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162. The Principles of Living by God’s Words

Practice and Exercises for Principled Behavior

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162. The Principles of Living by God’s Words

1. You must practice and experience God’s words so as to know God’s words, understand all the truths within God’s words and enter completely into the reality of the truth;

2. You must seek the truth with every problem, use the truth to resolve problems, and allow the truth to become your life’s reality;

3. You must view things according to the truth and practice the truth, so as to handle matters with principle and in conformity with the truth, and become someone with truth and humanity;

4. Practice praying to God, fellowshiping with God and trying to grasp God’s will in all things, so as to conform to God’s will in all things and walk together with God.

Relevant Words of God:

Over the course of a day, how many hours do you spend truly in front of God? How much of your day is given to God? How much is given to the flesh? If your heart is always facing Him, this is the first step on the right track toward being perfected by God. You can devote your heart and body and all of your genuine love to God, place them before Him, be completely obedient toward Him, and be absolutely considerate to His will. Not for the flesh, not for family, and not for your personal desires, but for the interests of God’s household. In everything you can take God’s word as the principle, as the foundation. That way, your intentions and your perspectives will all be in the right place, and you will be someone who gains God’s praise before Him. … Those who truly expend themselves for God place their whole beings in front of Him. They genuinely obey all of His utterances, and they are able to put His words into practice. They make God’s words the foundation of their existence, and they are able to genuinely seek the portions of practice in God’s word. This is someone who truly lives in front of God. If what you do is beneficial for your life and satisfies God’s will, and through eating and drinking His words, you can meet your inner needs and inadequacies so that your life disposition is transformed, then this will satisfy God’s will. If you act according to God’s requirements, if you do not satisfy the flesh but satisfy His will, this is entering into the reality of His words.

from “People Who Can Be Absolutely Obedient Toward God’s Practicality Are Those Who Truly Love God” in The Word Appears in the Flesh

If you’ve read a lot of God’s word but only understand the meaning of the text and you do not have first-hand knowledge of God’s word through your practical experiences, you won’t know God’s word. As far as you are concerned, God’s word is not life, but just lifeless letters. And if you only hold fast to lifeless letters, you cannot grasp the essence of God’s word, nor will you understand His will. Only when you experience His word in your actual experiences will the spiritual meaning of God’s word open itself up to you, and it is only in experience that you can grasp the spiritual meaning of many truths, and only through experience that you can unlock the mysteries of God’s word. If you do not put it into practice, then no matter how clear His word, the only thing you’ve grasped hold of is empty letters and doctrines, which have become religious regulations to you. Isn’t this what the Pharisees did? If you practice and experience God’s word, it becomes practical to you; if you do not seek to practice it, then God’s word to you is little more than the legend of the third heaven. In fact, the process of believing in God is the process of you experiencing His word as well as being gained by Him, or to put it more clearly, to believe in God is to have the knowledge and understanding of His word and to experience and live out His word; that is the reality of your belief in God. …

… Truly understanding God’s word occurs when you practice the truth, and you must understand that “only by practicing the truth can it ever be understood.” Today, after reading the word of God, you can merely say that you know God’s word, but you can’t say that you understand it. Some say that the only way to practice the truth is to understand it first, but this is only half right and not entirely accurate. Before you have knowledge of a truth, you have not experienced that truth. Feeling that you understand what you hear is not the same thing as truly understanding. To equip yourself with the truth as it is seen in text isn’t the same as understanding the true meaning therein. Just because you have a skin-deep knowledge of the truth doesn’t mean you actually understand it or recognize it; the true meaning of the truth comes from having experienced it. Therefore, only when you experience the truth can you understand it, and only when you experience the truth can you grasp the hidden parts of it. To experience it in depth is the only way to grasp the connotations of the truth, to understand the essence of it.

from “Practice the Truth Once You Understand It” in The Word Appears in the Flesh

