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56. The Principles of Standing Witness and Bearing Witness

Practice and Exercises for Principled Behavior

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56. The Principles of Standing Witness and Bearing Witness

1. You must focus on eating and drinking the words of God and truly know God’s work. By seeking the truth and understanding God’s will during trials will you be able to stand witness;

2. Have the faith of Job during disasters and trials, and no matter how much pain or torment you suffer, it is better to curse yourself than to complain against God or betray God;

3. Be able to obey all of God’s orchestrations and arrangements during trials without complaint and, like Peter, be able to love God utterly and obey God till death;

4. No matter how Satan deceives, tempts, disturbs or oppresses you, always be able to see through its cunning schemes, be absolutely devoted to God, and shame Satan.

Relevant Words of God:

If you do not know God’s disposition, then you will inevitably fall during trials, because you are unaware of how God makes people perfect, and by what means He makes them perfect, and when God’s trials come upon you and they don’t match your conceptions, you will be unable to stand firm. God’s true love is His entire disposition, and when God’s entire disposition is shown to you, what does this bring to your flesh? When God’s righteous disposition is shown to you, your flesh will inevitably suffer much pain. If you don’t suffer this pain, then you cannot be made perfect by God, nor will you be able to devote true love to God. If God makes you perfect, He will surely show His entire disposition to you. From the time of creation until today, God has never shown His entire disposition—but during the last days He reveals it to this group of people whom He has predestined and selected, and by making people perfect He lays bare His dispositions, through which He makes complete a group of people. Such is God’s true love for people. Experiencing God’s true love for them requires that people endure extreme pain, and pay a high price. Only after this will they be gained by God and be able to give their true love back to God, and only then will God’s heart be satisfied. If people wish to be made perfect by God, and if they wish to carry out His will, and fully give their true love to God, then they must experience much suffering and many torments from the circumstances, to suffer pain worse than death, ultimately they will be forced to give their true heart back to God.

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

How should people cooperate with God during this stage of His work? God is currently testing people. He is not uttering a word; He is concealing Himself and not directly contacting people. From the outside, it looks like He’s not working, but the truth is that He is still working within man. Anyone who is pursuing entry into life and has a vision for their pursuit of life does not have doubts, even if they do not fully understand God’s work. In the midst of trials, even when you don’t know what God wants to do and what work He wants to accomplish, you should know that God’s intentions for mankind are always good. If you pursue Him with a true heart, He will never leave you, and in the end He will surely perfect you, and bring people to an appropriate destination. Regardless of how God is currently testing people, there will be one day when He will provide people with an appropriate outcome and give them the appropriate retribution based on what they have done. God will not lead people to a certain point and then just cast them aside and ignore them. This is because He is a faithful God. At this stage, the Holy Spirit is doing the work of refinement. It is refining every single person. In the steps of work of the trial of death and the trial of chastisement, the refinement at that time was all refinement through words. For people to experience God’s work, they must first understand His current work and understand how mankind should cooperate. This is something that everyone should understand. No matter what God does, whether it’s refinement or if He’s not speaking, every step of God’s work is not in line with mankind’s conceptions. They all break apart and break through people’s conceptions. This is His work. But you must believe when God’s work reaches a certain stage, no matter what He will not put all mankind to death. He gives both promises and blessings to mankind, and all those who pursue Him will be able to gain His blessings, while those who do not will be thrown out by God. This depends on your pursuit.

from “You Ought to Maintain Your Devotion to God” in The Word Appears in the Flesh

While undergoing trials, it’s normal for people to be weak, or have negativity within them, or to lack clarity on God’s will or their path for practice. But in any case, you must have faith in God’s work, and not deny God, like Job. Although Job was weak and cursed the day of his own birth, he did not deny that all things in human life were bestowed by Jehovah, and that Jehovah is also the One to take it all away. No matter how he was tested, he maintained this belief. No matter what kind of refinement you undergo in your experiences from God’s words, God requires mankind’s faith. This way, what is perfected are people’s faith and aspirations. When you cannot touch or see it, it is under these circumstances that your faith is required. People’s faith is required for when something cannot be seen by the naked eye, and your faith is required for when you cannot let go of your own notions. When you are not clear on God’s work, what is required is your faith and that you take a firm stance and stand witness. When Job reached this point, God appeared to him and spoke to him. That is, it is only from within your faith that you will be able to see God, and when you have faith God will perfect you. Without faith, He cannot do this. God will bestow upon you whatever you hope to gain. If you don’t have faith, you cannot be perfected and you will be unable to see God’s actions, much less see His omnipotence. When you have faith and you can touch His actions in your practical experience, God will appear to you, and He will enlighten and guide you from within. Without that faith, God will be unable to do that.

