Now that we are in the last days, at the crucial time of welcoming the coming of the Lord, how can we welcome His return whilst at the same time be able to discern false Christs? Sister Xiangwang found the way.
I Learned to Discern Between the True Christ and False Christs and Welcomed the Return of Jesus (Part 2)
By Xiangwang, Malaysia
Brother Zhang continued his fellowship, saying, “God is the truth, the way and the life, and besides discerning between the true Christ and false Christs by the principles of God’s work, we can also discern them by the essence of Christ.” At that point, Brother Zhang sent over a passage of God’s words: “God become flesh is called Christ, and so the Christ that can give people the truth is called God. There is nothing excessive about this, for He possesses the substance of God, and possesses God’s disposition, and wisdom in His work, that are unattainable by man. Those who call themselves Christ, yet cannot do the work of God, are frauds. The real Christ is not merely the manifestation of God on earth, but also the particular flesh assumed by God as He carries out and completes His work among man. This flesh is not one that can be replaced by just any man, but one that can adequately bear God’s work on earth, and express the disposition of God, and well represent God, and provide man with life. Sooner or later, those who impersonate Christ will all fall, for although they claim to be Christ, they possess none of the substance of Christ. And so I say that the authenticity of Christ cannot be defined by man, but is answered and decided by God Himself” (“Only Christ of the Last Days Can Give Man the Way of Eternal Life” in The Word Appears in the Flesh).
Brother Zhang went on with his fellowship, saying, “We can see from God’s words that Christ is the incarnation of the Spirit of God—He possesses a divine essence, He performs the work of God, He expresses the disposition of God, He can express the truth to supply and shepherd man at any time and in any place, and only Christ can perform the work of saving man. The Lord Jesus was Christ, for example, and His appearance and work brought the Age of Law to a close and began the Age of Grace. He also spoke His words to give mankind the way of repentance, to enable us to know clearly God’s will and requirements and so that we would have a way to follow when difficulties arise. Through the words of the Lord Jesus, man understood how to pray to the Lord, how to get along with one another, how to forgive each other, and so on. Moreover, the Lord Jesus expressed His disposition of lovingkindness and mercy, He healed the sick, cast out demons and He bestowed endless grace on man. Ultimately, He was crucified in order to redeem mankind, thus completing the work to redeem all mankind and saving us from the bonds and fetters of the law, as well as sparing us from the danger of being condemned and put to death for violating the law. These are just some of the things the Lord Jesus did, and no one else could have done them in His stead. From the work and words of the Lord Jesus, we can see that He is the truth, the way and the life. Similarly, God has once again become flesh in the last days and He has ended the Age of Grace and begun the Age of Kingdom. He has uttered millions of words, He performs the work of judgment and purification, and He expresses the righteous disposition of God that is majestic, wrathful and inviolable. The words spoken by Almighty God not only unveil the mystery of God’s entire management plan and the end and final destination of man, but they also expound in perfect clarity the truths we need to be purified and to attain true salvation. For example, how Satan corrupts man, the truth of man’s corruption at the hands of Satan, how God judges and purifies man’s corrupt dispositions, how man should believe in God and obey God, what kind of person God loves and what kind of person He detests and weeds out, and how we should pursue in order to be made perfect by God, and so on. Through experiencing the judgment and chastisement of God’s words, we see clearly the essence and root of our corruption by Satan and we come to understand God’s righteous, holy and inviolable disposition. We then cannot help but fall to the ground before God in true remorse, we become more and more reverential and obedient toward God and, gradually, we cast off our satanic corrupt dispositions, free ourselves from the bonds of sin and achieve the true salvation of God. The utterances and work of Almighty God bring us the truth, the way and the life—Almighty God is God Himself and He is Christ become flesh. False Christs do not possess the essence of God and they cannot express the truth, much less perform the work of saving mankind. They can only say some things that may sound true but are actually false in order to deceive and harm people. When someone listens to them, they not only obtain no supply whatsoever, but furthermore their hearts become darker and darker, their hearts sink lower and lower, they have nowhere to turn to, and they inevitably end up being devoured by Satan. Therefore, we are able to ascertain from God’s utterances, work and the disposition He expresses that only Christ is the truth, the way and the life.”
