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VII Classic Words on Knowing God Himself, the Unique

(III) Words on God’s Holiness

38. “The holiness of God” means that God’s essence is flawless, that God’s love is selfless, all that God provides to man is selfless, and you will come to know that God’s holiness is unblemished and irreproachable. These aspects of God’s essence are not just words He uses to flaunt His status, but rather God uses His essence to treat each and every individual with quiet sincerity. In other words, the essence of God is not empty, nor is it theoretical or doctrinal, and it is certainly not a kind of knowledge. It is not a kind of education for man, but instead is the true revelation of God’s own actions and the revealed essence of what God has and is.

Excerpted from “God Himself, the Unique VI” in The Word Appears in the Flesh

39. You will not see God hold similar views on things that people have, and moreover you will not see Him use men’s viewpoints, their knowledge, their science or their philosophy or man’s imagination to handle things. Instead, everything God does and everything He reveals is connected to truth. That is, every word He has said and every action He has taken concerns the truth. This truth is not some baseless fantasy; this truth and these words are expressed by God due to God’s substance and His life. Because these words and the substance of everything God has done are truth, we can say that God’s substance is holy. In other words, everything God says and does brings vitality and light to people; it allows people to see positive things and the reality of those positive things, and it points the way for humanity so that they may walk the right path. These things are determined because of God’s substance and they are determined due to the substance of His holiness.

Excerpted from “God Himself, the Unique V” in The Word Appears in the Flesh

40. What does the holiness of God that I talk about refer to? Think about it for a second. Is the truthfulness of God His holiness? Is the faithfulness of God His holiness? Is the selflessness of God His holiness? Is the humility of God His holiness? Is the love of God for man His holiness? God freely bestows truth and life on man—is this His holiness? (Yes.) All this that God reveals is unique; it does not exist within corrupt humanity, nor can it be seen there. Not the slightest trace of it can be seen during the process of Satan’s corruption of man, neither in the corrupt disposition of Satan nor in the essence or nature of Satan. All that God has and is is unique and only God Himself has this kind of essence, only God Himself possesses this kind of essence. … The essence of holiness is true love, but more than this it is the essence of truth, righteousness and light. The word “holy” is only appropriate when applied to God; nothing in creation can be worthy to be called holy. Man must understand that.

Excerpted from “God Himself, the Unique VI” in The Word Appears in the Flesh

41. “And Jehovah God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat: But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, you shall not eat of it: for in the day that you eat thereof you shall surely die.” What does God’s command to man in this passage contain? Firstly, God tells man what he can eat, being the fruits of a variety of trees. There is no danger and no poison, all can be eaten and eaten as one wishes, with no misgivings. This is one part. The other part is a warning. This warning tells man the tree from which he cannot eat the fruit—he must not eat the fruit from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. What will happen if he does? God told man: If you eat it you shall surely die. Are these words straightforward? If God told you this but you did not understand why, would you treat it as a rule or an order to be followed? It should be followed, shouldn’t it? But whether or not man is able to follow it, God’s words are unequivocal. God told man very clearly what he can eat and what he cannot, and what will happen if he eats what he should not eat. Have you seen any of God’s disposition in these brief words that He spoke? Are these words of God true? Is there any deception? Is there any falsity? Is there anything threatening? (No.) God honestly, truthfully and sincerely told man what he can eat and what he cannot eat, clear and plain. Is there any hidden meaning in these words? Are these words straightforward? Is there any need for conjecture? (No.) There is no need to guess. Their meaning is obvious at a glance, and you understand as soon as you see it. It is crystal clear. That is, what God wants to say and what He wants to express comes from His heart. The things God expresses are clean, straightforward and clear. There are no covert motives nor any hidden meanings. He spoke to man directly, telling him what he can eat and what he cannot eat. That is to say, through these words of God man can see that God’s heart is transparent, that God’s heart is true. There is absolutely no falsity here; it’s not telling you that you cannot eat what is edible or telling you to “Do it and see what happens” with things that you cannot eat. He does not mean this. Whatever God thinks in His heart is what He says.

