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(XI) Words on Man’s Relationship With God

Classic Words From Almighty God, Christ of the Last Days

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XI Classic Words on Entering Into the Reality of the Truth

(XI) Words on Man’s Relationship With God

128. God’s disposition is open to everyone and is not hidden, because God has never consciously avoided any person and has never consciously sought to conceal Himself so that people will not be able to know Him or understand Him. God’s disposition has always been open and has always been facing each person in a frank manner. During God’s management, God does His work, facing everyone; and His work is done on every single person. As He does this work, He is continuously revealing His disposition, continuously using His essence and what He has and is to guide and provide for each single person. In every age and on every stage, regardless of whether the circumstances are good or bad, God’s disposition is always open to each individual, and His possessions and being are always open to each individual, in the same way that His life is constantly and unceasingly providing for mankind and supporting mankind. Despite all of this, God’s disposition remains hidden to some. Why is that so? It is because even though these people live within God’s work and follow God, they have never sought to understand God or wanted to get to know God, let alone get closer to God. For these people, understanding God’s disposition means their end is coming; it means they are about to be judged and convicted by God’s disposition. Therefore, these people have never desired to understand God or His disposition, and don’t covet a deeper understanding or knowledge of God’s will. They don’t intend to comprehend God’s will through conscious cooperation—they just forever enjoy and never tire of doing the things they want to do; believe in the God they want to believe in; believe in the God that exists only in their imaginations, the God that exists only in their conceptions; and believe in a God that cannot be separated from them in their daily lives. When it comes to the true God Himself, they are completely dismissive, with no desire to understand Him, to pay heed to Him, and have even less intention of growing closer to Him. They are only using the words God expresses to gloss over themselves, to package themselves. For them, that already makes them successful believers and people with faith in God inside their hearts. In their hearts, they are guided by their imaginations, their conceptions, and even their personal definitions of God. The true God Himself, on the other hand, has absolutely nothing to do with them. Because once they understand the true God Himself, understand God’s true disposition, and understand what God has and is, this means that their actions, their faith, and their pursuits will be condemned. That is why they are not willing to understand God’s essence, and why they are reluctant and unwilling to actively seek or pray to better understand God, better know God’s will, and better understand God’s disposition. They would rather God be something made up, hollow and elusive. They would rather God be someone who is exactly as they have imagined Him, someone who can be at their beck and call, inexhaustible in supply and always available. When they want to enjoy God’s grace, they ask God to be that grace. When they need God’s blessing, they ask God to be that blessing. When they are faced with adversity, they ask God to embolden them, to be their safety net. These people’s knowledge of God is stuck within the ambit of grace and blessing. Their understanding of God’s work, God’s disposition, and God is also restricted to their imaginations and merely letters and doctrines. But there are some people who are eager to understand God’s disposition, want to genuinely see God Himself, and truly understand God’s disposition and what He has and is. These people are in pursuit of the reality of truth and God’s salvation, and seek to receive God’s conquest, salvation, and perfection. These people use their hearts to read God’s word, use their hearts to appreciate every situation and every person, happening, or thing God has arranged for them, and pray and seek with sincerity. What they want most is to know God’s will and to understand God’s true disposition and essence. This is so they will no longer offend God, and through their experiences, will be able to see more of God’s loveliness and His true side. It is also so that a genuinely real God will exist inside their hearts, and so that God will have a place in their hearts, such that they will no longer be living among imaginations, conceptions, or elusiveness. For these people, the reason they have a pressing desire to understand God’s disposition and His essence is because God’s disposition and essence are things mankind could need at any moment in their experiences, things that supply life throughout their lifetimes. Once they understand God’s disposition, they will be able to better revere God, better cooperate with God’s work, and be more considerate toward God’s will and do their duty to the best of their abilities. These are the two types of people when it comes to their attitudes toward God’s disposition. The first don’t want to understand God’s disposition. Even though they say they want to understand God’s disposition, get to know God Himself, see what God has and is, and genuinely appreciate God’s will, deep down inside they would rather that God does not exist. It is because this type of people consistently disobey and resist God; they fight God for position in their own hearts and often suspect or even deny God’s existence. They don’t want to let God’s disposition or let the real God Himself occupy their hearts. They only want to satisfy their own desires, imaginations, and ambitions. So, these people may believe in God, follow God, and can also give up their families and jobs for Him, but they don’t put an end to their evil ways. Some even steal or squander offerings, or curse God in private, while others might use their positions to repeatedly testify about themselves, aggrandize themselves, and compete with God for people and status. They use various methods and measures to make people worship them, constantly trying to win people over and control them. Some even intentionally mislead people into thinking that they are God so they can be treated like God. They would never tell people they have been corrupted, that they are also corrupt and arrogant, and not to worship them, and that no matter how well they do, it is all due to God’s exaltation and what they ought to be doing anyway. Why don’t they say these things? Because they are deeply afraid of losing their place in people’s hearts. This is why such people never exalt God and never bear witness to God, as they have never tried to understand God. Can they know God without understanding Him? Impossible! Thus, while the words in the topic “God’s Work, God’s Disposition, and God Himself” may be simple, their meaning is different to everyone. For someone who often disobeys God, resists God, and is hostile toward God, it means condemnation; whereas for someone who pursues the reality of the truth and often comes before God to seek God’s will, it is undoubtedly like a fish to water.

Excerpted from “God’s Work, God’s Disposition, and God Himself I” in The Word Appears in the Flesh

129. When God arose from His bed, the first thought that He had was this: to create a living person, a real, living human—someone to live with and be His constant companion. This person could listen to Him, and God could confide in and speak with him. Then, for the first time, God grabbed a handful of dirt and used it to create the very first living person that He had imagined, and then gave this living creature a name—Adam. Once God had gained this living and breathing person, how did He feel? For the first time, He felt the joy of having a loved one, a companion. He also felt for the first time the responsibility of being a father and the concern that comes along with it. This living and breathing person brought God happiness and joy; He felt comforted for the first time. This was the first thing God had ever done that was not accomplished with His thoughts or even words, but was done with His own two hands. When this kind of being—a living and breathing person—stood in front of God, made of flesh and blood, with body and form, and able to speak with God, He experienced a kind of joy He had never felt before. He truly felt His responsibility and this living being not only tugged at His heart, but his every little move also touched Him and warmed His heart. So when this living being stood in front of God, it was the first time He had the thought to gain more people like this. This was the series of events that began with this first thought that God had. For God, all of these events were occurring for the first time, but in these first events, no matter what He felt at the time—joy, responsibility, concern—there was no one for Him to share it with. Starting from that moment, God truly felt a loneliness and a sadness that He had never had before. He felt that human beings could not accept or comprehend His love and concern, or His intentions for mankind, so He still felt sorrow and pain in His heart. Although He had done these things for man, man was not aware of it and did not understand. Aside from happiness, the joy and comfort man brought to Him quickly brought with it His first feelings of sorrow and loneliness. These were God’s thoughts and feelings at that time. While God was doing all these things, in His heart He went from joy to sorrow and from sorrow to pain, all mixed with anxiety. All He wanted to do was hasten to let this person, this human race know what was in His heart and understand His intentions sooner. Then, they could become His followers and be in accord with Him. They would no longer listen to God speak but remain speechless; they would no longer be unaware of how to join God in His work; above all, they would no longer be people indifferent to God’s requirements. These first things that God completed are very meaningful and hold great value for His management plan and for human beings today.

Excerpted from “God’s Work, God’s Disposition, and God Himself III” in The Word Appears in the Flesh

130. Gen 2:15–17 And Jehovah God took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it. 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.

Did you get anything out of these verses? How does this part of the scriptures make you feel? Why was “God’s Command to Adam” extracted from the scriptures? Do each of you now have a snapshot of God and Adam in your minds? You can try to imagine: If you were the one in that scene, what would the God in your heart be like? What emotions does this image make you feel? This is a moving and heartwarming picture. Though there is only God and man in it, the intimacy between them is so worthy of envy: God’s profuse love is gratuitously bestowed upon man, surrounds man; man is naive and innocent, unencumbered and carefree, blissfully living under God’s eye; God shows concern for man, while man lives under God’s protection and blessing; every single thing man does and says is closely linked to and inseparable from God.

