Do you know how to listen to God’s voice and welcome the Lord?
By Yi Sheng, Singapore
I began to believe in thealong with my family several years ago. In 2017, because of my work, I couldn’t attend gatherings very often. Gradually, I felt that my spirit was sinking downward. Whenever I met with things that were not to my liking, I would often reveal my hot-headedness. Although in my heart I hated myself, I still couldn’t control my emotions. So I prayed to the Lord to arrange for me someone who could lead me in Bible study, and thereby help me restore my relationship with Him.
One day, I was in a Facebook group praying for someone, when a sister in that group added me as a friend. After that, we started to chat online about things related to faith. The sister knew a lot aboutand her fellowship was very illuminating, so I was very grateful to the Lord that my spirit was being watered once again. Once, the sister invited me to listen to a sermon, and I happily agreed. During the sermon, a brother used the Bible to tell us about the origin of mankind’s corruption and what kind of people can enter the kingdom of heaven. His sermon was more enlightening than those of the pastors and my heart filled with light as I listened, so I came to like listening to the brother’s sermons.
Toward the end of our next gathering, the brother sang a hymn called “I’m Resolved to Follow God.” Because I never heard this hymn before, out of curiosity, I went online to search for it. I clicked on a link and a familiar image popped up, and then I remembered that this was the website of The Church of Almighty God, and that the hymn was produced by Eastern Lightning. I was stunned because the pastors had shown me before the website of The Church of Almighty God on the projector and they had said nasty things about it. But the sermons the brother delivered were so full of light, so what was going on? I then read many negative comments online about Eastern Lightning, so I began to feel guarded against the brother. Afterward, I told the sister that the hymn the brother sang was from Eastern Lightning and that his belief was different from ours. The sister then said to me that we could seek the answer to this issue together at the next online gathering.
During the gathering, we told the brother the doubts in our hearts. The brother then fellowshiped that we should pay attention to hearingwhen investigating the true way rather than basing our investigation of it on the rumors online. He said that now it’s the last days and that the Lord Jesus has returned in the flesh and is doing the work of judgment beginning with God’s house with the name Almighty God. He also showed us many Bible verses about God’s judgment work of the last days and God changing His name. Although I couldn’t refute the prophecies in the Bible of the judgment work of the last days and the name of Almighty God, it was hard for me to believe what the brother said, that Almighty God was the returned Lord Jesus. I thought: Is Almighty God really the returned Lord Jesus? I have never heard any pastors talk about it in the past and the Lord Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man comes to the Father, but by Me” (John 14:6). Besides the Lord Jesus, no one can save us. If I believe in Almighty God, won’t I be betraying the Lord Jesus? Would I still be able to enter the kingdom of heaven? Thinking of all this, I became unwilling to listen to what the brother had to say.
Later, messages about guarding against heresy were sent out by my church’s Facebook group. Seeing them, I was even more reluctant to keep in contact with the brother. I also refused to go online to attend gatherings despite the sister’s numerous invitations. However, afterward, I felt the brother’s sermons were in accordance with the Lord’s words, and so they couldn’t be heresies. Thinking all this, my heart was at war with itself, and I felt miserable, not knowing what to do. After that, the brother sent some videos in group chat. I played those videos and saw some research reports and comments by western scholars of religious studies. They investigated the CCP’s accusations against The Church of Almighty God, and they proved that much of the negative news on the internet about The Church of Almighty God was fake news made up by the CCP, without any factual basis. They also revealed that the fake news fabricated by the CCP slandering and condemning The Church of Almighty God was aimed at suppressing religious beliefs. Only after I finished watching those videos did I realize that the rumors on the internet were all fake. Later, I also watched a gospel movie produced by The Church of Almighty God that was sent through group chat by the brother. In the movie, brothers and sisters often had to change their meeting place to avoid being arrested by the CCP. Some were arrested by the CCP during gatherings and were cruelly tortured; some were forced to flee their homes. I was very sad watching those scenes, and I remembered an elder who once went to China to preach, who said that the CCP spared no effort in persecuting Christians and some elders were even imprisoned. The Sunday school teacher said that, because the CCP is atheistic and believes in Marxism, whoever believes in God will be oppressed. At that time, I thought they were exaggerating, because why would the CCP arrest believers in the Lord who had committed no theft or robbery? Only after watching these videos did I understand that the CCP was more concerned with suppressing religious beliefs than with fighting crime, and their condemnation of The Church of Almighty God was not to be trusted.
