In the past, I always thought that the “puppets and rebels who run away from the great white throne,” as God said, referred to those who had accepted this stage of work but later dropped out because of hating to undergo the suffering of chastisement and judgment. So, each time I saw someone dropped out of this stream because of loving the world etc., my heart was full of disdain for him or her: Another puppet and rebel who runs away from the great white throne of God; you just wait to be punished by God. At the same time, I thought that I was undergoing God’s judgment “obediently” and was pretty close to being saved by God.
One day, during my spiritual devotions, in the piece of God’s word “Christ Does the Work of Judgment With the Truth,” I read these words: “…the substance of the work of judgment is a work that God’s truth, way, and life are opened to all those who believe in him. This work is the work of judgment God does. If you pay no attention to these truths and if you always want to avoid these truths and want to search for a new way out outside these truths, then I say that you are an extremely sinful man. If you believe in God but do not search for the truth, seek God’s will, or love the way that can cause you to be closer to God, then I say that you are one who escapes from the judgment and you are a puppet and a rebel who runs away from the great white throne. God will not let off any rebel who runs away from his sight. Such people will suffer a severer punishment. Those who come before God to receive judgment and are purified will live in God’s kingdom forever. …”
Thank God for his inspiration. Through pondering over this passage, I came to understand that the puppets and rebels who run away from the great white throne of God do not merely refer to those who drop out of this stream, but mainly refer to those who follow God but do not value these truths, who always want to avoid these truths and search for a new way out outside them, and who are unwilling to receive God’s chastisement and judgment submissively and pursue to be purified by God. Under God’s inspiration and guidance, I began to examine my actions and behavior: God expresses his words to judge man and cleanses man of the things contrary to God through painful refining. However, when I encountered God’s chastisement and judgment and painful refining, I always wanted to escape and hoped that God would soon take the circumstances away. Wasn’t I avoiding the truth and searching for a way out outside the truth? When the people, matters, or things God arranged for me were against my notions and thus I fell into passivity, even though the fellowship of the brothers and sisters could solve my problem, clear up my misunderstanding about God, and restore me to the normal relationship with God, yet I resented it and turned a deaf ear. Does this not show that I did not seek the truth and did not love the way that can cause me to be closer to God, as God said? When I encountered dealing and pruning due to working perfunctorily, I always tried to make excuses to justify and vindicate myself. Is the substance of it not that I was unwilling to accept the truth? In my real life, I often gave in to myself, and even if I understood the truth, I was unwilling to forsake my flesh to practice it. Does this not show that I only received judgment but did not pursue to be purified?
Thinking of this, I became clearer: The running away from the great white throne God spoke of not only means leaving God’s family physically, but mainly means rejecting the truth in the heart and being unwilling to receive God’s judgment submissively. Then I trembled with fear. Although my person has not left God’s family, yet my heart has always been escaping God’s judgment. Am I not a puppet and a rebel who runs away from God’s judgment seat? However, I thought that only those who have left God’s family are puppets and rebels who run away from God’s throne, while I was quite close to being saved. This shows that my understanding of God’s words was too one-sided and superficial, and I knew too little about God’s work. Today, only he who submissively receives God’s chastisement and judgment and whose nature is transformed is the one who is truly saved by God. I, however, lived in my own imagination, did not thirst for the truth, did not have a burden for my life, and did not have any sense of crisis or urgency. If I continue like this, won’t I be one to be punished by God?
O God, thank you for your inspiration. I have realized that I am not one who is willing to receive your chastisement and judgment, and seen that I am on the verge of danger. From now on, I will give my heart fully to you, receive your chastisement and judgment submissively, and do my best to pursue the truth and the transformation of my nature, so as to soon be purified and made perfect by you.
Jinan City, Shandong Province