You can say that this is the first command God gave man since creating him. What does this command carry? It carries God’s will, but it also carries His worries for mankind. This is God’s first command, and it is also the first time God worries about man. That is to say, God has had a responsibility toward man since the moment He created him. What is His responsibility? He has to protect man, to look after man. He hopes man can trust and obey His words. This is also God’s first expectation of man. It is with this expectation that God says the following: “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.” These simple words represent God’s will. They also reveal that God’s heart has already begun to show concern for man. Among all things, only Adam was made in God’s image; Adam was the only living thing with God’s breath of life; he could walk with God, converse with God. That is why God gave him such a command. God made it very plain in this command what man can do, as well as what he cannot do.

In these few simple words, we see God’s heart. But what kind of heart do we see? Is there love in God’s heart? Does it have any concern in it? God’s love and concern in these verses can not only be appreciated by people, but it can also well and truly be felt. Isn’t that so? Now that I’ve said these things, do you still think these are just a few simple words? Not so simple, right? Could you see this before? If God personally told you these few words, how would you feel inside? If you are not a humane person, if your heart is ice cold, then you wouldn’t feel anything, you wouldn’t appreciate God’s love, and you wouldn’t try to understand God’s heart. But if you are a person with a conscience, with humanity, then you would feel differently. You would feel warmth, you would feel cared for and loved, and you would feel happiness. Isn’t that right? When you feel these things, how will you act toward God? Would you feel attached to God? Would you love and respect God from the bottom of your heart? Would your heart grow closer to God? You can see from this just how important God’s love is to man. But what is even more crucial is man’s appreciation and comprehension of God’s love.

Excerpted from “God’s Work, God’s Disposition, and God Himself I” in The Word Appears in the Flesh

131. In this image of “To Adam also and to his wife did Jehovah God make coats of skins, and clothed them,” what kind of role does God play when He is with Adam and Eve? Under what kind of role does God appear in a world with only two human beings? As the role of God? … Some of you think God appears as a family member of Adam and Eve, while some say God appears as the head of the family and others say as a parent. All of these are very appropriate. But what is it that I’m getting at? God created these two people and treated them as His companions. As their only family, God looked after their living and also took care of their basic necessities. Here, God appears as a parent of Adam and Eve. While God does this, man does not see how lofty God is; he does not see God’s paramount supremacy, His mysteriousness, and especially not His wrath or majesty. All he sees is God’s humbleness, His affection, His concern for man and His responsibility and care toward him. The attitude and way in which God treated Adam and Eve is akin to how human parents show concern for their own children. It’s also like how human parents love, look after, and care for their own sons and daughters—real, visible, and tangible. Instead of putting Himself in a high and mighty position, God personally used skins to make clothing for man. It doesn’t matter whether this fur coat was used to cover their modesty or to shield them from the cold. In short, this clothing used to cover man’s body was personally made by God with His own hands. Rather than creating it simply through the thought or miraculous methods as people imagine, God had legitimately done something man thinks God could not and should not do. This may be a simple thing some might not even think as worthy of mentioning, but it also allows all those who follow God but were previously full of vague ideas about Him to gain an insight into His genuineness and loveliness, and to see His faithful and humble nature. It makes insufferably arrogant people who think they are high and mighty bow their conceited heads in shame in the face of God’s genuineness and humbleness. Here, God’s genuineness and humbleness further enables people to see how lovable He is. By contrast, the immense God, lovable God, and omnipotent God in people’s hearts is so small, unappealing, and unable to withstand even a single blow. When you see this verse and hear this story, do you look down upon God because He did such a thing? Some people might, but for others it will be the complete opposite. They will think God is genuine and lovable, and it is precisely God’s genuineness and loveliness that moves them. The more they see the real side of God, the more they can appreciate the true existence of God’s love, the importance of God in their hearts, and how He stands beside them at every moment.

Excerpted from “God’s Work, God’s Disposition, and God Himself I” in The Word Appears in the Flesh

132. From the beginning until today, only man has been capable of conversing with God. That is, among all living things and creatures of God, none but man has been able to converse with God. Man has ears that enable him to hear, and eyes that let him see, he has language, and his own ideas, and free will. He is possessed of all that is required to hear God speak, and understand God’s will, and accept God’s commission, and so God confers all His wishes upon man, wanting to make man a companion who is of the same mind with Him and who can walk with Him. Since He began to manage, God has been waiting for man to give his heart to Him, to let God purify and equip it, to make him satisfactory to God and loved by God, to make him revere God and shun evil. God has ever looked forward to and awaited this outcome.

Excerpted from “God’s Work, God’s Disposition, and God Himself II” in The Word Appears in the Flesh

133. God sees this instance of management of mankind, of saving humans, as more important than anything else. He does these things not only with His mind, nor is it only with His words, and He particularly does not do it casually—He does all of these things with a plan, with a goal, with standards, and with His will. It is clear that this work to save mankind holds great significance for both God and man. No matter how difficult the work is, no matter how great the obstacles are, no matter how weak humans are, or how deep mankind’s rebelliousness is, none of this is difficult for God. God makes Himself busy, expending His painstaking effort and managing the work He Himself wants to carry out. He is also arranging everything, and ruling all the people and the work He wants to complete—none of this has been done before. It is the first time God has used these methods and paid a great price for this major project of managing and saving mankind. While God is carrying out this work, little by little He is expressing to humans without reservation His hard work, what He has and is, His wisdom and almightiness, and every aspect of His disposition. He unreservedly reveals all of this to mankind bit by bit, revealing and expressing these things as He has never done before. So, in the entire universe, aside from the people who God aims to manage and save, there have never been any creatures so close to God, that have such an intimate relationship with Him. In His heart, the mankind He wants to manage and save is most important, and He values this mankind above all else; even though He has paid a great price for them, and even though He is continually hurt and disobeyed by them, He never gives up on them and continues tirelessly in His work, with no complaints or regrets. This is because He knows that sooner or later, humans will someday awaken to His call and be moved by His words, recognize that He is the Lord of creation, and return to His side …

Excerpted from “God’s Work, God’s Disposition, and God Himself III” in The Word Appears in the Flesh

