only those who pursue the truth and are capable of meeting God’s demands will receive blessings from Him, and only they will escape from the influence of darkness.
Excerpted from “Escape From the Influence of Darkness, and You Will Be Gained by God” in The Word Appears in the Flesh
635. My words are the basis of man’s escape from dark influences, and people who cannot practice in accordance with My words will not be able to escape from the bonds of the influence of darkness. To live in a correct state is to live under the guidance of the words of God, to live in a state of loyalty to God, to live in a state of seeking the truth, to live in the reality of sincerely expending oneself for God’s sake, and to live in a state of genuinely loving God. Those who live in these states and within this reality will slowly transform as they enter into the depth of the truth, and they will transform as the work goes deeper; and in the end, they will certainly become people who are gained by God and who love God genuinely.
Excerpted from “Escape From the Influence of Darkness, and You Will Be Gained by God” in The Word Appears in the Flesh
The words of God in these two passages are crucial. We can be certain that without truth, there is no way for people to live in the light of God. Without truth, people do not know God, and all who are without truth are people who live under Satan’s influence. This is fact. So many religious people say, “We believe in the Lord Jesus and we abide by the Bible. How can it be that we are not people living in God’s presence? How can we be people living under Satan’s dominion?” What is wrong with what they say? It is difficult for a new believer to recognize the depth of the truth in this matter. He or she thinks that abiding by the Bible is throwing off Satan’s influence. He or she thinks that if they abide by the Bible they are living in the light, as people commended by God. Does the Bible represent God? The Bible is only dead sentences. If you live within dead sentences, does this represent that you have truth? Can this represent that you have been gained by God? Can it represent that you know God? Religious people may acknowledge that it cannot represent knowing God, otherwise the Pharisees would not have been the people to resist God and would not have condemned the Lord Jesus. No one understood the Bible better than the Pharisees, and only they understood the Old Testament. They understood the Old Testament so well, but finally God revealed them with a fact. When God was incarnated to bring redemption, they did their utmost to condemn the Lord Jesus, not stopping until He was put to death. They would rather free a criminal and have the Lord Jesus nailed to death on a cross. This is what people who understood the Bible did. Therefore I say, all who believe that they understand the Bible are people who outright resist God and oppose Him. Can you accept saying something like this? These words are difficult to accept, and such words can take months, even a year, to understand. Someone who is simple, has some caliber, and is earnest does understand, understands well, but those who know the Bible cannot accept that statement and won’t obey. Once I say this, even though he does not say so, in his mind he resists, and someday he will deliver a grand talk to rebuke me. It is not easy to accept truth, is it? Although you well know that what I have given you to read are God’s words, not mine, could you go so far as to say that once a person has read the words of God, that person is filled with reverence toward God and is able to submit to Him? Is there anyone who can say, even though I have my notions, even though I do not acknowledge or accept these words, because I revere God therefore I am not judging or rejecting God’s words? No, there is no one. Why not? You cannot speak clearly. So when it comes to the reality of truth, the recognition of truth, and what involves people’s notions, how can you remain mute? Why won’t you speak clearly? This involves truth. Truth is difficult to understand, and the essence of truth is difficult to understand, but dead letters are easy to understand, is that right? All those who cannot accept the work of God and cannot meet God’s demands live under the influence of darkness. Are these God’s words? If these are God’s words, then we unhesitatingly affirm this is the truth, this is the voice of God, and these are the words that the Lord of creation, the one true God, has spoken to us. So how will you respond? Can you still be arrogant and self-right? Can you really reject the words of God because you have your own notions? In that case, are you someone who reveres God? Are you really a devout person? Are you a person who loves the truth? In this moment all is revealed. These words are the truth, whether you accept them or not they are the truth. If you do not acknowledge them today, they are still the truth, and after ten years if you still have not acknowledged them, they are still the truth. Finally there will be a day when God turns these words into fact, and you see many people descend into hell. Why? All those who have not accepted the work of God or met God’s demands descend into hell. Waiting until that day to acknowledge God amounts to failing to repent until faced with your own coffin! God’s word will accomplish all. Do you believe in His almightiness?
At present many scholars of exegesis see that what prophets in the Old Testament era foretold is coming true, and coming true perfectly: the appearance of the four blood moons has come true; the destruction of Damascus has come true; and Armageddon is imminent, followed immediately by disasters bringing on the end of the world. Seeing how perfectly the words of God are coming true, “Oh, only now do we recognize that God is truly almighty, and that his every word will come true. Just as the Lord Jesus said, ‘Heaven and earth shall pass away, but My words shall not pass away’ (Mat 24:35).” People acknowledge that Jesus spoke these words, and that they absolutely must come true. Those two passages that we read before are also what the Spirit of the Lord Jesus spoke, what God has spoken, and they too must come true. Do you believe this? Some people will say, “I believed in the Lord Jesus, I have been forgiven my sins, and this time I accept Almighty God, the second coming of the Lord Jesus, so I am confident I will enter the kingdom of heaven, there is hope of entering it. It will become reality.” Is what they say true? Where is the flaw in it? Such a person has not thrown off the influence of Satan, has not pursued the truth or gained the truth, and so will still be destroyed. Are there people who believe in Almighty God who are just passing themselves off as Christians? Are there fake followers, fake apostles, and fake workers? There are. Over these past ten or fifteen years the house of God has expelled between three hundred and five hundred thousand antichrists, wicked people, and evil spirits. When they have been expelled, some have said, “Even though you have expelled me, I will still follow my beliefs and I will still make offerings! God has not expelled