Sermons and Fellowship About God’s Word “God’s Work and Man’s Practice”
Let’s read a piece of God’s words “God’s Work and Man’s Practice.”
“Each stage of the Holy Spirit’s work simultaneously requires the testimony of man. Each stage of work is a battle between God and Satan, and the object of the battle is Satan, while the one who will be made perfect by this work is man. Whether or not God’s work can bear fruit depends on the manner of man’s testimony to God. This testimony is what God requires of those who follow Him; it is the testimony made before Satan, and also proof of the effects of His work. The entire management of God is divided into three stages, and in each stage, fitting requirements are made of man. Furthermore, as the ages pass and progress, God’s requirements of all mankind become ever higher. Thus, step-by-step, this work of God’s management reaches its climax, until man beholds the fact of the ‘appearance of the Word in the flesh,’ and in this way the requirements of man become even higher, and requirements of man to bear testimony become even higher. The more that man is capable of truly cooperating with God, the more that he glorifies God. Man’s cooperation is the testimony that he is required to bear, and the testimony that he bears is the practice of man. And so, whether or not God’s work can have the due effect, and whether or not there can be true testimony, are inextricably linked to the cooperation and testimony of man. When the work is finished, which is to say, when all of God’s management has reached its end, man will be required to bear higher testimony, and when the work of God reaches its end, the practice and entry of man will reach their zenith. In the past, man was required to comply with the law and the commandments, and was required to be patient and humble. Today, man is required to obey all of God’s arrangements and possess a supreme love of God, and is ultimately required to still love God amid the tribulation. These three stages are requirements that God makes of man, step-by-step, throughout His entire management. Each stage of God’s work goes deeper than the last, and in each stage the requirements of man are more profound than the last, and in this way, God’s entire management gradually takes shape. It is precisely because the requirements of man are ever higher that man’s disposition comes ever closer to the standards required by God, and it is only then that the whole of mankind gradually departs from the influence of Satan until, when God’s work comes to a complete end, the whole of mankind will have been saved from the influence of Satan. When that time comes, the work of God will have reached its end, and man’s cooperation with God in order to achieve changes in his disposition will be no more, and the whole of mankind will live in the light of God, and from then on, there will be no rebelliousness or opposition to God. God will also make no demands of man, and there will be a more harmonious cooperation between man and God, one which will be the life of man and God together, the life that comes after the management of God has been completely concluded, and after man has been fully saved by God from the clutches of Satan. Those who cannot closely follow the footsteps of God are incapable of attaining such a life. They will have lowered themselves into darkness, where they will weep and gnash their teeth; they are people who believe in God but do not follow Him, who believe in God but do not obey all of His work. Since man believes in God, he must closely follow the footsteps of God, step-by-step; he should ‘follow the Lamb wherever He goes.’ Only these are the people who seek the true way, only they are the ones who know the work of the Holy Spirit. People who slavishly follow letters and doctrines are those who have been eliminated by the work of the Holy Spirit. In each period of time, God will begin new work, and in each period, there will be a new beginning among man. If man only abides by the truths that ‘Jehovah is God’ and ‘Jesus is Christ,’ which are truths that only apply to a single age, then man will never keep up with the work of the Holy Spirit, and will forever be incapable of gaining the work of the Holy Spirit. Regardless of how God works, man follows without the slightest doubt, and he follows closely. In this way, how could man be eliminated by the Holy Spirit? Regardless of what God does, as long as man is certain that it is the work of the Holy Spirit, and cooperates in the work of the Holy Spirit without any misgivings, and tries to meet the requirements of God, then how could he be punished? The work of God has never ceased, His footsteps have never halted, and prior to the completion of His work of management, He has always been busy, and never stops. But man is different: Having gained but a modicum of the Holy Spirit’s work, he treats it as if it will never change; having gained a little knowledge, he does not go forth to follow the footsteps of God’s newer work; having seen but a bit of God’s work, he immediately prescribes God as a particular wooden figure, and believes that God will always remain in this form that he sees before him, that it was like this in the past and will always be thus in the future; having gained but a superficial knowledge, man is so proud that he forgets himself and begins to wantonly proclaim the disposition and being of God that simply do not exist; and having become certain about one stage of the Holy Spirit’s work, no matter what kind of person it is that proclaims the new work of God, man does not accept it. These are people who cannot accept the new work of the Holy Spirit; they are too conservative, and incapable of accepting new things. Such people are those who believe in God but also reject God. Man believes that the Israelites were wrong to ‘only believe in Jehovah and not believe in Jesus,’ yet the majority of people act out a role in which they ‘only believe in Jehovah and reject Jesus’ and ‘long for the return of the Messiah, but oppose the Messiah who is called Jesus.’ No wonder, then, that people still live under the domain of Satan after accepting one stage of the work of the Holy Spirit, and still do not receive God’s blessings. Is this not the result of man’s rebelliousness? Christians across the world who have not kept up with the new work of today all hold onto the belief that they are the lucky ones, that God will fulfill each of their wishes. Yet they cannot say for sure why God will take them up to the third heaven, nor are they certain about how Jesus will come to collect them riding upon a white cloud, much less can they say with absolute certainty whether Jesus will truly arrive upon a white cloud on the day that they imagine. They are all anxious, and at a loss; they themselves don’t even know whether God will take up each of them, the varied small handfuls of people, who hail from every denomination. The work that God does now, the present age, God’s will—they have no grasp of any of these, and can do nothing but count down the days on their fingers. Only those who follow the footsteps of the Lamb to the very end can gain the final blessing, whereas those ‘clever people,’ who are unable to follow to the very end yet believe they have gained all, are incapable of witnessing the appearance of God. They all believe they are the smartest person on earth, and they cut short the continued development of God’s work for no reason at all, and seem to believe with absolute certainty that God will take them up to heaven, they who ‘have the utmost loyalty to God, follow God, and abide by the words of God.’ Even though they have the ‘utmost loyalty’ toward the words spoken by God, their words and actions still feel so disgusting because they oppose the work of the Holy Spirit, and commit deceit and evil. Those who do not follow to the very end, who do not keep up with the work of the Holy Spirit, and who only cleave to the old work have not only failed to achieve loyalty to God, but on the contrary, have become those who oppose God, have become those who are rejected by the new age, and who will be punished. Are there any more pitiable than them? Many even believe that all those who reject the old law and accept the new work are without conscience. These people, who only talk of ‘conscience,’ and do not know the work of the Holy Spirit, will ultimately have their prospects cut short by their own consciences. God’s work does not abide by doctrine, and even though it is His own work, still God does not cling to it. That which should be denied is denied, that which should be eliminated is eliminated. Yet man places himself in enmity of God by holding onto but one small part of the work of God’s management. Is this not the absurdity of man? Is this not the ignorance of man? The more that people are timid and overcautious because they are afraid of not gaining God’s blessings, the more that they are incapable of gaining greater blessings, and of receiving the final blessing. Those people who slavishly abide by the law all display the utmost loyalty toward the law, and the more they display such loyalty toward the law, the more they are rebels who oppose God. For now is the Age of Kingdom and not the Age of Law, and the work of today cannot be held up against the work of the past, and the work of the past cannot be compared to the work of today. The work of God has changed, and the practice of man has also changed; it is not to hold onto the law or bear the cross. So, people’s loyalty toward the law and the cross will not gain God’s approval.”
We’ve just read a passage from God’s word “God’s Work and Man’s Practice.” This passage tells people clearly how to experience God’s work and how to fulfill their duty. Now, let’s have a fellowship. Read this first: “Each stage of the Holy Spirit’s work simultaneously requires the testimony of man. Each stage of work is a battle between God and Satan, and the object of the battle is Satan, while the one who will be made perfect by this work is man. Whether or not God’s work can bear fruit depends on the manner of man’s testimony to God. This testimony is what God requires of those who follow Him; it is the testimony made before Satan, and also proof of the effects of His work.” What is this paragraph saying? It’s easy to see the literal meaning of God’s word: God has requirements for those who experience His work. What does He require? He requires you to bear witness once you’ve experienced a step of God’s work. What will the result be if you don’t bear witness? Needless to say, you will definitely be eliminated. Those who bear witness are those who will be gained by God and receive God’s blessing. It is extremely important that people bear witness during every step of work done and it should not be treated as a trifling matter; but if people don’t pay attention, does this show they are heartless? God requires people to bear witness during every step of His work, but what exactly does it mean to bear witness? Someone once said: “It means fulfilling my duty, and fulfilling it in every step of the work done; that’s what it means to bear witness.” Is this right? It’s good, but not complete, though you can say that the response is correct. Why is it said that it’s correct? What is the basis for determining whether or not one’s performing duty is bearing witness? It’s based on whether one fulfills their duty adequately. Fulfilling your duties adequately; that is bearing witness. Like when someone says, “When I fulfill my duties well, is that not bearing witness?” This sounds absolutely correct! Fulfilling one’s duty well is bearing witness. But what is the standard for “fulfilling one’s duty well”? Does it mean to fulfill one’s duty adequately? When you fulfill your duty, and do so adequately, that is bearing witness. Someone might ask if doing good deeds had any relationship to bearing witness. Doing good deeds is a part of bearing witness. Aren’t most of the good deeds man does part of duties they should fulfill? You can say that good deeds are the duties that one should fulfill; the more good deeds one does, the more of their duty they fulfill, and their testimony will resonate. If someone fulfills their duty only in one aspect, does that mean they’ve done many good deeds? If they fulfill their duty in one aspect without accomplishing any other good deeds, is their testimony bright and resounding? This does not meet the standard!
What exactly does it mean to bear witness? To bear witness is to be able to fulfill one’s duty according to God’s will while in the midst of experiencing God’s work. To bear witness encompasses all the good deeds of man and all the good deeds of man are also considered as bearing witness. The more and higher one can bear witness, the better the results that one can achieve when experiencing God’s work. Additionally, this kind of witnessing can confirm the results one can achieve when experiencing God’s work as well as changes in one’s life disposition. This is completely true. If one can continually improve on bearing witness, that is, if one can do more good deeds, what else can be said? This shows that one has conscience, reason and good humanity. Only a person with a kind heart is prepared to accomplish so many good deeds. If one has a wicked disposition and does not love truth or if one is selfish and contemptible, how can one be prepared to do so many good deeds? It’s impossible! Can a selfish and contemptible person offer all he has and pay whatever price to fulfill one’s duty for the sake of God’s work? Not likely. So, the more kind-hearted a man is and the more prepared he is to accomplish good deeds, then the more he can fulfill his duty accordingly. Conversely, a man who lacks conscience, sense and humanity is not prepared to accomplish many good deeds, nor is he capable of fulfilling his duty adequately. So, if we want to know what one’s humanity is like and what kind of changes has his life disposition gone through, how do we examine this? Do we have to merely look at the words a man says? The key is to look at how a man fulfills his duties. If one fulfills his duties responsibly and sincerely, and is able to seek the truth, follow proper principles when accomplishing tasks and suffer to pay the price, then they surely have a good humanity. Even though their words are not very clear or even clumsy when they give sermons or communicate the truth, they are kind-hearted, have humanity, and love the truth; is this viewpoint appropriate? Clearly, there is evidence for this! When you say something, you must have evidence. If you say this person is good, then why exactly are they good? If they are skillful at speaking doctrines and letters, is this evidence that they have good humanity? If their speech is impeccable, is this evidence that they have good humanity? There are some people who are not good with their words, but they fulfill their duty single-mindedly, they are sincere and responsible. Can you say that these people have no truth? Understanding the truth is not necessarily related to speaking eloquently. The most important thing to consider is whether someone can bear witness, whether they fulfill their duties appropriately, and whether they fulfill their duties according to principle. This is the most important thing to consider. It should follow that those who can practice the truth and follow principles in their actions are all people who love the truth. This is because those who genuinely love the truth are also the ones who are able to practice the truth. Those who cannot practice the truth say with their mouth that they love the truth, which is fruitless, groundless, and untenable!