134. Everyone who has read the Bible knows that many things happened when the Lord Jesus was born. The greatest among those was being hunted by the king of devils, even to the point of all the children two years old and under in that area being slaughtered. It is evident that God assumed great risk by becoming flesh among humans; the great price that He paid for completing His management of saving mankind is also evident. The great hopes that God held for His work among mankind in the flesh are also evident. When God’s flesh was able to take on the work among mankind, how was He feeling? People should be able to understand that a bit, right? At the very least, God was happy because He could start developing His new work among mankind. When the Lord Jesus was baptized and officially began His work to fulfill His ministry, God’s heart was overwhelmed with joy because after so many years of waiting and preparation, He could finally wear the flesh of an average man and begin His new work in the form of a man of flesh and blood that people could see and touch. He could finally speak face-to-face and heart-to-heart with people through the identity of a man. God could finally be face to face with mankind in human language, in a human way; He could provide for mankind, enlighten them, and help them using human language; He could eat at the same table and live in the same space with them. He could also see human beings, see things, and see everything the way humans did and even through their own eyes. For God, this was already His first victory of His work in the flesh. It could also be said that it was an accomplishment of a great work—this of course was what God was happiest about. Starting then was the first time that God felt a sort of comfort in His work among mankind. All of these events were so practical and so natural, and the comfort that God felt was so authentic. For mankind, each time a new stage of God’s work is accomplished, and each time God feels gratified, is when mankind can come closer to God, and when people can draw nearer to salvation. To God, this is also the launch of His new work, when His management plan progresses one step further, and, moreover, when His will approaches complete accomplishment. For mankind, the arrival of such an opportunity is fortunate, and very good; for all those who await God’s salvation, it is momentous news. When God carries out a new stage of work, then He has a new beginning, and when this new work and new beginning are launched and introduced among mankind, it is when the outcome of this stage of work has already been determined, and it has been accomplished, and God has already seen its final effects and fruit. This is also when these effects make God feel satisfied, and His heart, of course, is happy. Because, in God’s eyes, He has already seen and determined the people He is looking for, and has already gained this group, a group that is able to make His work successful and bring Him satisfaction, God feels reassured, He puts aside His worries, and He feels happy. In other words, when the flesh of God is able to embark upon new work among man, and He begins to do the work He must do without obstruction, and when He feels that all has been accomplished, He has already seen the end. And because of this end He is satisfied, and of a happy heart. How is God’s happiness expressed? Can you imagine that? Would God cry? Can God cry? Can God clap His hands? Can God dance? Can God sing? What would that song be? Of course God could sing a beautiful, moving song, a song that could express the joy and happiness in His heart. He could sing it for mankind, sing it for Himself, and sing it for all things. God’s happiness can be expressed in any way—all of this is normal because God has joys and sorrows, and His various feelings can be expressed in various ways. This is His right and it is the most normal thing. You should not think anything else of it, and you should not project your own inhibitions onto God, telling Him He shouldn’t do this or that, He shouldn’t act this way or that, to limit His happiness or any feeling He has. In people’s hearts God can’t be happy, He can’t shed tears, He can’t weep—He can’t express any emotion. Through what we have communicated these two times, I believe you will no longer see God this way, but will allow God to have some freedom and release. This is a very good thing. In the future if you are able to truly feel God’s sadness when you hear about Him being sad, and you are able to truly feel His happiness when you hear about Him being happy—at the least, you are able to clearly know and understand what makes God happy and what makes Him sad—when you are able to feel sad because God is sad, and feel happy because God is happy, He will have fully gained your heart and there will no longer be any barrier with Him. You will no longer try to constrain God with human imagination, conceptions, and knowledge. At that time, God will be alive and vivid in your heart. He will be the God of your life and the Master of everything of you. Do you have this kind of aspiration? Do you have confidence you can achieve this?

Excerpted from “God’s Work, God’s Disposition, and God Himself III” in The Word Appears in the Flesh

135. When God became flesh and lived among mankind for a long time, after He had experienced and witnessed people’s various lifestyles, these experiences became His textbook for transforming His divine language into human language. Of course, these things that He saw and heard in life also enriched the Son of man’s human experience. When He wanted to get people to understand some truths, to get them to understand some of God’s will, He could use parables similar to the ones above to tell people about God’s will and His requirements of mankind. These parables were all related to people’s lives; there was not a single one that was out of touch with human lives. When the Lord Jesus lived with mankind, He saw farmers tending their fields, He knew what tares were and what leavening was; He understood that humans like treasure, so He used the metaphors of both the treasure and the pearl; He frequently saw fishermen casting their nets; and so on. The Lord Jesus saw these activities in mankind’s lives, and He also experienced that type of life. He was the same as every other normal person, experiencing humans’ three meals a day and daily routines. He personally experienced the life of an average person, and He witnessed the lives of others. When He witnessed and personally experienced all of this, what He thought of wasn’t how to have a good life or how He could live more freely, more comfortably. When He was experiencing an authentic human life, the Lord Jesus saw the hardship in people’s lives, He saw the hardship, the wretchedness, and the sadness of people under the corruption of Satan, living under the domain of Satan, and living in sin. While He was personally experiencing human life, He also experienced how helpless people were who were living amongst corruption, and He saw and experienced the misery of those who lived in sin, who were lost in the torture by Satan, by evil. When the Lord Jesus saw these things, did He see them with His divinity or His humanity? His humanity really existed—it was very much alive—He could experience and see all of this, and of course He also saw it in His essence, in His divinity. That is, Christ Himself, the Lord Jesus the man saw this, and everything He saw made Him feel the importance and the necessity of the work He had taken on this time in the flesh. Even though He Himself knew that the responsibility He needed to take on in the flesh was so immense, and how cruel the pain He would face would be, when He saw mankind helpless in sin, when He saw the wretchedness of their lives and their feeble struggles under the law, He felt more and more grief, and became more and more anxious to save mankind from sin. No matter what kind of difficulties He would face or what kind of pain He would suffer, He became more and more resolute to redeem mankind living in sin. During this process, you could say that the Lord Jesus began to understand more and more clearly the work He needed to do and what He had been entrusted with. He also became increasingly eager to complete the work He was to take on—to take on all of mankind’s sins, to atone for mankind so that they no longer lived in sin and God would be able to forget man’s sins because of the sin offering, allowing Him to further His work of saving mankind. It could be said that in the Lord Jesus’ heart, He was willing to offer Himself up for mankind, to sacrifice Himself. He was also willing to act as a sin offering, to be nailed to the cross, and He was eager to complete this work. When He saw the miserable conditions of human’s lives, He wanted even more to fulfill His mission as quickly as possible, without the delay of a single minute or second. When He had such a feeling of urgency, He was not thinking of how great His own pain would be, nor did He think any longer of how much humiliation He would have to endure—He held just one conviction in His heart: As long as He offered up Himself, as long as He was nailed to the cross as a sin offering, God’s will would be carried out and He would be able to commence new work. Mankind’s lives in sin, their state of existing in sin would be completely changed. His conviction and what He was determined to do were related to saving man, and He had only one objective: to do God’s will, so that He could successfully begin the next stage in His work. This was what was in the Lord Jesus’ mind at the time.

Excerpted from “God’s Work, God’s Disposition, and God Himself III” in The Word Appears in the Flesh

136. When God becomes flesh, becoming an average, normal person, living among mankind, side-by-side with people, can’t He see and feel people’s methods, laws, and philosophies for living? How do these methods and laws for living make Him feel? Does He feel loathing in His heart? Why would He feel loathing? What are mankind’s methods and laws for living? What principles are they rooted in? What are they based on? Mankind’s methods, laws, etc. for living—all of this is created based on Satan’s logic, knowledge, and philosophy. Humans living under these types of laws have no humanity, no truth—they all defy the truth, and are hostile to God. If we take a look at God’s essence, we see that His essence is exactly the opposite of Satan’s logic, knowledge, and philosophy. His essence is full of righteousness, truth, and holiness, and other realities of all positive things. God, possessing this essence and living among such a mankind—what does He feel in His heart? Isn’t it full of pain? His heart is in pain, and this pain is something that no person can understand or realize. Because everything that He faces, encounters, hears, sees, and experiences is all mankind’s corruption, evil, and their rebellion against and resistance to the truth. All that comes from humans is the source of His suffering. That is to say, because His essence is not the same as corrupt humans, the corruption of humans becomes the source of His greatest suffering. When God becomes flesh, is He able to find someone who shares a common language with Him? This cannot be found among mankind. No one can be found who can communicate, who can have this exchange with God—what kind of feeling would you say God has? The things that people discuss, that they love, that they pursue and long for all have to do with sin, with evil tendencies. When God faces all of this, isn’t it like a knife to His heart? Faced with these things, could He have joy in His heart? Could He find consolation? Those who are living with Him are humans full of rebelliousness and evil—how could His heart not suffer? How great really is this suffering, and who cares about it? Who takes heed? And who could appreciate it? People have no way of understanding God’s heart. His suffering is something that people are particularly unable to appreciate, and humanity’s coldness and numbness makes God’s suffering even deeper.