me!” If you follow your belief, perhaps you genuinely repent, and that may all be well, but God has said, “My words are the basis of man’s escape from dark influences, and people who cannot practice in accordance with My words will not be able to escape from the bonds of the influence of darkness.” These are God’s words; they are the truth. Ultimately, when the time comes that He has fixed for the end of humanity, these words will be fulfilled. Do you imagine it will be so easy to enter the kingdom of heaven? Once the Lord Jesus comes, and you accept Him, will you ascend into the sky to meet the Lord, and then become those chosen for the kingdom of heaven? That is a dream. The genuine reality is accepting the judgment before the seat of Christ here on earth and gaining purification before finally being able to understand the truth and coming to know God, and through changes in life disposition, no longer having notions of God’s work, no matter what it may be, but only obeying, only worshiping, and only prostrating oneself before Him. To be gained by God is just this. Can your experience now measure up to this? If I were to say something that offends you, if I were to insult you, would you disagree? For you to object to my insulting you is unacceptable. You may say, “What you said is not an insult; it is the truth. I don’t take it as an insult. I accept it as truthful and submit to it.” If you say this, people respect you, they marvel at it! You are genuinely a person with the truth, one who is truly obedient to God. Can you say such a thing now? You can’t say it. So do not undergo judgment before the seat of Christ based on some personal notions and imaginations. “I will obey the word of God, I will accept whatever God says, and I will obey whatever God says. No matter what God’s judgment of me is, whether condemnation or even to be cursed, I will accept it and submit to it. Even if I shall die in hell, I will not complain, nor will I feel resentment, I must praise God still, praise God, who is righteous.” Can you bear witness this way? Is bearing witness this way easy? Do you know what is the most difficult part of bearing witness this way? If you can say clearly what is the most difficult part, then you truly know yourself. Is it easy to know yourself? There are people who will say, “I am the devil, I am Satan.” Then I say, “You are not human, you have no conscience, and you are an animal.” But he refuses this: “I can’t accept it when you say I am an animal. I am no better than Satan the devil. It is all right if I say it, but when you say I am Satan the devil I resent it, I hate you!” What sort of person is this? Does a person like this know himself? No. Why do I say that? Didn’t he say himself that he is Satan the devil? He knows that so well, how is it that he still does not know himself? How can we discern this? When it comes to practical experience, people have so many difficulties that they cannot understand. How is genuine obedience produced? One has to go through judgment and chastisement to know God’s righteous disposition. Only then does he have a mind that fears God, being sincerely convinced of God. Only acknowledging that every word of God is truth can be called being sincerely convinced.
Tell me, what is the effect that we ultimately accomplish by experiencing judgment and chastisement before the seat of Christ? What is the word for the effect that is ultimately accomplished? That word is “conquest”: conquering humanity with truth, conquering humanity with fact. You are not convinced that this is the truth, right? God says, “Very well, I will put you through a trial. I will make you undergo Satan’s temptation, send you down there and let you fall, and fall hard. Then, when you crawl back up, will you understand the word of God? Will you admit that Satan’s nature is in yourselves and that you are one of a kind with Satan?” What is this process called? It is a process of judging, and a process of conquering, as well as a process of purifying, and even more a process of perfecting. Is that how we should understand this? So in undergoing judgment before the seat of Christ, which of these three steps have you accomplished—conquest, purification, or perfection? You have not even accomplished being conquered! You still can come up with your notions, you are still in conflict, resisting. You cannot even keep going, really. You feel humiliated, and you want to get away. Is this a person who has been conquered? A person who has been conquered does not run away, but accepts God’s orchestration and works hard to carry out all duties without complaint, and in the end says, “I will do service for God all my life, and even if I gain nothing I will not resent God, for God is supremely righteous.” If you submit to God to this extent, it may be said you have been gained by God; you are one of God’s people. If you have not been conquered to this extent, then you still have not gone through experience that is deep enough. If you have not experienced deeply enough, are you still disobedient, could you still betray Him? It is not certain! If your experience is not deep enough, would you go so far as to say you are one of God’s people? You yourself would not dare guarantee what you might say in resentment when faced with a trial or whether you could betray God if you are tested. Therefore, I say the work of judgment before the seat of Christ is without precedent in history! It is a step in the greatest work of God in the human world in the last era of this corrupt humankind, to thoroughly conquer, save, and perfect humankind. So will you say that the significance of experiencing judgment before the seat of Christ is profound? Is its significance of great weight? So I say, the work of judgment during the last days is something that God does only once among humankind, and is a singularly unique opportunity to perfect people. The saints down through the ages never experienced this work. We who have been born in the last days have experienced judgment before the seat of Christ. This is feasting with God, attending the feast of the Lamb. Those who after going together to this feast become one household, are gained by God to be in God’s household, who will be the people of the kingdom of heaven, the people of God’s kingdom. Do you know what is written at the end of the prophecies of the book of Revelation? Most of those believers who have read Revelation know that at the end of the prophecies of Revelation, the kingdom of Christ appears on earth. When the kingdom of Christ appears, the tabernacle of God will be among humankind, and then humankind will enter a glorious destination. That will be the fact that God’s management plan finally achieves. Those who have believed in the Lord have committed the Lord’s Prayer to memory. How does it go? “Our Father which are in heaven, Hallowed be Your name. Your kingdom come, Your will be done in earth, as it is in heaven” (Mat 6:9-10). This passage is of such great importance, it is how the Lord Jesus called on people to pray. When will these words be fulfilled and become reality? When Almighty God comes, He comes to fulfill these words.