Excerpted from “God Himself, the Unique IV” in The Word Appears in the Flesh

42. God created man and since then has ever led the life of mankind. Whether in giving mankind blessings, giving them the laws and His commandments, or stipulating the various rules for life, do you know what God’s intended aim is in doing these things? Firstly, can you say for sure all that God does is for the good of mankind? You may think that this sentence is relatively broad and hollow, but specifically speaking, isn’t everything God does to lead and guide man toward living a normal life? Whether it is so man keeps His rules or keeps His laws, God’s aim is for man not to worship Satan, not to be harmed by Satan; this is most fundamental, and this is what was done in the very beginning. At the very beginning, when man did not understand God’s will He took some simple laws and rules and made provisions that covered every conceivable aspect. These provisions are simple, yet within them they contain God’s will. God treasures, cherishes and dearly loves mankind. Isn’t that the case? (Yes.) So can we say His heart is holy? Can we say His heart is clean? (Yes.) Does God have any ulterior intentions? (No.) So is this aim of His right and positive? (Yes.) No matter what provisions God made, in the course of His work they all have a positive effect on man, and they lead the way. So are there any self-serving thoughts in God’s mind? Does God have any additional aims where man is concerned, or does He want to use man in some way? (No.) Not at all. God does as He says, and He also thinks this way in His heart. There is no mixed purpose, no self-serving thoughts. He does not do anything for Himself, but does absolutely everything for man, without any personal aims. Although He has plans and intentions for man, He does not do anything for Himself. Everything He does is done purely for mankind, to protect mankind, to keep mankind from being led astray. So is this heart not precious? Can you see even the tiniest hint of this precious heart in Satan? (No.) You cannot see one hint of this in Satan. Everything God does is revealed naturally. By looking at the way God works, how does He work? Does God take these laws and His words and bind them tightly onto the heads of every person like the incantation of the golden hoop,[a] imposing them on each man? Does He work in this way? (No.) So in what way does God do His work? (He guides us. He advises and encourages us.) Does He threaten? Does He talk in circles to you? (No.) When you do not understand the truth, how does God guide you? (He shines a light.) He shines a light on you, telling you clearly that this is not in keeping with the truth, and what you should do. From these ways in which God works, what kind of relationship do you feel you have with God? Do they make you feel that God is beyond your grasp? (No.) So how do they make you feel? God is especially close to you, there is no distance between you. When God guides you, when He provides for you, helps you and supports you, you feel God’s amiability, His respectability, you feel how lovely He is, how warm. But when God reproaches your corruption, or when He judges and disciplines you for rebelling against Him, what way does God use? Does He reproach you with words? Does He discipline you through your environment and through people, affairs, and things? (Yes.) What level does this discipline reach? Does it reach the same point where Satan harms man? (No, it reaches a level that man can endure.) God works in a gentle, loving, delicate and caring way, a way that is especially measured and proper. His way does not cause you to feel intense emotions such as, “God must let me do this” or “God must let me do that.” God never gives you that kind of intense mentality or intense feelings that make things unbearable. Isn’t that right? Even when you accept God’s words of judgment and chastisement, how do you feel then? When you feel the authority and power of God, how do you feel then? Do you feel that God is divine and inviolable? (Yes.) Do you feel distanced from God at these times? Do you feel frightened of God? No, instead you feel fearful reverence of God. Do people not feel all these things because of God’s work? Would they have these feelings if Satan worked on man? (No.) God uses His words, His truth and His life to continuously provide for man, to support man. When man is weak, when man is feeling down, God certainly does not speak harshly, saying: “Do not feel down. What are you down for? What are you weak for? What is there to be weak about? You are so weak and always so down. What is the point in living? Just die!” Does God work this way? (No.) Does God have the authority to act this way? (Yes.) But God does not act this way. The reason why God does not act this way is because of His essence, the essence of the holiness of God. His love for man, His treasuring and cherishing of man cannot be expressed clearly in just one or two sentences. It is not something that is brought about by man’s boasting but is something that God brings forth in actual practice; it is the revelation of God’s essence. Can all these ways in which God works allow man to see the holiness of God? In all these ways in which God works, including God’s good intentions, including the effects God wishes to achieve on man, including the different ways God adopts to work on man, the kind of work He does, what He wants man to understand—have you seen any evil or craftiness in God’s good intentions? (No.) So in everything God does, everything God says, everything He thinks in His heart, as well as all the essence of God that He reveals—can we call God holy? (Yes.) Has any man ever seen this holiness in the world, or in himself? Apart from God, have you ever seen it in any man or in Satan? (No.) From what we have talked about so far, can we call God the unique, holy God Himself? (Yes.) All that God gives to man, including the words of God, the different ways in which God works on man, that which God tells man, that which God reminds man of, that which He advises and encourages, it all originates from one essence: It all originates from the holiness of God. If there were no such holy God, no man could take His place to do the work He does.