There are some people who often sympathize with Christ’s plight because there is a verse in the Bible that says: “The foxes have holes, and the birds have nests; but the Son of man has not where to lay His head.” When people hear this, they take it to heart and believe that this is the greatest suffering that God endures, and the greatest suffering that Christ endures. Now, looking at it from the perspective of the facts, is that the case? God does not believe that these difficulties are suffering. He has never cried out against injustice for the difficulties of the flesh, and He has never made humans repay or reward Him with anything. However, when He witnesses mankind’s everything, the corrupt lives and the evil of corrupt humans, when He witnesses that mankind is in Satan’s grasp and imprisoned by Satan and cannot escape, that people living in sin do not know what the truth is—He cannot bear all of these sins. His loathing of humans increases by the day, but He has to endure all of this. This is God’s great suffering. God cannot fully express even the voice of His heart or His emotions among His followers, and no one among His followers can truly understand His suffering. No one even tries to understand or to comfort His heart—His heart endures this suffering day after day, year after year, time and time again. What do you see in all of this? God doesn’t require anything from humans in return for what He has given, but because of God’s essence, He absolutely cannot tolerate mankind’s evil, corruption, and sin, but feels extreme loathing and hatred, which leads to God’s heart and His flesh enduring unending suffering.

Excerpted from “God’s Work, God’s Disposition, and God Himself III” in The Word Appears in the Flesh

137. It can be said that the series of things that the Lord Jesus said and did after His resurrection were thoughtful, and done with kind intentions. They were full of the kindness and affection that God held toward humanity, and full of the appreciation and meticulous care He had for the intimate relationship He had established with mankind during His time in the flesh. Even more, they were full of the nostalgia and the hope He had for the life of eating and living with His followers during His time in the flesh. So, God did not want people to feel a distance between God and man, nor did He want mankind to distance themselves from God. Even more, He didn’t want mankind to feel that the Lord Jesus after His resurrection was no longer the Lord who was so intimate with people, that He was no longer together with mankind because He returned to the spiritual world, returned to the Father who people could never see or reach. He didn’t want people to feel that there was any difference in position between Him and mankind. When God sees people who want to follow Him but keep Him at a respectful distance, His heart is in pain because that means their hearts are very far from Him, it means that it will be very difficult for Him to gain their hearts. So if He had appeared to people in a spiritual body that they could not see or touch, this would have once again distanced man from God, and it would have led mankind to mistakenly see Christ after His resurrection as having become lofty, of a different kind than humans, and someone who could no longer share a table and eat with man because humans are sinful, filthy, and can never get close to God. In order to remove these misunderstandings of mankind, the Lord Jesus did a number of things He frequently did in the flesh, as recorded in the Bible, “He took bread, and blessed it, and broke, and gave to them.” He also explained the scriptures to them, as He had used to do. All of this that the Lord Jesus did made every person who saw Him feel that the Lord had not changed, that He was still the same Lord Jesus. Even though He had been nailed to the cross and had experienced death, He had been resurrected, and had not left mankind. He had returned to be among humans, and His everything had not changed. The Son of man standing in front of people was still the same Lord Jesus. His demeanor and His conversation with people felt so familiar. He was still so full of lovingkindness, grace, and tolerance—He was still that Lord Jesus who loved others as He loved Himself, who could forgive mankind seventy times seven. As always, He ate with people, discussed the scriptures with them, and even more importantly, just the same as before, He was made of flesh and blood and could be touched and seen. The Son of man in this way allowed people to feel that intimacy, to feel at ease, and to feel the joy of regaining something that has been lost, and they also felt at ease enough to bravely and confidently begin to rely on and look up to this Son of man who could forgive mankind of their sins. They also began to pray in the name of the Lord Jesus without hesitations, to pray to obtain His grace, His blessing, and to obtain peace and joy from Him, to gain care and protection from Him, and began to perform healings and cast out demons in the name of the Lord Jesus.

During the time that the Lord Jesus worked in the flesh, most of His followers could not fully verify His identity and the things that He said. When He went up on the cross, the attitude of His followers was one of expectancy; when He was nailed to the cross all the way until He was put into the grave, people’s attitude toward Him was disappointment. During this time, people had already begun to move in their hearts from doubting to denial of the things the Lord Jesus had said during His time in the flesh. And when He walked out from the grave, and appeared to the people one by one, the majority of people who had seen Him with their own eyes or heard the news of His resurrection gradually shifted from denial to skepticism. By the time the Lord Jesus had Thomas put his hand into His side, by the time the Lord Jesus broke bread and ate it in front of the crowd after His resurrection, and after that ate broiled fish in front of them, only then did they truly accept the fact that the Lord Jesus is Christ in the flesh. You could say that it was as if this spiritual body with flesh and blood standing in front of those people then was awakening every one of them from a dream: The Son of man standing in front of them was the One who had existed since time immemorial. He had a form, and flesh and bones, and He had already lived and eaten with mankind for a long time…. At this time, the people felt that His existence was so real, so wonderful; they were also so joyful and happy, and at the same time filled with emotion. And His reappearance allowed people to truly see His humility, to feel His closeness, and His longing, His attachment for mankind. This brief reunion made the people who saw the Lord Jesus feel as if a lifetime had passed. Their lost, confused, afraid, anxious, yearning and numb hearts found comfort. They were no longer doubtful or disappointed because they felt that now there was hope and something to rely on. The Son of man standing in front of them would be behind them for eternity, He would be their strong tower, their refuge for all time.

Although the Lord Jesus was resurrected, His heart and His work had not left mankind. He told people with His appearance that no matter what form He existed in, He would accompany people, walk with them, and be with them at all times and in all places. And at all times and all places, He would provide to mankind and shepherd them, allow them to see and touch Him, and make sure they never again feel helpless. The Lord Jesus also wanted people to know this: Their lives in this world are not alone. Mankind has God’s care, God is with them; people can always lean on God; He is the family of every one of His followers. With God to lean on, mankind will no longer be lonely or helpless, and those who accept Him as their sin offering will no longer be bound in sin. In human eyes, these portions of His work that the Lord Jesus carried out after His resurrection were very small things, but the way I see it, every single thing was so meaningful, so valuable, and they were all so important and weighty.

Excerpted from “God’s Work, God’s Disposition, and God Himself III” in The Word Appears in the Flesh

138. God had despised man because man was in enmity to Him, but in His heart, His care, concern, and mercy for humanity remained unchanged. Even when He destroyed mankind, His heart remained unchanged. When humanity was full of corruption and disobedient toward God to a certain extent, God had to, because of His disposition and His essence, and in accordance with His principles, destroy this humanity. But because of God’s essence, He still pitied mankind, and even wanted to use various ways to redeem mankind so they could continue to live. Instead, man opposed God, continued to disobey God, and refused to accept God’s salvation, that is, refused to accept His good intentions. No matter how God called to them, reminded them, supplied them, helped them, or tolerated them, man did not understand or appreciate it, nor did they pay attention. In His pain, God still did not forget to give man His maximum tolerance, waiting for man to turn around. After He reached His limit, He did what He had to do without any hesitation. In other words, there was a specific time period and process from the moment God planned to destroy mankind to the official start of His work in destroying mankind. This process existed for the purpose of enabling man to turn around, and was the last chance God gave to man. So what did God do in this period before destroying mankind? God did a significant amount of reminding and exhorting work. No matter how much pain and sorrow God’s heart was in, He continued to exercise His care, concern, and abundant mercy on humanity. What do we see from this? Undoubtedly, we see that God’s love for mankind is real and not just something He is paying lip service to. It is actual, tangible and appreciable, not fake, adulterated, deceitful or pretentious. God never uses any deception or creates fake images to make people see that He is lovable. He never uses false testimony to let people see His loveliness, or to flaunt His loveliness and holiness. Aren’t these aspects of God’s disposition worthy of man’s love? Aren’t they worth worshiping? Aren’t they worth cherishing? At this point, I want to ask you: After hearing these words, do you think God’s greatness is merely words on a sheet of paper? Is God’s loveliness just empty words? No! Certainly not! God’s supremacy, greatness, holiness, tolerance, love, and so forth—all of these various aspects of God’s disposition and essence are put into effect every time He does His work, embodied in His will toward man, and also fulfilled and reflected on every person. Regardless of whether you have felt it before, God is caring for every person in every possible way, using His sincere heart, wisdom, and various methods to warm each person’s heart, and awaken each person’s spirit. This is an indisputable fact.