Although I saw through the CCP’s rumors, I was still not clear of the relationship between the Lord Jesus and Almighty God, and I wasn’t sure whether I should continue to listen to the brother’s sermons because I was worried that I would betray the Lord Jesus if I started to believe in Almighty God. Afterward, the sister advised me not to give up so easily and to conduct a detailed investigation before giving my final verdict. I thought what she said was right, because if I gave up without figuring out what it was all about, then if the Lord had indeed returned, then would I not miss the opportunity to welcome Him? So, I decided to listen to what the brother had to fellowship in the next gathering.
After I went online, the brother fellowshiped regarding my question, saying, “All of us who believe in the Lord Jesus know that the Lord is the true God. We have also received much grace and many blessings from Him, and we are very grateful to and attached to Him. So when we hear that the Lord has returned but that He is no longer called Jesus but Almighty God, many of us begin to have scruples in our hearts, afraid that we would be believing in another God and betraying the Lord; thus we dare not investigate God’s work. But is this way of thinking correct? As we all know, when the Lord Jesus came to perform His work, the Pharisees condemned His work as heresy and colluded with the Roman government to nail Him to the cross, because His name was not Messiah and He didn’t keep the Sabbath, and He went outside the temple to work and preach. Let us think about this: Why did the Pharisees, who had served Jehovah God from generation to generation and waited for the Messiah with eager solicitude, not recognize that the Lord Jesus was the Messiah foretold in the prophecies? This was because they did not know God and were very arrogant and conceited, and they condemned and rejected the Lord based on their notions and imaginings. Ultimately, they ended their lives as people who believed in God but resisted Him. So if we hear the news that the Lord has returned but we refuse to investigate it because the Lord’s name has changed from Jesus to Almighty God, isn’t this simply repeating the mistakes of the Pharisees during that time?”
The brother’s fellowship gave me a lot to think deeply about. He is right, I thought. God is wise and how God works is something we can’t imagine. However, if I judged God’s work based on my notions and imaginings, wouldn’t I then be just like the Pharisees? Thinking of this, my heart calmed down a lot, and I continued listening to the brother’s fellowship.
The brother continued, “In fact, Jehovah God, the Lord Jesus, and Almighty God are one God. Although Their work and the location of Their work are different, they are all works God needs to perform according to the needs of corrupt mankind. In the Age of Law, God worked using the name Jehovah. He proclaimed His laws to guide the newborn human race how to live their lives on earth, and He expressed His disposition of majesty, wrath and mercy. People who complied with the laws had God’s blessing and grace. Those who violated the laws would have to make sin offerings, otherwise they would be stoned to death or burned by heavenly fire. In the later period of the Age of Law, the sins of mankind became more and more serious, to the extent where there were no longer any sin offerings that could be made to atone for their sins. God, therefore, based on the needs of mankind, incarnated and did the work of the Age of Grace under the name of Jesus, expressing His disposition of love and mercy, bestowing abundant grace upon mankind, preaching the way of, teaching people to love others as they loved themselves, and being crucified for mankind as a sin offering. The work of the Age of Grace lasted for two thousand years, and although our sins have been forgiven thanks to the Lord’s redemption, our arrogance, deceit, selfishness, wickedness and other corrupt satanic dispositions still remain, and we still live within a cycle of sinning and confessing, simply unable to break free from the bondage of sin. Isn’t this true?”
I said, “It is indeed true. The Lord taught us to be tolerant and patient and to love others as we love ourselves. Although sometimes we can control our anger, there are times when we encounter things that are at odds with our ideas and we will uncontrollably reveal our hot-headedness. Even if we confess and repent our sins before the Lord, we can still commit the same sin again.”
The brother started to fellowship again, “Yes. Although our sins have been forgiven because of the Lord Jesus’ work of redemption, the satanic nature that makes us sin is still deeply rooted in us, so we can still sin and oppose God at any time and in any place. The Bible says, ‘Holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord’ (Hebrews 12:14). The Lord Jesus said, ‘Truly, truly, I say to you, Whoever commits sin is the servant of sin. And the servant stays not in the house for ever: but the Son stays ever’ (John 8:34–35). If we continue to live in this state of sinning and confessing, then even if the sin offering of the Lord Jesus is forever effective, we still cannot be raised up into the kingdom of heaven by the Lord. So in the last days, based on our needs, God performs a higher work on the foundation of the work of redemption of the Lord Jesus, expressing the truth to judge our sins and cleanse away our injustice, thus enabling us to attain true salvation and enter into the kingdom of heaven. From this, we can see that the work of Jehovah God, the work of the Lord Jesus and the work of Almighty God are linked inseparably together, with each stage of work higher than the last, and they are the work of one God. Let’s read two passages of, and we will understand more clearly.”