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(Gen 6:9-14) These are the generations of Noah: Noah was a just man and perfect in his generations, and Noah walked with God. And Noah begat three sons, Shem, Ham, and Japheth. The earth also was corrupt before God, and the earth was filled with violence. And God looked on the earth, and, behold, it was corrupt; for all flesh had corrupted his way on the earth. And God said to Noah, The end of all flesh is come before me; for the earth is filled with violence through them; and, behold, I will destroy them with the earth. Make you an ark of gopher wood; rooms shall you make in the ark, and shall pitch it within and without with pitch.
(Gen 6:18-22) But with you will I establish my covenant; and you shall come into the ark, you, and your sons, and your wife, and your sons’ wives with you. And of every living thing of all flesh, two of every sort shall you bring into the ark, to keep them alive with you; they shall be male and female. Of fowls after their kind, and of cattle after their kind, of every creeping thing of the earth after his kind, two of every sort shall come to you, to keep them alive. And take you to you of all food that is eaten, and you shall gather it to you; and it shall be for food for you, and for them. Thus did Noah; according to all that God commanded him, so did he.
In that age, God intended to call upon Noah to do a very important thing. Why did He have to do it? Because God had a plan in His heart at that moment. His plan was to destroy the world with a flood. Why destroy the world? It says here: “The earth also was corrupt before God, and the earth was filled with violence.” What do you see from the phrase “the earth was filled with violence”? It’s a phenomenon on earth when the world and its people are corrupt to the extreme, and that is: “the earth was filled with violence.” In today’s language, “filled with violence” means everything is in a mess. For man, it means in all walks of life there is no order, and things are quite chaotic and difficult to manage. In God’s eyes, it means the people of the world are too corrupt. Corrupt to what extent? Corrupt to the extent that God can no longer bear to look and can no longer be patient about it. Corrupt to the extent that God decides to destroy it. When God became determined to destroy the world, He planned to find someone to build an ark. Then God chose Noah to do this thing, which is to let Noah build an ark. …
That Noah was called upon is a simple fact, but the main point of what we are talking about—God’s disposition, His will, and His essence in this record—is not simple. To understand these several aspects of God, we must first understand the kind of person God desires to call upon, and through this, understand His disposition, will, and essence. This is crucial. So in God’s eyes, just what kind of a person is this man He calls upon? This must be a person who can listen to His words, who can follow His instructions. At the same time, this must also be a person with a sense of responsibility, someone who will carry out God’s word by treating it as the responsibility and duty they are bound to fulfill. Then does this person need to be someone who knows God? No. Back in that time, Noah had not heard too much of God’s teachings or experienced any of God’s work. Therefore, Noah’s knowledge of God was very little. Although it is recorded here that Noah walked with God, did he ever see God’s person? The answer is definitively no! Because in those days, only God’s messengers came to people. While they could represent God in saying and doing things, they were merely conveying God’s will and His intentions. God’s person was not revealed to man face-to-face. In this part of the scriptures, all we basically see is what this person Noah had to do and what God’s instructions to him were. So what was the essence expressed by God here? Everything God does is planned with precision. When He sees a thing or a situation occurring, there will be a standard to measure it in His eyes, and this standard will determine whether He commences a plan to deal with it or how to treat this thing and situation. He is not indifferent or has no feelings toward everything. It’s actually the complete opposite. There is a verse here that God said to Noah: “The end of all flesh is come before me; for the earth is filled with violence through them; and, behold, I will destroy them with the earth.” In God’s words this time, did He say He was destroying only humans? No! God said He was going to destroy all living things of flesh. Why did God want destruction? There is another revelation of God’s disposition here: In God’s eyes, there is a limit to His patience toward man’s corruption, toward the filthiness, violence, and disobedience of all flesh. What is His limit? It’s as God said: “God looked on the earth, and, behold, it was corrupt; for all flesh had corrupted his way on the earth.” What does the phrase “for all flesh had corrupted his way on the earth” mean? It means any living thing, including those who followed God, those who called on the name of God, those who once sacrificed burnt offerings to God, those who verbally acknowledged God and even praised God—once their behavior was full of corruption and reached God’s eyes, He would have to destroy them. That was God’s limit. So to what extent did God remain patient to man and the corruption of all flesh? To the extent that all people, whether followers of God or unbelievers, were not walking the right path. To the extent that man was not just morally corrupt and full of evil, but where there was no one who believed in God’s existence, let alone anyone who believed that the world is ruled by God and that God can bring people light and the right path. To the extent that man despised God’s existence and did not permit God to exist. Once man’s corruption reached this point, God would no longer have patience. What would replace it instead? The coming of God’s wrath and God’s punishment. Was that not a partial revelation of God’s disposition? In this current age, is there still a just man in the eyes of God? Is there still a perfect man in the eyes of God? Is this age one in which the behavior of all flesh on earth is corrupt in the eyes of God? In this day and age, apart from those God wants to make complete, those who can follow God and accept His salvation, aren’t all people of flesh challenging the limit of God’s patience? Isn’t everything that happens beside you, what you see with your eyes and hear with your ears, and personally experience every day in this world full of violence? In God’s eyes, shouldn’t such a world, such an age, be ended? Though the background of the current age is completely different from the background of Noah’s time, the feelings and wrath God has toward man’s corruption remains exactly the same as it was back at that time. God is able to be patient because of His work, but in accordance with all kinds of circumstances and conditions, this world should have been destroyed long ago in God’s eyes. The situation is far and beyond what it was back when the world was destroyed by flood.