After listening to the words of Almighty God and the brother’s fellowship, I came to understand completely the truth of how to discern between the true Christ and false Christs. “Yes,” I thought. “Only Christ is the truth, the way and the life, and only Christ can express the truth and perform the work of God Himself. All who name themselves Christ but who are incapable of expressing the truth and who cannot perform the work of saving man are false Christs. I’ve now found the way forward and I’m no longer afraid of being deceived by false Christs and constantly being passive and guarded. Thanks be to God!”
Over the time that followed, Brother Zhang gave me fellowship on other truths, such as the mystery of the incarnation, the difference between God’s work and the work of man, the inside story on the Bible, and more. The more I listened, the more satiated I felt, and I looked forward every day to attending gatherings with the brothers and sisters. Each time a gathering ended, I would discuss with my mom the things that had been newly illuminated to us and, slowly, I came to have some understanding of God’s work of the last days. Over a period of seeking and investigating, I became certain that Almighty God was indeed the Lord Jesus returned. I then began to spread the gospel and to tell the news of the Lord’s return to even more people who longed for the appearance of God.
The Wicked Servants Show Their True Colors
Later, my mom and I went to our old church to attend Friday worship. After the assembly was over, to our surprise, the pastor began to play a video that laid false charges against The Church of Almighty God. When I saw the fabricated rumors and the slander they’d leveled against The Church of Almighty God, I became angry, and I thought: “The Church of Almighty God is nothing like they say at all. They have never had anything to do with The Church of Almighty God and neither have they investigated God’s work of the last days. How can they so baselessly and arbitrarily judge the work of God?”
After the video was over, the pastor, two deacons and two church council members asked my mom and I to stay behind. The pastor asked us, “Are you two now believers in Almighty God?” We replied, “Yes.”
The moment we said this, one of the deacons suddenly sprang to his feet and, pointing at my mom, said ferociously, “So you now believe in Almighty God? From tomorrow, you are no longer permitted to teach Sunday school. Tomorrow afternoon, I’ll come to your home and take back the church’s money.”
My mom said, “You can take it whenever you like.”
The pastor asked angrily, “The entire religious world resists and condemns The Church of Almighty God. Why would you persist in having contact with them?”
My mom retorted, saying, “Pastor, does the religious world possess the truth? Did the Lord Jesus ever say that one can only welcome Him by following the religious world? When the Lord Jesus appeared and performed His work all those years ago, the Jewish leaders not only refused to seek or investigate His work themselves, but they also stopped believers from accepting it, and they even made up rumors about Jesus and they frantically resisted, judged and blasphemed against Him. In the end, they offended God’s disposition and were thus cursed and punished by God. If we go by what you say and say that any way the religious world resists and condemns is not the true way, then would that not mean that you are denying even the work of the Lord Jesus? You go along with the religious world in your resistance to and condemnation of The Church of Almighty God, and you refuse to seek or investigate God’s work of the last days—does this accord with the truth? As the pastor and deacons of the church, why do you just arbitrarily condemn and judge Almighty God’s work of the last days without even bothering to look into it? Through reading many of Almighty God’s words, by seeing that Almighty God’s words are the truth and that they are the voice of God, we have become certain that Almighty God is the Lord Jesus returned.” To my surprise, they showed a contemptuous disregard for what my mom had said, and they didn’t accept it at all.
My mom opened an app on her phone and read Almighty God’s words to them. One of the church council members then spoke very arrogantly and said some blasphemous things against Almighty God. My mom said angrily, “You are so unbelievably arrogant. These words are the truth—can you not hear it? Can you understand the voice of God when you hear it? Are you God’s sheep?”
They smiled mirthlessly and just looked haughtily at us. The pastor then said self-importantly, “The One we wait for is the Lord Jesus who has nail wounds in His hands and who comes with the appearance of a Jew. Apart from the Lord Jesus, we won’t accept anything, even if what Almighty God expresses is the truth.” Seeing how stubborn they were being, my mom and I gave up trying to talk to them. I saw that their behavior was exactly the same as that of the Pharisees who had resisted the Lord Jesus; they believed in God but they didn’t seek the truth, nor did they take heed to listen to God’s voice. Instead, they were just arrogant and conceited, they stubbornly clung to their own notions and imaginings and they arbitrarily judged and resisted God’s work—they were indeed the ones who appeared to serve God but who actually resisted Him.