Now the gospel of the kingdom is expanding to every country and in every direction, and in later times there will be The Church of Almighty God in each country. The Church of Almighty God will spread more and more quickly, and when this gospel of the kingdom has spread widely throughout the earth, the end of the world will have arrived. When The Church of Almighty God is established in every country, the great calamity will befall, and God will begin to demolish all the satanic countries in the world. In the end, the kingdom of Christ will appear on earth, and this is the coming of the Millennial Kingdom, the realization of the Millennial Kingdom. So how did God tell of this in His administrative decrees proclaimed to the entire universe? “[A]ll who worship Satan will be laid low by My burning fire—that is, except for those now within the stream, the rest will be turned to ashes.” Everyone will be turned to ashes! Do you know what it means to be turned to ashes? Some people say everyone will die, and this is true—everyone will die—but even in death one is not finished, and they will also be turned to ashes. When you say they are turned to ashes, that means they will all be burned to ashes. Some people ask whether these words are true or false. Clear your eyes and wait to see, for in time you will know. Some people here still wildly condemn God, arrogantly judge God, and this may be called “not crying until you see the coffin.” These are digging their own grave! Do you know what is it that is called “digging your own grave”? If you do not do this thing, you may have many more days to live, and after you have finished this thing, once you have finished this evil deed, there is no one who can come to save you. You have already been condemned, and your death has already become reality. God says, “Defiance means death!” These words have been fulfilled, and this is called digging your own grave. Do you understand? Tell me, can water that is spilled be retrieved again? If people speak any word of condemnation against God, can they ever withdraw it? They cannot withdraw it, and once the words are spoken, they are already condemned. Once condemned, their death has already become a reality. Some people say, “After he finished speaking these words, he did not die, and he is still quite vigorously alive.” Then tell me, when a branch is chopped off a tree with a ‘chop,’ do its leaves immediately wither up? The leaves are still on that branch, but this branch is already dead the moment when it is cut off. Its source has been severed, so it can be said that it is a dead branch. A dead branch, even if on the outside its leaves are still green, is still dead because once it has been cut off you can no longer attach it back onto the tree. That is to say that as soon as a person has uttered words of condemnation of God from his mouth, he has already been condemned, and the foregone conclusion of this condemnation is death. You see how the religious world keeps condemning God, and what are these people doing there? They are digging their own graves. They have already been condemned, and it is finished. Are they still brothers and sisters? They are not. They are eternal corpses, finished.
Some people say, why do I half believe and half doubt? When you do not know God, you half believe and half doubt, and one day when you know God, you will understand this matter and at that time you will truly believe. You say, what is believing in God with sincerity? Is this easy or not to explain? Some people say, “I acknowledge God, I acknowledge Him absolutely, so I believe truly.” It is not tenable to say this. Why can it be said to be untenable? When you acknowledge the existence of God, you acknowledge that heaven, earth, and all therein are created by God, and so you believe in God, thinking that you believe in God with sincerity. I ask you, do you believe that God’s disposition is righteous? Since you believe God is righteous, then why are there so many good people who believe in the Lord who die? Can you comprehend this? Do you dare say that you have no notion about this? When the great disaster suddenly befalls, regardless of whether the people of the world are good, mighty, or of great prestige, they all die together. On the basis of this matter, do you believe that God is righteous? How do you know the righteousness of God? Do you know Him or not? If a bad person whom you know should die, you would exclaim, “God is righteous, so righteous! He was an evil person, so he has encountered the punishment. Look, he has met retribution. God is righteous.” If suddenly your mom and dad who do not believe should also die, would you say these same words? You could still say “Good, my mom and dad were evil people, and they should die. God has dealt retribution, and is righteous.” Can you say this? If your mom and dad truly constrained you from belief in God, you would say “God has dealt out retribution. They have long constrained me in my belief in God, and are truly devils. The devils have met their recompense.” This is good. If your mom and dad are also people who believe in God, they may also suddenly die. How would you look upon this? Is it easy to bear witness? Whoever says it is an easy thing to bear witness is merely boasting. That is just bluster. What does one need for this? One must know God’s disposition is righteousness. Is knowing God really as simple as you imagine? When these matters befall you, it reveals you for what kind of person you are. God says, “Of everything that occurs in the universe, there is nothing that I do not have the final say in. What exists that is not in My hands?” How do you understand these words? In every affair, God has the final word. God has the final say in the U.S. elections. When two countries go to war, God has the final say in victory or defeat. It is all arranged by God, and only God knows the final conclusion. God has the final say in whether there is war or not as well as whether an epidemic occurs. God has the final say in all these matters, and in everything that takes place in the universe. Do you believe this? Some say they believe. In your words, you believe, but will you have knowledge when these things befall you? Will you be able to bear witness? Believing and being able to bear witness are two separate things. When you believe in God, you acknowledge that God is the Ruler, is the true God, and that there really is a God, absolutely. This is a real thing, but can you have faith that God’s disposition is righteousness? Can you have faith that God’s every word will be accomplished in its appointed time? Can you have faith that God’s word will achieve everything? In this your faith is lacking, so can it be up to God’s standard? What is your belief reckoned as? Is it reckoned as true belief? It is not up to the standard.
When God just began the work of the last days, He used the examples of Peter and Job. People who believe in the Lord and read the Bible know the example of Job and that of Peter, but why does God use these two examples? What questions does using these two examples mean to answer? What demands does God have of people, and people who seek the truth should be able to understand some of this. People who do not seek the truth will only be able to supply a couple of doctrines, but not understand. What was the faith of Job like? What degree had he reached? Why did God commend Job on his faith? Peter experienced God’s work and was made perfect, and what results did he reach? What was the witness that Peter bore in the end? It was submitting all the way up to death, it was loving God to the extreme so that he was willingly nailed upside down to the cross. This bearing of witness is one of love of God. It is a bearing of witness of obedience unto death. People can see and understand this, that God praised Peter in being the best in knowledge of God among the saints of all generations. The work of God in the last days is in order to perfect man, but to perfect man in achieving what result? It is the bearing witness of Peter. Have the people of God not been made perfect? At the very least, you must be equipped with the faith of Job in order to meet the standard. If you do not have the faith of Job, then do not think you will pass the test or think that you will continue on to enter the kingdom of God. The administrative decrees of God are severe, and no one can enter through a roundabout way. No matter how much wealth you spend, it is all of no use. Honestly accepting the judgment and chastisement before the seat of Christ, you will attain to being cleansed and be able to submit to God unto your death. This is the only path by which to enter the kingdom of heaven. Do you understand?