Under these circumstances, what does God care about the most? Not how those who don’t follow Him at all or those who oppose Him anyway treat Him or resist Him, or how mankind is slandering Him. He only cares about whether those who follow Him, the objects of His salvation in His management plan, have been made complete by Him, whether they have achieved His satisfaction. As for the people other than those who follow Him, He merely occasionally provides a bit of punishment to express His wrath. For example: tsunamis, earthquakes, volcano eruptions, and so forth. At the same time, He is also strongly protecting and looking after those who follow Him and are about to be saved by Him. God’s disposition is this: On the one hand, He can give the people He intends to make complete extreme patience and tolerance, and wait for them for as long as He possibly can; on the other hand, God strongly hates and loathes the Satan-type of people who don’t follow Him and oppose Him. Although He doesn’t care whether these Satan-types follow Him or worship Him, He still detests them while having patience for them in His heart, and as He determines the ending of these Satan-types, He is also waiting for the arrival of the steps of His management plan.
from “God’s Work, God’s Disposition, and God Himself I”
Panpan I am a member of the post-90s generation. Since I was young, I had been affected by the surrounding circumstances. Additionally, a song called “Wife Is the Captain” was once in vogue and a sentence of the song was, “Wife is the captain and husband is the lieutenant.” I, frequently listening to the song in those days, progressed from paying no attention to the viewpoint to finally accepting it. So when I grew up and was in love, there was a strong desire in my heart: I must make my boyfriend obey my orders. In this way, I can gain a foothold in his family after marriage, so as not to suffer wrong. Looking at my male relatives and friends, I found nearly all of them were henpecked. They listened to whatever their wives said. My parents were a case in point. As I saw, dad never dared to yell at mom. Whoever was wrong, mom always got the better of quarrels while dad was always bullied. Moreover, mom always said to me, “Dominate him when you have a boyfriend. If you fail to do so before marriage, he will be more difficult to manage after marriage.” Gradually I took it for granted that a husband should listen to his wife. After getting married, I always found faults with my husband intentionally or unintentionally and made a quip to get the better of our quarrels. My aim was just to let him listen to me and to have a place in his heart. If there was anything he didn’t act according to my will, I would get into a temper, get a handle on him, and keep gripping about him. Furthermore, he usually forbore with me. As time went on, I made severer demands on him. Even before he went out to have a meal and drink with his friends, he must tell me in advance. As long as he disobeyed me and came home too late, I would burst into a rage whatever sound reasons he had. I never showed consideration for his feelings; nor did I sit down to have a heart-to-heart talk with him calmly. Gradually, our feelings grew cold. After coming back from work, seldom did we talk with each other. He played with his phone while I did my housework. Facing that kind of life all day, I was in anguish and depression, and I didn’t know how to face my future life. In 2014, my elder sister preached God’s kingdom gospel to me. After reading God’s words and listening to brothers and sisters’ fellowship, I realized the reason why I dominated my husband all day long and asked him to listen to me in everything is that I was living in dependence on the satanic disposition of “I’m the boss”. It was not the life to be lived by a normal person. Then I came into God’s presence and prayed for Him to transform me, so that I could be at peace with my husband. One evening, my husband called to tell me he wouldn’t be home for supper. Hearing that, I grew angry, thinking: Over these days, you have been out for drinks invariably. Don’t you even care about me? Wearing a long face, I thundered over the phone, “What? Go out drinking again! Listen! Get back before 11. Otherwise, I will deal with you!” After saying that, I flung the phone and threw myself down on the bed angrily. At that moment, I thought of God’s words: “If you believe in the dominion of God, then you must believe that the things that happen every day, be they good or bad, don’t happen accidentally. It is not that someone doesn’t get on with you or opposes you on purpose; it is actually all arranged by God and He orchestrates everything. What does God orchestrate everything for? It is not to reveal your shortcomings for everyone to see or to expose you; exposing you is not the final aim. The aim is to perfect you and save you. How does God perfect you and save you? Firstly, He makes you aware of your own corrupt disposition, your own nature and essence, your own shortcomings and what you lack. Only by knowing these things and understanding them in your heart can