Excerpted from “God’s Work, God’s Disposition, and God Himself I” in The Word Appears in the Flesh

139. God created mankind; regardless of whether they have been corrupted or whether they follow Him, God treats human beings as His loved ones—or as human beings would say, the people dearest to Him—and not His playthings. Although God says He is the Creator and that man is His creation, which may sound like there is a bit of a difference in rank, the reality is that everything God has done for mankind far exceeds a relationship of this nature. God loves mankind, cares for mankind, and shows concern for mankind, as well as constantly and unceasingly provides for mankind. He never feels in His heart that this is additional work or something that deserves a lot of credit. Nor does He feel that saving humanity, supplying them, and granting them everything, is making a huge contribution to mankind. He simply provides for mankind quietly and silently, in His own way and through His own essence and what He has and is. No matter how much provision and how much help mankind receives from Him, God never thinks about nor tries to take credit. This is determined by the essence of God, and is also precisely a true expression of God’s disposition. This is why, regardless of whether it is in the Bible or any other books, we never find God expressing His thoughts, and we never find God describing or declaring to humans why He does these things, or why He cares so much for mankind, in order to make mankind be grateful toward Him or praise Him. Even when He is hurt, when His heart is in extreme pain, He never forgets His responsibility toward mankind or His concern for mankind, all while He bears this hurt and pain alone in silence. To the contrary, God continues to provide for mankind as He always does. Even though mankind often praises God or bears witness to Him, none of this behavior is demanded by God. This is because God never intends for any of the good things He does for mankind to be exchanged for gratitude or for it to be paid back. On the other hand, those who fear God and shun evil, those who truly follow God, listen to Him and are loyal to Him, and those who obey Him—these are the people who will often receive God’s blessings, and God will bestow such blessings without reservation. Moreover, the blessings people receive from God are often beyond their imagination, and also beyond anything human beings can exchange for what they have done or the price they have paid.

Excerpted from “God’s Work, God’s Disposition, and God Himself I” in The Word Appears in the Flesh

140. Man’s Fate Is Decided by His Attitude Toward God

God is a living God, and just as people perform differently in different situations, God’s attitude toward these performances differs because He is not a puppet, nor is He empty air. Getting to know God’s attitude is a worthy pursuit for mankind. People should learn how, by knowing God’s attitude, they can know God’s disposition and understand His heart bit by bit. When you come to understand God’s heart bit by bit, you won’t feel that fearing God and shunning evil is a difficult thing to accomplish. What’s more, when you understand God, you’re not likely to make conclusions about Him. When you stop making conclusions about God, you’re not likely to offend Him, and unwittingly God will lead you to have a knowledge of Him, and thereby you will fear God in your heart. You will stop defining God using the doctrines, the letters, and the theories you’ve mastered. Rather, by always seeking out God’s intentions in all things, you will unconsciously become a person who is after God’s heart.

God’s work is unseen and untouchable by mankind, but as far as God is concerned, the actions of each and every person, along with their attitude toward Him—these are not just perceptible by God, but visible as well. This is something that everyone should recognize and be clear about. You might be always asking yourself: “Does God know what I’m doing here? Does God know what I’m thinking about right now? Maybe He does, maybe He doesn’t.” If you adopt this kind of viewpoint, following and believing in God yet doubting His work and His existence, then sooner or later there will come a day when you anger Him, because you’re already teetering on the edge of a dangerous precipice. I’ve seen people who have believed in God for many years, but they still haven’t gained the reality of the truth, nor do they even understand God’s will. Their life and stature do not make any progress, adhering only to the shallowest of doctrine. This is because these people have never taken God’s word as their own life, and they have never faced up to and accepted His existence. Do you think that God sees such people and is filled with enjoyment? Do they comfort Him? In that case, it’s the method of people’s belief in God that decides their fate. Whether it’s the question of how you seek after God or how you treat God, it’s your own attitude that is the most important thing. Don’t neglect God like He is empty air in the back of your head. Always think of the God of your belief as a living God, a real God. He’s not up there in the third heaven with nothing to do. Rather, He’s constantly looking into everyone’s hearts, looking at what you’re up to, into every little word and every little deed, looking into how you behave and what your attitude toward God is. Whether you’re willing to give yourself to God or not, all of your behavior and your innermost thoughts and ideas are before God, being looked upon by Him. It’s according to your behavior, according to your deeds, and according to your attitude toward God, that His opinion of you, and His attitude toward you, is constantly changing. I’d like to offer some advice to those who would place themselves like a little baby in the hands of God, as if He should dote on you, as if He could never leave you, as if His attitude toward you is fixed and could never change: Quit dreaming! God is righteous in His treatment of each and every person. He approaches the work of mankind’s conquest and salvation earnestly. That’s His management. He treats every single person seriously, not like a pet to play with. God’s love for man is not the pampering or spoiling kind; His mercy and tolerance toward mankind is not indulgent or unmindful. On the contrary, God’s love for mankind is to cherish, to pity, and to respect life; His mercy and tolerance convey His expectations of man; His mercy and tolerance are what humanity needs to survive. God is alive, and God actually exists; His attitude toward mankind is principled, not a dogmatic rule at all, and it can change. His will for humanity is gradually changing and transforming with time, with circumstance, and with the attitude of each and every person. So you should be crystal clear on this, and understand that the essence of God is immutable, and His disposition will issue forth at different times, and in different contexts. You might not think that this is a serious issue, and you use your own personal conceptions to imagine how God should do things. But there are times when the total opposite of your viewpoint is true, and that by using your own personal conceptions to try and gauge God, you’ve already angered Him. This is because God doesn’t operate like you think He does, and God won’t treat this matter like you say He will. And so I remind you to be careful and prudent in your approach to everything around you, and learn how to follow the principle of walking in God’s way in all things—fearing God and shunning evil. You must develop a firm understanding on matters of God’s will and God’s attitude; find enlightened people to communicate it to you, and seek earnestly. Don’t view the God of your belief as a puppet—arbitrarily judging, arriving at arbitrary conclusions, not treating God with the respect He deserves. In the process of God’s salvation, when He defines your outcome, no matter if He grants you mercy, or tolerance, or judgment and chastisement, His attitude toward you is not fixed. It depends on your attitude toward God, and your understanding of God. Don’t let one passing aspect of your knowledge or understanding of God define Him in perpetuity. Don’t believe in a dead God; believe in a living one.

Excerpted from “How to Know God’s Disposition and the Results His Work Shall Achieve” in The Word Appears in the Flesh