Some people say, “I am not willing to suffer the judgment and chastisement.” “Why?” “Because it is too painful, and I am uneasy and am suffering in my heart.” If you cannot accept that suffering, can you attain happiness? If you do not accept the judgment and chastisement before the seat of Christ, then you must bear the suffering of descending into hell and enjoy the everlasting torment of hell. The Bible therefore says, “For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, works for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory” (2Co 4:17). This refers to the final suffering before the seat of Christ, and if you are able to completely endure this suffering then you will attain to having been cleansed. You will attain the truth and know God’s disposition, and become a person like Job who reveres God and departs far from evil. You will be of the people of the kingdom—this is the faith that people of the heavenly kingdom must be equipped with. Do you understand? In what way did the faith of Job stand out? Some say it is quite simple. Job’s faith is that he believed that all the wealth he had obtained and all that he possessed was conferred on him by God. He sensed clearly all that was granted to him by God, rest assured! If there were people who said, “Job, where did all this that you possess come from? You are so capable and of great ability. You truly know how to conduct business and really have a brain for commerce!” Job would say, “Wrong! It is not this. Everything is granted by God. There are many people with brains, so why did they not attain this?” If God has not given it to you, then even if you are smart it is of no use. If God wants to give this to you, then even if you are clumsy and stupid you will attain it. This is your fate—the “fate” that unbelievers speak of. Could it be that Job had only so much faith? Wherein was Job’s faith, after all? He acknowledged that everything he possessed was granted by God, and had not the slightest doubt. Is it enough only to understand Job’s faith to this extent? What else is there? “He who takes away is also Jehovah, also God.” This is difficult to accept, and ordinary people cannot accept this. Job said, “He who takes away does not do so as theft. All this was permitted by God, and one cannot complain that this is theft.” Some people say, “Chase after it, go snatch it back!” “It is not like this. Do not chase after what God takes away. It is of no use. Submit to God!” Is this true faith? Ordinary people do not possess faith like this. If a matter like this were to befall me, I would have to ponder it. “How many bandits have come?” “Twenty.” “Gather thirty men to go wrest it back! Grab our guns and go seize it back. Can I let them run off with the things I have gained?” But Job did not act in this way. Job had many people he knew, and was of a rich family in the east and also had a certain amount of power. There were also many people who associated with him and wanted to have dealings with him, so if he wanted to go find people, would that have been easy? Then why did Job not act in that way? Job saw clearly, “All this was taken away by God, and is not a matter of theft. You are only looking at this externally, and truly do not understand the spirit! This is a matter of the spiritual world, and is permitted of God; if it were not permitted of God, would these thieves dare to come? Why has this not happened in all these years? This is reaching a time appointed by God, and whatever will come will come. This is God taking away. Submit!” He spoke of how Jehovah had acted and how Jehovah had treated him. Look: Anyway, he acknowledged that it was Jehovah who allowed him to be deprived and who had taken these things back. Is this not true faith? This faith in the second phrase is something ordinary people cannot reach. Is there a third phrase? What is the third phrase? “[B]lessed be the name of Jehovah” (Job 1:21). It is not easy to speak these words! Others say, “You all acknowledge that it is God who allowed you to be deprived, that it is Jehovah who permitted these thieves to come and steal and snatch away all that you possessed, and after that you praise the name of God? Are you someone who is not in a good mental state?” They say Job was insane, that he was unable to withstand the blow when this matter befell him, that his mind fell apart and he spoke nonsense. Is that what happened? Then how was he able to speak these words? Do you believe these words were written blindly? Do you dare to say that these words were spoken in hyperbole? Now, when people bear witness, they may go and exaggerate, but in the record of Job it was not exaggeration. The things recorded in the Old Testament are all very true. “[B]lessed be the name of Jehovah.” What knowledge of God must there be here to be able to say these words? Ponder this well. Why was he still able to praise God? Are scholars of the Bible able to say what the inner meaning or the origin of these words is? They are not able. Why? As for these two phrases of Job, no one in the later generations of saints was able to penetrate them, no one was able to penetrate them. Only God knows what happened, so in the record of Job those several good friends of Job who spoke all those foolish words were all in judgment of Job. Were they people who knew God? Those people were only experts in words and doctrines, only verbal theoreticians, all looking at matters only externally. No one understood Job’s heart. So Job felt extreme sorrow in his heart, feeling that his friends all did not understand him, and that what they said did not accord with his heart. How difficult for him it was to bear! Especially when Job heard his wife say those rebellious words, it was very severe, it pained Job’s heart so much. What did his wife say? “Do you still retain your integrity? curse God, and die” (Job 2:9). Tell me, what kind of words are these? Before, Job’s wife also believed in God, on the same path as Job, and Job was shocked that she could say such words. What was the essence of the words his wife spoke? They were words that betrayed God—do you understand? Their meaning is, “If you believe in God, this is the result. Why do you still believe in this God? Curse God, and die. You have believed in vain, it is better to not believe in God.” It is of this meaning. These are words of betrayal. They are also words that reveal who she really was after undergoing the trial! What did Job say? “You speak as one of the foolish women speaks” (Job 2:10). The foolish people do not acknowledge that there is God, and these words saw through her. “This foolish woman, you do not believe in God.”
Job’s testimony represents his faith. What state did his faith attain? “Jehovah gave,” which ordinary people have experienced. “After believing in the Lord, I have experienced God’s grace in no little part. I have had many difficulties, have fallen ill so many times, but my prayers and supplications to God have all been fulfilled. So what I am able to have today, everything I possess is bestowed by God.” Many people are equipped with this faith. It is the second level “Jehovah has taken away” that ordinary people are unable to have knowledge of. They believe, “It is Satan that did this, or it was done by robbers. God gave unto me, and Satan itself ruined these things. It is the devil that specializes in being the enemy of God. It wants to seize everything that God gives to people, so it was Satan that did this. All I need is to fight against Satan. This has no connection to God.” Do most people think this way or not? Then this faith is far inferior to that of Job. What is rare and precious regarding Job is his last sentence “blessed be the name of Jehovah.” This sentence is incredible to people, who say, “He caused you to be deprived, and afterward you still praise His name? This cannot be! Praising God on this instance of being deprived, what kind of person could do so? This is impossible and incredible!” Is this not what happened? Tell me, when Job was confronted with this trial, or wretched situation, he still said, “[B]lessed be the name of Jehovah.” What kind of knowledge of God must he have in order to speak these words? This is enough for people to rack their brains about for a while. How long must you try to figure it out before you come up with an answer? Would you be able to figure it out in three days, or five? If you are unable to figure it out, then experience it. When you have reached a certain level through experience, you will be able to know why Job said these words. Only once you experience Job’s faith in that degree, can you say, “Oh, what Job said is so true. How was I unable to imagine this before? Today I understand why Job was able to speak these words, today I have finally experienced them. When Job reached the age of seventy—‘Man’s life from of old has rarely reached seventy’—his life was fast approaching its end, and when faced with the trial, he was able to speak words like this. He had thoroughly experienced this in his whole life. His faith was very true, what Job experienced was certainly profound enough!” Job and Abraham, these two are great people of faith, whose faith was the greatest, their state being very elevated. Ordinary people cannot reach or attain this. Otherwise how would these two receive such great blessings from God? Isn’t it like this? We experience God’s work today, and God promises that what we will gain will surpass that of the saints of the previous generations. Is this not the grace and blessing of God? How can we surpass them? Surpassing the former saints in faith and knowledge of God, is this easy to attain? It is not easy. Why do you say it is not easy? Because in obtaining the truth you must pay a price! There is no one who can obtain the truth without paying a price. In obtaining the truth you must pay a price, in obtaining the truth you must suffer much hardship. One must gradually pass through experience and do well in seeking the truth and in seeking to know God. Is this not the case?