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If you are like Job, who in the midst of trials cursed his own flesh and did not complain against God, and was able to detest his own flesh without complaining or sinning through his words, that is standing witness. When you undergo refinements to a certain degree and can still be like Job, utterly obedient in front of God and without other requirements of Him or your own notions, then God will appear to you.

from “Those Who Are to Be Made Perfect Must Undergo Refinement” in The Word Appears in the Flesh

If people don’t have any confidence, it’s not easy to continue down this path. Everyone can see now that God’s work is not at all in line with people’s notions—no matter how much work He does or how much He speaks, it is completely out of line with human notions. This requires people to have confidence and resolve to be able to stand by what they have already seen and what they have gained from their experiences. No matter what God does in people, they must uphold what they themselves possess, be sincere in front of God, and be devoted to Him to the very end. This is mankind’s duty. This is what people should do—they should uphold this. Belief in God requires obedience of Him and experience of His work. God has done so much work—it could be said that for people it is all perfection, it’s all refinement, and even more, it’s all chastisement. There has not been a single step of God’s work that has been in line with human notions; what people have enjoyed is God’s harsh words. When God comes, people should enjoy His majesty and His wrath, but no matter how harsh His words are, He comes to save and perfect mankind. As creatures, people should fulfill the duties that they ought to, and stand witness for God in the midst of refinement. In every trial they should uphold the witness that they should bear, and bear a resounding witness for God. This is an overcomer. No matter how God refines you, you remain full of confidence and never lose confidence in God. You do what man should do. This is what God requires of man, and man’s heart should be able to fully return to Him and turn toward Him at every single moment. This is an overcomer. Those who God refers to as overcomers are those who are still able to stand witness, maintain their confidence, and their devotion to God when under the influence of Satan and under siege by Satan, that is, when within the forces of darkness. If you are still able to maintain a heart of purity and your genuine love for God no matter what, you stand witness in front of God, and this is what God refers to as being an overcomer. If your pursuit is excellent when God blesses you, but you retreat without His blessings, is this purity? Since you are certain that this way is true, you must follow it until the end; you must maintain your devotion to God. Since you have seen that God Himself has come to the earth to perfect you, you should give your heart entirely to Him. No matter what He does, even if He determines an unfavorable outcome for you at the very end, you can still follow Him. This is maintaining your purity in front of God. Offering a holy spiritual body and a pure virgin to God means keeping a heart of sincerity in front of God. For mankind, sincerity is purity, and being able to be sincere toward God is maintaining purity.

from “You Ought to Maintain Your Devotion to God” in The Word Appears in the Flesh

When you face sufferings you must be able to not consider the flesh and not complain against God. When God hides Himself from you, you must be able to have the faith to follow Him, to maintain your previous love without allowing it to falter or disappear. No matter what God does, you must submit to His design, and be more willing to curse your own flesh than to complain against Him. When you are faced with trials you must satisfy God in spite of any reluctance to part with something you love, or bitter weeping. Only this can be called true love and faith. No matter what your actual stature is, you must first possess the will to suffer hardship as well as true faith, and you must have the will to forsake the flesh. You should be willing to personally endure hardships and suffer losses to your personal interests in order to satisfy God’s will. You must also have a heart of regretting yourself, that you weren’t able to satisfy God in the past, and be able to regret yourself now. Not a single one of these can be lacking and God will perfect you through these things. If you lack these conditions, you cannot be perfected.

from “Those Who Are to Be Made Perfect Must Undergo Refinement” in The Word Appears in the Flesh

You must be able to follow to the very end regardless of whether there are any prospects, and you must not lose faith in God regardless of the environment. Ultimately, you must achieve two aspects of testimony: the testimony of Job—obedience unto death—and the testimony of Peter—the supreme love of God. In one respect, you must be like Job: He had no material possessions, and was beset by the pain of the flesh, yet he did not forsake the name of Jehovah. This was Job’s testimony. Peter was able to love God unto death. When he died—when he was put on the cross—he still loved God; he did not think of his own prospects or pursue glorious hopes or extravagant thoughts, and he sought only to love God and to obey all of God’s arrangements. Such is the standard you must achieve before you can be considered to have borne testimony, before you become someone who has been made perfect after having been conquered.

from “The Inside Truth of the Conquering Work (2)” in The Word Appears in the Flesh

Thus, during these last days you must bear testimony to God. No matter how great your suffering, you should go on to the very end, and even at your last breath, still you must be faithful to God, and at the mercy of God; only this is truly loving God, and only this is the strong and resounding testimony. When you are tempted, you should say: “My heart belongs to God, and God has already gained me. I cannot satisfy you—I must devote my all to satisfying God.” The more you satisfy God, the more God blesses you, and the greater the strength of your love for God; so, too, will you have faith and resolve, and will feel that nothing is more worthy or significant than a life spent loving God. It can be said that man has but to love God to be without sorrow. Although there are times when your flesh is weak and you are beset by many real troubles, during these times you will truly rely on God, and within your spirit you will be consoled, and you will feel certainty, and that you have something to depend upon. In this way, you will be able to overcome many environments, and so you will not complain about God because of the anguish that you suffer; you will want to sing, dance, and pray, to assemble and commune, to give thought to God, and you will feel that all the people, matters, and things around you that are organized by God are fitting. … If you do not pursue for the sake of happiness, but in order to satisfy God and to not be accused by Satan, then such pursuit will give you great strength to love God. Man is able to carry out all that is spoken by God, and all that he does is able to satisfy God—this is what it means to be possessed of reality. Pursuing the satisfaction of God is using the love of God to put His words into practice; regardless of the time—even when others are without strength—inside of you there is still a heart which loves God, which profoundly yearns for God, and misses God. This is real stature. Just how great your stature is depends on how great your love of God is, on whether you are able to stand fast when tested, whether you are weak when a certain environment comes upon you, and whether you can stand your ground when your brothers and sisters reject you; the arrival of the facts will show just what your love of God is like.

