1. What is an honest person? Why does God require people to be honest?
Relevant Words of God:
You ought to know that God likes those who are honest. In essence, God is faithful, and so His words can always be trusted; His actions, furthermore, are faultless and unquestionable, which is why God likes those who are absolutely honest with Him. Honesty means giving your heart to God, being genuine with God in all things, being open with Him in all things, never hiding the facts, not trying to deceive those above and below you, and not doing things only to curry favor with God. In short, to be honest is to be pure in your actions and words, and to deceive neither God nor man. What I say is very simple, but to you it is doubly arduous. Many people would rather be condemned to hell than speak and act honestly. Little wonder that I have other treatment in store for those who are dishonest. Of course, I know full well how difficult it is for you to be honest. Because you are all so clever, so good at measuring people with your own petty yardstick, this makes My work much simpler. And since you each hug your secrets to your bosom, well then, I shall send you, one by one, into disaster to be “schooled” by fire, so that thereafter you may become dead set on your belief in My words. Ultimately, I shall wrest from your mouth the words “God is a faithful God,” whereupon you shall beat upon your breast and lament, “Devious is the heart of man!” What will be your state of mind at this time? I imagine you will not be as triumphant as you are now. And much less will you be as “profound and abstruse” as you are now. In the presence of God, some people are all prim and proper, they take pains to be “well-behaved,” yet they bare their fangs and brandish their claws in the presence of the Spirit. Would you number such people among the ranks of the honest? If you are a hypocrite, someone who is skilled in “interpersonal relations,” then I say that you are definitely someone who tries to trifle with God. If your words are riddled with excuses and valueless justifications, then I say that you are someone who is loath to put the truth into practice. If you have many confidences that you are reluctant to share, if you are highly averse to laying bare your secrets—your difficulties—before others to seek the way of the light, then I say that you are someone who will not attain salvation easily, and who will not easily emerge from the darkness. If seeking the way of the truth pleases you well, then you are someone who dwells always in the light. If you are very glad to be a service-doer in the house of God, working diligently and conscientiously in obscurity, always giving and never taking, then I say that you are a loyal saint, because you seek no reward and are simply being an honest person. If you are willing to be candid, if you are willing to expend your all, if you are able to sacrifice your life for God and stand firm in your testimony, if you are honest to the point where you know only to satisfy God and not to consider yourself or take for yourself, then I say that such people are those who are nourished in the light and who shall live forever in the kingdom.
Excerpted from “Three Admonitions” in The Word Appears in the Flesh
I take pleasure in those who are not suspicious of others, and I like those who readily accept the truth; toward these two kinds of people I show great care, for in My eyes they are honest people. If you are deceitful, then you will be guarded and suspicious toward all people and matters, and thus your faith in Me will be built upon a foundation of suspicion. I could never acknowledge such faith. Lacking true faith, you are even more devoid of true love. And if you are liable to doubt God and speculate about Him at will, then you are, without question, the most deceitful of all people. You speculate whether God can be like man: unpardonably sinful, of petty character, devoid of fairness and reason, lacking a sense of justice, given to vicious tactics, treacherous and cunning, pleased by evil and darkness, and so on. Is not the reason that people have such thoughts because they lack the slightest knowledge of God? Such faith is nothing short of sin!
Excerpted from “How to Know the God on Earth” in The Word Appears in the Flesh
My kingdom requires those who are honest, those who are not hypocritical or deceitful. Are not the sincere and honest people unpopular in the world? I am just the opposite. It is acceptable for the honest people to come to Me; I delight in this kind of person, and I also need this kind of person. This is precisely My righteousness.
Excerpted from “Chapter 33” of Utterances of Christ in the Beginning in The Word Appears in the Flesh
In the dispositions of normal people there is no crookedness or deceitfulness, people have a normal relationship with each other, they do not stand alone, and their lives are neither mediocre nor decadent. So, too, is God exalted among all; His words permeate among man, people live in peace with one another and under the care and protection of God, the earth is filled with harmony, without the interference of Satan, and the glory of God holds the utmost importance among man. Such people are like angels: pure, vibrant, never complaining about God, and devoting all their efforts solely to God’s glory on earth.
Excerpted from “Chapter 16” of Interpretations of the Mysteries of God’s Words to the Entire Universe in The Word Appears in the Flesh
I have held man to a strict standard throughout. If your loyalty comes with intentions and conditions, then I would rather be without your so-called loyalty, for I abhor those who deceive Me through their intentions and extort Me with conditions. I wish only for man to be absolutely loyal to Me, and to do all things for the sake of—and in order to prove—one word: faith. I despise your use of blandishments to try to make Me rejoice, for I have always treated you with sincerity, and so wish for you to also act with true faith toward Me.