Do you know what is the result of your seeking to know God? Some people say, “Casting away the corrupt disposition, and being obtained by God.” Attain it by relying on what? “Relying on our understanding of the truth. As we understand the truth more, we will naturally belong to God.” Are these words correct? There are many antichrists, who seem to understand all things, and they preach excellently and speak pompously. They talk for days without giving their mouths a rest, but in the disposition of their lives there is no change. What is this? They just want to understand some secrets within God’s word, to see how God performs His work, and what kind of people are among those who are gained by God. They want to understand these outward things and the outer part of the truth. They can speak and preach, and they think they are gained by God, so where is the error? They have not accepted the judgment and chastisement of God’s word with sincerity and uprightness. It is like how people say, “I have no words against the judgment and chastisement of God’s word. I acknowledge that the word of God is all the truth, but it is being dealt with and pruned by man that I cannot accept. I cannot be obedient.” I deal with some leaders and workers, and I deal with them very severely, and some are refined with great suffering, pondering, “How can it be that I am an antichrist? Do I really resist God? Am I not really seeking the truth? How can it come so unexpectedly? In believing in God up to today I have been reduced to such a condition. I am not convinced. I am out of balance in my heart!” Are these words true or not? People who have not experienced do not know, but people who have gone through experience all know that these words are true and accurate. Do you think that experiencing the judgment before the seat of Christ is as simple as you imagine? “We several people are gathered together, eating and drinking the word of God, communicating in the knowledge of God’s word, and in the end everyone acknowledges that the word of God is the truth, and everyone is able to know themselves in the word of God. Afterward, we speak a little about knowledge, and show a little resolution. Just with this experience, in the end there will come a day when our life disposition is changed, and we are gained by God.” Is it like this? What was Job’s trial like? What was Peter’s trial like? God says, “So many times did I put him under trial, which of course left him half dead,” that is, Peter was made by God half dead. Tell me, how can we explain these words? God dealt with him, so he was halfway between life and death, feeling that death would be better than life! Tell me, are these words true or false? Is God able to do this? Someone says yes. How is He able? These words are not easy to say, and if you have not experienced it, you cannot speak about it. Ask Peter, he knows, and Job also knows. Job would say, “God has blessed me so many years, and I have gained so much from God, but suddenly, in the span of one day, everything was taken away and there was nothing left. No matter how many children I had, they had all died.” When God does things, they can be extraordinary and impossible to fathom. And they can be unlike what people think in their notions and imagination. Sometimes it is grace that comes descending in a downpour, that is when a bumper harvest happens to occur. Sometimes you undergo a trial, suddenly, like a mountain toppling over or the sky collapsing, this will befall you. How do the unbelievers describe this? “Disaster falls from the sky.” This very matter might torture a person half to death. Tell me, when Job was faced with this matter, was he not tortured half to death? Suddenly, he encountered such a great disaster, and who would not topple over at this? Who could bear this up? Furthermore, Job’s whole body became covered in boils, so that he had to use a potsherd to scrape them off. As for Abraham, God spoke those words to him, “Take now your son, your only son Isaac, whom you love, and get you into the land of Moriah; and offer him there for a burnt offering on one of the mountains which I will tell you of” (Gen 22:2). What state of mind do you think was Abraham in after he heard these words and decided to sacrifice his son? Was he at all happy? Death was better than life! He took his son to the place of sacrifice, and how did he walk this road? What was he to do when he arrived there? Kill his son. His only son, whom he had late in life at the age of a hundred. Who would not be dearly pained! This truly is like a knife twisting in the heart. It is the same feeling as the Lord Jesus on the road to Jerusalem where He was to be crucified. Experiencing the work of God is such a way, can it be said like this? Experiencing the judgment and chastisement of God is just this kind of experience, it is having so many trials befall you. Today, the great red dragon seizes you, and tomorrow the religious world condemns you, and the next day everyone abandons you, and even friends and relatives scorn you, all saying that “You are deranged, you have wandered onto a crooked path, you have believed in an evil teaching.” Can you endure this? Are there not some people who have experienced some of this? What does it feel like in your heart to have such things befall you? Is it easy to bear? It is absolutely not easy to bear. Is there not a feeling of wishing for death? “How is life so wearying? How is it so difficult to believe in God? I might as well not believe, just let me die!” If your households have not broken apart, you have not reached the end of this suffering. When one day your family breaks apart, and your wife leaves you and your children are scattered, you have nearly suffered all the torment. Believing in Almighty God, you must have such experience, “And he that takes not his cross, and follows after Me, is not worthy of Me” (Mat 10:38). The words of the Lord Jesus have been fulfilled and come to fruition. Is this path easy to follow or not? It is not easy to follow, this is correct and is spoken from the heart. If there are people who say, “It is easy to follow! I do not believe it is difficult to follow. Even if some have stumbled, I will not!” then you should feel shame after speaking such words.
