Haicheng city, Liaoning Province
My name is Wangli. At the age of eleven, I believed in the Lord Jesus with my mother. After graduating from high school, I gave up the opportunity to go to a college or a seminary, and worked as an important co-worker in the Praise Church. I shepherded the churches in Haicheng, Yingkou, and Panjin in Liaoning Province, and in Qian’an, Funing, Qinglong, and other places in Hebei Province. And I had been invited to preach and attend the youth meetings by some religious groups in Beijing, Qinhuangdao (Hebei Province), and Ningbo (Zhejiang Province). During that time, I ran about busying myself with the church work all day, feeling very proud of myself.
One day in May 1997, my leader told me, “Now there arose a new sect called the ‘Eastern Lightning.’ It’s a ‘heresy.’ We must be strictly on guard against it.” In 1998, an upper worker said, “The ‘Eastern Lightning’ is generally recognized as a ‘heresy’ in the world. They deny that God is the Triune God. If anyone wants to withdraw after accepting it, they will cut off his ears, gouge out his eyes, or cut his hamstring. From now on, if you see the book of the ‘Eastern Lightning,’ burn it; if you see those who preach the ‘Eastern Lightning,’ drive them away and don’t receive them, or you’ll share in their evil deeds.” I believed these words without any doubt. On the platform, I even fabricated lies to embroider the leader’s words, saying, “I had contact with the people of the ‘Eastern Lightning’ in 1997. Their spirit can be passed on to others. Once their hand touches you, the spirit will enter into you. If they lay their hand on you and pray, you will be completely bewildered. They are walking about everywhere, trying to devour the souls of the believers in the Lord…” I also summed up eleven characteristics of the “Eastern Lightning” and told the brothers and sisters to discern according to them and drive away any suspicious people without mercy. In this way, I stepped onto the evil way of blaspheming, resisting, and rejecting Almighty God.
Once, I heard that a nonlocal sister came to our church. I immediately sent for her and questioned her like questioning a prisoner, and after that, I drove her out of the church. When she left in tears, I didn’t feel any guilt in my heart. A church out of town was in chaos and a co-worker there was possessed by a demon. I blamed all that on the “Eastern Lightning.” I got so exasperated that I gave an order to drive away all the newcomers. A sister among them said, “Aren’t you afraid of offending God by doing so? How will you give account to God in the future?” I walked the floor impatiently. With one hand holding a cup and the other waving to them, I said fiercely, “It is my own business whether I can give account or not. You needn’t worry about it. I know whether the way I’m walking is right or wrong. Let’s meet before the judgment seat of Christ in the future! Everything will be clear then…” After that, I carried out these clear-up measures in every church under my charge.
I busied myself running about the churches every day. But problems kept arising one after another. I was really in a terrible fix. I ran back and forth among the local and out-town churches. Not only did I recklessly seal off the churches in Liaoning Province, but I stretched my evil hand to other provinces. Because of my doing, Almighty God’s gospel work in the last days was greatly hindered in the churches I shepherded. But I was proud of it. How shameless I was! And I thought complacently, “No matter how fierce the ‘Eastern Lightning’ followers are, we won’t receive you. What can you do with it?” I had lost my conscience completely.
At the time when I resisted Almighty God most fiercely, my churches and I lost God’s keeping and care: A co-worker suddenly went insane, crying and laughing in the street, and a brother in her church felt restless at home and insisted on going to the graveyard. I also became ill and got heart trouble, cholecystitis, backache, nosebleed, and other undiagnosed illnesses. One night, my insane father suddenly came into my room and held me in his arms, saying, “You belong to me. I don’t allow you to get married…” I was dumbfounded! “Why? Why does such a thing happen to me? Why doesn’t God keep me?” I cried out to God tearfully.
After that, I began to ponder over these things: Why has the co-worker who loves the Lord gone insane? Why do the believers form cliques and raise envy and strife? Why can a preacher who has an affair offer a sacrifice and praise God on the platform? Why did those who swore an oath of serving God all their life together with me all get married and have children and fall into the world? Why did I encounter these things? What mistakes have I made? Extremely disappointed and discouraged, I lay in bed for two days and nights without eating or drinking. I completely broke down in my heart and even wanted to go back home and flee from my service, but I feared God and couldn’t do so. After that, for about half a year, I didn’t pray or read the Bible at all except at meetings. I forced myself to look strong in front of the brothers and sisters, but in my heart I had already collapsed. Just when I was suffering unspeakably, God stretched out His saving hand to me.