I see some of our brothers and sister; when you want them to communicate the truth to you, they don’t speak clearly, but there is some light within them, some feeling, and yet they cannot convey them well, as if their speech is awkward; but it’s not that their speaking is awkward, merely that there’s a lot of feeling inside, but they never communicate it or put everything together and make it complete. Their knowledge doesn’t reach a level of rational understanding, and thus they cannot speak on things clearly. No matter who it is, when a person is in a haze, they cannot communicate truth clearly, and these cases can be happened in everyone—I was once the same way. When experiencing God’s word brings about clear understanding that becomes accuracy, where one can express themselves clearly, he will naturally communicate the truth clearly. So many people, though being unable to communicate truth clearly, cannot be said to be wholly without knowledge. What matters is how they fulfill their duty. If he is submissive in fulfilling his duty, when being pruned and dealt with, he seeks the truth and shows obedience, and no matter what duty he performs, even if he has experienced setbacks or failures, he can still learn and overcome them, fulfilling his duty better and better, does this kind of person actually love the truth? Firstly, he can seek the truth, secondly, he can practice truth, and thirdly, he can obey the truth. This shows that he is a person who loves the truth and pursues the truth, and it is absolutely right. You’ve no need to focus on whether one communicates truth clearly, because that the truth is not communicated clearly right now is not an indication that they have no understanding in their heart. Because in their heart, they know how to do to be in line with the principles, how to do to be after the will of God, and what to do to be in accordance to the truth, and this is enough. Surely such people are willing to practice the truth, and they love the truth and pursue the truth. This kind of person, after having suffered setbacks and failures and being pruned and dealt with will change. They will finally reach a point where they can wholly fulfill their duty, and this is bearing witness. What does this kind of testimony create? If he does not accept truth, does not seek out truth, and does not obey truth, can he achieve this? (He cannot.) That comes from experience; it comes as the ultimate result of seeking truth and pursuing truth. That is how one bears a bright and resounding testimony for God.
Some of our brothers and sisters don’t fulfill their duties well, and when dealing with them, sometimes I sounded sterner and harsher, but they were neither negative nor did they complain, and afterward I would realize: “There’s a change, and they’re doing well! They’re fulfilling their duty better and better, and the more they do it, the more reassuring it is.” When you reassure people here, you also reassure God there, and doesn’t God bless and guide? If you can’t reassure people, then how can you reassure God? There’s no way you can. When people see you and are not reassured, they’ll say: “Look at this person! First, there’s no certainty in his words; no matter how good his words sound, he never practices truth; secondly, he sometimes speaks extremely well, but he can’t necessarily carry it out in actions; and thirdly, he acts one way to your face and another behind your back, agreeing with you to your face while opposing you inside, and his words don’t match his heart.” Can these people then reassure God? You can’t reassure man, but how can you reassure God? In order to reassure God, he must be able to have the trust of most people. To measure a man’s humanity and whether they pursue truth, this is what you judge by, and this is absolutely true! You see some people fulfilling their duty, who are constantly dealt with, and yet never fulfill requirements. What is the problem with this? We won’t talk about those who perform their duty in a perfunctory manner and act wildly. Most people do not have truth, and so this is the state they are in when fulfilling their duty. However, as he keeps listening to the fellowship and can accept the pruning and dealing, some time later, things come together: “I’ve groped some principles this time, and this time I understand some truths, and in this time of failure I have also learned, and know how to do it better next time.” Is this not how one continues to grow? A person’s experience with many failures does not represent their having no humanity, nor can it say they’ve not pursued truth; all it can say is that they currently have no reality of the truth, that their stature is too small. Small stature is often found in children and youth, doing things in accordance to what their imaginations tell them to, going about things in their own way, resulting in a lot of turns and tumbles. After some time of reflection, they see things clearly, understand truth, grasp the principles, and are finally able to get over the mountain with greater and greater ease, doing things with greater and greater accuracy, and with more and more principles. Even if they cannot see things clearly, they can still search for truth. After understanding it they gradually perform their duty better. This is how most people experience God’s work, finding their way through this process.
Are there any who haven’t failed or stumbled and who were simply successful at fulfilling their duties? No. I too am someone who has experienced many failures, going my own way when I first started out and having no truth, but after I was pruned and dealt with by God and judged and chastised by the words of God, I became knowledgeable and turned around a little bit at a time, so this is a normal state. Some people meet with so many failures and setbacks, they become negative, and will say: “I’m through! I cannot understand the spirit, and I am not one who pursues truth! Perhaps I am of the devil Satan, hopeless and simply needing to give up!” Isn’t this foolish? It is indeed foolishness! Humans can be broken by their own ignorance. You have to understand that all humans go through this; you are not the only one who has gone through these things—every single person has gone through these things. It’s only that you don’t understand how they experience these things. When we have heart-to-hearts with our brothers and sisters, all will discuss with you how they’ve experienced things, their failures, their setbacks, and what they’ve learned from these things. And so when these things befall you, don’t be negative; just strive upward and you’ll be fine; truth cannot be pursued without perseverance! As well, sometimes we get stuck when fulfilling our duties, and for a long time cannot get past this crossroad; some things take 3 to 5 years of experiences, to finally be able to do things based on principle; would you call this normal? All of this is normal. If someone tells you that you will finally be able to do things on principle just after 3 or 5 times of failure, is that true? I can say it isn’t, as I myself have experienced numerous failures, but is it possible to fail for 3 to 5 times and then finally be able to act in accordance with principles and enter into the reality of truth? Yeah, simple things are like that, but some big problems cannot be overcome after 3 to 5 times—they can’t necessarily be overcome in 3 to 5 years! Do you think it takes 3 to 5 years to understand a critical truth? For instance, how many years does it take to enter into the truth of understanding the disposition of God? You could spend 8 to 10 years trying, and it still would not be enough. To genuinely understand a truth, sometimes it takes one or two years to experience, sometimes two or three, and some truths require an entire lifetime. Isn’t that how it goes? Let me give you an example: How many years does it take for someone to become a person of honesty? Experiences of three to five years can bring about change, but would you dare say that the change is complete? Are you completely an honest person? You haven’t thrown any curveballs? You wouldn’t dare say that. Would you say this truth is completely obtainable after 8 to 10 years of experience? The truth concerning how one conducts themselves and the truth dealing with knowledge of God require a lifetime of experiences, and you need to understand this! But there are some people who ask, “If this is a lifelong thing, then if I suddenly die while trying to achieve my goal, won’t it be a waste?” Isn’t this true, though? There really isn’t meaning to this. If you are a pursuer of truth who even wants to die, you cannot die, right? You wouldn’t say that. It’s simply that God doesn’t require too much from you with these truths. What does it mean by “not requiring too much”? It means that you aren’t required to spend 3 to 5 years to complete your experiences. It takes a lifetime for a person to experience truth; can God really request that you achieve this in 3 to 5 years? God wouldn’t do that, as He knows our stature. God created man, and however long you spend trying to achieve whatever result, this is all too clear to God, and so God wouldn’t make such requirements. Man should only strive to move upward, but just because a truth takes an entire lifetime to experience, you don’t need to say, “Augh! Having faith in God takes too much, and pursuing truth is way too hard! What’s the point in still believing? I wouldn’t have believed had I known it’d be this hard!” What kind of talk is this? It’s foolishness, foolish words spoken by a child. Isn’t living hard? If life is so hard, then why do you wish to continue living? Don’t talk such nonsense! You simply have to keep moving forward. Some truths take an entire lifetime to experience, but after only three to five years, you’ll have results. You can have some human likeness, and so some truths can be entered into quickly: Some can be after one or two years, and sometimes you can enter the truth in a few months. What does it mean to have entry after a few months? It means that you are starting out with your experiences. He said, “I saw results after 3 to 5 months of experience, and I did gain some actual knowledge in three to five months, so haven’t I entered the truth?” However, you have to live out the truth completely, becoming a complete person, and that takes a lifetime. Achieving basic results of experiencing some truth needs 7 to 8 years, and you will show human likeness, with others noticing how good you’ve become. Take the truth of being an honest person for example, after you really experience seven to eight years, people will say, “This person is quite honest and has no craftiness.” There are special circumstances where they express craftiness, but they are usually simple, speaking honest words and from the heart; what kind of person then is this person seen as? Aren’t they the kind of person everyone loves? In spite of how you look or if you’ve grown in an average way, people like you, willingly communicating and doing things with you because you’re an honest person and cute.
Why do we feel we only like to associate with honest people? Because associating with deceitful people is too dangerous, annoying and disgusting. When you hear deceitful people say something, it’s really disgusting. It puts you off your food. Actually you already know, “When you say this it isn’t sincere, what are you being pretentious about? What are you arguing about? What are you trying to show off? Do you imagine I don’t know what’s in your heart?” So deceitful people can upset you with just a few words, and it’s as though you are boiling over. It’s awful, horrible, as if you’re seeing right through them. And because it’s so awful, disgusting and boring to associate with deceitful people, people don’t enjoy it and don’t associate with them. But as soon as you associate with honest people you find it happy and bright. They say what they think. So you feel light-hearted, happy, excited. You can share openly something in common with them, and this creates a resonance. And you will feel peaceful and pleasurable. This is one side of it: the very real emotional enjoyment and happiness. Furthermore, it is not dangerous no matter how you deal with honest people: they won’t deceive you or cheat you. They certainly won’t harm you. You could happily go out and leave them in your home to look after things. Imagine, you could put your gold ring and gold necklace in a drawer and tell them, “Look after these for me, will you? I am putting them here.” “Fine, don’t worry!” When you come back and check the drawer, the ring and the necklace are gone. “What’s happened?” “They weren’t safe there, I hid them away in a safe place.” You check and there they are. “Fine, you’re more careful than I am!” You see how it is to associate with honest people? You feel secure. If you associate with evil people, if something goes wrong, they will scowl. “This guy is so ferocious, with such a horrifying expression. It’s best not to have anything to do with him. If you just say some small thing wrong and offend him, you don’t know whether he might take out a knife behind your back, and you don’t know what will happen to you. You just can’t associate with such an evil person, it’s like bumping into a poisonous snake!” Isn’t there this kind of feeling? To be with an evil person, first of all you won’t feel secure; secondly, you can’t fathom them out; thirdly, you never know when they will become devilish. It’s just too dangerous to deal with this kind of person. So after having experienced being an honest person for three to five years, or five to six years, you will have the likeness of an honest person, the likeness of mankind. People will like to see you as an honest person. Then won’t you enjoy this? You will. How will you enjoy it? “Now I know what the likeness of a real man is, and what kind of person I should be.” Surely to have insight into this is to understand a mystery of life, right?