When you are faced with the slanderous words of judgment of the religious world, there are also the rumors, condemnations, libel, and defamation by the Chinese Communist Party government. Have you had discernment to defend yourselves? This negative propaganda cannot defeat you, correct? This is the first step, and it shows that you have some faith, and if further you can use the truth and the word of God to refute their fallacies, you are guaranteed to be able to completely stand firm; this difficulty will have passed. Are you currently able to refute them? You still feel it difficult. You simply do not listen, “I am not listening, I do not believe it!” You may ponder this in your heart: Is what he is saying true or false? Is it, after all, in accordance with reality? I still do not understand it too well. I am at a loss in trying to use the truth to refute them. Who knows if it is true or false? I cannot see it through, and anyway I do not believe it, “Do not talk to me! I will not listen, I will not listen!” People will say, “If you will not listen, then I will force you to, I will force it into you. If you will not listen, you still have to listen!” This is dangerous. So to say, if you want to stand firm on the true way, will you be able to if you do not understand the truth? It is not a matter of you listening or not; if you do not listen, then when something befalls you, you will cause trouble yourself in your heart, and will feel doubt there. If you do not have the truth, then your heart is in danger. Your notions and imagination can become your obstacle, and may cause you to fail. Do you believe this or not? It need not to be said that the lies and rumors of the outside world may defeat you, and the notions and imagination in your heart, your arrogance, and not seeking the truth but believing yourself infallible—these may cause you to be sent to hell. The greatest enemy of mankind is his heart, and it is those satanic notions and imagination. These things are a stumbling block. Enemies of the outside world are easy to handle, but the enemy within is difficult to handle, and if you do not have the truth you will not be able to resolve this. Are you able to accept words like these?
There are some people who take believing in God and entering the kingdom of heaven to be simple, but this is indulging in fantasy. Once you hear me discuss this today, you may say: “Is something amiss here? Is entering the kingdom of heaven truly this difficult? In believing in God, is it really so difficult to be gained by God? Is it as complicated as what you say? Is God really not content with us believing in Him so purely and simply? Does He demand that we seek the truth in order to know Him? So, if we do not seek the truth and just continue to believe, will that be fine? We are still able to expend for God, and to bear witness to Him—will this also not do? Is this still not enough?” How can these things be explained? Can you explain them? It is just that once God’s work does not conform to people’s notions, people are unable to be obedient to Him. For example, when people encounter a trial, it is not easy for them to be obedient. In the Age of Law, the people of Israel chose their king, and the first whom they chose was Saul. He was a tall man, taller than others by a head, and the people of Israel said, “We will be tremendous if we choose this kind of a man. How would either the Philistines or Gentiles dare to come attack Israel?” As a result, they chose him as their leader, and the victories they won were not many, and neither did Saul have much ability. The Philistines had a person among them who was a giant, who would be measured as more than three meters using today’s measurements. Even if many people gathered together they could not defeat him, and the Israelites were scared to death. “Who can defeat this giant!” And what was the result? When they were all terrified and dared not go out to do battle, David entered the field of war, and with just one small motion he flung a rock which toppled the giant over. And after that, he did not get back up. When the Israelites saw this, they said, “Oh! This David is so fierce! His height is not so tall, and he looks unremarkable. Why is he this fierce? It seems that the person God has chosen is of good quality, and that man, Saul, whom we chose is not capable.” What else is explained through this matter? People cannot rely on the imaginary notions to consider the work of God. They say, concerning God taking on the flesh, “This person looks quite unremarkable; how can he be the incarnate Christ? How can he be the appearance of God?” Can this kind of consideration work or not? This is not something that you can measure. People’s two eyes cannot see further than two miles, and you cannot see even an inch of the spiritual world. Is that not so? At your side many spirits are watching, but can you know this? Aliens may be at your side, and could you know this? You cannot see anything. So you must not measure the work of God by relying on your imaginary notions, it is impossible in your eyes, but it is possible in the eyes of God. When God does things, it is in order to fight back against people’s notions—everywhere to fight back against your notions—and there is no place where He does not fight back against your notions. In the end He conquers you, defeats you. He causes you to renew your knowledge of God and not again to rely on the imaginary notions of people to know God. When people reach the point of truly being conquered, God does another new thing. God asks people, “Do you still have any notions?” “There are none; whatever God does, we will be obedient.” God says, “Look, are these words the word of God?” “They are.” “Do they or do they not accord with your notions?” “They do not.” “If they do not, then how do you still say that they are God’s words?” “They are absolutely.” Whatever God does we acknowledge, whatever God does we obey, and there are none of man’s imaginary notions. Is this or is this not having been conquered? So is the process of God conquering people the same process as fighting against the brood of Satan? After having been conquered, people begin to seek the truth, and once they pursue the truth the time of formally being cleansed begins. People’s imaginary notions, their disobedience, their nature, and their satanic disposition are all revealed, and they are all cleansed one by one. They must all be cleansed by means of the truth, and after they are cleansed, people are perfected. The truth becomes people’s life, and God’s word becomes man’s love and faith; it all enacts its practical function and attains to its result. This group of people who have experienced the judgment before the seat of Christ and are purified, saved, and perfected will be the people of the kingdom. God works in such practical ways. God’s work is just this normal, and there is nothing supernatural about it, nor are there any marvelous signs and wonders. In the end, God’s word accomplishes everything: The judgment of God’s word produces the result of judging man; the cleansing of God’s word produces the result of cleansing man; the perfecting of God’s word produces the result of “convert[ing] words to faith, to love, and to life.” Having experienced this course, this is being raptured to enter the kingdom of heaven. There are some people who say, “We were raptured ten years ago, twenty years ago. But how have we still not entered the kingdom of heaven?” When people have achieved their cleansing, they have obtained the truth, and this means they are in the kingdom of heaven. Some people say, “The great calamity has not yet befallen!” When the great calamity has not yet befallen, you are in the kingdom of heaven, and when it occurs, you are still in the kingdom of heaven. Why? No matter what calamity befalls the earth, you do not die, for you have gained life. That is merely a matter of a course of events. Is it this way or not? There are people who say, “I have obtained the truth. So, am I guaranteed not to die when the great calamity befalls?” “Correct, you are guaranteed not to die.” “Do you dare to guarantee this?” “I