141. Believing in Fate Is No Substitute for Knowledge of the Creator’s Sovereignty

Having followed God for so many years, is there a substantive difference between your knowledge of fate and that of the worldly people? Have you truly understood the predestination of the Creator and truly come to know the Creator’s sovereignty? Some people have a profound, deeply felt understanding of the phrase “that’s fate,” yet they do not believe in God’s sovereignty in the least; they do not believe that human fate is arranged and orchestrated by God, and are unwilling to submit to the sovereignty of God. Such people are as if adrift on the ocean, tossed by the waves, drifting with the current, with no choice but to wait passively and resign themselves to fate. Yet they do not recognize that human fate is subject to God’s sovereignty; they cannot on their own initiative come to know God’s sovereignty and thereby achieve knowledge of God’s authority, submit to God’s orchestrations and arrangements, stop resisting fate, and live under God’s care, protection, and guidance. In other words, accepting fate is not the same thing as submitting to the Creator’s sovereignty; belief in fate does not mean that one accepts, recognizes, and knows the Creator’s sovereignty; belief in fate is mere recognition of its truth and its superficial manifestations. This is different from knowing how the Creator rules humanity’s fate, from recognizing the Creator is the source of dominion over the fates of all things, and certainly a far cry from submitting to the Creator’s orchestrations and arrangements for humanity’s fate. If a person only believes in fate—even if they feel deeply about it—but is not thereby able to know and recognize the Creator’s sovereignty over the fate of humanity, to submit to it and accept it, then their life will nonetheless be a tragedy, a life lived in vain, a void; they will still be unable to come under the Creator’s dominion, to become a created human being in the truest sense of the term, and to enjoy the Creator’s approval. A person who truly knows and experiences the Creator’s sovereignty should be in an active state, not a state that is passive or helpless. While such a person would accept that all things are fated, they should possess an accurate definition of life and fate: Every life is subject to the Creator’s sovereignty. When one looks back on the road one has walked, when one recollects every phase of one’s journey, one sees that at every step, whether one’s journey was arduous or smooth, God was guiding one’s path, planning it out. It was God’s meticulous arrangements, His careful planning, that led one, unknowingly, to today. To be able to accept the Creator’s sovereignty, to receive His salvation—what great fortune that is! If a person has a negative attitude toward fate, it proves that they are resisting everything that God has arranged for them, that they do not have a submissive attitude. If one has a positive attitude toward God’s sovereignty over human fate, then when one looks back upon one’s journey, when one truly comes to grips with God’s sovereignty, one will more earnestly desire to submit to everything that God has arranged, will have more determination and confidence to let God orchestrate one’s fate and to stop rebelling against God. For one sees that when one does not comprehend fate, when one does not understand God’s sovereignty, when one gropes their way forward willfully, staggering and tottering through the fog, the journey is too difficult, too heartbreaking. So when people recognize God’s sovereignty over human fate, the clever ones choose to know it and accept it, to bid farewell to the painful days when they tried to build a good life with their own two hands, and to stop struggling against fate and pursuing their so-called “life goals” in their own way. When one does not have God, when one cannot see Him, when one cannot clearly recognize God’s sovereignty, every day is meaningless, worthless, miserable. Wherever one is, whatever one’s job is, one’s means of living and the pursuit of one’s goals bring one nothing but endless heartbreak and suffering without relief, such that one cannot bear to look back on one’s past. Only when one accepts the Creator’s sovereignty, submits to His orchestrations and arrangements, and seeks true human life will one gradually begin to break free from all heartbreak and suffering, and to be rid of all the emptiness of life.

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

142. Only Those Who Submit to the Creator’s Sovereignty Can Attain True Freedom

Because people do not recognize God’s orchestrations and God’s sovereignty, they always face fate defiantly and with a rebellious attitude, and they always want to cast off God’s authority and sovereignty and the things fate has in store, hoping in vain to change their current circumstances and alter their fate. But they can never succeed and are thwarted at every turn. This struggle, which takes place deep in one’s soul, brings profound pain of the sort that carves itself into one’s bones, as one fritters away their life all the while. What is the cause of this pain? Is it because of God’s sovereignty, or because a person was born unlucky? Obviously, neither is true. At bottom, it is caused by the paths people take, the ways they choose to live their lives. Some people may not have realized these things. But when you truly know, when you truly come to recognize that God has sovereignty over human fate, when you truly understand that everything God has planned for you and decided for you is a great benefit and protection, then you feel your pain begin to lighten, and your whole being becomes relaxed, free, liberated. Judging from the states of the majority of people, they objectively cannot truly come to terms with the practical value and meaning of the Creator’s sovereignty over human fate, even though on a subjective level, they do not want to keep on living as they did before and want relief from their pain; objectively, they cannot truly recognize and submit to the Creator’s sovereignty, and still less do they know how to seek out and accept the Creator’s orchestrations and arrangements. So, if people cannot truly recognize the fact that the Creator has sovereignty over human fate and over all human matters, if they cannot truly submit to the Creator’s dominion, then it will be difficult for them not to be driven and fettered by the idea that “one’s fate is in one’s own hands.” It will be difficult for them to shake off the pain of their intense struggle against fate and the Creator’s authority, and, needless to say, it will also be hard for them to become truly liberated and free, to become people who worship God. But there is an exceedingly simple way to free oneself from this state, which is to bid farewell to one’s former way of living; to say goodbye to one’s previous goals in life; to summarize and analyze one’s previous lifestyle, view of life, pursuits, desires, and ideals; and then to compare them with God’s will and demands for man, and see whether any of them is consistent with God’s will and demands, whether any of them delivers the right values of life, leads one to a greater understanding of the truth, and allows one to live with humanity and the likeness of a human being. When you repeatedly investigate and carefully dissect the various goals that people pursue in life and their myriad ways of living, you will find not one of them conforms to the Creator’s original intention with which He created humanity. All of them draw people away from the Creator’s sovereignty and care; they are all pits into which humanity falls, and which lead them to hell. After you recognize this, your task is to lay aside your old view of life, stay far from various traps, let God take charge of your life and make arrangements for you; it is to try only to submit to God’s orchestrations and guidance, to live without individual choice, and to become a person who worships God. This sounds easy, but is a hard thing to do. Some people can bear the pain of it, others cannot. Some are willing to comply, others are unwilling. Those who are unwilling lack the desire and the resolution to do so; they are clearly aware of God’s sovereignty, know perfectly well that it is God who plans out and arranges human fate, and yet they still kick and struggle and remain unreconciled to laying their fates in God’s palm and submitting to God’s sovereignty; moreover, they resent God’s orchestrations and arrangements. So there will always be some people who want to see for themselves what they are capable of; they want to change their fates with their own two hands, or to achieve happiness by their own power, to see whether they can overstep the bounds of God’s authority and rise above God’s sovereignty. The tragedy of man is not that he seeks a happy life, not that he pursues fame and fortune or struggles against his own fate through the fog, but that after he has seen the Creator’s existence, after he has learned the fact that the Creator has sovereignty over human fate, he still cannot mend his ways, cannot pull his feet out of the mire, but hardens his heart and persists in his errors. He would rather keep thrashing in the mud, vying obstinately against the Creator’s sovereignty, resisting it until the bitter end, all without the slightest shred of contrition. It is only when he lies broken and bleeding that he at last decides to give up and turn back. This is true human sorrow. So I say, those who choose to submit are wise, and those who choose to struggle and flee are foolish indeed.