The first mystery of life is that God is the Lord of creation and humankind comes from God. The second is that God is the source of the life of humankind. The third, that God likes honest people and it is honest people who are the likeness of true humanity. If you have grasped these three points, and understood the truth of being human, in the end through your experience, you will say: “Finally I have some likeness of humanity.” At this time you will see that God always leads you, God blesses you in many things. You may lack this or that, and you think about it, but before you become desperate for it, it has already been prepared by God. Sometimes I say, “I need this kind of clothing, it would be just right for this season.” While I am thinking, suddenly I find something, and then I like it and it suits me. There is only one garment left, the size is right, and it is discounted. I say: “This was prepared for me by God.” What is God’s “blessing”? If you are really pursuing truth and life, whatever you eat and wear will all be prepared for you, and wherever you go if there is danger there will be a way out, prepared for you by God. You have seen in your heart, “God blesses me, God protects me.” How good it is to enjoy this! Can unbelievers obtain this? No, they can’t. It’s such great happiness! So if you pursue truth and being an honest person, if you do your duty and are loyal to God, you are true to God, then God will bless you. This is absolutely true. The word of God says that God does this. God is so reliable, so faithful; the more you practice the truth the more you will receive the blessings of God. Some people say, “How come I haven’t received blessings from God? How come I haven’t tasted this?” You haven’t experienced this, because you haven’t practised so much of the truth. If you do a little more for God, give all your heart to God, then you will see this blessing. Some say, “Since I didn’t see God’s blessing, I can’t bring myself to continue.” But why haven’t you thought over this: “How much have I done for God? Have I been totally loyal to God? Have I been true to God?” Why don’t you examine your own mind? Why is it that you always ask too much of God? Are you being reasonable? How much have you done for God? Have you loved Him? How much of His word have you practiced? How much of His word have you listened to? How much have you satisfied Him? If you don’t examine your thinking, and still demand, “How come I haven’t seen God’s blessings,” this is not reasonable. When two people get on well it is like this. You respect the other person, and the other person will respect you; you are loving toward the other person, and the other person will also be loving to you. Good is rewarded by good, and evil is recompensed by evil. If you have no love for another person but still demand that that person be loving to you, is that fair? Is it reasonable to ask this of someone? Some say: “In the church how come no one loves me?” If you demand others love you, you have to first learn to love others. If you do enough for others, and do not seek a reward, one day your reward will come, whether you ask it to come or not. Doing your duties is like this: How much have you satisfied God? Have you carried out your duties well for the sake of God? If you truly love God, why don’t you repay God’s love, and satisfy Him during performing your duty? Why can’t you, in order to gain the truth and love God, suffer a little and pay a small price? See what hardship God has suffered for mankind, the price that He has paid. Why can’t you pay a true price to God, suffer a little real difficulty, true difficulty, to make people see that you really are suffering for God? It is this kind of person who is qualified to receive God’s blessings. Is it reasonable not to suffer anything for God, not have the heart to love God, but expect to still receive blessings from God and gain approval from God? Is it easy for you to learn lessons while suffering in performing your duties? What kind of people can suffer? It must be someone with a conscience, someone with a heart! Can heartless people who carry out their duties suffer? Can such selfish people suffer as they carry out their duties? If their suffering is for their own flesh, for their own gain, for their own position, and they are not suffering in order to follow the will of God, isn’t it an illusion for them to think of receiving blessings from God? This is really an extravagant desire!
I see now that some brothers and sisters have begun to be devoted to performing their duties, to be able to suffer, and to take it seriously. As soon as they are really earnest in performing their duties, and practice according to the principles of truth they have understood, won’t they have to suffer a little? For example, when you cook for yourself you cook any old way. But one day some church leaders and workers come to visit, and you meet someone that you like. “I’ll make a very nice snack for you!” What’s the issue here? Does it mean that you really put your heart into it? You can take the trouble for someone you like, but if it’s someone you don’t like then you just do what suits you. Now if it’s doing your duty to God, the point is whether you can suffer. Some people say, “For God? These are the duties that the leaders and workers arranged for me, so it seems I’ve done it for them.” Is this what you think? These people don’t say that it’s an entrustment from God, they don’t say that it is what God requires from those He has created, that each of them has a duty that they should perform. It doesn’t matter who arranged the duties that you have to perform, you are responsible to God for all of them, and you can’t connect this with other people. If your church leader or worker arranges a duty for you, if you feel, “So I am suited to this duty,” is this ordained by God? Yes, it is. What is ordained by God comes from what is dictated, arranged, ordained by God, no matter who arranges it. Since you accept that God has ordained it—“I can only perform this duty, and I am most suited to performing this duty”—then can you perform the duty well or not? This depends on whether you have a conscience, and whether you possess humanity. There are some whose reasoning ability is not normal, and who persist in saying that this is arranged by the leaders and workers. They say, “If God Himself tells me, ‘Perform this duty,’ then I will go and do it.” Now what is arranged by the leaders and workers, is that arranged and ordained by God? Is it led by God? It comes out of God’s management. To take a simple example, when Daniel was shut in a cave with a lion, was that arranged by God or arranged by man? It was arranged by God. Many things are arranged by man on the surface, done by man, but underneath they are all arranged and ordained by God. If this is inscrutable to people, it shows that they do not understand spiritual matters. Those without understanding the spiritual matters will tend to say, “If what the leaders and workers arrange suits what I like, I will do it nicely for them, but if it’s not to my liking I won’t be able to do it for them. When I have finished doing it for them the credit will go to them.” Is this way of thinking right or not? ‘Aren’t they absurd ones? They are absurd ones as a matter of fact. How can the credit go to them? As far as God is concerned, does the credit in fact go to them? Don’t you believe that God is just? The credit will go to anyone who fulfills his duty. What does it have to do with the leaders and workers? When the leaders and workers have led people to perform certain duties, how well these people perform their duties has nothing to do with the duties of the leaders and workers themselves. Each has his or her own separate task. But if the leaders and workers do not lead the brothers and sisters in performing their duties, that would be dereliction of duty on their part. If in communicating the truth they can lead the brothers and sisters to God, and they can use the truth to solve problems in the performance of duty, this is their duty. When the duties of God’s chosen people have been fulfilled adequately, this is the result achieved by life entry of God’s chosen people and the work of God. When the church leaders and workers have performed their duty well, this is their task, and it has nothing to do with the task of others. We must fully accept this. It’s an individual matter. God is just and He will judge each individual precisely according to what he or she has done. You should not think, “I dislike this church leader or worker. Does the credit for doing my duties well have to go to him or her?” Do you think it is the same as in the world outside? You are not making sense, this shows you don’t understand the spirit. Is there someone who is so absurd? Isn’t this causing disturbances? How will people who understand the spirit see it? Every person lives before God, and everyone carries out his or her duties, each with his or her individual task. This is the way God sees it. You should not be concerned about how the church leaders and workers see things; this has nothing to do with you. You should only think about carrying out your own duties. God is observing you, requiring you to act according to your actual stature. If you have carried out your duties well then this is your testimony; if not, you don’t have a testimony. If it is because “I just don’t want the church leaders and workers to take the credit for what I do, and that’s why I don’t carry out my duties well,” then you will be eliminated and you have no testimony. If you have done your duty well, and your work has been accepted before God, then you have testimony in experiencing the work of God. Bear your testimony, and you will be rewarded, you will enter the kingdom of God. If the church leaders and workers have not done their work well, but desire praise, and want the credit for everyone’s efforts in doing their duty, saying that they have done their work well, then God will bring retribution on them. God is just. This is how you must see it. So in speaking of these things, some people are absurd and have an erroneous understanding, thinking that this is done for the leaders and workers, “If I do well they will take the credit for it, and if I don’t do it well, there’s no credit to take. So this is what I do for them!” Aren’t people like this being very narrow? Very short-sighted? Aren’t they in fact blind, not knowing God? Can people like this attain the truth? I find people like these a nuisance, absurd. Whatever matter it is, you have to understand it clearly before the way you have chosen will be correct, before it will be in accord with God’s will. You must understand it clearly. And another thing: don’t compare matters of God’s house with the matters of the world. When workers do their work well, their bosses get reward, and they take the credit for it too. That is the world. God’s house isn’t like that. In God’s house, God judges each person according to what he or she has done. God is the Lord, God rules all. God is just. If you have met God’s demands, God rewards you, God commends you. If you have not met God’s demands, if you do not bear testimony, no matter what reasons you had, what constraints you had, God will not care these, and He will eliminate you. You have to see this. And so no matter what it is, you have to understand the will of God, what God demands of man. You can’t judge things by what the world thinks and what people of the world think. In the world people who are skilled in social relations and good at expressing themselves will be popular: “Maybe people will act the same way in God’s house, so here I’ll just concentrate on the social and verbal side.” Will that work? No. Flattery is useless, and duplicity is even more useless. Eventually duplicity will become known, and when that happens you’ll have to put up with the consequences and look stunned.
There are some people who write false resumés in recommending leaders and workers, extolling a person to such an extent, but in the end God’s family finds, “This person isn’t doing real work, he or she doesn’t have a good disposition; how can there be such a difference from the resumé?” After investigation of the responsibility for this, several leaders and workers were dismissed, weeded out. To lie to God is a serious sin; wasn’t it exposed? At the time of writing the resumé they would have felt good: “I will write it a bit better for him or her, to make God’s family satisfied—look how good it is that we have proposed this person.” But do you think that writing this is the end of the matter? When the person gets here and can’t work, this goes back to your responsibility! Deliberately writing these things well is deception. Can the sin of deception be overlooked? To go into it, who wrote the resumé? Dispense with that person! They are not qualified as leaders or workers and should be eliminated completely. It’s time for retribution, isn’t it? To take the standpoint of the people of the world and lie to God, this just will not work. After this has been exposed, you’re finished. Things will have caught up with you. When you have just finished doing some things you may feel you’ve done very well, but there’s no rush, when the things are exposed one day see if the church can’t investigate you. So no good will come from doing evil, and if now you felt at ease lying to the church and to God, don’t worry, things have still not been resolved; one day you will give yourself away and you will be found to be responsible. Who can be popular in God’s house? Honest people, people who love God. Such people will become popular. God loves this kind of people and blesses them, and others love them too. Truth reigns in the house of God; it is God’s words and God that reign. What is the evidence for God’s reigning? First, the truth is in power; second, God’s word is in power. This means that God reigns. The authority of the Holy Spirit is the authority of the truth, the authority of the word of God. The truth, the Holy Spirit, the word of God, and God are as one—ultimately all these are the authority of God.