you cast them off—this is a God-given opportunity. You must learn to seize this opportunity and know how to seize it; don’t lock horns and don’t resist. If you are always competing with the people, events, and things that God has arranged around you, if you are always trying to extricate yourself from them, always feeling dissatisfied, always harboring a disagreeable mentality and always misunderstanding, then you will find it very difficult to enter into the truth. Through obeying, seeking, praying more, retreating to your spirit and coming before God then, unbeknownst to you, a change will happen in your inner condition” (“If You Wish to Attain the Truth, Then You Must Learn From the People, Matters, and Things Around You”). Realizing that God orchestrated the matter to transform me, I prayed to Him in my heart, “O God! I know my husband’s going out drinking is by Your permission. No matter when he will come back, I’m willing to obey and learn from it.” In thinking of this, my heart settled considerably and I fell asleep soon. At around three in the morning, I woke up. Seeing he wasn’t home yet, I felt shaken and distraught. At that point, I was impatient to get hold of him to ask whatever was going on. But when I picked up the phone, a thought came to my mind, “Whenever he will come back is in God’s hand. Even if I make an irate call to him, he does not necessarily return. I’d better obey God’s sovereignty and arrangements.” Though I had the wish, yet because he didn’t come back at this late hour, there was an inexplicable feeling of pain in my heart, as if a big stone weighed upon it. Then I thought to myself: “I’ve told you when to return, but you haven’t shown up till now! You turn a deaf ear to my words and have no regard for me at all…” The more I thought, the angrier I was. Turning and tossing in bed, I couldn’t wait to call him to make a scene and then parted company with him. But what little sense I had restrained me—putting down the phone I just picked up. I kept calling to God desperately in my heart to help me desist from committing senseless acts. Thus, at six that morning, my husband called and told me he slept at his friend’s house last night. At that moment, I couldn’t help losing my temper with him. After that, I was in agony on the inside: I treated him by satanic disposition again. How can I pass the rest of my life with him? We just married and there’s still a long way to go. How can we get through it? I even felt my existence meaningless. At exactly that moment, I thought of God. Then I prayed to Him, “Oh God! I feel painful when facing with this matter. I really can’t overcome it by my own self-control and I don’t know what I should do. Oh, God! May You lead and enlighten me, so that I can understand Your will.” Afterward, I saw a passage of God’s words, “One after another, all these trends carry an evil influence that continually degenerates man, that lowers their morals and their quality of character more and more, to the extent that we can even say the majority of people now have no integrity, no humanity, neither do they have any conscience, much less any reason. So what are these trends? You cannot see these trends with the naked eye. When the wind of a trend blows through, perhaps only a small number of people will become the trendsetters. They start off doing this kind of thing, accepting this kind of idea or this kind of perspective. The majority of people, however, in the midst of their unawareness, will still be continually infected, assimilated and attracted by this kind of trend, until they all unknowingly and involuntarily accept it, and are all submerged in and controlled by it. For man who is not of sound body and mind, who never knows what is truth, who cannot tell the difference between positive and negative things, these kinds of trends one after another make them all willingly accept these trends, the life view, the life philosophies and values that come from Satan. They accept what Satan tells them on how to approach life and the way to live that Satan “bestows” on them. They have not the strength, neither do they have the ability, much less the awareness to resist” (“God Himself, the Unique VI”). “Did you ever realize that what you are doing today-namely, … considering yourselves as always right and better than others, being arrogant, and acting savagely like wild animals in mountains and rough like the king of the beasts—where is the likeness of a human being? You are rude and unreasonable” (“The Essence and Identity of Man”). From God’s words, I knew the root of my misery was that I was poisoned by the ideological view of “Wife is the captain and husband is the lieutenant.” This view has become a kind of social trend which everyone adores and lives by. So I took it for granted that a husband should listen to his wife in this era. Therefore, whatever I asked my husband to do, he had to act accordingly; he couldn’t do whatever I didn’t permit him to do; if he didn’t listen to me, it was his fault and I would argue with him. Moreover, as I have been corrupted by Satan, satanic natures such as arrogance and