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

143. A Life Spent Seeking Fame and Fortune Leaves One at a Loss in the Face of Death

Because of the Creator’s sovereignty and predestination, a lonely soul that started out with nothing to its name gains parents and a family, the chance to become a member of the human race, the chance to experience human life and see the world. This soul also gains the chance to experience the Creator’s sovereignty, to know the marvelousness of the Creator’s creation, and more than that, to know and become subject to the Creator’s authority. Yet most people do not really seize this rare and fleeting opportunity. One exhausts a lifetime’s worth of energy fighting against fate, spends all of one’s time bustling about, trying to feed one’s family and shuttling back and forth between wealth and status. The things that people treasure are family, money, and fame, and they view these as the most valuable things in life. All people complain about their fates, yet still they push to the back of their minds the issues that are most imperative to examine and understand: why man is alive, how man should live, what the value and meaning of life are. They spend their entire lives, however long they may last, merely rushing about seeking fame and fortune, until their youth has fled and they have become gray and wrinkled. They live in this way until they see that fame and fortune cannot stop their slide toward senility, that money cannot fill the emptiness of the heart, that no one is exempt from the laws of birth, aging, sickness, and death, that no one can escape what fate has in store. Only when they are forced to confront life’s final juncture do they truly grasp that even if one owns vast wealth and extensive assets, even if one is privileged and of high rank, one still cannot escape death and must return to their original position: a solitary soul, with nothing to its name. When people have parents, they believe their parents are everything; when people have property, they think that money is one’s mainstay, that it is the means by which one lives; when people have status, they cling tightly to it and would risk their lives for its sake. Only when people are about to let go of this world do they realize that the things they spent their lives pursuing are nothing but fleeting clouds, none of which they can hold onto, none of which they can take with them, none of which can exempt them from death, none of which can provide company or consolation to a lonely soul on its journey back; least of all, none of these things can save a person and enable them to transcend death. The fame and fortune that one gains in the material world give temporary satisfaction, passing pleasure, a false sense of ease; in the process, they cause one to lose one’s way. And so people, as they thrash about in the vast sea of humanity, craving peace, comfort, and tranquility of heart, are engulfed by wave after wave. When people have yet to figure out the questions that are most crucial to understand—where they come from, why they are alive, where they are going, and so forth—they are seduced by fame and fortune, misled and controlled by them and irrevocably lost. Time flies; years pass in the blink of an eye, and before one realizes it, one has bid farewell to the best years of one’s life. When one is soon to depart from the world, one arrives at the gradual realization that everything in the world is drifting away, that one can no longer hold onto possessions that originally were theirs; then one truly feels that one is like a wailing infant that has just emerged into the world, with nothing yet to their name. At this point, one is compelled to ponder what one has done in life, what being alive is worth, what it means, why one came into the world. And it is at this point that one increasingly wants to know whether there really is a next life, whether Heaven really exists, whether there really is retribution…. The nearer one comes to death, the more one wants to understand what life is really about; the nearer one comes to death, the more one’s heart seems empty; the nearer one comes to death, the more helpless one feels; and so one’s fear of death grows greater by the day. There are two reasons such feelings manifest in people as they approach death: First, they are about to lose the fame and wealth upon which their lives have depended, about to leave behind all that the eye beholds in the world; and second, they are about to confront, all alone, an unfamiliar world, a mysterious, unknown realm where they are afraid to set foot, where they have no loved ones and no means of support. For these two reasons, everyone who faces death feels uneasy, experiences panic and a sense of helplessness such as they have never known before. Only when someone has actually come to this point do they realize that when one sets foot on this earth, the first thing they must understand is where human beings come from, why people are alive, who dictates human fate, and who provides for and has sovereignty over human existence. This knowledge is the true means by which one lives, the essential basis for human survival—not learning how to provide for one’s family or how to achieve fame and wealth, not learning how to stand out from the crowd nor how to live a more affluent life, much less learning how to excel and to compete successfully against others. Though the various survival skills that people spend their lives mastering can offer an abundance of material comforts, they never bring true peace and consolation to one’s heart, but instead make people constantly lose their direction, have difficulty controlling themselves, and miss every opportunity to learn the meaning of life; these survival skills create an undercurrent of anxiety about how to face death properly. People’s lives are ruined in this way. The Creator treats everyone fairly, giving everyone a lifetime’s worth of opportunities to experience and know His sovereignty, yet it is only when death draws near, when its specter looms, that one begins to see the light—and then it is too late!

People spend their lives chasing after money and fame; they clutch at these straws, thinking they are their only means of support, as if by having them they could live on, exempt from death. But only when they are about to die do they realize how distant these things are from them, how weak they are in the face of death, how easily they shatter, how lonely and helpless they are, with nowhere to turn. They realize that life cannot be bought with money or fame, that no matter how wealthy a person may be, no matter how lofty their position, all are equally poor and insignificant in the face of death. They realize that money cannot buy life, that fame cannot erase death, that neither money nor fame can lengthen a person’s life by a single minute, a single second. The more people feel this way, the more they yearn to keep on living; the more people feel this way, the more they dread the approach of death. Only at this point do they truly realize that their lives do not belong to them, are not theirs to control, and that one has no say over whether one lives or dies—that all of this lies outside of one’s control.

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

144. Come Under the Creator’s Dominion and Face Death Calmly

At the moment a person is born, one lonely soul begins its experience of life on earth, its experience of the Creator’s authority which the Creator has arranged for it. Needless to say, for the person—the soul—this is an excellent opportunity to gain knowledge of the Creator’s sovereignty, to come to know His authority and to experience it personally. People live their lives within the laws of fate laid out for them by the Creator, and for any rational person with a conscience, coming to terms, over the decades of their life, with the Creator’s sovereignty and coming to know His authority is not a difficult thing to do. Therefore, it should be very easy for every person to recognize, through their own life experiences over several decades, that all human fates are predestined, and it should be easy to grasp or to summarize what it means to be alive. As one embraces these life lessons, one will gradually come to understand where life comes from, to grasp what the heart truly needs, what will lead one to the true path of life, and what the mission and goal of a human life ought to be. One will gradually recognize that if one does not worship the Creator, if one does not come under His dominion, then when the time comes to confront death—when one’s soul is about to face the Creator once more—one’s heart will be filled with boundless dread and turmoil. If a person has been in the world for several decades yet has not understood where human life comes from nor recognized in whose palm human fate rests, then it is no wonder that they will not be able to face death calmly. A person who has gained, in their decades of experience of human life, knowledge of the Creator’s sovereignty is a person with a correct appreciation for the meaning and value of life. Such a person has a deep knowledge of life’s purpose, with real experience and understanding of the Creator’s sovereignty, and beyond that, is able to submit to the Creator’s authority. Such a person understands the meaning of God’s creation of mankind, understands that man should worship the Creator, that everything man possesses comes from the Creator and will return to Him some day not far in the future. This kind of person understands that the Creator arranges man’s birth and has sovereignty over man’s death, and that both life and death are predestined by the Creator’s authority. So, when one truly grasps these things, one will naturally be able to face death calmly, to calmly lay aside all one’s worldly possessions, accept and submit happily to all that follows, and welcome the last life-juncture, arranged, as it is, by the Creator, rather than blindly dreading it and struggling against it. If one views life as an opportunity to experience the Creator’s sovereignty and come to know His authority, if one sees one’s life as a rare chance to perform one’s duty as a created human being and to complete one’s mission, then one will surely have the correct outlook on life, will surely live a life blessed and guided by the Creator, will surely walk in the light of the Creator, will surely know the Creator’s sovereignty, will surely come under His dominion, and surely become a witness to His miraculous deeds, a witness to His authority. Needless to say, such a person will surely be loved and accepted by the Creator, and only such a person can hold a calm attitude toward death and welcome life’s final juncture with joy. One person who obviously held this kind of attitude toward death is Job. Job was in a position to accept the final juncture of life happily, and having brought his life’s journey to a smooth conclusion and completed his mission in life, he returned to be at the Creator’s side.

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

145. Only by Accepting the Creator’s Sovereignty Can One Return to His Side

When one does not have clear knowledge and experience of God’s sovereignty and of His arrangements, one’s knowledge of fate and of death will necessarily be incoherent. People cannot see clearly that everything rests in God’s palm, do not realize that everything is subject to God’s control and sovereignty, do not recognize that man cannot cast off or escape such sovereignty. For this reason, when their time comes to face death, there is no end to their last words, worries, and regrets. They are weighed down by so much baggage, so much reluctance, so much confusion. This causes them to fear death. For any person born into this world, birth is necessary and death inevitable; no one can rise above this course of things. If one wishes to depart from this world painlessly, if one wants to be able to face life’s final juncture with no reluctance or worry, the only way is to leave no regrets. And the only way to depart without regrets is to know the Creator’s sovereignty, to know His authority, and to submit to them. Only in this way can one stay far from human strife, from evil, from Satan’s bondage, and only in this way can one live a life like Job’s, guided and blessed by the Creator, a life that is free and liberated, a life with value and meaning, a life that is honest and openhearted. Only in this way can one submit, like Job, to the trials and deprivation of the Creator, to the Creator’s orchestrations and arrangements. Only in this way can one worship the Creator all one’s life and win His commendation, as Job did, and hear His voice, see Him appear. Only in this way can one live and die happily, like Job, with no pain, no worry, no regrets. Only in this way can one live in light, like Job, and pass every one of life’s junctures in light, smoothly complete one’s journey in light, successfully complete one’s mission—to experience, learn, and come to know, as a created being, the Creator’s sovereignty—and pass away in the light, and for ever after stand at the Creator’s side as a created human being, commended by Him.