Reaching principled performance with completion of duties needs a process. It’s not a matter of solving a problem through truth after discovering it and ‘That’s that, you know it all, and anything can be done according to principles.’ Nothing that relates to truth will be partial, and any aspect will have various levels and issues of depth. So in carrying out duties when there are often difficult problems, it isn’t a matter of solving a few difficulties and then everything will be solved and people will be able to experience and practice; people can’t achieve that. Some people ask, “How many failures will it take to get through this, how many problems to solve, before I can do everything according to principles?” How to answer this question? We have talked about this previously, that there is no limit to the entry of truth, no limit to change in one’s disposition, no limit to the entry into life, no limit to knowing God…, so then is there a limit to the solution of problems? Well there is no limit to that either. Unbelievers have a saying, “Live and learn.” Do you understand this now? “How are there problems in carrying out my duties? At what point can I finish solving all these difficulties? How are there still difficulties?” How to solve this problem, how to understand it? Older people will say, “How come there are so many routine problems? How come there are always problems?” So because of the persistence of this practical problem, people conclude that we should “Live and learn.” Unbelievers have another saying, “Every family has its unique problems,” “Every family has its own special story.” Life is like that, and we can say that there are always difficulties. That’s life; can we say that? Some say, “We all know this. Please help solve it for us. Why are there always difficulties? Has God arranged them? Why does God always let us get into difficulty?” Shouldn’t we understand this? Tell me, are difficulties good for our life entry? They are good. What do you say they are good? When there is a difficulty it can make us go to seek the truth, and only after obtaining truth will there be no difficulty.
Having difficulty means that God is giving us a lesson, which is arranged by God that we should learn. Isn’t it good to learn something? The process of gaining truth is also the process of experiencing difficulty and seeking truth. If you have no difficulty you won’t seek the truth, and if you don’t have the truth you won’t be able to resolve difficulties. So it is that when these difficulties come they will make us go to seek truth, to use the truth to resolve them. And like this, we can finally gain the truth. What does difficulty reveal us? There is no truth. Without truth it will make us embarrassed, and without stature we will be unable to handle it. If our stature is inadequate, we will be blocked by difficulty, made to stumble. So we urgently need to seek the truth. Thus the more the difficulty rises the more we have the opportunity to seek the truth, and the more we will acquire the opportunity to be made perfect through experiencing the work of God. If there was no difficulty, there would be no chance to be made perfect by God; isn’t this right? Do the dead have difficulties? When someone dies, it is all over, right? Unbelievers say this. They believe that there is nothing after death. Actually nothing physical remains, they don’t need to seek a mate, have children, eat and dress, there’s nothing left. But the soul will receive punishment, it will be judged. This is inescapable. The big things are inevitable, it’s just the physical things that pass. When things happen to them, many people don’t take them seriously. Others take the difficulty as difficulty, but to them, the difficulty they are in is not a difficulty. They don’t think it through. So there are many people who never know how to learn a lesson. They don’t know how to seek the truth, they don’t know how to find a path to practice through experiencing God’s word. Are these people who pursue the truth? Others may feel it hard and even complain to heaven, but he doesn’t take it seriously and just let it go vaguely, like there is nothing happened. These are people who don’t pursue the truth. They don’t seek the truth. Aren’t people like this more or less the same as the dead? Those who do not pursue the truth are the living dead, dead but still breathing. People ask, “Do you have any difficulties in your belief in God?” “There’s nothing difficult, it is just going along in believing. I have not been arrested, and I have never been to jail. I have things to eat and things to wear, there’s nothing difficult about it.” People ask again, “Then is there something difficult about doing duties?” “There’s nothing difficult, just do what I’m asked to do, and let it work out whatever way it works out.” “Do you have to seek the truth?” “No, just do whatever I like, do whatever my mind tells me to do!” Does this kind of person live without pressure? They live with an easy life; is that right? There’s no difficulty at all. Finally one day it comes to the end and a difficulty arises, “Oh, I am really dying, it’s just a pity, it’s just a pity, I haven’t pursued the truth!” There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. This serves them right; it’s their fate. Who asked you never to seek the truth, not to practice the truth, and just keep on dealing with things in a slipshod way, feeling that there was no problem, until now finally it comes to this? The major issue has come, a calamity, and you wail. Is there this kind of person? Some people are serious with everything, but others are impatient: “What’s the use of being serious? Why is it that I don’t have so many things to worry about?” Other people pursue the truth, seek the truth, do things according to principles, believing that “These are all problems; all of them need to be solved, and the truth needs to be sought for all of them. I cannot carry out my duty properly without these problems solved.” These people apply themselves with great diligence. But if people are not diligent, they might say, “How come you have so many things to do? This is an issue, that is a problem. You go into everything, you ask about everything. Why is it that I don’t have so many things to worry about?” What sort of people are these? Are they people who pursue the truth? They never seek the truth, and when a problem comes up they just muddle it through, they don’t take things seriously, so careless. Some people are careless in fact, some people just don’t love the truth, don’t take it seriously. If they don’t take it seriously, nothing matters to them, and it only becomes an issue as death approaches, when there’s nothing to eat in dinner time. To be starving is an issue, getting ill is an issue; there’s nothing more than these things—isn’t this the dead? Carrying out duties and never taking them seriously. “What is doing things according to principles? What kind of carrying out duties is adequate carrying out of duties? What is the exact meaning of adequate carrying out of duties?” To continually ponder the word of God like this, you will always discover things; all this is the result of the work of the Holy Spirit. This kind of person is putting their heart into it. To put the heart into it means always pondering appropriate issues. This is the kind of person that can enter the truth: They are always earnest. I really like people who are always earnest. “You are earnest. This is good. I communicate with you. If you have a problem, I will help you to the best of my ability.” I know this kind of people are good. They have potential and they develop rapidly.
Who in fact does not have any difficulty in carrying out his or her duties? There are always difficulties. If people are asked to carry out their duty according to the result they should achieve, how many can be up to the standard? How many can achieve results? For example in preaching the gospel, the object of the gospel is suitable, an object to whom the gospel can be preached. But you fail to testify God’s work clearly and that person runs away. Isn’t this a failure? How come they run away? In which aspect has the truth not been clearly communicated? In which aspect has the person produced conceptions and misunderstandings? Can you find the root causes? If you can’t find the root cause, how many people can you gain by preaching the gospel in this way? If you convey the gospel to ten objects, and ten run away; can such people still carry out their duties? They should be weeded out, as not meeting the standard. How many days have you taken in carrying out this duty? In these days you have eaten for free in God’s house, and not come up with anything. Is this an indebtedness? Can your conscience rest easy? If you eat for free in God’s house, and you feel satisfied: “I’ve found an iron rice bowl!” is this a parasite? What is the difference from Judas? It’s just that you haven’t sold out, but if you meet someone who gives you money, you will sell out, and right away you will have become a Judas. Muddling through your duties and seeking to sponge, isn’t this like stealing the sacrifices yourself? To have no qualms about stealing the sacrifices, is this humanity? For those without humanity, aren’t they the objects to be eliminated by God? All these issues come out one after another. No matter what duties you are carrying out, you have to show finished product, because without finished product you aren’t carrying out your duties adequately. Some leaders and workers never know how to communicate the truth, they only use administrative commands to handle problems. Are such people doing real work? To be a leader or a worker, first of all, how many antichrists have you expelled and how many false leaders have you removed? When you do such things have you fellowshiped about the truth transparently? Do people all understand the truth and agree with what you are doing? Are they all able to see that this is the work of the Holy Spirit, that all has been accomplished by God? This is one aspect of work— expel antichrists and remove false leaders. In some pastoral areas or regions this sort of work has still not been carried out properly. They meet some leaders and workers they know, and they know that these people are antichrists, but they are unable to take action and don’t dare to offend them. They know that they are false leaders but are embarrassed to remove them—is this kind of person carrying out their duty adequately? Is this doing things according to principles? Do they achieve loyalty to God? No. These people are not carrying out their duties adequately. The first problem for leaders or workers is not thoroughly resolving antichrists and false leaders, only resolving a part of them that they don’t know themselves, or that they have no emotional bond with them; but concerning to those who they know or have emotional bond with, they don’t resolve. Such leaders do not have loyalty to God, and they do not handle things according to principles; they do not fulfil their duties adequately. This is a problem. Further, if you are a leader or worker you have to be able to solve the real problems faced by God’s chosen people in their life experience. When the above fellowship about whatever problems, you have to implement them below in the churches. The above cannot speak in too much detail and be too exhaustive. You should fill things out, to let the people understand. Whatever important problems that the above have to resolve, you should implement them and resolve them in the church. However the above arranges things, you implement them below and obey his arrangement. This is what makes a qualified leader or worker. Furthermore, to be qualified leaders and workers you must resolve some practical problems of the brothers and sisters or co-workers by your side, so that they can first understand the truth and enter into reality. If leaders or workers only perform administrative work, and do not resolve the real problems they meet in their life entering and practical experience, these are not qualified leaders and workers. Such people certainly do not have the reality of truth.
With leaders or workers who have the reality of truth, wherever they are, the people near them will receive benefits first of all. What does receiving benefits mean? First it means being supplied, being watered, so that the problems of the people at hand are solved first of all. First of all there will be improvement in being involved in the lives of the people at hand. The evil people, the false leaders, the antichrist beside them will first be handled. Only in this way will the leaders and workers be leaders and workers with the reality of truth. As leaders or workers, if all the chosen people of God around them and their co-workers have many problems that are not solved, and these people’s lives can’t receive any support, there is no entry into their lives, and there is no improvement in their lives, then this is enough to show that these leaders or workers do not possess the reality of truth, are not up to the mark, and are not acceptable. It doesn’t matter whether it is the church, or a group, if among those who carry out their ordinary duties there is a person who pursues the truth, although his or her understanding of the truth is not necessarily very deep, yet when problems arise for the brothers and sisters at hand he or she can help resolve them, and through fellowship whatever difficulties will all be resolved too. The results of those carrying out their duties will be better and better, and this will prove that a person who pursues the truth is openly being the light and salt of the earth, first of all shedding light. Such a person is then someone that God wants to make perfect. You can see who it is that experiences the work of the Holy Spirit. They bear a load. Even if they are not leaders, the situation of the people around them becomes better and better. The people around them first derive benefit, they are provided for, they are watered and supported. The results of the duties they carry out are better and better. This proves that here there are pursuers of truth, that God wants to perfect. Here there are people that the Holy Spirit secretly uses, that the work of the Holy Spirit uses, that the Holy Spirit trains. Although this is not God’s formal witness to them, the Holy Spirit is training such people, leading them. If this kind of person emerges, won’t this benefit the brothers and sisters living with them? Certainly it will, and those people will be blessed by God too. If among a local church or a group of people a false leader, who speaks smoothly and deceitfully, who has knowledge, who has brains, who is able to speak convincingly, who can manipulate people, everyone will respect him or her. On the outside, everyone is so enthusiastic when they perform their duty. But there is no entry into life, there is no change in the disposition of life, and there is no resolution of problems through the truth. Here there is no result, there is only hot air on the outside, and what kind of person is that leader? Is this one who has the work of the Holy Spirit or is this a false leader, a hypocritical Pharisee? This is a false leader. A false leader relies on gifts to do work. After all the hot air has no fruits, in one or two years, two or three years, it will be finished and everyone will be tired of him: “Don’t say those pat phrases. If you say anything more I’ll fill in the rest; what more do you want to say?” This proves that the person is no trusty steed. He or she is a mule, a donkey, isn’t that so? He is really different from people with the reality of truth, who particularly communicate the word of God, who have knowledge, who have experience, who can solve actual problems. For whoever it may be that have difficulty, these people can make things comparatively clear through the fellowship of truth, and after people listen, they will be sincerely convinced. Finally those around will gain supply and support, and they will all make progress. That kind of person has the reality of truth, and can carry out real work; that kind of person has the blessing of God, and has the work of the Holy Spirit! It is only a person with the work of the Holy Spirit who has the blessing of God. Can a person who does not have the work of the Holy Spirit have God’s blessing? It is certainly not possible!
