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One noon in late fall, Hanmei had just finished the domestic chores when she heard a sudden burst of knocking at the door. A sister in the church came to tell her that the CCP police would put the believers who got arrested before into prison again and that some brothers and sisters had been arrested these past few days. So she asked Hanmei to leave home quickly to hide herself. When Hanmei heard of this news, she couldn’t help but remember the scenes of her being arrested two years ago.
In 2012, it was the time to spread the kingdom gospel of God. For the sake of repaying God’s love, Hanmei devoted herself to the busy work of the gospel with her brothers and sisters. But she had never thought that they were arrested by the police when they were preaching the gospel. After several days, because Hanmei’s husband was paralyzed, and one of his relatives, the village headman, went to beg the police and paid 950 yuan in fines, eventually, they reluctantly agreed to release her. When Hanmei thought that she was arrested and subject to fines, she was incredibly angry because they didn’t do anything illegal but only preached the gospel.
But unexpectedly, that wasn’t over. Now the CCP would recapture the Christians who had previously been arrested. The evil party is so lawless! Where is rationality? Where is fairness? Hanmei was filled with hatred for the CCP. Facing this environment, she thought: If I leave home to hide myself, then there is no one to look after my husband. If not, I’ll be arrested again. When she thought of this, she shed tears unknowingly. Looking at her husband and then thinking of what the sister said just now, she realized that once she was arrested this time, she wouldn’t be set free easily. In this emergency circumstance, she had to temporarily entrust her husband to her married daughter and left home hurriedly.
After three months, because Hanmei worried about her paralyzed husband and was afraid that her daughter was too busy to look after her father, Hanmei wanted to go back home. One evening, when she had just gotten home and was cooking the meal, suddenly, one of her neighbors forced his way into her house, pointed at her and said loudly, “You’re finally back. You can’t escape again!” With that, he phoned the police. When the sudden matter came upon her, Hanmei was trembling with fear and continuously prayed to God in her heart and asked God to guide her. Only then did she know that the CCP had arranged for informers to monitor her around her house. Now, she regretted that she had come back home blindly, but everything was late. With the neighbor blocking the gate fiercely, Hanmei wasn’t able to get away even though she wanted to. In panic, she prayed to God again, “God. Facing this matter, I don’t know what to do. Soon later, the police will come to arrest me again. Please protect my heart, guide me and give me strength. Even if arrested by the CCP, I won’t betray You like Judas. May You lead me.” After the prayer, a thought arose in her mind: Climb over the east wall near the main room. She realized that this was God’s guidance. So she hurried to climb over the wall, and crouched down. Just then, she heard a few people force their way into her courtyard. One of them said hurriedly, “Where’s Hanmei? Where’s she?” Hanmei’s neighbor answered, “Just now, she was at the door of the main room.” As they were speaking, they entered the room. Soon, they came out of it. Hanmei heard a strange man say, “Damn it! We let her get away again …” At the time, Hanmei incessantly cried to God. Suddenly, a beam of a flashlight lit the wall, and Hanmei’s heart pounded and she was ready to be arrested. At that moment, she heard someone say, “See the traces of climbing over the wall. She has already gotten away. No wonder we can’t find her. This time she gets a treat.” Then, another person said, “Let’s go.” After a while, the courtyard became quite.
Then, Hanmei really experienced, “The heart and spirit of man are held in the hand of God, and all the life of man is beheld in the eyes of God. Regardless of whether or not you believe this, any and all things, living or dead, will shift, change, renew, and disappear according to God’s thoughts. This is how God rules over all things.” She saw the authority with which God rules over all things. Everything is in God’s control and people’s thoughts and ideas are also in God’s orchestrations. Without God’s permission, anything will not happen. God has the final say in everything. Just now, if the police had shone a flashlight on the outside wall, they would have found her easily. From that, Hanmei saw God’s care and protection, so she was more confident in God. Because she was afraid that her neighbor was watching her in secret, she didn’t come home until about midnight. When she entered the room, she found it had been turned upside down by the police, and with fear, her paralyzed husband looked pale and trembled because they all the time asked him about where Hanmei was. At that time, she knew that she could no longer stay at home and the police would come to arrest her at any time. Thereby she had to take her husband and leave home that very night.
With her sisters and brothers’ help, Hanmei rented a courtyard and lived there with her husband. Her sisters and brothers often gave some vegetables and grain to them. Later, she lived a church life and fulfilled her duty, feeling a hint of relief in her heart. Though the days were bitter, she was content with that. She knew that this was much better than living in prison. One day, Hanmei’s daughter sent a sister to her with a message which said that since Hanmei left home, the police had been to her daughter house several times. Because of failing to find Hanmei, they went to ask her daughter to tell them her whereabouts. Her daughter didn’t tell them about it. In order to prevent the police from following her daughter to arrest Hanmei, her daughter said that they couldn’t keep in contact later and told her to be careful.