Excerpted from “God Himself, the Unique IV” in The Word Appears in the Flesh

43. Now with God’s work in the last days, He no longer just bestows grace and blessings on man like He did in the beginning, nor does He coax people onward. During this stage of work, what has man seen from all the aspects of God’s work that they have experienced? They have seen God’s love and God’s judgment and chastisement. At this time, God furthermore provides, supports, enlightens and guides man, so that they gradually come to know His intentions, know the words He speaks and the truth He bestows on man. When man is weak, when they are dispirited, when they have nowhere to turn, God will use His words to comfort, advise and encourage them, so that man of small stature can gradually find their strength, rise up in positivity and become willing to cooperate with God. But when man disobeys God or resists Him, or they reveal their own corruption, God will show no mercy in chastening them and disciplining them. To man’s foolishness, ignorance, weakness and immaturity, however, God will show tolerance and patience. In this way, through all the work God does for man, man gradually matures, grows up, and comes to know God’s intentions, to know some truth, to know what are positive things and what are negative things, to know what evil is and what darkness is. God does not always chasten and discipline man, nor does He always show tolerance and patience. Rather He provides for each person in different ways, at their different stages and according to their different statures and caliber. He does many things for man and at great cost; man perceives nothing of this cost or these things God does, yet all that He does is in reality carried out on every single person. God’s love is real: Through the grace of God man avoids one disaster after another, whilst to man’s weakness, God shows His tolerance time after time. The judgment and chastisement of God allow people to gradually come to know mankind’s corruption and their satanic essence. That which God provides, His enlightenment of man and His guidance all allow mankind to know more and more the essence of truth, and to increasingly know what people need, what road they should take, what they live for, the value and meaning of their lives, and how to walk the road ahead. All these things that God does are inseparable from His one original purpose. What, then, is this purpose? Why does God use these ways to carry out His work on man? What result does He want to achieve? In other words, what does He want to see in man and get from them? What God wants to see is that man’s heart can be revived. These ways that He uses to work on man are to continually awaken the heart of man, awaken man’s spirit, letting man know where they came from, who is guiding them, supporting them, providing for them, and who has allowed man to live up till now; they are to let man know who is the Creator, whom they should worship, what kind of road they should walk, and in what way man should come before God; they are used to gradually revive the heart of man, so man knows God’s heart, understands God’s heart, and comprehends the great care and thought behind His work to save man. When man’s heart is revived, they no longer wish to live the life of a degenerate, corrupt disposition, but instead wish to pursue the truth in the satisfaction of God. When man’s heart has been awakened, they are then able to make a clean break with Satan, no longer to be harmed by Satan, no longer to be controlled or fooled by it. Instead, man can cooperate in God’s work and in His words in a positive way to satisfy the heart of God, thus attaining fear of God and the shunning of evil. This is the original purpose of God’s work.