When a person wants to pursue the truth in order to be perfected by God, first of all you must bear a burden for the life entry of God’s chosen people, the work of the church, and in achieving results in carrying out your duties. “Although I am not a leader, and I am not a worker, or a group leader, I have a burden. Whenever someone has a problem I will talk about my experience. First of all I will fulfill my duties well, so that no one can say anything about that. Secondly, when it comes to difficulty, I will seek the truth, and after I have sought the truth and solved the problem, I will communicate how to solve those problems with others.” And the fellowship has solved others’ problems, and found ways to have principled action in the carrying out of their duties, they will also be able to experience, and the result will be that through the influence of that person on the people around him the performance of their duties will become better and better. What will be the function of such a person? Isn’t this the actual work that leaders or workers should do? He actually has done the actual work. Such a person is not a leader or worker in name, while on the other hand those actually chosen to be leaders or workers have not done this actual work. What should we think about this? I think that God’s chosen people should hold another election, and such a person should be chosen as a leader or worker, to replace the leaders or workers who have been unable to do the actual work, and they should be removed as soon as possible. The people who can do the actual work should be instantly promoted and allowed to do it. The results will be guaranteed to be good. This is fair to everyone. If leaders or workers really have sense, and they find that the actual results of their work are so lacking, that it seems there has not been much of a burden, then don’t deceive people, don’t ruin brothers and sisters. “I’ve gone downhill and I should not let it influence others; I can see among these people the ones who are better than I am, who can do a little actual work, who are just better qualified. I recommend them, I give over to them.” Isn’t this good? It is right. Such a person is reasonable. Should the leaders or workers above them accept their recommendation and abdication? In order to protect the interests of God’s house, to do this is of value to God’s house. You should not throw them a bone by your emotions. “You will continue doing it, and according to your reason, you should do it.” Do what? If you keep doing this, you will harm people. You do it blindly by your emotions, you are not respecting the interests of God’s house. To promote those with virtue is a wise choice. What is according to conscience and reason should be done. If you can’t carry out actual work but you still do not commend others and promote others. Wouldn’t that be cheating people? Cheating people with your eyes open!
If there is no result from carrying out your duties, and you can’t produce any concrete products, what is the problem? Shouldn’t you look into it? Is there a reason that duties are not being carried out effectively? Yes, there is. If you are pursuing the truth, should you resolve this issue? Why can’t you achieve results in carrying out your duties? If you fail in a particular point, you must go into this thoroughly. If when you face this big problem you seem unconcerned, uncaring, this is just heartless. Can a heartless person produce witness? And someone who cannot produce witness must ultimately be eliminated. What does a useless and eliminated person God speaks of refer to? It refers to someone who ultimately has not fulfilled his duty, who always deal with it carelessly—nothing works out right, and who never eats enough; this kind of person in God’s eyes is a useless person. Some people are leaders, and nothing they do is ever done well, even when they are taught in whatever way; they are useless in this aspect. If they are to spread the gospel, and however they do it, it does not appeal to people, no-one accepts it, and they are also useless in this aspect. When they do other duties, nothing works, and they are also useless—useless in various ways. Does this kind of person have any reality of truth? Some people say, “If I look after someone’s home, clean up the yard and so on, and I can do this work well—is there any work like this?” Is this kind of work carrying out duties? Is it enough to be considered good deeds? That kind of work has no value, and is not sufficient to be regarded as witness. Have you heard what God has said about this kind of work? “Going to the home of a brother or sister, wiping the table, this is remarkable witness, this is a good deed?” Has God said this? It isn’t witness. It does not involve any truth and has nothing to do with the truth. Is there such work in the kingdom? There isn’t. It is not sufficient as witness. Some people say, “I can only run some errands.” “What kind of errands?” “Send word.” Can this achieve witness? If there is just this little activity it is not sufficient as witness. What is indicated by really achieving witness? Witness is spreading the gospel and gaining people. Making good videos, making a video bearing witness to God’s work, talking about the true experience of repentance, the true witness of change in disposition of God’s chosen people, talking about man’s true knowledge of God, testifying about God to unbelievers, this lets people see the result of the work of God. The contribution of well-made videos to people is quite great. People gain sustenance after seeing the video, it has a contribution, there are benefits. People like these videos. This is duty that people should do, it is worthy of being called true witness, and it is also truly a good deed. This can bring many benefits, and it is also a result achieved through experiencing the work of God. If you do not know something of the truth, of God, you will not be able to do it. The imagery seems simple, and the video doesn’t last long, but if you don’t understand the truth and God, you will not able to do it. In this a definite amount of experience is involved, and isn’t a good deal of effort involved to achieve the result? And not everyone can do it. Some people would like to write an essay but can’t do it, but as soon as they try to write about actual experience, there is something inside them and it feels really good. But how is it worth nothing when they write it down on the notebook? How isn’t there something worthwhile to talk about? But in the end if as soon as you contemplate it, it is still too shallow, it is still that you have too small stature, you think yourself too high, and the result is ineffective. Other people don’t agree, other people don’t praise it. Is it easy to be a leader or worker? You have to resolve real problems. Just don’t think that to be an official in the world when necessary you write a draft, give a talk and that is it. Afterward in the real work whatever you do no-one cares about it, no-one takes it seriously. Further, officials in the world do not get involved in solving problems in thoughts, unbelievers even more do not get involved with entering into life. It’s all management of the administrative system. It is easy to be an official; as long as someone is not stupid, is shrewd, with the philosophy of Satan then it can be done. To be a leader of God’s house it is very different. You must have the reality of truth, you must have good character, you have to make people convinced. Can a person without character, without humanity in God’s family stand as a leader? Within a year or two he or she will be cast aside, and so there is no place for that person if he or she doesn’t have the truth. There is nothing false about this.
The process of carrying out duties in fact is a process of gaining truth. The more the difficulties in carrying out duties, the more the lessons for one to learn, and the more easy it is to understand the truth, to gain the truth. Man’s experience in life has no bounds. Understanding the truth and knowing God has no bounds. Our life always has difficulties, one after another; when one is solved another emerges; when the simple ones are solved bigger, deeper ones come. This is all a challenge for each person. If you don’t seek the truth then this barrier will be impassable; if you don’t seek the truth you will be bound here, you will be put aside, you will be left here. So all those who can seek the truth will ultimately get over and break through all kinds of barriers. The stature of this kind of person becomes mature. Solving a difficulty once means getting over a barrier, and life becomes a step more mature; solving a greater difficulty means crossing a greater barrier, and life progresses a big step further. Isn’t this the way spiritual life grows? If there is no difficulty, if there is no search for truth, can life become mature? Having difficulty is a good thing. Don’t imagine things according to human conceptions; to do so will mean loss of faith and delay in the progress of life. Having difficulties is not a bad thing, it is a good thing. Why is it a good thing? Because these difficulties are what force us to seek the truth. It is because of these difficulties that we can see that our understanding of the truth is so shallow, and that our stature is so small, and it stimulates our determination to pursue the truth all the more. It is because we have these difficulties that we absolutely must seek the truth, solve problems, solve difficulties, and so the more difficulties we solve, the faster our stature develops. If we don’t take these difficulties seriously, give no heed to them, and don’t solve them, still thinking that everything is all right, living at ease, this will ruin us, and this is like being stagnant, being laid aside by God.
Look at how the experience of becoming an honest person needs many steps. The more experience one acquires, the deeper it gets. In the beginning you focus on following the rules. As you do, suddenly something happens. “This time, if I do not lie I will be in trouble. This time, if I do not lie, I’m going to suffer severely. I’m going to take a loss. This is bad. Okay, just for this time, I will lie. I will say one more lie and that is it. I will not do this the next time.” The next time, you encounter another situation, and it is even more serious. You have been caught and the great red dragon interrogates you. You think, “If I do not say another lie, they will beat me to death. Then, I will die in a prison. In order to live, I will lie one more time!” So you tell another lie. This is not the end. They make you complete a written repentance. In addition to the written repentance, they ask you to write something more. They ask you to write how you are bidding farewell to God, that you will never believe again and that you have rejected Him. As you write these words, you become aware of what you are doing, “This is very serious. If I sign this, it means I will open the gates of hell.” If you sign this, it means you are entering hell directly. Do you dare tell a lie? This is troublesome, you are entering the “hornet’s nest.” That is why you must not tell lies. At what point do you tell the truth? Even if death is around the corner, you must tell the truth. You must stand witness. If you do not put the truth into practice in this way, well, a small hole not plugged will make you suffer a big hole! If you tell a lie today, then you will tell another lie tomorrow. Your husband asks you, “Do you believe or not? Tell me the truth! If you say, ‘I believe’, then I will divorce you, we are done!” “This is bad. Should I tell a lie or not?” It’s serious! You’re faced with a decision, this test is big. If you can pass this test by thinking this way, “Even if I die I won’t tell a lie, let alone divorce! It’s not that big a deal! Even if you take all of the family property, I can give it to you without blinking an eye!” is this situation a problem? This test is nothing. As you experience not uttering any more lies, you will feel, “Yes! My heart is rejoicing. I am finally able to not lie anymore.” Then, when you encounter another situation, your heart has treacherous and deceptive intentions, but your mouth says nothing. “This is a new problem. Is this considered lying?” It is unclear. Inside your heart, you say, “I wish you were like this, I wish you were like that. This time I will trap you in this way. This time, I will give you a taste of your own medicine. I am disgusted with you. This is how I am.” Is your heart lying?