dare to guarantee it.” “Well, those who have not obtained the truth are still alive now, are they not?” “They will not be able to live. Death is near at hand for them, and they do not know it. They are doomed to die, and if you have genuinely obtained the truth, you are guaranteed not to die.” “On what basis are you speaking?” Is there a basis in the word of God that we just read? Therein are many bases, and they are indeed the final phrases in this passage of the word of God: “You fool and deceive Me, you play with the truth, you conceal the existence of the truth, and betray the substance of the truth. What awaits you in the future by going against Me in this way?” Continue reading: “You merely seek compatibility with a vague God, and merely seek a vague belief, yet you are not compatible with Christ. Will not your maleficence beget the same retribution as that deserved by the wicked?” Are these words not a basis? God says, “When that day comes, your dreams of being blessed for your belief in God and of gaining entry into heaven shall all be shattered. It shall not be so, however, for those who are compatible with Christ. Though they have lost so much, though they have suffered much hardship, they shall receive all of the inheritance I bequeath to mankind. Ultimately, you will understand that I alone am the righteous God, and that I alone am capable of taking mankind into his beautiful destination.” In the above there are many words that can be used as a basis for this. These words of God will be fulfilled, and they will all come to be true. Do you understand? Believing in Almighty God is the path to entering the kingdom of heaven, for certain, but if you do not pursue the truth, will you be able to obtain it? If people, in the very end, are not able to attain compatibility with Christ, what will be their ending? God made all these words and this path be clearly spoken. The ending of every kind of person has been clearly spoken, and what phrase of the Bible has come true here? “Whose fan is in His hand, and He will thoroughly purge His floor, and gather His wheat into the garner; but He will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire” (Mat 3:12). When the last days come, God begins the winnowing. The winnowing is separating the seeds from the chaff, while the chaff is blown away and scattered by the wind, yet the seeds are gathered in the granary; this is the meaning of winnowing, and this is the result of the winnowing. Now is it or is it not that each follows along according to its class? As for those people in religion? They are finished, they all go down into hell, they are exterminated! The great city of religion, Babylon, topples over, and they do not emerge from there and all die there. Can this be said?
There was one time when I asked God about such a phrase, and I said, “In the Age of Grace, those people of old who spread the gospel, those people of renown, did not accept this stage of the work of God in the end. Among those people were some whose moral quality was quite good, and who were quite faithful, but when this stage of work came upon them, they just died in that way. Can their ending really be like that?” God said, “Did they accept this stage of the work?” I said, “They did not accept it.” God said, “Their career of believing in God ended, they were eliminated, and all their labors were then of no use. Their prestige, though great, was without use. If they did not accept this stage of the work, they are then of the ilk of Satan; they are all people who resist God. Why was it that they did not accept this stage of the work? Because they did not acknowledge God’s word as the truth, they did not acknowledge the reality of God becoming flesh, and this is resisting God. Tell me, in the Age of Grace, did they observe the name of the Lord Jesus? It appears they did not resist the Lord Jesus, but when the Spirit of the Lord Jesus came, it was the Spirit of truth again having put on an ordinary flesh, yet still they did not acknowledge this, nor did they accept this. Is this or is this not resisting the Lord Jesus?” I said, “Were these people thoroughly ruined?” God said, “They were thoroughly ruined. Eternally, they will not have a chance to come back to life, and they will not ever again have the opportunity to be raised up before God to obtain the approval of God. Their ending has been determined.” How about those who have not yet died? If they still do not accept this now, the great calamity will befall and they will be destroyed, they will all be destroyed! There are a few persons within the religion who do not know this matter. If they do not know Almighty God’s work in the last days, but they are quite devout, God will take pity on people like them. All people who have condemned Almighty God will be destroyed and completely dead! “Defiance means death!” This phrase is the word of God. When God had finished speaking, there were people who did not comprehend, and I asked, “Does this need to have some explanatory comments added?” God said, “It does not need to have anything added. Regardless of what they say, do not add anything else, whether they accept it or not. If they do not accept it, they will die.” God spoke this way. There are some people there inspecting the true way, coming and going in doubt, just coming and going in doubt. For a while they accept it; for a while they think the way is correct; for a while they think that is impossible; for a while they again are not thus; for a while they are obedient; for a while they are in opposition. Resembling those roly-poly toys, they persistently wonder about this. Tell me, when you see God’s word, do you doubt it? The word of God is the truth; can you doubt this? If you can doubt even the truth, then how do you believe? You are a person with no belief. Some people say, “I acknowledge that the word of God is correct, but I do not know The Church of Almighty God. I cannot see through it, and I dare not come into contact with these people.” It is finished. If you deny The Church of Almighty God, then you are a person who denies God, and you are a person who resists God. God works upon these people, God makes use of them, God dispatches them, and if you have doubt concerning them, are you not doubting God? You doubt The Church of Almighty God, you do not believe in The Church of Almighty God, so can the Church admit you? You doubt The Church of Almighty God, and this is essentially the same as doubting God, so you can more or less draw an equal sign between the two, because you do not acknowledge that God has chosen and called these people! You only acknowledge those devout Christians in the religion, and do not acknowledge those of The Church of Almighty God who have experienced the judgment before the seat of Christ and been conquered by the word of God. You do not believe the witness borne by these people, and still doubt these people. You are there doubting the work of God, you think that people who are gained by God in His work are not necessarily good people, and you think that those people who believe in God are not all necessarily good people, which means you deny that God’s word is the truth, deny that God is the God of righteousness. Is it not so? Herein it appears that there is no great problem, but in reality the problem is very serious. Here, in people’s faith, is there a problem? Gentiles often say one phrase: “Within one thought.” Sometimes they do or do not accept the true way within one thought, sometimes they are able or unable to be obedient to God within one thought, sometimes they are defeated and stumble within one thought, sometimes success and failure are also within one thought. The most serious of all is that sometimes people’s life and death are within one thought, that within this one thought their destiny is decided. In such a small amount of time, victory or defeat comes out of this, and their ending is revealed. “Within one thought” is too crucial. There are some people whom, upon having accepted this, Satan comes and subjects to a test. It arrives suddenly, and they follow Satan. Within one thought they collapse. There are some