conceit still remain within me. Thus I became less and less humane and completely lost my morality and reason. I, just like a fishwife, was very unreasonable most of the time. I always wanted to proclaim myself king before my husband and asked him to act according to my way of life and to listen to me in everything. In fact, my husband and I are both creatures in the hands of God and we are equal in front of Him. So the saying “Wife is the captain and husband is the lieutenant” is untenable at all. I am not entitled to control my husband. Both of us should worship and submit to God. This is the necessary reason we must be equipped with. I dictated to my husband, which was arrogant and the most unreasonable, and which was not only disliked by my husband but even more hated by God. When I dictated to him relying on these satanic poisons and thoughts, he not only refused to obey but was less and less willing to go home, see me or talk with me. We grew away from each other and there was more conflict between us. We had no patience and tolerance for each other and lived in endless altercations, which brought misery to me and harm to our family. At that time, I realized that I was so corrupted by the evil social trends that I had no likeness of man in the slightest, unable to get along with my husband. In today’s society, many people are infected by the evil thoughts, living by the satanic poison of “I’m the boss.” Many a married couple stands on equal ground and in the end makes their family break apart. Couples are unwilling to be controlled by each other, and because of just one word of disagreement, they often struggle fiercely and argue red in their face. Still so many are nominal couples and have to support the family only for their children. At that moment, I came to understand God’s good intentions. He couldn’t bear to see I was harmed by Satan, so He wants to save me. At this thought, I felt God’s word is so precious, which made me have discernment about the scheme of Satan—using the social trends to poison people. If I encounter things like this in the future, I will live according to His word, breaking away from the affliction of Satan and living out the manner of a true person. After a period of time, one evening, before I knocked off, my husband called to tell me that he would help his friend to move house and after that they would go out drinking. I thought: He just helped his friends to move two days ago. How could they move again? How is it possible to move every other day? He is obviously finding an excuse to go out drinking. Immediately, I was in a bad mood and wanted to lose temper with him. But I realized my corrupt nature was about to erupt, so I prayed to God silently in my heart, “O God! When I encounter this environment, I want to dominate my husband again. May You keep my heart. I’m willing to forsake my flesh and no longer be subject to Satan’s mocking! Please lead me to act according to Your words.” At that point, God enlightened me to remember His words, “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” (“Only Loving God Is Truly Believing in God”). I suddenly understood: I should bear witness for God in everything that happens to me each day. God wants to purify and transform me through this matter, making me live out a normal humanity and no longer live by the thoughts and views of Satan, so that I can win the admiration of my family members and unbelievers, and can bear witness and glorify God. When thinking of this, I was in a good humor and my heart was lightened. I didn’t feel angry at all. Later, I sent messages and chatted with him on my own initiative as if nothing had happened. He found I didn’t quarrel with him and directly asked me, “Aren’t you angry?” I replied, “Absolutely not! After you finish work, come back soon.” Seeing me really not mad at him, he was very happy and his attitude toward me improved. He began to talk and laugh with me. Thank God for His words being my beacon and reconciling us. Later, the more God’s words I read, the more truth I understand. Therefore, I no longer quarrel with him over some trifles. Not only can I be tolerant toward him, but also I can listen to his suggestions. Seeing my changes, he becomes increasingly caring and considerate. In addition, he is willing to discuss everything with me. He doesn’t go out drinking as often as before. We always chat and open our hearts to each other when we are free, which brings us more happiness and hope. From my experience, I see: I became less and less humane and senseless when I was basing my life on the thoughts, views and poisons of Satan, which brought me only sufferings; while, I can live out normal humanity, get on well with my husband and live a free and liberated life when coming before God and living by His words. I thank God for saving me. I will read more His words in the future and live out the likeness of a real man according to His requirements. To God be the glory! Recommended: God Is in Charge of My Family God Has Saved My Marriage The Sorrow in My Heart Is Finally Removed
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