The pastor then threatened us, saying, “We’ll give you one month to reconsider. If you’re still persisting in believing in Almighty God in a month’s time, I’ll expel you from our church.”
I said indignantly, “No need to wait a month. Just expel us now. Having spent this time seeking and investigating God’s work of the last days, we’re already certain that Almighty God is the Lord Jesus returned. We have finally heard God’s voice, so even if you don’t expel us, we won’t be coming back to attend assemblies in this church anyway.”
The pastor lowered his voice and said slyly, “That won’t do. If we expel you now, what will the brothers and sisters think of us? They’ll say that we expelled you just for attending some gatherings online, and then we’ll look totally heartless. In a month’s time, we’ll tell the brothers and sisters in our church that we’ve gone to great lengths to counsel you and have given you more than enough time to reconsider, but in the end you persisted in believing in Almighty God and decided to leave the church, and only then did we expel you.”
Hearing the pastor say this, I felt disgusted, and I didn’t want to say one more word to them. I then started to walk out, pulling my mom along with me. Just as we were leaving, the pastor gave us a warning: “It’s up to you whether you believe in Almighty God or not, but I won’t allow you to have any contact with the brothers and sisters in our church.”
When we left the church, it was already past one in the morning. As I thought back over what had just happened, I just couldn’t believe that the pastor, the preacher who we’d respected so much as being so virtuous and moral, could be like that. Just then, God’s words came to mind: “Those who read the Bible in grand churches recite the Bible every day, yet not one understands the purpose of God’s work. Not one is able to know God; moreover, not one is in accord with the heart of God. They are all worthless, vile men, each standing on high to teach God. Though they brandish the name of God, they willfully oppose Him. Though they label themselves believers of God, they are ones who eat the flesh and drink the blood of man. All such men are devils who devour the soul of man, head demons who purposefully disturb those who try to step onto the right path, and stumbling blocks that impede the path of those who seek God. Though they are of ‘robust flesh,’ how are their followers to know that they are antichrists who lead man in opposition to God? How are they to know that they are living devils who specially seek souls to devour?” (“All Who Do Not Know God Are Those Who Oppose God” in The Word Appears in the Flesh).
I’d always thought that the pastors and elders were servants of the Lord and that they should have the most understanding of the Bible and be people who most accorded with God’s will. I’d always thought that, when the Lord returned, they would definitely be able to welcome the Lord. Never had I imagined that, when the pastor heard the news of the Lord’s return, not only would he not seek or investigate it, but he would also become so arrogant and self-important, stubbornly clinging to his notions and imaginings, and that he would judge and condemn both God and God’s work of the last days. He was completely without a God-fearing heart, so much so that he would even pretend to be “protecting the flock” and would obstruct and stop believers from investigating God’s work of the last days, just for the sake of maintaining his own status and livelihood. To those believers who did accept God’s work of the last days, the pastors and elders resorted to expulsion to threaten, and intimidate them and even make the other brothers and sisters in their church reject them so that they wouldn’t be able to preach the gospel to their brothers and sisters. They were so sinister and malicious! In order to maintain their positions and livelihoods, the Pharisees at the time of Jesus wildly resisted and condemned the Lord and they crucified Him upon the cross. The pastors and elders of today have exactly the same essence as the Pharisees—they are the antichrists who have been exposed by God’s work of the last days, and they are the demons who devour the souls of man. At that moment, I finally understood completely that when someone believes in God but doesn’t know God and doesn’t know God’s work, then no matter how much they appear to suffer or how much they appear to expend themselves, they just always resist God and offend God’s disposition by relying on their arrogant and conceited satanic disposition.
At that moment, I couldn’t help but express thanks and praise to God in my heart. Thinking back, I had been deceived by the hypocritical appearance of the pastors and elders and had always idolized them, followed and obeyed them, and in the matter of welcoming the Lord, I had even gone along with them and resisted God. God exposing them for what they were allowed me to see, at last, the truth-hating, God-hating demonic essence of the pastors and elders, and I was then able to pass through the trap they had laid for my soul and welcome the return of the Lord. I truly give thanks to God for saving me, and I wish to pursue the truth in earnest on the path ahead of my faith in God so that I may repay God’s love!