Excerpted from “Are You a True Believer in God?” in The Word Appears in the Flesh
Why has God always emphasized that people should be honest? Because it is so important, and it directly relates to whether or not you can be saved. Some people say: “I’m arrogant, self-righteous, I’m quick-tempered, I often expose my naturalness, I’m superficial and vain, I love making people laugh, I always want the approval of others….” These are all mere trifles. Do not always go on talking about them. Regardless of your disposition or personality, as long as you are able to be honest as God requires, you can be saved. So what do you say, is it important to be honest? This is the most important thing, and so it is that in the passage of God’s words, Three Admonitions, God talks about being honest. Despite the fact that God talks about how to live in the spirit, how to live a normal spiritual life, or how to live a proper church life, or how to live out normal humanity in other texts, nowhere does He explicitly tell people what kind of person to be, or how to practice—but in talking about being honest, He shows people a path, and tells them how to put it into practice; this is very explicit. God says, “If you have many confidences that you are reluctant to share, if you are highly averse to laying bare your secrets—your difficulties—before others to seek the way of the light, then I say that you are someone who will not attain salvation easily….” Being honest relates to attaining salvation. What do you say, is being honest important? (Yes.) What God wants are people who are honest. If you are capable of lies and deception, you are a deceitful, crooked, and sinister person, and not an honest person. If you are not an honest person, then there is no chance that God will save you, nor can you possibly be saved. You have not changed into someone who is honest, and you say you are already very devout, that you are not arrogant or self-righteous, that you are well able to pay a price, or that you can spread the gospel and bring many people to God. But you are not honest, and you are still deceitful, and have not changed at all. Can you be saved? (No.) And so these words of God remind every one of us that, to be saved, we must first of all be honest in accordance with the words and requirements of God. We must open ourselves up, lay bare our corrupt dispositions, be able to lay bare our motives and secrets, and search for the way of the light.
Excerpted from “The Most Fundamental Practice of Being an Honest Person” in Records of Christ’s Talks
That God asks for people to be honest proves that He truly loathes those who are deceitful, and that He does not like deceitful people. The fact that God does not like deceitful people means that He dislikes their actions, disposition, and motivations; that is, He does not like the way they do things. Therefore, if we are to please God, we must first change our actions and the way in which we exist. Previously, we relied on lies and pretense to live among people, using these as our capital and as the existential basis, life, and foundation by which we conducted ourselves. This was something that God despised. Among the world’s unbelievers, if you do not know how to be manipulative or deceitful, then it could be difficult for you to stand firm. You could only tell lies, engage in trickery, and use conniving and insidious methods to protect and camouflage yourself in order to obtain a better life. In God’s house, it is precisely the opposite: The more deceitful you are, and the more you employ sophisticated manipulation to put on an act and package yourself, the less able you are to stand firm and the more God despises and rejects you. God has predestined that only honest people can be a part of the kingdom of heaven. If you are not honest, and if, in your life, your practice is not directed toward being honest and you do not reveal your own true face, then you will never have any chance of gaining God’s work or praise.
Excerpted from “The Most Fundamental Practice of Being an Honest Person” in Records of Christ’s Talks
Only if people seek to be honest can they know how deeply corrupted they are and whether or not they have any human likeness; only when they are practicing honesty can they become aware of how many lies they tell and how deeply hidden their deceit and dishonesty are. Only while having the experience of practicing being honest can people gradually come to know the truth of their own corruption and recognize their own nature essence, and only then can their corrupt dispositions be constantly purified. Only in the course of their corrupt dispositions being constantly purified will people be able to gain the truth. Take your time experiencing these words. God does not perfect those who are deceitful. If your heart is not honest—if you are not an honest person—then you will never be gained by God. Likewise, you will never gain the truth, and will also be incapable of gaining God. If you cannot gain God and you do not understand the truth, then what does this mean? It means that you are hostile to God, you are incompatible with Him, and He is not your God. And if God is not your God, then you cannot attain salvation. If you cannot attain salvation, you will forever be a bitter enemy of God, and your outcome will be set. Thus, if people wish to be saved, then they must start by being honest. There is a sign that marks those who shall ultimately be gained by God. Do you know what it is? It is written in Revelation, in the Bible: “And in their mouth was found no lie; they are without blemish.” Who are “they”? They are those who are perfected and gained by God, and are saved. How does God describe these people? What are the characteristics and the expressions of their actions? (They are without blemish. They speak no lies.) You should all understand and grasp what speaking no lies means: It means being honest. What does it mean to be without blemish? How does God define someone who is without blemish? Those without blemish are able to fear God and shun evil; they are the ones who can abide by God’s way. Such people are perfect in God’s eyes; they are without blemish.
Excerpted from “Six Indicators of Life Growth” in Records of Christ’s Talks