One day soon after, the church sent Hanmei a message again, and asked her to leave at once because a sister’s husband heard that the police would go to arrest Hanmei for somebody finding and peaching her. Faced with the sudden news, Hanmei was at a loss. The only thing that she could do was come before God to pray, asking God to protect her heart, give her confidence and strength and lead her to walk on the path ahead. She saw God’s words, “For thousands of years this has been the land of filth, it is unbearably dirty, misery abounds, ghosts roam its every corner, tricking and deceiving, making groundless accusations, being ruthless and vicious, trampling this ghost town and leaving it littered with dead bodies; the stench of decay covers the land and pervades the air, and it is heavily guarded. Who can see the world beyond the skies? … Forefathers of the ancient? Beloved leaders? They all oppose God! Their meddling has left all beneath heaven in a state of darkness and chaos! Religious freedom? The legitimate rights and interests of citizens? They are all tricks for covering up sin! … Why put up such an impenetrable obstacle to the work of God? Why employ various tricks to deceive God’s folk? Where is the true freedom and legitimate rights and interests? Where is the fairness? Where is the comfort? Where is the warmth? Why use deceitful schemes to trick God’s people? Why use force to suppress the coming of God?” Through the revelation of God’s words and her personal experiences, Hanmei saw that the CCP government is indeed the Satan’s regime that hates the truth and God the most. Externally, they hang banners promoting “Citizens enjoy the right of freedom of religious belief,” but in reality they furiously arrest and cruelly suppress Christians by all kinds of means. The CCP extremely viciously persecutes and arrests believers of God, for the purpose of making people deny and betray God, controlling people firmly under their domain, so as to maintain its dictatorship, turn China into a region without God, and to prevent people from worshiping God, thus making people resist God and eventually get destroyed and go to hell together with them. Hanmei thought: I’m sixty years old, and my husband’s paralyzed, who needs to be taken care of. But the CCP doesn’t have the slightest regard for whether someone lives or dies. They have pursued me all the time everywhere just because of my believing in God and walking on the proper path of life. Their despicable objective is to let me give in to them and betray God for being unable to bear their persecution and torment. At that moment, Hanmei saw that the CCP’s vicious intention was too mean and evil and a rage flared up inside of her. She thought again: Since I believed in God, although I have experienced many dangerous circumstances, the notifications from my brothers and sisters and God’s marvelous protection have made me escape from danger again and again. From my experiences, I realize it is God who has led me to where I’m today step by step. When she thought about this, she had the faith and determination to stand testimony for God in her heart. No matter how difficult and rough the path ahead was, she would follow God to the very end. At this moment, she no longer felt cowardly, and instead her heart calmed down a lot. Because she believed that everything is in God’s hands and Satan is doomed to be defeated by God’s hands.
With the help of her brothers and sisters, Hanmei quickly moved again. This time, a sister in the church let Hanmei live in her own house. In such a dangerous situation, ignoring her own safety, the sister still helped Hanmei. Hanmei knew that all this is God’s love and she couldn’t help bursting into tears. Hanmei didn’t know how long her fugitive life was, but she was filled with, no matter how difficult things were, she would follow God and go forward.
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By Zhenzhen The Bible says: “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walks about, seeking whom he may devour” (1 Peter 5:8). This verse shows us that there isn’t a single moment that Satan is not by our side, exploiting all kinds of people and things to entice and tempt us, trying to get us to sink into disaster and evil. For example, in everyday life we frequently encounter temptations regarding money, status and fame, pornography, and so on. Without discerning them, we can fall into Satan’s web at any moment and thereby lose our testimony. So what can we do to shun Satan’s enticement and overcome its temptations? Let’s fellowship about three paths of practice regarding this matter. First, you must pray to seek out God’s will. As we are tempted, we must first come in front of God, pray and seek to grasp His will. Only in this way can we break through Satan’s tricks and triumph over its temptations. The Lord Jesus said: “And all things, whatever you shall ask in prayer, believing, you shall receive” (Matthew 21:22). God is almighty. When we meet with Satan’s temptation, God is secretly inspecting our each and every move and thought. If we come before God and pray to Him in order to satisfy Him and stand witness, God will surely lead us to understand His will and show us a way of practice. Just like when Job encountered the temptations of Satan—a mountain of sheep and cattle, his great fortune, and his children and servants were instantly taken away, he never once complained about God, nor did he use his own methods to retrieve the situation. Instead, he prayed and sought God’s will, and in the end, he spoke these words: “Naked came I out of my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return thither: Jehovah gave, and Jehovah has taken away; blessed be the name of Jehovah” (Job 1:21). From Job’s experience, we can see that it is of the utmost importance to seek out God’s will in times of temptation. It is because Job had a seeking heart that he understood God’s intentions. And so, not only did he not complain about God when losing everything, but he could see through Satan’s scheme when his wife tempted him to abandon God. Finally, Job stood witness for God in the face of Satan, obtained God’s praise, and caused Satan to be shamed and defeated. On the contrary, the three friends of Job neither prayed to God nor sought His will, but instead, they said many things that were foolish and ignorant according to human ideas, thus suffering God’s loathing. It can be seen that, if we want to stand testimony during Satan’s temptations, praying to God and seeking His will is indeed extremely