89. If we have faith in Almighty God with a true heart, continue gathering, read His word, actively perform our duty, and follow Him to the end, is that enough to achieve salvation?
The Answer from God’s Word:
People say that God is a righteous God, and that as long as man follows Him to the very end, He will surely be impartial toward man, for He is most righteous. If man follows Him to the very end, could He cast aside man? I am impartial toward all men, and judge all men with My righteous disposition, yet there are suitable conditions to the requirements I make of man, and that which I require must be accomplished by all men, regardless of who they are. I care not how extensive or venerable are your qualifications; I care only whether you walk in My way, and whether or not you love and thirst for the truth. If you lack the truth, and instead bring shame upon My name, and do not act according to My way, merely following without care or concern, then at that time I will strike you down and punish you for your evil, and what will you have to say then? Will you be able to say that God is not righteous? Today, if you have complied with the words I have spoken, then you are the kind of person whom I approve. You say you have always suffered whilst following God, that you have followed Him through thick and thin, and have shared with Him the good times and the bad, but you have not lived out the words spoken by God; you wish only to run about after God each day, and have never thought to live out a life of meaning. You say that, in any case, you believe God is righteous: You have suffered for Him, run around for Him, and devoted yourself for Him, and you have worked hard despite not receiving any recognition; He is sure to remember you. It is true that God is righteous, yet this righteousness is untainted by any impurities: It contains no human will, and it is not tainted by the flesh, or human transactions. All who are rebellious and in opposition, and not in compliance with His way, will be punished; none is forgiven, and no one is spared! Some people say, “Today I run around for You; when the end comes, can You give me a little blessing?” So I ask you, “Have you complied with My words?” The righteousness that you speak of is based on a transaction. You think only that I am righteous, and impartial toward all men, and that all those who follow Me to the very end are sure to be saved and gain My blessings. There is inner meaning to My words that “all those who follow Me to the very end are sure to be saved”: Those who follow Me to the very end are the ones who will be fully gained by Me, they are those who, after being conquered by Me, seek the truth and are made perfect. What conditions have you achieved? You have only achieved following Me to the very end, but what else? Have you complied with My words? You have accomplished one of My five requirements, yet you have no intention of accomplishing the remaining four. You have simply found the simplest, easiest path, and pursued it whilst thinking yourself fortunate. Toward such a person as you My righteous disposition is one of chastisement and judgment, it is one of righteous retribution, and it is the righteous punishment of all evildoers; all those who do not walk in My way will surely be punished, even if they follow to the very end. This is the righteousness of God.
from “The Experiences of Peter: His Knowledge of Chastisement and Judgment” in The Word Appears in the Flesh
In the words that “those who follow God to the end will receive salvation,” the meaning of “follow” is to stand firm in the midst of tribulation. Today, many believe that following God is easy, but when God’s work is about to end, you will know the true meaning of “follow.” Just because you are still able to follow God today after being conquered, this does not prove that you are one of those who will be made perfect. Those who are unable to endure the trials, who are incapable of being victorious amid tribulation will, ultimately, be incapable of standing fast, and so will be unable to follow God to the very end. Those who truly follow God are able to withstand the test of their work, whereas those who do not truly follow God are incapable of withstanding any of God’s trials. Sooner or later they will be expelled, while the overcomers will remain in the kingdom. Whether or not man truly seeks God is determined by the test of his work, that is, by God’s trials, and has nothing to do with the decision by man himself. God does not reject any person at whim; all that He does is so that man may be utterly convinced. He does not do anything that is invisible to man, or any work that cannot convince man. Whether man’s belief is true or not is proved by the facts, and cannot be decided by man. That “wheat cannot be made into tares, and tares cannot be made into wheat” is without doubt. All those who truly love God will ultimately remain in the kingdom, and God will not mistreat anyone who truly loves Him.
from “God’s Work and Man’s Practice” in The Word Appears in the Flesh
Many people say: “I believe in God and I follow in this way, so I’m bound to obtain something. I do not seek the truth but I follow until the end, and I use all my strength to expend effort and to abandon things in the course of my duties. Even if I commit some transgressions, I can still obtain something.” They do not know what they are saying. With so much corruption within people, how can they change if they do not seek the truth? With the degree of corruption man has, if there is no protection from God, then one can falter and betray God at any time. Do you believe that? Even if you force yourself, you still cannot make it to the end because the final stage is to make a group of overcomers; can it be as easy as you imagine? In the end it is not necessary for people to change 100 percent or 80 percent, but at least there needs to be a 30 or 40 percent change; at the very least you must dig out the things that are embedded deep inside you and change them, and you can reach God’s requirement of 30 or 40 percent, or better yet reach a 60 to 70 percent change, meaning that you possess some truth within you, that you have some things that are compatible with God within you, and that when you encounter some issues it will not be easy for you to resist God, and it will not be easy to offend God’s disposition. In this way, in the end, you will be perfected, and be commended. Some people always think: “Isn’t believing in God just attending meetings, singing songs, listening to the word of God, praying, doing some duties? Isn’t that what it’s like?” No matter how long you have been believers in God, you still haven’t understood thoroughly the significance of belief in God. In fact, the significance of belief in God is incredibly deep, and people have not thought thoroughly about it. In the end, the things within people that are of Satan, and the things of their nature must change, and must become compatible with the requirements of the truth; only this is truly achieving salvation. If you are like what you were in the religion—just shouting some words of doctrine or shouting some slogans, and then doing some actions and good behaviors, and not committing any sins, not committing any obvious sins—this still does not mean that you have entered onto the right track of believing in God. Just because you can abide by the rules, does that mean you are walking the correct path? Does this mean you have chosen correctly? If the things within your nature have not changed and in the end you are still resisting God and offending God, then this is the largest of problems. If you believe in God but do not resolve this problem, then can you be considered as having been saved? What does it mean, Me saying this? It is to make you all understand in your hearts that a belief in God cannot be separated from God’s words, from God, or from the truth. You must choose your path well, put effort into the truth and put effort into God’s words. Do not just have some half-baked knowledge and then consider yourself done, or just understand them more or less. If you go about things in a slapdash way, you will only hurt yourself. A person should not deviate in their belief in God; if in the end there is no God in their heart, and they merely hold a book glancing at it without having a space for God in their heart, then they are finished. … If you are unable to do a small thing according to God’s requirement, then when you face a big matter of principle you will be even less able to fulfill God’s requirement. This means you have no testimony, and this is troublesome, and it proves that you have nothing.
from “Those Who Have Lost the Work of the Holy Spirit Are Most at Risk” in Records of Christ’s Talks