Excerpted from “God Himself, the Unique VI” in The Word Appears in the Flesh

44. Throughout your long lives, basically every individual has encountered many dangerous situations and undergone many temptations. This is because Satan is right there beside you, its eyes fixed on you constantly. It likes it when disaster strikes you, when calamities befall you, when nothing goes right for you, and likes it when you are caught in Satan’s net. As for God, He is protecting you constantly, keeping you from one misfortune after another and from one disaster after another. This is why I say that everything man has—peace and joy, blessings and personal safety—is in fact all under God’s control, and He guides and decides the fate of every individual. But does God have an inflated notion of His position, as some people say? Telling you “I am the greatest of all, it is I that take charge of you, you must all beg Me for mercy and disobedience will be punished by death.” Has God ever threatened mankind in this way? (No.) Has He ever said “Mankind is corrupt so it does not matter how I treat them, any arbitrary treatment will do; I do not need to arrange things very well for them.” Does God think this way? Has God acted in this way? (No.) On the contrary, God’s treatment of each and every person is earnest and responsible, more responsible even than you are to yourself. Is this not so? God does not speak idly, neither does He stand on high putting on airs nor does He make do with fooling people. Instead He is honestly and silently doing the things He Himself needs to do. These things bring blessings, peace and joy to man. They bring man peacefully and happily into God’s sight and into His family; then they live before God and accept God’s salvation with the proper reasoning and thinking. So has God ever been duplicitous with man in His work? Has He ever shown a false display of kindness, fooling man with a few pleasantries, then turned His back on man? (No.) Has God ever said one thing and then done another? Has God ever made empty promises and boasted, telling you He can do this for you or help do that for you, and then vanished? (No.) There is no deceit in God, no falsity. God is faithful and everything He does is real. He is the only One that people can count on and the God that people can entrust their lives and their all to. As there is no deceit in God, could we say that God is the most sincere? (Yes.) Of course we can, right? Although, talking about this word now, when applied to God it is too feeble, too humanized, there is nothing we can do about it as these are the limits of human language. It is slightly improper here to call God sincere, but we will use this word for the time being. God is faithful and sincere. So what do we mean by talking about these aspects? Do we mean the differences between God and man and the differences between God and Satan? We can say this. This is because man cannot see one trace of Satan’s corrupt disposition in God. Am I correct in saying this? Can I get an Amen for this? (Amen!) We see none of Satan’s evil revealed in God. All that God does and reveals is wholly beneficial and helpful for man, is wholly done to provide for man, is full of life and gives man a road to follow and a direction to take. God is not corrupt and, furthermore, looking now at everything God does, can we say that God is holy? (Yes.) As God has none of the corruption of mankind and has nothing similar to or identical to the corrupt disposition of mankind or the essence of Satan, from this point of view we can say that God is holy. God reveals no corruption, and the revelation of His own essence in His work is all the confirmation we need that God Himself is holy. Do you see this? Now, to know God’s holy essence, for the time being let us look at these two aspects: 1) There is no corrupt disposition in God; 2) the essence of God’s work on man allows man to see God’s own essence and this essence is entirely positive. For the things that every manner of God’s work brings to man are all positive things. Firstly, God requires man to be honest—isn’t this positive? God gives man wisdom—isn’t this positive? God makes man able to discern between good and evil—isn’t this positive? He allows man to understand the meaning and value of human life—isn’t this positive? He allows man to see into the essence of people, events, and things in accordance with truth—isn’t this positive? (Yes, it is.) And the result of all this is that man is no longer deceived by Satan, no longer to continue to be harmed by Satan or controlled by it. In other words, they allow people to completely free themselves from the corruption of Satan, and therefore gradually walk the path of fearing God and shunning evil.

Excerpted from “God Himself, the Unique VI” in The Word Appears in the Flesh

45. Now your perceptive understanding of God’s essence still requires a long period of time to learn, to confirm, to feel and to experience it, until one day you will know the holiness of God from the very center of your heart to be the flawless essence of God, the selfless love of God, that all this God gives to man is selfless, and you will come to know that God’s holiness is unblemished and irreproachable. These essences of God are not just words He uses to show off His identity, but instead God uses His essence to silently and sincerely deal with each and every individual. In other words, the essence of God is not empty, nor is it theoretical or doctrinal and is certainly not a kind of knowledge. It is not a kind of education for man, but instead is the true revelation of God’s own actions and is the revealed essence of what God has and is. Man should know this essence and comprehend it, as everything God does and every word He says is of great value and great significance to every single person. When you come to comprehend the holiness of God, you can then really believe in God; when you come to comprehend the holiness of God, you can then really realize the true meaning of the words “God Himself, the Unique.” You will no longer imagine that you can choose to walk other roads, and you will no longer be willing to betray everything that God has arranged for you. Because the essence of God is holy, that means that only through God can you walk the bright, right road through life; only through God can you know the meaning of life, only through God can you live out real humanity, possess the truth, know the truth, and only through God can you obtain life from the truth. Only God Himself can help you shun evil and deliver you from the harm and control of Satan. Besides God, no one and nothing can save you from the sea of suffering so that you suffer no longer: This is determined by the essence of God. Only God Himself saves you so selflessly, only God is ultimately responsible for your future, for your destiny and for your life, and He arranges all things for you. This is something that nothing created or non-created can achieve. Because nothing created or non-created possesses an essence of God such as this, no person or thing has the ability to save you or to lead you. This is the importance of God’s essence to man.

Excerpted from “God Himself, the Unique VI” in The Word Appears in the Flesh

Footnotes:

a. “The incantation of the golden hoop” refers to the famous Chinese novel “Journey to the West,” in which the monk Xuanzang uses an incantation to bring the Monkey King under control by means of a golden hoop placed on the Monkey King’s head that can be magically tightened, thus causing unbearable headaches. It subsequently became a metaphor for binding people.

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