He not only came to understand himself from the words and the work of God, but he also came to know God. He also particularly focused on God’s requirements of mankind within His words, and in what aspects man should satisfy God to be in line with God’s will. He put forth great effort in this aspect and achieved full clarity; this was very beneficial for his own entry. No matter what God spoke of, as long as those words could become his life and they belonged to the truth, he was able to carve them into his heart to ponder them often and comprehend them. After hearing the words of Jesus he was able to take them to heart, which shows that he was especially focused on God’s words, and he truly achieved results in the end. That is, he was able to freely put the words of God into practice, accurately practice the truth and be in line with God’s will, act entirely in accordance with God’s intention, and give up his own personal opinions and imaginations. In this way he entered into the reality of God’s words. Peter’s service was in line with God’s will primarily because he did this. If one can truly enter into the reality of God’s words from the matters and the words required by Him, then he will be a person perfected by God. It can be said that the work and the words of God are completely effective for this person, that God’s words become his life, he obtains truth, and he can live according to God’s words. After this the nature of his flesh, that is, the foundation of his original existence, will shake and collapse. After one has the words of God as their life they become a new person. The words of God become his life; the vision of God’s work, His requirements of man, His revelation of man, and the standards for a true life that God requires man to achieve become his life—he lives according to these words and these truths, and this person becomes perfected by the words of God. He experiences rebirth and becomes a new man through His words. This is the path by which Peter pursued the truth; it was the path of being perfected, perfected by God’s words, and gaining life from the words of God. The truth expressed by God’s words became his life, and only then did he become a person who obtained the truth.

from “How to Take the Path of Peter” in Records of Christ’s Talks

You must first resolve all the difficulties within yourself by relying on God. Make an end to your degenerate dispositions and be able to really understand your own situations and know how you should do things; keep fellowshiping anything you don’t understand. It is unacceptable for you not to know yourself. First heal your own sickness, and by means of eating and drinking My words more, contemplating My words, live life and do things according to My words; whether you are at home or in some other place, you should allow God to wield power within you. Cast off the flesh and naturalness. Always let God’s words have dominion within you. There is no need to worry that your life is not changing; you will slowly come to feel that your disposition has changed a great deal. … The key now is to focus on life, to eat and drink more of My words, experience My words, know My words, make My words genuinely become your life—this is the main thing. Can the life of someone who cannot live by God’s words mature? No, it cannot. You must live by My words at all times. In life, My words must be your code of conduct. They will cause you to feel that doing things in a certain way is what God takes joy in, and doing things in another way is what God hates; slowly, you will come to walk the right track.

from Utterances and Testimonies of Christ in the Beginning

No matter what you do, you should first understand why you are actually doing it and what the nature of the matter is. If it is categorized as fulfilling your duty, then you should ponder: How should I do this? How should I fulfill my duty well so that I am not doing it perfunctorily? This is a matter in which you should draw close to God. Drawing close to God is seeking the truth in this matter, it is seeking the way to practice, it is seeking the will of God, and it is seeking how to satisfy God. These are the methods for drawing close to God while doing things; it is not performing a religious ceremony or an outward action; it is done for the purpose of practicing in accordance with the truth after seeking God’s will. …

… If you cannot accurately grasp the will of God and don’t know how to practice, then you should communicate with others. If no one feels like they can see the matter clearly, then you should carry out the most reasonable solution; but if you ultimately discover that there is an error in carrying it out this way, then you should quickly correct it, and God will not count the error as a sin. Because your intent was right at the time of putting this matter into practice, and you were practicing in accordance with truth, only you didn’t see it clearly, and there were some errors in your actions; this is an extenuating circumstance. However, now many people merely rely on their own two hands to work and rely on their own minds to do this and that, and they seldom ponder: Does practicing this way conform to God’s will? Would God be happy if I do it this way? Would God trust me if I do it this way? Would I be putting truth into practice if I do it this way? If God hears this, would He be able to say, “This matter is done correctly and suitably. Keep it up”? Are you able to seriously examine everything like this? Are you able to be meticulous in everything? Or are you able to ponder if God despises the way you are doing it, how everyone else feels about the way you are doing it, whether you are doing it based on your own will, or to satisfy your own desires…? You have to put much thought into it, ask many questions, and seek more, and the errors will become smaller and smaller. Doing things this way proves that you are a person who genuinely seeks truth and that you are a person who reveres God, because you are doing things in accordance with the direction required by truth.