people who, upon doubting, want to leave, but before they have left, they hear one phrase of the word of God; once the brothers and sisters bear witness, they say, “I believe this is the word of God, I accept it.” Just a moment ago they wanted to revert, but this time they accept. After they accept it, they go through a period of time of being watered, of reading the word of God, then they are certain this is the true way, and they have not gone back. In the very end they are gained by God; is this or is this not within one thought? There are some people who suddenly have a calamity befall their family, and there are some people who are suddenly seized by the great red dragon. Within one thought their end is decided; is this or is this not the reality? And there are people who say, “Are things really so random?” They are random, but there must also be some kind of connection. If a person, in their nature, does not love the truth, then this one thought is very critical. If they have the truth then this question would not exist, is it not so? This test is not necessarily of a dangerous character. For people who do not have the truth, every matter is within one thought, because the possibility of them betraying God is still one hundred percent. So whether one will examine the true way, within one thought; whether one can stand firm, within one thought; how to face a trial, within one thought; whether one can depart from God, within one thought—if a person does not have the truth then it is just this random. If a person has the truth, the problem is not that severe, and they can stand firm, and the tests of Satan will be nothing difficult to deal with, nor will the rumors and lies of Satan when they befall be anything difficult to deal with. One phrase will be able to unmask their real nature, and their essence, and one phrase will see through the schemes of Satan, and Satan will be ashamed at that one phrase. See, does “within one thought” still exist? The nature of the test is reduced considerably in severity. Once you obtain the truth you will then be considered to be secure, and if you do not have the truth you will seem like a newborn baby, a premature birth, still needing to be put in the incubator. The time when an infant is put in the incubator is the most dangerous of all, and it is hard to tell if it will live or die. So as for new believers, can you guarantee that you yourselves will not be tested, or that you are totally able to stand firm when faced with whatever test? Who can guarantee this? In the face of Satan’s rumors, you are all there still wavering and indecisive, still unable to see through them, thinking: “True or not? True or not? How do I find this out?” Find out what? Look at the word of God. If this is indeed the word of God and the work of God, what else should you find out? Even if, in the church, there are some people who are fake believers or who are condemned and eliminated by God, that does not represent God, nor does it represent The Church of Almighty God. The family of God is controlled by the truth, the Holy Spirit controls it, Christ controls it. You have not seen through this matter either. When an evil person or a nonbeliever appears in the church, can he represent the church? Does it mean that he is one of the chosen people of God? The word of God says that He will eliminate people, that a great wind will befall people, and many people will be blown and scattered by the wind; do you not know these words? Some people do not believe the word of God, so they do not read the word of God; they just rely on people’s brains to ponder this, to ponder it that way, or to think it over in this way, or to reason about it in this way, and this is useless! If you find that the word of Almighty God is one hundred percent the truth, it is the word of God, then no doubt the people of The Church of Almighty God are God’s chosen. What, then, is there in this that can be doubted? When a few false leaders or antichrists appear, most of them must be expelled, and they are not able to stand firm. The Church of Almighty God expels the antichrists and evil people, and that is not a matter that only exists now. In these past ten or twenty years, it has been continuously expelling people, and up to now it is no fewer than three or five hundred thousand people. If you come into contact with people of The Church of Almighty God, and you discover an evil person, you say, “This person cannot stand firm, and sooner or later he will be eliminated, certainly.” What about within the religion? Within the religion is there still now this matter of expelling people? They offer shelter to any and all, even such shoddy goods as these people, and are continuously entrapping people, afraid that their numbers are few and afraid that people will leave and their pastors will have no earnings. So as long as one can dedicate wealth, they will give him blessing; as long as one can offer money, he is considered good. They entrap people, they do not expel people. The Church of Almighty God is unceasingly expelling evil people, unceasingly accepting new believers. Then you say, which church is the true church? Which church truly believes in God? Which church is the one controlled by the truth? Which church is the one that is truly blessed by God? These things you cannot all see through, and what are you still doing there researching? You think that your brain functions well, but brains of science do not even come close to pertaining to belief in God. Scientists’ research is unable to know God, so what are you still researching? You must hurriedly read the word of God, and in the word of God it says that evil people must all be eliminated. So look around, how are those evil people in the family of God to be eliminated? Which kinds of people should be expelled and when should they be expelled? Everything is there in the word of God—it is also there in the work arrangements of the family of God. The people expelled from the family of God in these past twenty or thirty years are all recorded in accounts, and when any shepherding district expels someone it announces and preserves this. Whichever shepherding district it may be, they have all expelled several tens of thousands of people. If they are really evil or indecent people, who are not fit to enter The Church of Almighty God, then the church does not admit them. So as the people who accept the gospel are very many, they must all be investigated, and those who meet the standard will be admitted while those who do not meet the standard will not be admitted. The Church of Almighty God disseminates the books of God’s word, and this is all for free. When some brothers and sisters have difficulties, or when there are challenges in their lives, or when they have no food to eat, other brothers and sisters will help them; when there is food, everybody will eat together. Just look—is there any other church like this on earth? This is the church formed by people obtained by God in doing the work of the last days, and they truly love each other. The family of God has never called for people to give offerings, and whichever leader or worker ever emphasizes giving offerings, we should then dismiss and replace him, for he is not fit to serve God. God does not force anybody to do anything, and if people who are in the early stages of their faith give offerings, the family of God does not accept them. After believing for one year, they will understand the truth. If they go through prayer many times, then they may give offerings. What the chosen people of God have consecrated and given to God is very much, and it cannot be returned. Some people say, “If you do not accept my money, that is the same as expelling me”; there are some people who are expelled and are still giving offerings, there are some people who bite off the tips of their fingers to sign in blood. “Expulsion is not departing from God!” What kind of witness is this? This is a witness of having been conquered by God, and even in death they acknowledge God. Is this found in religion? You cannot see this witness, and you still investigate The Church of Almighty God!