God’s Work and Man’s Work (Part Two)
The work of man has a range and limitations. One person is only able to do work of a certain phase and cannot do the work of the entire era—otherwise, he would lead people into rules. The work of man can only be applicable to a particular time or phase. This is because man’s experience has a scope. One cannot compare the work of man with the work of God. Man’s ways of practice and his knowledge of the truth are all applicable to a particular scope. You cannot say that the path that man treads is completely the will of the Holy Spirit, because man can only be enlightened by the Holy Spirit and cannot be completely filled with the Holy Spirit. The things that man can experience are all within the scope of normal humanity and cannot exceed the range of thoughts in the normal human mind. All those with practical expression experience within this range. When they experience the truth, it is always an experience of normal human life under the enlightenment of the Holy Spirit, not experiencing in a way which deviates from normal human life. They experience the truth enlightened by the Holy Spirit on the foundation of living their human life. Moreover, this truth varies from person to person, and the depth of it is related to the state of the person. One can only say that the path they walk is the normal human life of a man pursuing the truth, and that it is the path walked by a normal person who has the enlightenment of the Holy Spirit. You cannot say that the path they tread is the path taken by the Holy Spirit. In the normal human experience, because the people who pursue are not the same, the work of the Holy Spirit is also not the same. In addition, because the environments they experience and the ranges of their experience are not the same, because of the mixture of their mind and thoughts, their experience is mixed to different degrees. Each person understands a truth according to their individual different conditions. Their understanding of the real meaning of the truth is not complete and is only one or a few aspects of it. The scope by which the truth is experienced by man is always based on the different conditions of individuals and is therefore not the same. In this way, the knowledge expressed of the same truth by different people is not the same. That is to say, man’s experience always has limitations and cannot completely represent the will of the Holy Spirit, and the work of man cannot be perceived as the work of God, even if what is expressed by man corresponds very closely to God’s will, even if the experience of man is very close to the perfecting work to be performed by the Holy Spirit. Man can only be God’s servant, doing the work that God entrusts to him. Man can only express the knowledge under the enlightenment of the Holy Spirit and the truths gained from his personal experiences. Man is unqualified and does not have the conditions to be the outlet of the Holy Spirit. He is not entitled to say that man’s work is the work of God. Man has man’s working principles, and all men have different experiences and possess varying conditions. Man’s work includes all his experiences under the enlightenment of the Holy Spirit. These experiences can only represent man’s being and do not represent the being of God or the will of the Holy Spirit. Therefore, the path walked by man cannot be said to be the path walked by the Holy Spirit because the work of man cannot represent the work of God and man’s work and man’s experience are not the complete will of the Holy Spirit. Man’s work is prone to falling into a rule, and the method of his work is easily confined to a limited scope and is unable to lead people into a free way. Most followers live within a limited scope, and their way of experiencing is also limited in its scope. Man’s experience is always limited; the method of his work is also limited to a few types and cannot be compared with the work of the Holy Spirit or the work of God Himself—this is because man’s experience, in the end, is limited. However God does His work, there are no rules to it; however it is done, it is not limited to one way. There are no rules whatsoever to God’s work, all His work is released freely. No matter how much time man spends following Him, they cannot sum up any laws of the ways of His working. Although His work is principled, it is always done in new ways and always has new developments, which is beyond man’s reach. During one period of time, God may have several different types of work and different ways of leading, allowing people to always have new entries and new changes. You cannot find out the laws of His work because He is always working in new ways. Only in this way do followers of God not fall into rules. The work of God Himself always avoids the notions of people and counters their notions. Only those who follow and pursue Him with a true heart can have their dispositions transformed and are able to live freely without being subject to any rules or restrained by any religious notions. The demands that the work of man makes of people are based on his own experience and what he himself can achieve. The standard of these requirements is limited within a certain scope, and the methods of practice are also very limited. Followers thus unconsciously live within this limited scope; as time passes, they become rules and rituals. If the work of one period is led by a person who has not undergone God’s personal perfecting and not received judgment, his followers will all become religionists and experts in resisting God. Therefore, if someone is a qualified leader, the person must have undergone judgment and accepted perfecting. Those who have not undergone judgment, even though they may have the work of the Holy Spirit, express only vague and unreal things. With time, they will lead people into vague and supernatural rules. The work that God performs does not accord with the flesh of man; it does not accord with man’s thoughts but counters man’s notions; it is not mixed with vague religious color. The results of His work cannot be achieved by a man who has not been perfected by Him and are beyond the reach of man’s thinking.
