17. What is a false Christ?
Relevant Words of God:
If a man calls himself God yet is unable to express the being of divinity, do the work of God Himself, or represent God, he is undoubtedly not God, for he has not the essence of God, and that which God can inherently achieve does not exist within him.
from “The Difference Between the Ministry of the Incarnate God and the Duty of Man” in The Word Appears in the Flesh
Apart from Christ, those who falsely claim to be Christ do not have His qualities. When juxtaposed against the arrogant and self-exalting disposition of those false Christs, it becomes apparent what manner of flesh is truly Christ. The more false they are, the more such false Christs show off themselves, and the more capable they are of working signs and wonders to deceive man. False Christs do not have the qualities of God; Christ is not tainted by any element belonging to false Christs.
from “The Substance of Christ Is Obedience to the Will of the Heavenly Father” in The Word Appears in the Flesh
There are some who are possessed by evil spirits and cry out vociferously, “I am God!” Yet, in the end, they are unable to stand fast, for they are wrong in what they represent. They represent Satan, and the Holy Spirit pays them no heed. However highly you exalt yourself or however strongly you cry out, you are still a created being and one that belongs to Satan. I never cry out, “I am God, I am the beloved Son of God!” But the work I do is God’s work. Need I shout? There is no need for exaltation. God does His own work Himself and does not need man to accord Him a status or give Him an honorific title: His work is sufficient to represent His identity and status. Prior to His baptism, was not Jesus God Himself? Was He not the incarnate flesh of God? Surely it cannot be said that it was only after receiving witness that He became the only Son of God? Long before He began His work, was there not already a man by the name of Jesus? You are unable to bring forth new paths or to represent the Spirit. You cannot express the work of the Spirit or the words that He speaks. You are unable to do the work of God Himself, and that of the Spirit you are unable to do. The wisdom, wonder, and unfathomability of God, and the entirety of the disposition by which God chastises man: all of these are beyond your capacity to express. So it would be useless to try to claim to be God; you would have only the name and none of the substance. God Himself has come, but no one recognizes Him, yet He continues on in His work and does so in representation of the Spirit. Whether you call Him man or God, the Lord or Christ, or call Her sister, it does not matter. But the work He does is that of the Spirit and represents the work of God Himself. He does not care about the name by which man calls Him. Can that name determine His work? Regardless of what you call Him, as far as God is concerned, He is the incarnate flesh of the Spirit of God; He represents the Spirit and is approved by the Spirit. If you are unable to make way for a new age, or to bring the old to an end, or to usher in a new age, or to do new work, then you cannot be called God!
from “The Mystery of the Incarnation (1)” in The Word Appears in the Flesh
If, during the present day, there is to emerge a person who is able to display signs and wonders, and can cast out demons, and heal the sick, and perform many miracles, and if this person claims that they are Jesus who has come, then this would be the counterfeit of evil spirits, and their imitation of Jesus. Remember this! God does not repeat the same work. Jesus’ stage of work has already been completed, and God will never again undertake that stage of work. The work of God is irreconcilable with the conceptions of man; for example, the Old Testament foretold the coming of a Messiah, but it turned out that Jesus came, so it would be wrong for another Messiah to come again. Jesus has already come once, and it would be wrong if Jesus were to come again this time. There is one name for every age, and each name is characterized by the age. In the conceptions of man, God must always display signs and wonders, must always heal the sick and cast out demons, and must always be just like Jesus, yet this time God is not like that at all. If, during the last days, God still displayed signs and wonders, and still cast out demons and healed the sick—if He did exactly the same as Jesus—then God would be repeating the same work, and the work of Jesus would have no significance or value. Thus, God carries out one stage of work in every age. Once each stage of His work has been completed, it is soon imitated by evil spirits, and after Satan begins to follow on the heels of God, God changes to a different method; once God has completed a stage of His work, it is imitated by evil spirits. You must be clear about these things.
from “Knowing God’s Work Today” in The Word Appears in the Flesh
The Man’s Fellowship:
Now do you know what a false Christ is? False Christs are people pretending to be Christ. They say that they are Christ, that they have been sent by God, that they are Christ, the Son of God, that they have God’s Spirit within them, and that they are here now to carry out new work. They are pretending to be Christ, they actually do not have any substance of divinity, and they are false Christs.
from “How to Stand Witness Amidst Disasters and Trials” in Sermons and Fellowship on Entry Into Life (V)
Those of us who experience the work of God in the last days all see one fact clearly: When God has done a new stage of work, Satan and all kinds of evil spirits follow shortly thereafter to imitate and impersonate the work of God in order to deceive people. The Lord Jesus healed and cast out demons, and Satan and evil spirits healed and cast out demons in imitation. The Holy Spirit bestowed tongues upon the people, then evil spirits manipulated people to speak in so-called “tongues” that no one could understand. However, even though evil spirits will do all kinds of things to pander to the various needs of man and even though they will perform some supernatural acts to deceive people, Satan and evil spirits do not have the least bit of the truth. So, they will never be able to bestow the truth upon man. Based on this point, you can distinguish the true Christ from the false ones.