from “Only by Experiencing Painful Trials Can You Know the Loveliness of God” in The Word Appears in the Flesh

In every step of work that God does within people, externally it appears to be interactions between people, as if born of human arrangements, or from human interference. But behind the scenes, every step of work, and everything that happens, is a wager made by Satan before God, and requires people to stand firm in their testimony to God. Take when Job was tried, for example: Behind the scenes, Satan was making a bet with God, and what happened to Job was the deeds of men, and the interference of men. Behind every step that God does in you is Satan’s wager with God—behind it all is a battle. For example, if you are prejudiced toward your brothers and sisters, you will have words that you want to say—words that you feel may be displeasing to God—but it will be hard for you inside, and at this moment, a battle will commence within you: Do I speak or not? This is the battle. Thus, in everything there is a battle, and when there is a battle within you, thanks to your actual cooperation and actual suffering God works within you. Ultimately, inside you are able to put the matter aside and the anger is naturally extinguished. Such is the effect of your cooperation with God. Everything you do requires you to pay a certain price in your efforts. Without actual hardship, you can’t satisfy God, it does not even come close to satisfying God, and you are just saying empty slogans! Can these empty slogans satisfy God? When God and Satan do battle in the spiritual realm, how should you satisfy God, and how should you stand firm in your testimony to Him? You should know that everything that happens to you is a great trial and the time when God needs you to bear testimony. Externally, they might not seem like a big deal, but when these things happen they show whether or not you love God. If you do, you will be able to stand firm in your testimony to Him, and if you have not put the love of Him into practice, this shows you are not someone who puts the truth into practice, that you are without the truth, and without life, that you are chaff! Everything that happens to people is when God needs them to stand firm in their testimony to Him. Nothing major has happened to you at the moment, and you do not bear great testimony, but every detail of your daily life relates to the testimony to God. If you can win the admiration of your brothers and sisters, your family members, and everyone around you; if, one day, the unbelievers come, and admire all that you do, and see that all that God does is wonderful, then you will have borne testimony. Although you have no insight and your caliber is poor, through God’s perfection of you, you are able to satisfy Him and be mindful of His will. Others will see what great work He has done in people of the poorest caliber. People come to know God, and become overcomers before Satan and loyal to God to an extent. So none will have more backbone than this group of people. This will be the greatest testimony. Although you are incapable of doing great work, you are able to satisfy God. Others can’t put aside their conceptions, but you can; others can’t bear testimony to God during their actual experiences, but you can use your actual stature and actions to repay God’s love and bear resounding testimony to Him. Only this counts as actually loving God. … You are incapable of doing any great work, and should focus on satisfying God by experiencing His words in real life, and bearing strong and resounding testimony that brings shame upon Satan. Although your flesh will remain unsatisfied and have suffered, you will have satisfied God and brought shame upon Satan. If you always practice in this way, God will open up a path before you. When, one day, a great trial comes, others will fall down, but you will still be able to stand firm: Because of the price you have paid, God will protect you so you can stand firm and not fall down.

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

Suffering in the course of practicing the truth is inevitable; if, when they put the truth into practice, everything within them were right, then they would not need to be made perfect by God, and there would be no battle, and they would not suffer. It is because there are many things within people that are not fit for use by God, and much of the rebellious disposition of the flesh, that people need to learn the lesson of rebelling against the flesh more profoundly. This is what God calls the suffering that He asked man to undergo with Him. When you encounter difficulties, hurry up and pray to God: “O God! I wish to satisfy You, I wish to endure the final hardship to satisfy Your heart, and regardless of how great the setbacks I encounter, still I must satisfy You. Even if I have to give up my whole life, still I must satisfy You!” With this resolve, when you pray thus you will be able to stand firm in your testimony. Each time they put the truth into practice, each time they undergo refinement, each time they are tried, and each time God’s work comes upon them, people endure extreme pain. All of this is a test for people, and so within all of them there is a battle. This is the actual price that they pay. … If, on the road to loving God, you are able to stand on the side of God when He does battle with Satan, and you do not turn back to Satan, then you will have achieved the love of God, and you will have stood firm in your testimony.

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

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