There are many instances where your mouth does not utter any lies. However, the corruption originates from within your heart. Lies come from the heart. Even if your mouth does not utter a lie, your heart is devising different schemes. Crafty, sly and treacherous schemes. Isn’t this a deeper version of a lie? A person with experience would say, “It is not difficult to solve the problem of a mouth that utters lies. A heart that lies on the other hand, this is a much deeper lie and even harder to resolve. If there is no truth, then this test is very difficult to pass. This is very difficult to cleanse!” You find that this difficulty is quite significant. Right now, it is not a matter of following the rules. It is deeper than that. It involves your life disposition. It is a matter of the heart. It is a disease of the heart. If it is a disease of the heart, how do you cure it? Can you resolve this by simply following the rules? This will not resolve it! At this point, you should pray to God, “God, I am going through the experience of becoming an honest person. It seems like I am able to not tell lies verbally, but my heart is crooked and full of lies, treachery and schemes. Why is this so hard to expel? That just my mouth does not utter lies does not mean I am cleansed. I can see this. The disease is in my heart! The disease is in my heart, the treachery is in my heart. The lies are hidden within my heart, the lies are disguised and concealed. This is very difficult to eliminate. God, the only thing I can do is rely on You when it comes to this matter. Cleanse my heart! My heart is full of lies and treachery. This is the source of my lies. This is the disposition of my treachery. Help me resolve it!” At this point, hasn’t your experience been deepened? Your experience of becoming an honest person has been deepened. So, he has discovered, “Becoming an honest person does not solely involve making sure no lies come out of your mouth. This does not fix a corrupt disposition. It is not easy to resolve the matter of a heart that tells lies! If your mouth utters lies, just slap it a couple times as punishment, stick a piece of tape over it and practice a little bit of restraint. This might solve the problem. A heart that tells lies, however, is a whole different ball game. Just practicing a little bit of restraint will not solve this problem. This involves changes to one’s disposition and putting the truth into practice. It involves the choices that man makes, the things that man must relinquish, the self he must betray. It involves despising oneself and Satan. It involves a deeper truth. The experience of becoming an honest person is not a simple matter! In the past, I thought that becoming an honest person was easy. Now when I look back, it is definitely not the case!” What’s next after you come to this point? You have discovered these difficulties, that things are not so simple. The situations you encounter are all very complex. You did not have knowledge and experience and you thought the situation was a lot simpler than it actually is. After you have experienced for a period of time, you start to discover many complex situations and you discover the root of all this. You begin to see past the external appearance of the situation and you start to see the essence of it. At this time, you will be stunned. To be a man is not simple. Pursuing the truth is not simple. Entering the reality of the truth is even more difficult. Now, has this person’s experience deepened? How has this person’s experience deepened? How did he get deeper? How is it that there are some people who have believed for 10, 20 years, yet they have not gone deeper? They are able to experience God’s word and experience the truth to this degree. It shows very clearly that they can put the truth into practice. If they do not have this experience, putting into practice, how is it that they have reached today’s depth? Those whose experiences are too superficial and have never gone deeper, what’s wrong with them exactly? Can you see? They have never put the truth into practice, that is why they are never able to go deep, not even if they believe for 800 years! If you want to go deeper in truth, do you need to pay a price? Do you think that you can simply follow the rules and achieve further depth? The experience of becoming an honest person is not simple. It takes 3-5 years to enter the door and for these words to set in. You need 8-10 years before these situations can be resolved. These words are premature.
As you go through the experience of becoming an honest person, sometimes, as you are talking, you make a joke. “But even this joke is not the truth, there is a bit of a lie to it. This is not okay. This joke is not in accordance with the principles of being an honest person.” You will see your discipline gets to a certain level where you begin to analyze the nature of your jokes. You cannot make jokes that transgress the principles of being an honest person. If you tell these jokes, then people will say, “You are still speaking lies.” If this happens, your conscience will not be at peace, am I right? If you say these kinds of lies, then your conscience will not be at peace, “These jokes are still lies!” In order to achieve a conscience that is completely at peace, you cannot utter a single lie. Not even a single lying word. Not even a single casual joke. You cannot say a single lie, no matter what kind of lie it is. Whether it is a lie with a malicious intent or a benevolent intent, they are still lies. Even lies that are jokes are not okay. These are still lies. This is how it is, right? Right. Some people are serious to a certain step, “Can I say lies to Satan?” First, let’s rule out this next situation. You can use wisdom to deal with Satan, this is not considered lying. We can experience in this way, understand? If your experience reaches a certain stage, “I speak the truth to Satan, however there are some things I do not say. I do not say these things and at the same time, I will not tell lies. When it comes to crucial things I must say, when the time comes to say these things, I will still speak the truth,” this is the highest realm. For most people, generally, they should not be asked to act like this, because this principle is unachievable. At first, you put this into practice by saying false things to Satan. This is a method that utilizes wisdom. This is how you experience this process at first. If you go through the process in this way, there will be no difficulty. When your experience reaches a certain stage, you no longer say false things to Satan anymore. You speak wisely when you need to, but if there are things that you do not need to say, then you do not say them. This is similar to when Jesus was being interrogated by Pilate. He did not speak unless He had to. When He had to speak, He spoke the truth. When He had the chance to use wisdom, He did not speak. Not speaking is the highest level of wisdom and you speak the truth at times when you absolutely must speak. When you experience this principle, when you can practice this principle, this is the highest realm. Are you clear about this topic now? If a man can truly experience this realm, would you say that this man still tells lies? Each statement he makes is the truth. Furthermore, he is able to bear true and solid witness for God. This kind of person surely has the reality of the truth! You say that you utilize wisdom and speak false things to Satan, however, he was in the highest realm, he did not say anything and remained silent. Not speaking is the highest form of wisdom. It is even better than speaking false things and utilizing your wisdom. It is on a higher level. This kind of person is quite amazing. This is called the highest realm. When dealing with Satan, at first, it is easier to go through the experience of utilizing your wisdom to speak. Once you have finished experiencing this stage, and when you reach the highest level, it’s much better for you to use that principle. You will speak no lies. Sometimes, when I see that what I am saying is inappropriate, I take a step back and stop speaking. Is this not wisdom? This can be compared to when Satan asks you, “Do you actually believe?” Do not answer. “Do not ask me this, I will not answer you.” “Do you want God or do you want me?” “Do not expect my answer at this moment. You are speaking these words prematurely. One day I will give you a satisfactory reply.” Is it okay to say it this way? For the time being, do not answer if you don’t think it’s the right time. Push it to another day. This is even more astounding. This is even more wise.
No matter what aspect of the truth you experience, it is endless and inexhaustible! When it comes to the truth of obeying God, there are many situations where you know what to do. However, sometimes, there are special circumstances that you do not know how to handle. In those cases, it’s not easy for you to obey. Let’s make an example. When someone gives this kind of example, others would say, “You are a very experienced person. You are really putting effort into experiencing God’s word.” Is it easy to give such an example? It’s not easy to give, right? For example, there is a leader who you are on good terms with. What he says conforms to the truth. You say, “The things he says that conform to the truth, I will obey. If I obey the truth, that means I am obeying God. Now, would you say I am obeying him, or obeying God?” Is this distinguishable? This is not distinguishable. This is like me dealing with you. After I finished dealing with you, you start pondering, “Am I obeying the Brother or am I obeying God?” Is this a question easy to answer? Can you give me a clear answer? “You are communicating the truth and asking us to obey God. Actually, there are many situations that are created by man. I do not know whether or not I am obeying man, or if I am obeying God.” Under these conditions, how do we put obedience to God into practice? If you obey God, how should you deal with people? The average person does not know how to deal with this. When they encounter this situation, they make wild guesses. They do not know how to put it into practice. Someone said, “My dad does not believe in God, but what he says is right. He asks me to pay filial respect to him, because he encounters difficult situations. Should I listen to what he says? If I do not listen, then I am disrespecting my mother and father. Furthermore, what he says is correct, it is in accordance with the truth. Paying filial respect to my mother and father is also a duty that I must fulfill. Now, if I obey my father, am I obeying God or am I obeying the devil Satan?” Is it easy to explain this situation clearly? This is a matter of the heart, you should not talk about it with your mouth. If you believe that what your father says is in accordance with the truth, that it is a duty that you should fulfill and put into practice, then base your decision on obeying God and put it into practice. If what your father says is not in accordance with the truth then you cannot accept it. Not accepting it is not the same as disobeying God because what he says is not in accordance with the truth nor with God’s words. If this is the case, then do not take on the task. If it is a worker or leader that has arranged something, and you think, “I will follow the principles I have accepted in my heart and I will not obey. I will not put it into practice. However, he says I am violating the work arrangements and resisting God. I am confused and I do not know what to do,” can this situation be resolved? Can the arrangements of God’s family be in conflict with the truth of God’s words? They cannot be in conflict with each other. You say to him, “You say it is the work arrangements of God’s family. Now, I will look to see what kind of evidence there is.” If it really is the work arrangements of God’s family, then I will receive it from God and follow the principle of obeying God to put it into practice. If what he says is not true and it is not the work arrangements of God’s family, then he is imposing his own ideas onto the work arrangements of God’s family. He gets other people to put it into practice, claiming it is in the name of following work arrangements. If you do not put it into practice, he will put the blame on you and say you are not obeying God. Whose problem is this? Is this not the mistake of the worker or leader? In this case, you should expose the worker or leader, “Why do you say these things? This is not in accordance with the work arrangements. This is your own interpretation. Your interpretation does not represent the work arrangements!” Do you dare say these things? Some people do not have such thought, and they cannot distinguish what is going on. The worker or leader tells him to do something, and he says, “Fine, I will do it!” The worker or leader says, “Let me tell you, if you do not do this, then you are disobeying God. You do not show God any obedience.” “Oh no, I am not obeying God? This is unacceptable. I will listen to him.” So he follows along. Whatever the worker or leader says, he does. When the worker or leader tells him to do something, he obeys. Is this the same as obeying God? This is blind obedience. Are these kinds of people following principles when they put their beliefs into practice? Are they working according to principles? No. This is frustrating. When he is obeying the arrangements of man in these matters, this is not a normal form of fulfilling duties because he is not working according to principles. Do these kinds of people exist? There are a lot of these types of people. Many people are muddled and do things in this way. This is what is known as a muddled person. These people are misguided in their obedience. They do not care if what the worker or leader says is in accordance with God’s words or the work arrangements of God’s family. They will obey regardless. Some people are being restrained and they can do nothing but obey. This is because if they do not obey, someone will blame them for disobeying God and the work arrangements of God’s family. They feel that they cannot take the blame. This is why as long as someone gives them a decent reason, they will quickly obey. We can see clearly that these kinds of people are muddled. This is misguided obedience. It does not matter what a false leader does or how they arrange things, these people will obey. It does not matter who is the leader, they will still obey. They have no principles. In the end, do you think that they are putting the truth into practice? Are they obeying God? God does not consider this obedience. You will not receive a reward for this type of obedience. Instead, if this mistaken obedience is in opposition to God, there will be retribution. Now, what kind of obedience to God is commended? You must weigh it in your heart, “These words are correct. These words are in accordance with the truth. I must obey because to obey the truth is to obey God. This is obeying the truth and obeying God. I am not obeying anyone else.” This person’s heart sees things clearly, he understands. Why does he do these things? What principles is he upholding? This person obeys in this manner because his heart understands the truth. This person knows that this is obeying God. He obeys the truth and that is why he obeys. His heart has an understanding, it sees things clearly and understands. He is consciously obeying God. God praises this kind of obedience. This is a person who obeys the truth. This is a person who obeys God.