… No matter what you are doing, no matter how big the matter is, and regardless of whether you are fulfilling your duty in God’s family, or whether it is your private matter, you must consider whether this matter conforms with God’s will, whether this matter is something a person with humanity should do, and whether or not what you are doing would make God happy. You need to think about these things. If you do this, then you are a person who seeks the truth and a person who truly believes in God. If you devoutly treat every matter and every truth this way, then you will be able to transform your disposition.

from “Seeking God’s Will and Putting Truth Into Practice to the Greatest Extent Possible” in Records of Christ’s Talks

During the process of seeking to enter, every matter must be investigated and compared against God’s word and compared against the truth; they must be thoroughly mulled over to know how to do them in a way that is entirely in conformity with God’s will. Things that arise from your self-will can then be abandoned. You will know how to do things in conformity with God’s will and will then go and do them, as though everything is taking its natural course, and it will feel exceedingly easy. People who have the truth do things in this way. You can then really show others that you have genuinely changed your disposition, others will see that you surely possess some good deeds, and that you do things in a principled way, and do everything right. They will see that this is someone who understands the truth, who certainly has some human likeness and, sure enough, the word of God has reaped results with them.

from “Only by Seeking the Truth Can You Obtain Changes in Your Disposition” in Records of Christ’s Talks

If you are living within the sphere of God’s words, if you are living within the state required by God, then you belong to Him and His work will be performed on you; if you are not living within the sphere of God’s requirements but instead are living under Satan’s domain, then you are certainly living under Satan’s corruption. Only by living within God’s words and giving your heart to Him, can you meet His requirements; you must do as God says, you must make God’s words the foundation of your existence and the reality of your life, and only then will you belong to God. If you sincerely practice in accordance with God’s will, He will perform work on you and then you will live under God’s blessings, live in the light of God’s countenance, grasp the work that the Holy Spirit performs, as well as feel the joy of God’s presence.

from “Escape From the Influence of Darkness and You Will Be Gained by God” in The Word Appears in the Flesh

Loving God requires seeking God’s will in all things, and that you probe deep within when anything happens to you, trying to grasp God’s will, and trying to see what God’s will is in this matter, what He wishes you to achieve, and how you should be mindful of His will. For example: Something happens that requires you to endure hardship, at which time you should understand what God’s will is, and how you should be mindful of His will. You must not satisfy yourself: First put yourself to one side. Nothing is more abject than the flesh. You must seek to satisfy God, and must fulfill your duty. With such thoughts, God will bring especial enlightenment to you in this matter, and your heart will also find comfort. Be it big or small, when something happens to you, you must first put yourself to one side and regard the flesh as the most lowly of all things.

from “Only Loving God Is Truly Believing in God” in The Word Appears in the Flesh

If you only have God’s words in your heart and you are able to pray to God and become close to Him at all times, as if He were very close to you, as if God were within you and you were within Him, if you are within that kind of state, it means that your heart has been in the presence of God. If you pray to God and eat and drink of His words every day, are always thinking of the work of the church, if you show consideration for God’s will, use your heart to genuinely love Him and satisfy His heart, then your heart will belong to God. If your heart is occupied by a number of other things, then it is still occupied by Satan and it has not truly turned to God. When someone’s heart has truly turned toward God, they will have genuine, spontaneous love for Him and will be able to consider God’s work. Although they will still have foolish and senseless states, they will be able to have consideration for the interests of the house of God, for His work, and for a change in their disposition. Their heart will be entirely correct.

from “Genuine Love for God Is Spontaneous” in The Word Appears in the Flesh

You must concern yourselves only with being peaceful before Me. Keep in close communion with Me, seek where you do not understand, offer up prayers, and wait for My time. See everything clearly from the spirit. Do not act recklessly, so as to prevent walking astray. Only in this way will your eating and drinking of My words truly bear fruit. Eat and drink My words often, ponder what I have said, pay attention to practicing My words, and live out the reality of My words; this is the key issue. The process of building the church is also the process of the growth of life. If your life stops growing, you cannot be built. Relying only on naturalness, on the flesh, on zealousness, on contributions, on qualifications, however good you may be, you will not be built. You must live within the words of life, live within the enlightenment and illumination from the Holy Spirit, know your actual situation, and be a changed person. You must have the same insight within your spirits, have new enlightenment, and be able to keep up with new light. You must be able to ceaselessly get in closer communication with Me, be able to base your actions in daily life on My words, be able to handle properly all sorts of people, events, and things based on My words, all activities in life having My words as your standard, living out My disposition.

from Utterances and Testimonies of Christ in the Beginning

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