Work in the mind of man is too easily achieved by man. Pastors and leaders in the religious world, for example, rely on their gifts and positions to do their work. People who follow them for a long time will be infected by their gifts and be influenced by some of what they are. They focus on people’s gifts, abilities and knowledge, and they pay attention to some supernatural things and many profound unrealistic doctrines (of course, these profound doctrines are unattainable). They do not focus on changes to people’s disposition, but rather they focus on training people’s preaching and working abilities, improving people’s knowledge and rich religious doctrines. They do not focus on how much people’s disposition is changed or how much people understand the truth. They do not concern themselves with the substance of people, much less try to know people’s normal and abnormal states. They do not counter people’s notions or reveal their notions, much less mend their deficiencies or corruptions. Most of the people who follow them serve by their natural gifts, and what they express is knowledge and vague religious truth, which are out of touch with reality and are completely unable to confer people with life. In fact, the substance of their work is nurturing talent, nurturing a person with nothing into a talented seminary graduate who later goes on to work and lead. With six thousand years of God’s work can you find out any laws of it? There are a lot of rules and restrictions in the work that man does, and the human brain is too dogmatic. So what man expresses is some knowledge and realization within all his experiences. Man is unable to express anything apart from this. Man’s experiences or knowledge do not arise from his innate gifts or his instinct; they arise because of God’s guidance and God’s direct shepherding. Man has only the organ to accept this shepherding and not the organ to directly express what divinity is. Man is unable to be the source, he can only be a vessel that accepts water from the source; this is the human instinct, the organ that one should have as a human being. If a person loses the organ to accept God’s word and loses the human instinct, that person also loses what is most precious, and loses the duty of created man. If a person has no knowledge or experience of God’s word or His work, that person loses his duty, the duty he should perform as a created being, and loses the dignity of a created being. It is God’s instinct to express what divinity is, whether it is expressed in the flesh or directly by the Spirit; this is God’s ministry. Man expresses his own experiences or knowledge (that is, expresses what he is) during God’s work or afterward; this is man’s instinct and man’s duty, it is what man should achieve. Although the expression of man falls far short of what God expresses, and there are a lot of rules in what man expresses, man must fulfill the duty he should fulfill and do what he must do. Man should do everything humanly possible to fulfill his duty, and there should not even be the slightest reservation.
After working for years, man will sum up some experience of these years of work, as well as the wisdom and rules accumulated. He who works for a long time knows how to sense the movement of the work of the Holy Spirit, knows when the Holy Spirit works and when He does not; he knows how to fellowship when carrying a burden, he is aware of the normal state of the Holy Spirit’s work and the normal state of people’s growth in life. Such is a person who has worked for years and knows the work of the Holy Spirit. Those who have worked for a long time speak assuredly and unhurriedly; even when they have nothing to say they are composed. Inside, they can keep praying to seek the work of the Holy Spirit without restlessness or anxiety; they are experienced in working. A person who has worked for a long time and has a lot of lessons and experience has a lot inside that obstructs the work of the Holy Spirit; this is a defect of his long-term work. A person who has just started working has not brought in human lessons or experience, particularly at a loss about how the Holy Spirit works. However, during the course of work, he gradually learns to sense how the Holy Spirit works and becomes aware of what to do to have the Holy Spirit’s work and what to do to touch the vital spots of others. He comes to know such common knowledge that those who work should possess. Over time, he gets to know such wisdom and common knowledge about working almost like the back of his hand, and seems to use them easily when working. However, when the Holy Spirit changes the way He works, he still sticks to his old working knowledge and old working rules and knows very little about the new working movement. Years of work and being full of the presence and guidance of the Holy Spirit give him more and more working lessons and experience. Such things fill him with a self-confidence that is not pride. In other words, he is quite pleased with his own work and very content with the common knowledge he has obtained about the work of the Holy Spirit. In particular, those things that other people have not obtained or realized give him even more confidence in himself; it seems that the work of the Holy Spirit within him can never be extinguished, while others do not qualify for this special treatment. Only people of his kind who have worked for years and have considerable use value are qualified to enjoy it. These things become a great hindrance to his accepting the new work of the Holy Spirit. Even if he can accept the new work, it is not an overnight thing. He is sure to go through several twists and turns before accepting it. This situation can only be turned around gradually after his old notions are dealt with and his old disposition is judged. Without going through these steps, he does not give up and easily accept the new teachings and work that are not in harmony with his old notions. This is the most difficult thing to deal with in man, and it is not easy to change. If, as a worker, he is able to both achieve an understanding of the Holy Spirit’s work and sum up the movement of