When a person’s heart reaches an understanding of the truth where they do work according to principles and are able to truly obey God and obey the truth, God will examine this person very closely! There are some things that, even though you won’t say it out loud, God already knows. God closely examines man’s ideas and thoughts. You can see that there are some people whose obedience is purely external. They show it when they are in front of others, when they are in front of everyone else. When they encounter a small situation, they dig and search and afterward, they put the truth into practice. Everyone sees this and they exclaim, “Look at this person. They are really serious about the truth. In this situation, after they sought out the truth, they obeyed. This person truly obeys God.” The end result however is that behind everyone’s back, there are many significant matters, even some where they have sinned against God. They choose to do things that serve the flesh. They speak in order to protect their gains. Is this the type of person that obeys God? Externally, it looks like they are doing very well, but behind everyone’s back, what they do is not okay. Is this not hypocritical? This is a hypocrite. This person is truly a Pharisee. This type of person is generally approved of by the majority of people. If there was an election, this type of person would get a lot of votes. Why would they get a lot of votes? Externally, this person is flawless. Only a small number of people can see through them. Those who know them well can see right through to the core. This is why this type of person would receive a lot of votes. That is why even if there is a vote to produce a leader or worker, this is not necessarily an effective result. Some of these leaders and workers have undergone a period of revealing, yet they turn out to be false leaders and antichrists. Why is this? It is because the true face of these people has not been exposed in front of others to see. Before they became leaders, no one was able to see through to what they actually are like. Only looking to see if the external appearance is good does not necessarily mean that they are good. Externally, the things they do may seem good, but the things they do behind people’s back may not be good. What they say in front of others may be good, but what is in their heart may not be good. That is why it is not easy to discern people. If you do not have the truth, you won’t be able to see through this person. Even if you have the truth, if you have not come in contact with this kind of person enough, you will not be able to see through this person. This is the reality of the situation. In the past, I came in contact with a few leaders and workers. Externally, I could see that their performance was quite good and as a result, I had a good impression of them. “Let these people do some work and see what these people are like.” The result was that once I examined the situation and watched these people work, within one to two years, they were revealed to be the false leaders and were eliminated. That is why unbelievers often say, “Time reveals a person’s true character.” There is nothing false about this! God examines the bottom of people’s hearts. We are unable to see through other people. Even if you understand the truth and can discern people, you need to have contact for a long period of time. Without contact, you would not be able to see through to the core. Can you see through just by examining someone’s facial features? For example, you look at his appearance, look at his eyes and how frightening they look. His facial features are quite frightening. He looks like the devil. You’ve seen through him. This person is definitely an evil person. You’ve only looked at this person’s facial features, and you can see he is an evil person. We can distinguish some evil people from their facial features but there are other people whose facial features are not like this. They look quite normal in fact. But in the end, the things they do are not the things that a good person would do. They do bad things. The things they do are quite despicable. As a result, this person is an evil person. There are many of these kinds of people. This has verified that we should not look at a person’s external appearance alone. Rely on long-term contact as a method of seeing through a person. Someone said that for people with a bad humanity or disposition, if they experience God’s work for many years, would they not change? Is this correct? Just experiencing God’s work for many years does not mean there will be change. Only if these people pursue the truth will they be able to change. If they do not pursue the truth, they can believe for 800 years and they still would not change. That is why your impression of people can be too optimistic. You think that it does not matter who believes in God, as long as they believe for a long time, they will change. This is incorrect. Some people respond by asking, “Well, isn’t believing in God for a long time worse than believing in God for a short time?” It is not a case of better or worse. If this person does not pursue the truth, then it is all the same. If this person does not pursue the truth, the longer he believes, the more of an idiot he becomes. Is there a difference between someone who believes for 30 years and does not obtain the truth and someone who believes for 20 years and does not obtain the truth? The longer someone believes, the more stubborn and worse they get. This is how you should look at this situation. So, who should be eliminated first? The person who believes for 10 years and does not change, or the person who believes for 30 years and does not change? Someone said that the person who has believed for 30 years should be eliminated. This is correct. The person who has believed for 30 years has no more hope. The person who has believed for 10 years may still have some hope left.
For those who are serious about fulfilling their duties, their obstacles are many. For those that are not serious, their obstacles are few. Who do you think will advance faster? There are some people who are quite capable. They do not mention everyday situations. They do not seek God in those matters, they resolve them themselves. They say that they do not want to hassle God with so many matters, “God is busy, I can take care of this myself. I am self-reliant.” The result is there are many situations where these people should seek help, but they do not. They should communicate with others, but they do not. Instead, they swallow them up. Do you think these kinds of people will progress fast? Not at all. As you are serious about fulfilling your duties, the more you communicate, the more truth you will obtain. The more you communicate, the clearer the truth will become. If you communicate less, you will obtain less. If you never seek, ask questions or communicate with others and only rely on your own experience to obtain things, as time goes on, your stature will be so small. It will be pathetic! Can you see the difference between people who have a life in the church and those that don’t? If someone has not lived the church life in two years, when you get in touch with them and take a look at their mood, their appearance, they seem a little strange. “How come it seems he is pretty much like an unbeliever? He is not like our brothers and sisters. It is like he is a new convert.” Is this not a reversal? Those who have a life at the church are together with everybody else. They are able to communicate the truth and talk about what is in their hearts. Everybody here is like their family. Wouldn’t you say that everybody here is like family? Everyone is a little more pure, a little more open, almost like children! Isn’t the mood here quite happy? Is this not happiness? Our spirits are happy and comfortable. This is happiness. God and His blessings are present here with our spirits. We are here with our brothers and sisters. There are cheers of joy, talking and laughter. This is a very blessed situation. This is a memory that is hard to forget! There are not a lot of these moments in our lives! Look at how today, there are several score of brothers and sisters growing together in the church. You often see each other on a regular basis. We pursue the truth together, communicate the truth together, communicate God’s words together. We are able to talk about our understanding and the experiences we have with the truth. The more people like this there are, the better the atmosphere becomes. The more people like this there are, the better our mood, the more enjoyable it becomes and the more peace and happiness there is. This kind of life will become a beautiful memory in the future. After the great disaster arrives, you will not be able to enjoy this kind of life anymore. It will have become a beautiful memory! You’ll say, “Those days are great, I understand what happiness is. It is to grow together in the church with my brothers and sisters. We have a spirit of cooperation as we fulfill our duties together. This is happiness!” If there is some conflict among our brothers and sisters, if there is someone who is narrow-minded and petty, if someone is unable to approach situations appropriately or if some people hold prejudices, after a few years, once these uncomfortable situations are recalled, they would feel, “How was I like this? How was I so petty and my spiritual stature so poor? Why was I so childish, ignorant, so rebellious, so inhumane?” This person would feel very disgusted and fed up with themselves. In that period of life, he exposed a lot of corruption, selfishness, immorality and crookedness. This situation has become a part of the past that this person would rather not look back on. The past stings! During this period, keep on pursuing the truth and you will continue to change. When you reveal some corruptions, after a while the corruption will be resolved by communicating the truth. You keep on advancing. In the end, everyone will live in the cooperative and congenial atmosphere, and will love each other. That would be enough for a beautiful memory to emerge. You’ll say, “During those times, it was so good to communicate the truth. Because we kept on communicating the truth, everyone of us was able to love each other. God’s blessings are great. Our spirits were rejoicing!” These are all beautiful memories.
Let’s say in your church life, you do not fulfill your duties well. You encounter many setbacks and endure much dealing. There is no progression. You are still negative and you have a lot of complaints. You are incompatible with everyone else, you have become the black sheep of the group and everybody despises you. How will things be like afterward? The more you reflect, the greater the pain and the more you hate yourself, “Before, I was so inhuman. I am not worthy to face God. When I was doing those loathsome things, there was absolutely no love in my heart. How was my mind so narrow, selfish and despicable? How did I develop such a bad disposition?” It makes sense why you might hate yourself. No matter what, from now on if you fulfill your duties and pursue the truth, in the end, if you can fulfill your duties adequately, achieve some results, then afterward, you will be at peace and feel enjoyment! Look, no matter how much you suffer now, if you can succeed in the end and bear witness, when you look back on these difficult times, would you still consider it to be suffering? This suffering is an empty thing, it is nothing afterward. Let’s say you’ve been to prison and endured torture. After you come out of prison, in 1 year, 2 years, 3 years, maybe 5 years, you will forget more and more. In the end, whatever recollection you have, however much you have suffered, you will forget 80-90% of it. However, your stature and the rewards you reap, these things you will never forget. The period of time where your stature is, the period of time you obtain the most truth, the period of time where the results of the fulfillment of your duties is the best, that is the period of time which will be the most wonderful and memorable. During that period, the church life and the witnessing of the fulfillment of your duties will become beautiful memories that you will never forget. A similar example is, when you are in prison and stand witness, it’s so good to do so. This causes you to feel very pleased. Ten or twenty years later, you want to go back to the prison to have a look; what do you want to see? “At that time, I stood witness here even though I was suffering from torture. I have spread the gospel in this prison!” The experiences you endured in prison have cut deep into your bones. You will never forget it. If you fail to bear witness and you bring shame to God, do you want to go that prison? Definitely not. Why is this? “This was a place that made me sad. I have a lot of regrets about that place. I do not want to turn my head and look back.” Looking back is like ripping open an old scar. Isn’t this the case? In the church, if you secretly start a relationship with one of the brothers (or sisters), or if you secretly do something that degrades someone else, would you be able to face this person? No, you would not. Why would you not be able to face this person? You degraded this person. You played tricks on this person and you humiliated this person. Would you still be able to see this person? If you have degraded someone, the next time when you see this person, you will think of the contemptible things that you have done. These are things that you dare not expose to the light! Your face is dark and you cannot see that person. What would you say to that person? What you have done, they know too well! Even if they do not have the truth, they know whether the things you have done are good or bad. Do you think that they do not understand? That is why I say you should never do evil things. If you do evil things, you will not be able to face anyone. Do not do things that you will regret! If you want to have beautiful memories, you must do benevolent things. Pursue to understand more of the truth. Even if you reveal some corruptions and encounter failures and setbacks, it is not a big deal. Use the truth to resolve it. Afterward, prepare more good deeds. Leave a good impression for everyone else. This will all lead to beautiful memories that you can look back on. If you have many beautiful memories, isn’t this happiness?
What exactly is happiness? How can we explain happiness? It is clear now! First, love your brothers and sisters and coordinate with them harmoniously. Happiness is a joyous heart. Second, loyally fulfill your duties for God. Repay God’s love through fulfilling your duties and satisfy God. Your spirit will be happy. This is an eternally beautiful memory. Once you reflect on it, you will realize it is a happy and beautiful memory. Also, while you are fulfilling your duties, do not stop seeking the truth. Resolve your difficulties and your corruption. In the end, you will have gained a change to your life disposition. You will be able to live out the likeness of a real man. Once you have obtained this bright and wonderful outcome, the failures and corruption of the past will no longer be regrets because the end results are good. “Because of these failures and setbacks, I have obtained the truth. In the end, I have succeeded.” That is why the memories you have in the end will be beautiful. If someone wants to go through this kind of experience, they will say, “At the time, I revealed the types of corruptions and encountered the types of failures and setbacks. Afterward, I sought the truth, my brothers and sisters dealt with or pruned me and helped me. Now, I understand the truth and I have changed.” Isn’t this process a beautiful memory? Are these beautiful memories a form of witnessing? This is beautiful and resounding witness. There is nothing wrong with this! Some of our brothers and sisters are song-writers. They unceasingly work hard on what they are doing and make a continuous progress, and in the end they produce a couple well-known songs that praise God. These songs that have been produced by our brothers and sisters are worth hearing a hundred times. These songs will be transmitted across the globe so that all of mankind can hear them. They will spread all the way to the Millennial Kingdom. One day, when the great disaster arrives, will these brothers and sisters feel enjoyment on reflecting how they fulfilled their duties? When they see brothers and sisters singing the songs that they have written, how does their heart feel? This is enjoyment and gratitude. Once someone has this kind of enjoyment, is this not happiness? That is why fulfilling one’s duty well is happiness, bearing witness and a form of doing good deeds. There is nothing wrong with that!