… With God’s Spirit materialized in the flesh, He carries out His work in a humble and hidden manner. He experiences for Himself all the pain and suffering that man goes through, without a single complaint. As Christ, He has never shown Himself off or praised Himself, and He certainly has never been condescending, nor has He ever been opinionated. He completely emits the honor and holiness of God. This reveals the incomparably honorable life essence of God, and that He is precisely the embodiment of love. The work carried out by false Christs and evil spirits is the exact opposite of the work carried out by Christ. Evil spirits are always quick to claim that they themselves are Christ. They claim that if you do not listen to them, then you will not be able to enter the kingdom. They do everything they can for people to see them, they brag, they show off, they praise themselves, or they perform some miracles to deceive people. After people are deceived into acceptance, they will collapse unconsciously, because they have not been provided with the truth for a long time. There are so many examples of this, because false Christs are not the truth, the way, or the life. So, they have no way. Those who follow them will be humiliated sooner or later, and if they try to turn themselves around at that time, it will be too late. So, the most important thing is to determine that Christ alone is the truth, the way and the life. False Christs absolutely do not have any of the truth. Various kinds of evil spirits absolutely do not have any of truth. No matter how much they say, no matter how many books they write, there will not be a single truth in any of them. This is absolute. Christ alone can express the truth. To distinguish things based on this point is the most crucial matter. In addition, Christ has never forced people to accept Him or acknowledge Him. Those who believe in Him will come to see the truth more and more clearly, and the way will become more and more illuminated. This proves that Christ alone can save man, because Christ is the truth. False Christs are only able to say a few things that imitate Him, words that misrepresent facts. There is no truth whatsoever within these words. They will only lead man into darkness, bring man disaster, and the work of evil spirits. You absolutely will not be saved if you follow false Christs, you will only become more and more corrupted by Satan. You will become more and more numb and dull-witted unto the point of your destruction. Those who follow false Christs are like a blind man boarding a boat of thieves—they are choosing their own perdition!
from Preface to Dissecting Cases of Beguilement by False Christs and Antichrists
Anyone who impersonates Christ’s words to deceive people is a false Christ. All false Christs are possessed by evil spirits and speak to deceive people. How should you distinguish a false Christ who keeps speaking to deceive people? If you merely look at some of the false Christ’s words, you would scratch your head and be unable to see through what the evil spirit actually wants to do. If you continue to track this evil spirit and consider everything that it has said, it is very easy to see what it actually is, what it is doing, what it is actually saying, what it is plotting to do to people and what path it is offering people—these things will make it very easy to discern this evil spirit. We see many of the same characteristics in the things evil spirits say. They can only imitate God’s words, but cannot capture the essence of God’s words. God’s words have a context and a purpose. The eventual purpose and effect of God’s utterances is very clear and you can see the authority and the power in God’s words. They can touch one’s heart and move one’s soul. But the words of evil spirits and Satan have no context and no effect. They are like a pool of stagnant water. People feel dull in their hearts after reading them and nothing can be achieved. So evil spirits of all kinds do not hold any truths and are certainly murky and dark inside. Their words cannot bring people light and cannot show people the path they should follow. The evil spirits do not say clearly what their purpose is nor what they are putting across and there is no mention of anything related to the essence and root of the truth. Almost none. Nothing that people should understand or get can be found in the words of evil spirits. Therefore, the words of evil spirits can only confuse people and make people murky and dark inside. They cannot supply people with anything. From this we can see that the inherent nature of evil spirits is evil and dark. They have no life but are full of the breath of death. They are indeed negative and should be cursed. There is no truth at all in the speech of evil spirits. It is complete nonsense and makes people feel nauseous, disgusted and like vomiting, as if they have eaten dead flies. If people are in pursuit of the truth and possess the aptitude to receive God’s words, they will distinguish the words of evil spirits after reading them. Those who do not understand spiritual matters and do not have the ability to receive the words of God will certainly be deceived by the words of evil spirits. All those people whom the Holy Spirit has enlightened and illuminated, who have an understanding of God’s words and who understand some truths will naturally distinguish the evil spirits’ lies. They will be able to see that there is no truth in any words spoken by evil spirits. They do not have what God has and is, nor do they have the slightest power or authority. Their words are a world of difference from God’s words. To use a more appropriate metaphor, the words of evil spirits are almost the same in nature as the words of an unreasonable fellow who possesses no truths. They are purely a pack of lies and nonsense.
from “How to Discern the Demonic Speech and Fallacies of Evil Spirits, False Christs and Antichrists” in Selected Annals of the Work Arrangements of The Church of Almighty God