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

146. According to the normal laws of human existence, though it is a very long process from when one first encounters the subject of knowing the Creator’s sovereignty until the time when one is able to recognize the fact of that sovereignty, and from then until the point when one is able to submit to it, if one actually counts up the years, there are no more than thirty or forty during which one has the chance to gain these rewards. And often, people get carried away by their desires and their ambitions to receive blessings, so that they cannot discern where the essence of human life lies and do not grasp the importance of knowing the Creator’s sovereignty. Such people do not cherish this precious opportunity to enter into the human world to experience human life and the Creator’s sovereignty, and they do not realize how precious it is for a created being to receive the Creator’s personal guidance. So I say, those people who want God’s work to end quickly, who wish God would arrange man’s end as soon as possible so that they may immediately behold His real person and gain blessings as soon as possible—they are guilty of the worst kind of disobedience and they are foolish in the extreme. Meanwhile, the wise among men, those possessed of the utmost mental acuity, are those who desire, during their limited time, to grasp this unique opportunity to know the Creator’s sovereignty. These two different desires expose two vastly different outlooks and pursuits: Those who seek blessings are selfish and base and show no consideration for God’s will, never seek to know God’s sovereignty, never desire to submit to it, but simply want to live as they please. They are blithe degenerates, and it is this category of people that will be destroyed. Those who seek to know God are able to set aside their desires, are willing to submit to God’s sovereignty and God’s arrangement, and they try to be the kind of people who are submissive to God’s authority and who satisfy God’s desire. Such people live in the light and in the midst of God’s blessings, and they will surely be commended by God. No matter what, human choice is useless, and humans have no say in how long God’s work will take. It is better for people to put themselves at the mercy of God and submit to His sovereignty. If you do not put yourself at His mercy, what can you do? Will God suffer any loss as a result? If you do not put yourself at His mercy, but instead try to put yourself in charge, then you are making a foolish choice, and ultimately you will be the only one who suffers a loss. Only if people cooperate with God as soon as possible, only if they make haste to accept His orchestrations, know His authority, and understand all He has done for them, will they have hope. Only in this way will their lives not have been lived in vain, and will they attain salvation.

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

147. Accepting God as Your Unique Master Is the First Step in Attaining Salvation

The truths regarding God’s authority are truths that every person must regard seriously, must experience and understand with their heart; for these truths have a bearing on every person’s life; on every person’s past, present, and future; on the crucial junctures through which every person must pass in life; on man’s knowledge of God’s sovereignty and the attitude with which one should face God’s authority; and naturally, on every person’s final destination. So, it takes a lifetime’s worth of energy to know and understand them. When you look squarely at God’s authority, when you accept His sovereignty, you will gradually come to realize and understand the truth of the existence of God’s authority. But if you never recognize God’s authority and never accept His sovereignty, then no matter how many years you live, you will not gain the slightest knowledge of God’s sovereignty. If you do not truly know and understand God’s authority, then when you reach the end of the road, even if you have believed in God for decades, you will have nothing to show for your life, and you will naturally not have the least knowledge of God’s sovereignty over human fate. Is this not a very sad thing? So, no matter how far you have walked in life, no matter how old you are now, no matter how long the rest of your journey may be, first you must recognize God’s authority and take it seriously, and accept the fact that God is your unique Master. Attaining clear, accurate knowledge and understanding of these truths regarding God’s sovereignty over human fate is a mandatory lesson for everyone; it is the key to knowing human life and attaining the truth. Such is the life of knowing God, its basic course of study, that everyone must face each day, which no one can evade. If someone wishes to take shortcuts to reach this goal, then I tell you now, it is impossible! If you want to escape God’s sovereignty, that is even less possible! God is man’s only Lord, God is the only Master of human fate, and so it is impossible for man to dictate his own fate, impossible for him to step outside of it. No matter how great one’s abilities, one cannot influence—much less orchestrate, arrange, control, or change—the fates of others. Only God Himself, the unique, dictates all things for man, for only He possesses the unique authority that holds sovereignty over human fate, and so only the Creator is man’s unique Master. God’s authority holds sovereignty not only over created humanity, but also over non-created beings that no human can see, over the stars, over the cosmos. This is an indisputable fact, a fact that truly exists, which no person or thing can change. If one of you is still dissatisfied with things as they stand, believing you have some special skill or ability, and thinking still that by some stroke of luck you can change your present circumstances or otherwise escape them; if you attempt to change your own fate by means of human effort, and thereby distinguish yourself from your fellows and win fame and fortune; then I say to you, you are making things hard for yourself, you are only asking for trouble, you are digging your own grave! One day, sooner or later, you will discover you have made the wrong choice and your efforts have been wasted. Your ambition, your desire to struggle against fate, and your own egregious conduct will lead you down a road of no return, and for this you will pay a bitter price. Though at present you do not see the severity of the consequences, as you continue to experience and appreciate more deeply the truth that God is the Master of human fate, you will slowly come to realize what I speak of today and its real implications. Whether you truly have a heart and a spirit and whether you are a person who loves the truth depends on what kind of attitude you take toward God’s sovereignty and toward the truth. Naturally, this determines whether you can truly know and understand God’s authority. If you have never in your life sensed God’s sovereignty and His arrangements, much less recognized and accepted God’s authority, then you will be utterly worthless, and you will without a doubt be the object of God’s loathing and rejection, due to the path you have taken and the choice you have made. But those who, in God’s work, can accept His trial, accept His sovereignty, submit to His authority, and gradually gain real experience of His words will have attained real knowledge of God’s authority, real understanding of His sovereignty; they will have truly become subject to the Creator. Only such people will have truly been saved. Because they have known God’s sovereignty, because they have accepted it, their appreciation of the fact of God’s sovereignty over human fate, their submission to it, is real and accurate. When they face death, they will have, like Job, a mind undaunted by death, and submit to God’s orchestrations and arrangements in all things, with no individual choice, with no individual desire. Only such a person will be able to return to the Creator’s side as a true, created human being.

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

148. The biggest difference between God and mankind is that God rules over all things and supplies all things. God is the source of everything, and mankind enjoys all things while God supplies them. That is to say, man enjoys all things when he accepts the life God bestows on all things. Mankind enjoys the results of God’s creation of all things, whereas God is the Master. Then from the perspective of all things, what is the difference between God and mankind? God can see clearly the growth patterns of all things, and controls and dominates the growth patterns of all things. That is, all things are in God’s eyes and within His scope of inspection. Can mankind see all things? What mankind sees is limited—it’s just what they see before their eyes. If you climb this mountain, what you see is this mountain. You can’t see what’s on the other side of the mountain. If you go to the beach, you can see this side of the ocean, but you don’t know what the other side of the ocean is like. If you arrive at this forest, you can see the plants in front of your eyes and around you, but you can’t see what’s further ahead. Humans cannot see places that are higher, farther and deeper. All they can see is what’s in front of their eyes and within their line of sight. Even if humans know the pattern of four seasons in a year and the growth patterns of all things, they are unable to manage or dominate all things. On the other hand, the way God sees all things is like the way God would see a machine that He personally built. He would know each component extremely well. What its principles are, what its patterns are, and what its purpose is—God knows all of these things plainly and clearly. Hence God is God, and man is man! Even if man keeps researching science and the laws of all things, it is only within a limited range, whereas God controls everything. For man, that is infinite. If man researches something very small that God did, they could spend their entire life researching it without achieving any true results. That is why if you use knowledge and what you have learned to study God, you will never be able to know or understand God. But if you use the way of seeking the truth and seeking God, and look at God from the perspective of getting to know God, then one day you will admit that God’s actions and wisdom are everywhere, and you will also know just why God is called the Master of all things and the source of life for all things. The more you have such knowledge, the more you will understand why God is called the Master of all things. All things and everything, including you, are constantly receiving God’s steady flow of supply. You will also be able to clearly sense that in this world, and among this mankind, there is no one apart from God who can have such power and such essence to rule over, manage, and maintain the existence of all things. When you achieve such an understanding, you will truly admit that God is your God. When you reach this point, you have truly accepted God and let Him be your God and your Master. When you have such an understanding and your life reaches such a point, God will no longer test you and judge you, nor will He make any requirements of you, because you understand God, know His heart, and have truly accepted God in your heart. This is an important reason for communicating these topics about God’s domination and management of all things. It is to give people more knowledge and understanding; not just to make you admit, but to give you more practical knowledge and understanding of God’s actions.

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

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