Let’s talk about some other topics now. As of now, the great disaster is rapidly approaching. When you take a look at the signs, within the next two years, 2017 and 2018, the chances that it might occur are increasing dramatically. For us, our time to bear witness and fulfill our duties for God may fall within these one or two years. It is not a long time. We should see this clearly! When things get chaotic, how do we fulfill our duties? There is no way we can fulfill them; is this the case? Presently, the dangers of the disaster are growing bigger. Earthquakes will erupt very soon. Erupting volcanos foreshadow the coming of earthquakes. Right now, around the world, there are already quite a few volcanos starting to erupt. Once the volcanoes erupt, big earthquakes will follow very rapidly. Tsunamis and plagues will follow the big earthquakes. All of this is certain. Furthermore, the dangers of war are intensifying. This is a sign that the great disaster is rapidly on its way. The dangers of this disaster are increasing. Do we have a lot of time left to fulfill our duties? We do not. That is why, right now, we must increase our efforts in fulfilling our duties. We must use all of our strength to fulfill our duties. Only then will we bear witness for God. Only then will it be considered a good deed. If you keep back a little bit of your strength, after the great disaster arrives, you will be unable to fulfill all of your duties. Then, you will feel regret and remorse! What will you regret? “Why did I not give it my best? Why was I unwilling to suffer to fulfill my duties? Everyone else was willing to suffer. They rose early and went to bed late. Why was I so complacent? Why did I do things at a snail’s pace? I am indebted to God, I am truly indebted to God!” You see, there are only several years’ worth of duties left to fulfill. Even if we work harder, we won’t die or suffer illness from it. We do not have 30 or 50 years to fulfill our duties. We only have a couple years. Even if we give it our all, rising early and sleeping late, we won’t work to death. Why do we not exert ourselves completely? We’re really indebted to God, we do not have a true heart for God. Are we worthy to call ourselves a man? That is why we must increase the speed at which we fulfill our duties and produce more results. There are some people who take three days to complete a task that can be finished within two days. They just delay it for another day. A task that takes five days, they can actually finish it in three days. They just use up five days to do it. What do these people say? “I don’t want to be tired or suffer a lot. I won’t feel tired in this way. This is okay for both of us. Neither of us will lose. Even if I do not receive blessings, I will not have lost a lot.” What kind of person says these things? Do you think the person who said this is a clever person? This person is stupid. Right now, you think that you are so clever and crafty, but one day, you will feel regret and you will hate yourself. You will say, “I am such a wretch, I am inhuman!” We should work hard to find a way to do five days of work in only three days. Three days of work, we complete in two days. Can we improve our efficiency? Do not just scratch the surface. It’s like, “Don’t abuse my body, I do not interfere with anything. Do I not do this every day?” However, compared with those who are capable and outstanding in skill, you fall far short of them. Your efficiency is quite poor. This is one subject.
Another subject is the work of spreading the gospel. Spreading the gospel and bringing people into the church is the greatest good deed that you can do. God has entrusted you with this! What do most people think? “God’s family did not arrange for me to spread the gospel, that is why spreading the gospel has nothing to do with me.” Is this correct? There is some work that is closely related to the work of spreading the gospel. Why do you not make an effort? A good example of this is when you are fulfilling other duties, but you have people that you are close to that you can spread the gospel to. Shouldn’t you give it a try? You believe in God. The people close to you, your relatives and friends, you know some of them might be receptive to God’s work. They acknowledge that there is a God. Why do you not try to spread the gospel to them? Why do you not introduce them to those who spread the gospel? Is this not irresponsible? You think, “I will fulfill the duties that God’s family has set out for me. I will not pay any attention to other duties.” You have not done enough good deeds. At the very least, you need to fulfill your duties adequately and coordinate to spread the gospel to those who are able to accept it. Sacrifice a little bit of your time to cooperate with the gospel team on those close to you who may be receptive to the message. Once there are no longer any people close to you who might be receptive to the gospel, then there is nothing else you need to do. Is this not the correct way to put this into practice? The people who you are close to, your close relatives, are potential converts that you can spread the gospel to. If you do not know how to spread the gospel, refer them to other members of the church or the gospel team and let them do it. Find the time to make introductions. When they are more receptive to receiving the gospel, you can sit down beside these people and the words you say will have more of an impact simply because you are familiar with these people. This is an example of a friend leading the way! Spreading the gospel and converting people is the greatest good deed one can perform. If you do not take on any responsibilities when it comes to this, then your good deeds are too insignificant. You have not made enough preparations to perform good deeds. If you only fulfill one aspect of your duties, and you do not pay heed to other duties and responsibilities, would you say that this kind of person is doing enough good deeds? This person is not doing enough good deeds. God will not commend you very much, He will not be pleased. If you fulfill all the duties and responsibilities that you are supposed to fulfill, then you have prepared enough good deeds. This involves making an all-out effort to love and satisfy God. You must make an all-out effort to adequately fulfill the duties that you need to fulfill. By doing this, you have performed enough good deeds. When the great disaster arrives, does the person who has made these preparations feel any regret? No regret. In the midst of the great disaster, when you reflect on the years that you fulfilled your duties, how would you feel about your accomplishments? If you only fulfilled one aspect of your duties, and you did not care about the other aspects, if you did not spread the gospel, that one aspect that you did fulfill, do you think that it is up to standard? That’s hard to say. Is your heart content? Does your heart rejoice? Is it at peace? I think there is only nervousness and apprehension. Your heart would not be at peace because you only fulfilled a portion of your duties. You do not even know if it was up to standard, so how could your heart be at peace? If you have adequately prepared yourself to perform good deeds and you have also spread the gospel to those that are close to you, “Whatever needs to be done, I have tried my best to do it,” once you reflect back on these things, you will not have any regret! At that time, whatever you were thinking, whatever you chose, once you look back, you will realize it was absolutely the right choice. Your heart will be at peace, am I right? If the great disaster comes and you somehow die, what will you be thinking right before you die? “I have no regrets, I have made an effort. Even though my effort did not satisfy God’s will, I still do not have regrets. I made an all-out effort. I can only reach this level. This is how far my abilities can take me. This is how far my conscience and intelligence can take me. I did not achieve God’s desires, that means we are inhuman, we are not good enough.” This way, at least you won’t have any regrets. If you actually held back a lot of your strength, if there were a lot of things that you could have done but left undone, this is a completely different story. Not only will you have regrets, you will feel remorse and you will hate yourself for being so pathetic and useless. You will hate yourself for being so heartless. You do not have a true heart for God, you deserve to be exterminated, and put to death. At that point, all there will be is weeping and the gnashing of teeth. You have to try your best when it comes to the work of spreading the gospel. The more you do it, the better you should get. Why is this? The more you communicate the truth, the clearer it gets. You will be able to see the truth clearly. Difficulties with spreading the gospel will steadily decrease. If the truth gets clearer but the number of people you convert decreases, what kind of problem is this? This is a problem with the person spreading the gospel. They are lazy and they do not want to do it. Some people who fulfill their duties are actually similar to slaves. They are not devoted to God or willing to do things for God based on an understanding of the truth. They have to be pressured, pushed and disciplined by other people before they can fulfill their duties. If they are not dealt with and pruned for a couple of days, they will regress. They are being pulled, yet they will not move forward. They are being disciplined, yet they fall backward. Don’t you think these people are like slaves? Slaves are not devoted to God because they do not truly obey. They do not have a life of their own. Humans use animals to do things, but the animals must be watched over, pressured and managed. If we do not watch over, pressure, manage or lead them, would the animals make an effort to do the work? I do not believe that if you place an ox in the middle of the field and say, “Ox, go plow the fields!” the ox would go and do it on its own. Someone said, “Well, once I get the ox wagon on the road, then I do not need manage it anymore.” Once it is on the road, do you no longer have to watch over it? Once it spots a ditch with water in it and heads straight for the water, won’t it just overturn the cart? Domestic animals do not understand what humans are saying. They will not proactively follow our instructions and do things on their own. If they could do this, then they would be humans, they would no longer be livestock. When a donkey pulls a grindstone, would you say that it could be left on its own without supervision? Of course not. First of all, you have to put the straddle on the donkey yourself. Second, you have to follow it around with a whip. Third, you have to put the blinders over its eyes, otherwise they will move randomly. That is why we must keep an eye on them when animals are performing their tasks, otherwise, they will not do what we want them to do. Sometimes, we have to force them and whip them. If we don’t whip them, they will stop working. Aren’t there a lot of people that are pretty much like livestock? If no one is watching them, they will goof off and not get anything done. Aren’t there people that are like this? Can these people enter the kingdom? They cannot enter. Livestock do not have humanity, that is why regardless of rank, all workers and leaders have to keep an eye on the effectiveness of these livestock. Since they are livestock, they are not people who can understand the truth, nor are they those who willingly put the truth they understand into practice. Someone has to watch over them. Some people need others to watch over them. If a worker or leader is irresponsible, the work results will steadily degenerate. Now, is this worker or leader up to standard? This worker or leader is not a devoted manager, he or she is unable to take on the responsibility of the work. If there is someone who can take on the responsibility, even if the worker or leader does not go through dealing and pruning, he still can undertake tasks despite criticism and he buries himself in work. This type of person shows a little bit of devotion and reverence to God. If a worker or leader does not inspect or inquire about the work, if they do not deal with and prune him, then he is no longer shouldering his responsibilities. He is careless and wasting his time at work. Does this person have life? Those who do not have life will be expelled and eliminated when the time comes. Not one will remain. If the efforts they make are not up to par, if they do not listen to instructions, they will promptly be eliminated. If they are objectionable to other people, how would God be satisfied with them? Would God bless them?
The responsibilities of spreading the gospel need to be taken on earnestly. Do not have regret later on. Now, the time left to spread the gospel is not long. You say, “How long do I need to be doing this until it all finally ends?” Do not ask this question, this is foolish. Things can end any time. Let me tell you, when disaster arrives, it arrives. Look at what unbelievers say about these next two years, 2017 and 2018, on the internet. The great disaster will arrive. The earth's final days are here. Scientists all recognize this. What kind of evidence would cause scientists to recognize that this is true? They already see it, scientists already see it clearly. It is publicly known to those who have a brain. This is real. Yet you are still blind to it and you refuse to see. You are still muddleheaded and do your work in a slipshod way. You are even more foolish than the unbelievers. You cannot see anything. How much longer do you have to fulfill your duties? Not a lot of time. If you do not make an effort or do some service for God, but hope that after the disasters arrive, you will be protected by God, survive the disasters and enter God’s kingdom, then you are dreaming! Who is God’s kingdom prepared for? It is for those who have fulfilled their duties, those who have suffered tirelessly. Those who are devoted to God and who love God. It is for those who pursue the truth. It is definitely not for those who do not have a shred of life, those who do not revere God in the slightest and those who are not serious and just muddle through in terms of fulfilling their duties. God’s kingdom is for those who suffer tirelessly in order to do God’s will. God lets these people enjoy His kingdom for 1,000 years. If you have not suffered tirelessly, do you think you can enjoy this? Isn’t this an extravagant craving? Isn’t this a delusion?