it, as well as be able to not be restricted by his working experience and be able to accept new work in light of old work, he is a wise man and a qualified worker. Men often work for several years without being able to sum up their working experience, or become hindered from accepting the new work after summing up their working experience and wisdom and cannot properly understand or correctly treat the old and new work. Men really are difficult to handle! Most of you are like this. Those who have experienced years of the Holy Spirit’s work find it hard to accept the new work, always full of notions which they find difficult to let go of, while a man who has just started working lacks working common knowledge and does not even know how to handle some of the simplest matters. You people are really difficult! Those with some seniority behind them are so proud and conceited that they have forgotten where they came from. They always look down on younger people, yet they are unable to accept the new work and unable to let go of the notions they have collected and kept over the years. Although those young ignorant people are able to accept a little of the Holy Spirit’s new work and they are quite enthusiastic, they always become muddled and do not know what to do when problems are encountered. Though enthusiastic, they are too ignorant. They have only a little knowledge of the Holy Spirit’s work and are unable to use it in their lives; it is just doctrine that is of no use at all. There are too many people like you; how many are fit for use? How many are there who can do work that is fit for the Holy Spirit? It seems that you have been very obedient up to now, but in fact, you have not given up your notions, you are still seeking in the Bible, believing in vagueness, or wandering in notions. There is no one who carefully investigates today’s actual work or goes deep into it. You are accepting today’s way with your old notions. What can you gain with such a belief? It could be said that in you are hidden a lot of notions that have not been revealed, and it is just that you are making a supreme effort to hide them and do not reveal them easily. You do not accept the new work sincerely and do not plan to give up your old notions; you have too many, too grievous life philosophies. You don’t give up your old notions and reluctantly deal with the new work. Your hearts are too sinister, and you simply do not take the steps of the new work to heart. Can such wastrels as you do the work of spreading the gospel? Are you able to undertake the work of spreading it to the entire universe? These practices of yours are stopping you from transforming your disposition and knowing God. If you go on like this, you are bound to be eliminated.
You have to know how to differentiate God’s work from the work of man. What can you see from the work of man? There are a lot of elements of man’s experience in the work of man; what man expresses is what he is. God’s own work also expresses what He is, but what He is is different from what man is. What man is is representative of man’s experience and life (what man experiences or encounters in his life, or life philosophies that he has), and people living in different environments express different beings. Whether or not you have social experiences and how you actually live and experience in your family can be seen in what you express, whereas you cannot see from the work of God incarnate whether or not He has social experiences. He is well aware of the essence of man, He can reveal all kinds of practices pertaining to all kinds of people. He is even better at revealing human corrupt disposition and rebellious behavior. He does not live among the worldly people, but He is aware of the nature of the mortals and all the corruptions of the worldly people. This is what He is. Though He does not deal with the world, He knows the rules of dealing with the world, because He fully understands human nature. He knows about the Spirit’s work that man’s eyes cannot see and that man’s ears cannot hear, both of today and of the past. This includes wisdom that is not a life philosophy and wonder that people find hard to fathom. This is what He is, made open to people and also hidden from people. What He expresses is not what an extraordinary person is, but the inherent attributes and being of the Spirit. He does not travel around the world but knows everything of it. He contacts the “anthropoids” who have no knowledge or insight, but He expresses words that are higher than knowledge and above great men. He lives among a group of obtuse and numb people who do not have humanity and who do not understand the human conventions and lives, but He can ask mankind to live out normal humanity, at the same time revealing the base and low humanity of mankind. All of this are what He is, higher than what any flesh-and-blood person is. For Him, it is unnecessary to experience a complicated, cumbersome and sordid social life to do the work that He needs to do and thoroughly reveal the essence of corrupt mankind. The sordid social life does not edify His flesh. His work and words only reveal man’s disobedience and do not provide man with the experience and lessons for dealing with the world. He does not need to investigate society or man’s family when He supplies man with life. Exposing and judging man is not an expression of the experiences of His flesh; it is to reveal man’s unrighteousness after long knowing man’s disobedience and abhorring mankind’s corruption. The work He does is all to reveal His disposition to man and express His being. Only He can do this work, it is not something that a flesh-and-blood person could achieve. With regard to His work, man cannot tell what kind of person He is. Man is also unable to classify Him as a created person on the basis of His work. What He is also makes Him unable to be classified as a created person. Man can only consider Him a non-human, but does not know which category to put Him in, so man is forced to list Him in the category of God. It is not unreasonable for man to do this, because He has done a lot of work among people that man is unable to do.