In September 2000, under God’s wonderful arrangement, I met the brothers and sisters who preached God’s work of the last days. During my fellowship with a sister, I spoke of the condition of the churches. She said, “The churches today are as desolate as the temple in those days. At that time, the temple was in a filthy mess and became a den of robbers where people bought and sold cattle, sheep, and doves. The temple should be a place where people prayed, offered sacrifices, and worshipped God, but it became a place where people committed sins. In the law, God required people to offer sacrifices without blemish, but at the end of the Age of Law people offered defective sacrifices. This showed that the temple was desolate. When people lost the work of the Holy Spirit, they dared to act willfully and recklessly, so it proved that God no longer worked in the temple. Today in the churches, people intrigue against each other, scramble for fame and gain, steal the church money, commit adultery, and so on. Aren’t they as desolate as the temple of those days? At that time, when Jesus came to earth to do a new work, God’s Spirit withdrew from the temple and worked on the Jesus’ disciples. Likewise, today the churches are desolate because God has done a new work.” Hearing this, I woke up: No wonder the churches are in such a mess; so God has done a new work! All at once, the door of my heart was opened, I felt so brightened within, and I saw hope. The sister continued, “Now is the Age of Kingdom, and God’s work is higher…” At this word, my heart skipped a beat. “Aren’t they the ‘Eastern Lightning’ followers? I’ve been speaking about and guarding against them day and night, but today I’m actually fellowshipping with them! No! I must go immediately.” I got up to leave, but the brothers and sisters earnestly persuaded me to stay. At that time, the Holy Spirit moved me. I thought of the disunity in the churches, my weakness, and the series of things that happened to me. I thought, “I might as well listen carefully today and see what it’s all about.” So I sat down and said straightforwardly, “Isn’t God the Triune God? Why do you say He is not? If you can explain it clearly, I will investigate.” “OK!” The sister said readily. Then she asked me, “Is Jehovah Spirit?” “Yes,” I answered. And she continued, “Is Jesus Spirit?” “Yes. Jesus is conceived by the Holy Spirit and His substance is the Spirit,” I answered. Then she asked further, “Jehovah is Spirit, Jesus is Spirit, and the Holy Spirit is Spirit. Then does God have one Spirit or three Spirits? And what is the ‘Trinity?’” I was stunned. “Right! There is only one God. If the Holy Father, the Holy Son, and the Holy Spirit are three Spirits, won’t there be three Gods? How could God be the only true God then? What is this about?” The sister opened the book of God’s word and read these words to me: “It was only after the truth of Jesus become flesh came to be that man realized this: it is not only the Father in heaven, but also the Son, and even the Spirit. This is the conventional notion man holds, that there is a God such as this in heaven: a Trinity that is the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, all in one.” “Let Me tell you that, in truth, the Trinity does not exist anywhere in this universe. God has no Father and no Son, much less is there the concept of an instrument jointly used by the Father and the Son: the Holy Spirit. All of this is the greatest fallacy and simply does not exist in this world! Yet even such a fallacy has its origin and is not without basis, for the minds of man are not simple, and your thoughts are not without reason. Rather, they are quite appropriate and ingenious, so much so that they are impregnable even to any Satan. The pity is that these thoughts are all fallacies and simply do not exist! You have not seen the real truth at all; you are merely making conjectures and conceptions, then fabricating it all into a story to deceitfully gain man’s trust and to gain dominance over those most foolish of men without wit or reason, so that they believe in your great and renowned ‘expert teachings.’ Is this truth? Is this the way of life that man should receive? It is all nonsense! Not a single word is appropriate! Throughout these many years, God has been split by you in this way, being split finer and finer with each generation, to the extent that one God has been openly split into three Gods. And now it is simply impossible for man to rejoin God as one, for you have split Him up too finely! If not for My prompt work before it was too late, it is hard to say how long you would have brazenly continued this way! To continue splitting God in this way, how can He still be your God? Would you still recognize God? Would you still return to Him? If I had arrived any later, it is likely that you would have sent the ‘Father and Son,’ Jehovah and Jesus back to Israel and claimed that you yourselves are a part of God!” “This concept of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit is most absurd! This segments God and splits Him into three parts, each with a