important. Second, you must see clearly spiritual warfare, accept everything from God, and not analyze or research things based on their superficial presentation. When Satan’s temptation comes upon us, on the surface it seems like we encounter some people, events, or things, but actually what is behind it is Satan making a wager with God. Only by standing firmly on God’s side can we defeat Satan and stand firm in our testimony. Let’s take a look at the scriptures: “And Jehovah said to Satan, Have you considered my servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect and an upright man, one that fears God, and eschews evil? Then Satan answered Jehovah, and said, Does Job fear God for nothing? Have not you made an hedge about him, and about his house, and about all that he has on every side? you have blessed the work of his hands, and his substance is increased in the land. But put forth your hand now, and touch all that he has, and he will curse you to your face. And Jehovah said to Satan, Behold, all that he has is in your power; only on himself put not forth your hand. So Satan went forth from the presence of Jehovah” (Job 1:8-12). We can see from these verses that there are spiritual wars before the advent of facts, that is, temptations coming upon us. Take the temptations that befell Job for example: Satan first made a bet with God and then began to do things, making disasters befall Job. Because Job knew God and had a heart that feared Him, when meeting with these temptations, he didn’t rely on his own brain to research or analyze them, but instead sought out God’s intentions, accepted all from Him, and in the end stood witness for Him. Just as God’s words say: “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. … Thus, in everything you encounter there is a battle, and when there is a battle within you, thanks to your actual cooperation and actual suffering God works within you.” In these modern times we will meet with many adversities and various temptations from Satan. If we want to be victorious over them, it requires us to pray to God and look at things according to God’s words, instead of relying on our own head to analyze or research them. Only then can we see clearly spiritual warfare, see through Satan’s schemes, and bear firm witness. Third, you must hold to God’s words, and persist in obeying the truth and being faithful to God. [caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="640"] Good News Productions International and College Press Publishing/FreeBibleimages.org CC BY-NC-ND 4.0[/caption] We all know that only God’s words are the truth. His words hold authority and power, and are the reality of all positive things. Therefore, only God’s words can enable us to have discernment over all of Satan’s fallacies and lies, and strike back against its trickery. Only by acting according to God’s words can we not lose our way. Just as the Bible records: “And when he had fasted forty days and forty nights, he was afterward an hungered. And when the tempter came to him, he said, If you be the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread. But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God. Then the devil takes him up into the holy city, and sets him on a pinnacle of the temple, And said to him, If you be the Son of God, cast yourself down: for it is written, He shall give his angels charge concerning you: and in their hands they shall bear you up, lest at any time you dash your foot against a stone. Jesus said to him, It is written again, You shall not tempt the Lord your God. Again, the devil takes him up into an exceeding high mountain, and shows him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them; And said to him, All these things will I give you, if you will fall down and worship me. Then said Jesus to him, Get you hence, Satan: for it is written, You shall worship the Lord your God, and him only shall you serve” (Matthew 4:2-10). These scriptures show us that Satan tested the Lord Jesus three times but each time it fled in defeat in the end. The reason why it repeatedly failed was because the Lord Jesus is the truth, the way and the life—He can see through Satan’s tricks, and even more so His words are the truth, the weapons for countering all of Satan’s cunning schemes. However, if we fail to base our outlook on God’s words, we will fall into Satan’s temptations and suffer harm at its hands. For instance, our first ancestors, Adam and Eve, were enticed and deceived by Satan because they didn’t adhere to God’s words, and as a result, they were cast out of the Garden of Eden. Nowadays, living in the evil world full of temptations, if we want to overcome the various temptations of Satan, we must adhere to and practice God’s words in all things. This way, Satan will be left without any opportunities to exploit us. Just as God said: “During the work of His abiding provision and support of man, God tells the entirety of His will and requirements to man, and shows His deeds, disposition, and what He has and is to man. The objective is to equip man with stature, and to allow man to gain various truths from God while following Him—truths that are the weapons given to man by God with which to fight Satan. Thus equipped, man must face God’s tests. God has many means and avenues for testing man, but every one of them requires the ‘cooperation’ of God’s enemy: Satan. … It may be said that whether or not man can be saved depends on whether he can overcome and defeat Satan, and whether or not he can gain freedom depends on whether he is able to lift up, on his own, the weapons given to him by God to overcome Satan’s bondage, making Satan completely abandon hope and leave him alone.” No matter what happens to us, we should come in front of God, frequently pray to Him, seek His will, look at things by standing on His side, clearly see the spiritual warfare, and act in strict accordance with His word. Only in this manner can we receive God’s protection and not fall into Satan’s temptations. Then we can become a witness for God and live before God in freedom. If you have other understanding or new light about this article, you’re welcome to have a chat with us via the online chat window at the bottom of the website. We Look forward to sharing with more brothers and sisters about your enlightenment from God and growing together in Christ. Extended reading: Relying on God, We Will Fear No Difficulty What Should I Choose Between God and Work? God Helped Me Win in a Family Conflict About Belief
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