The work that God does does not represent the experience of His flesh; the work that man does represents man’s experience. Everyone talks about his personal experience. God can directly express the truth, while man can only express the corresponding experience after experiencing the truth. God’s work has no rules and is not subject to time or geographical constraints. He can express what He is at anytime, anywhere. He works as He pleases. Man’s work has conditions and context; otherwise, he is unable to work and unable to express his knowledge of God or his experience of the truth. You just have to compare the differences between them to tell whether it is God’s own work or man’s work. If there is no work done by God Himself and there is only the work of man, you will know that men’s teachings are high, beyond the capacity of anyone else; their tones of speaking, their principles in handling things and their experienced and steady manner in working are beyond the reach of others. You all admire these people with high humanity, but you cannot see from God’s work and words how high His humanity is. Instead, He is ordinary, and when working, He is normal and real but also immeasurable to mortals, which therefore makes people feel a kind of reverence of Him. Perhaps a person’s experience in his work is particularly high, or his imagination and reasoning are particularly high, and his humanity is particularly good; these can only gain people’s admiration, but not arouse their awe and fear. People all admire those who have the ability to work and who have particularly deep experience and can practice the truth, but they can never elicit awe, just admiration and envy. But people who have experienced God’s work do not admire God, instead they feel that His work is beyond human reach and is unfathomable to man, and that it is fresh and wonderful. When people experience God’s work, their first knowledge of Him is that He is unfathomable, wise and wonderful, and they unconsciously revere Him and feel the mystery of the work He does, which is beyond the reach of man’s mind. People just want to be able to meet His requirements, to satisfy His desires; they do not wish to exceed Him, because the work that He does goes beyond man’s thinking and imagination and cannot be done by man instead. Even man himself does not know his own inadequacies, while He has opened up a new path and come to bring man into a newer and more beautiful world, so that mankind has made new progress and had a new start. What man feels for Him is not admiration, or rather, is not only admiration. Their deepest experience is awe and love, their feeling is that God is indeed wonderful. He does work that man is unable to do, He says things that man is unable to say. People who have experienced His work always experience an indescribable feeling. People with deeper experiences particularly love God. They always feel His loveliness, feel that His work is so wise, so wonderful, and this thereby generates infinite power among them. It is not fear or occasional love and respect, but deep feeling of God’s compassion and tolerance of man. However, people who have experienced His chastisement and judgment feel Him to be majestic and inviolable. Even people who have experienced a lot of His work are also unable to fathom Him; all people who truly revere Him know that His work is not in line with people’s notions but always goes against their notions. He does not need people to have full admiration or give the appearance of submitting to Him, but rather to have true reverence and true submission. In so much of His work, anyone with true experience feels reverence for Him, which is higher than admiration. People have seen His disposition due to His work of chastisement and judgment, and they therefore revere Him in their hearts. God is meant to be revered and obeyed, because His being and His disposition are not the same as those of a created being, and they are above those of a created being. God is a non-created being, and only He is worthy of reverence and submission; man is not qualified for this. So, all people who have experienced His work and truly known Him feel reverence toward Him. However, those who do not let go of their notions about Him, that is, those who simply do not regard Him as God, do not have any reverence toward Him, and even though they follow Him they are not conquered; they are disobedient people by nature. He does this work to achieve the result that all created beings can revere the Creator, worship Him, and submit to His dominion unconditionally. This is the final result that all His work aims to achieve. If people who have experienced such work do not revere God, even slightly, if their disobedience of the past does not change at all, then these people are sure to be eliminated. If a person’s attitude toward God is only to admire or show respect from a distance and not to love in the slightest, this is what a person without a heart for loving God reaches, and that person lacks the conditions to be perfected. If so much work is unable to obtain a person’s true love, this means that the person has not gained God and does not genuinely pursue the truth. A person who does not love God does not love the truth and thus cannot gain God, much less receive God’s approval. Such people, regardless of how they experience the work of the Holy Spirit, and regardless of how they experience judgment, are still unable to revere God. These are people who cannot change their nature, who have extremely wicked disposition. All those who do not revere God are to be eliminated, to be the object of punishment, and to be punished just like those who do evil, suffering even more than those who have done unrighteous things.