status and Spirit; how then can He still be one Spirit and one God? Tell Me, were the heavens and earth, and all things within it created by the Father, the Son, or the Holy Spirit? Some say that They created it all together. Then who redeemed mankind? Was it the Holy Spirit, the Son, or the Father? Some say it was the Son who redeemed mankind. Then what is the substance of the Son? Is He not the incarnation of the Spirit of God? The incarnation calls God in heaven by the name of Father from the perspective of a created man. Are you not aware that Jesus was born from the conception through the Holy Spirit? Within Him is the Holy Spirit; whatever you say, He is still one with God in heaven, for He is the incarnation of the Spirit of God.” “Man believes that Jehovah is the Father of Jesus, but this was actually not acknowledged by Jesus, who said: ‘We were never distinguished as Father and Son; I and the Father in heaven are one. The Father is in Me and I am in the Father; when man sees the Son, they are seeing the heavenly Father.’ When all has been said, be it the Father or the Son, They are one Spirit, not divided into separate persons. Once man attempts to explain, matters are complicated with the idea of distinct persons, as well as the relationship between Father, Son, and Spirit. When man speaks of separate persons, does this not materialize God? They even rank the persons as first, second, and third; these are all but the conceptions of man, not worthy of reference, and utterly unrealistic!” “The Spirit within Jesus, the Spirit in heaven, and the Spirit of Jehovah are all one. It can be called the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of God, the sevenfold intensified Spirit, and the all-inclusive Spirit. The Spirit of God alone can carry out much work. He is able to create the world and destroy it by flooding the earth; He can redeem all mankind, and moreover, conquer and destroy all mankind. This work is all carried out by God Himself and cannot have been done by any other of the persons of God in His stead. His Spirit can be called by the name of Jehovah and Jesus, as well as the Almighty. He is the Lord, and Christ. He can also become the Son of man. He is in the heavens and also on the earth; He is on high above the universe and among the multitude. He is the only Master of the heavens and earth!” “At all times, God can only be called the almighty and one true God, the all-inclusive God Himself. The distinct persons do not exist, much less this idea of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit! There is only one God in heaven and on earth!” (from “Does the Trinity Exist?” in The Word Appears in the Flesh)
Hearing these words, I thought to myself, “These words explain the ‘Trinity’ so clearly and thoroughly; it is really convincing. Who else can explain the things of God except God? They are God’s words. They are indeed God’s words! So, the ‘Triune’ God doesn’t exist at all. I have believed in God for so many years, but I didn’t know God, and I have even divided God into three Gods. Wasn’t I doing evil? If God didn’t utter these words personally, who could be clear about it?” At that moment, I firmly believed that God had been incarnated indeed! Tears flowed from my eyes, and I finally burst out crying, “O God, I was so hardened and disobedient that I’ve been resisting Your work of the last days for four years. Not only I myself didn’t accept Your work, but I even hindered the brothers and sisters from accepting it. I’m really too wicked! O God! I don’t deserve Your salvation and Your paying such a great price for me. I only deserve to be cursed and cast into hell! O God! I have fabricated lies against You and slandered, framed, blasphemed, and condemned You. I’m really a heinous and unpardonably wicked person. According to my deeds, I’m a Pharisee of the present age deserving to be cursed and Satan’s accomplice full of sins, but You didn’t treat me according to my transgressions and are still saving me. Your great love is beyond expression. I’m willing to commit myself to Your hand, submitting to Your orchestration, judgment, and chastisement! …” At that moment, I couldn’t say anything but only cried.
Brothers and sisters, around you maybe many brothers and sisters who love the Lord and have been dead set against the “Eastern Lightning” and many God’s faithful servants have all accepted the “Eastern Lightning.” Have you ever felt perplexed about them? Today I’d like to say a few heartfelt words on behalf of these brothers and sisters: We join the “Eastern Lightning” not because we are forced by their violent threats, such as gouging eyes or cutting off ears, or because we are paid with a large sum of money. We accept the “Eastern Lightning,” which we resisted frenziedly before, simply because the truth from Almighty God’s mouth has conquered our heart and He is indeed the Savior Jesus we have been expecting day and night. I hope that brothers and sisters will make more investigation, discern wisely, and see through Satan’s scheme of deceiving people with lies, and return to Almighty God and be saved.