God’s Love Was With Me in the Devil’s Dark Prison

I am a Christian of the Church of Almighty God. I have been a follower of Almighty God for over ten years. During this time, one thing I’ll never forget is the awful tribulation when I was arrested by the CCP police a decade ago. Back then, despite my being tortured and trampled on by evil demons, and coming close to death several times, Almighty God used His mighty hand to guide and protect me, to bring me back to life, and take me back to safety…. Through this, I truly experienced the transcendence and greatness of the power of God’s life, and gained the precious wealth of life conferred upon me by God.

It was January 23, 2004 (the second day of Chinese New Year). I needed to go and visit a sister from the church; she was in trouble and in urgent need of help. Living a long way away, I had to get up early to get a taxi so I’d be back the same day. I left home just as it was getting light. There was hardly anyone on the streets, just the workers cleaning up rubbish. I anxiously searched for a taxi, but there were none about. I went to a taxi rank to wait, and stepped into the road to flag one down when I saw it coming—but it turned out to be a vehicle belonging to the Environmental Protection Bureau. They asked me why I’d flagged them down. “I’m sorry, it was a mistake, I thought you were a taxi,” I said. “We think you were putting up illegal posters,” they replied. “Did you see me? Where are the posters I was putting up?” I said. Without giving me the chance to defend myself, they three rushed forward and forcibly searched my bag. They rifled through everything in my bag—a copy of a sermon, a notepad, a purse, a cell phone and a disabled beeper, and so on. Then they took a closer look at the copy of a sermon and the notepad. Seeing there were no posters in my bag, they held up the copy of a sermon and said: “You might not have been putting up illegal posters, but you believe in Almighty God.” Next, they rang the National Security Brigade’s Religious Division. Soon after, four people from the National Security Brigade arrived. They knew I was a believer in Almighty God as soon as they saw the things in my bag. Without letting me say anything, they bundled me into their vehicle, then locked the door to stop me running away.

When we arrived at the Public Security Bureau, the police led me into a room. One of them fiddled with my beeper and mobile phone, looking for clues. He turned on the phone but it showed low battery, then said the battery was completely empty. Try as he might, he couldn’t get it to turn on. Holding the phone, he looked worried. I was puzzled too—I’d just charged the phone that morning. How could it have no power? I suddenly realized that God had miraculously arranged this to stop the police from finding any information about the other brothers and sisters. I also understood the words spoken by God: “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” (“God Is the Source of Man’s Life” in The Word Appears in the Flesh). This gave me a true knowledge of God’s sovereignty and arrangement of all things, and strengthened my faith in future cooperation. Pointing at the things in the bag, the police officer asked accusingly: “These show that you’re clearly no ordinary church member. You must be one of the senior leadership, someone important. For junior leaders don’t have beepers or mobile phones. Am I right?” “I don’t understand what you’re saying,” I replied. “You’re pretending you don’t!” he roared, then ordered me to squat as I spoke. Seeing I wasn’t going to play ball, they surrounded me and began punching and kicking me—enough to kill me. My face bloody and swollen, my whole body aching unbearably, I collapsed on the floor. I was incensed. I wanted to talk reason to them, to argue my case: What have I done wrong? Why did you beat me like that? But I had no way of talking sense with them, because the CCP government doesn’t talk sense. I was perplexed, but I didn’t want to give in to their beatings. Just as I was at a loss, I suddenly thought of how, since these evil officers of the CCP government were being so absurd, since they weren’t letting me speak any words of reason, I needn’t say anything to them. I was better of keeping silent—that way I’d be of no use to them. When I thought of this, I stopped paying any attention to what they were saying.

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Seeing that this approach had no effect on me, the evil policemen flew into a rage and grew even more barbaric: They turned to torture to extract a confession. They handcuffed me to a metal chair screwed to the ground in such a position that I could neither squat nor stand. One of them placed my uncuffed hand on the chair and struck on it with a shoe, only stopping when the back of my hand had gone black and blue; another squashed my toes beneath his leather shoe. Only then did I experience that pain in the fingers shoots straight to the heart. After that, six or seven policemen took turns at me. One of them concentrated on my joints, and pinched them so hard that a month later I still couldn’t bend my arm. Another grabbed my hair and shook my head from side to side, then wrenched it back so I was looking up. “Look at the sky and see if there’s a God!” he said viciously. They carried on until nightfall. Seeing that they weren’t going to get anything out of me, and because it was Chinese New Year, they sent me straight to the detention center.

When I arrived at the detention center, a guard ordered a female prisoner to take all my clothes off and throw them in the trash can. Then they made me put on a dirty, foul-smelling prison uniform. The guards put me in a cell and then lied to the other prisoners, saying: “She especially broke up people’s family. A lot of families have been ruined by her. She’s a liar, she deceives honest people, and upsets the public order….” “Why does she look like a simpleton?” one of the prisoners asked. To which the guards replied: “She’s putting on an act to avoid being sentenced. Who of you are that clever? Anyone who thinks she’s a fool is the biggest idiot of all.” Thus deceived by the guards, all the other prisoners said I was being let off too easily, and that the only thing good for someone as bad as me was the firing squad! Hearing this enraged me—but there was nothing I could do. My attempts at resistance had been to no avail, they only brought more torture and savagery. In the detention center, the guards made the prisoners recite the rules every day: “Confess your crimes and submit to the law. Inciting others to commit crimes is not allowed. Forming gangs is not allowed. Fighting is not allowed. Bullying of others is not allowed. Making false charges against others is not allowed. Grabbing others’ food or possessions is not allowed. Playing tricks on others is not allowed. Prison bullies should be cracked down on. Any violation of the rules should be reported to the supervisors or roundsmen immediately. You must not cover up the facts or try to protect those prisoners who have violated the regulation, and monitoring should be humane. …” In reality, the guards encouraged the other prisoners to torment me, allowing them to play tricks on me every day: When it was 8 or 9 degrees below zero, they soaked my shoes; they secretly poured water in my food; in the evening, when I was asleep, they drenched my cotton-padded jacket; they made me sleep next to the toilet, they often pulled off my quilt in the night, pulled my hair, to keep me from sleep; they snatched my steamed buns; they forced me to clean the toilet, and forced their leftover medicine into my mouth, they didn’t let me relieve myself…. If I didn’t do anything they said, they’d gang up and beat me—and often at such times the supervisors or the roundsmen would hurry out of view or pretend they hadn’t seen anything; sometimes they’d even hide a ways off and watch. If the prisoners went a few days without tormenting me, the supervisors and the roundsmen would ask them: “That stupid bitch has smartened up these last few days, yes? Meanwhile, you lot have gone soft in the head. Anyone who brings that stupid bitch around will get a remission.” The guards’ brutal torment filled me with hatred for them. Today, if I hadn’t seen this with my own eyes and personally experienced it, I would never believe that the CCP government, which is supposed to be full of benevolence and morality, could be so dark, fearful, and horrible—I would never have seen its true face, a face that is fraudulent and duplicitous. All its talk of “serving the people, creating a civilized and harmonious society”—these are lies designed to deceive and hoodwink people, they were a means, a trick, of prettifying itself and gaining kudos it does not deserve. At that time, I thought of the words of God: “Small wonder, then, that God incarnate remains completely hidden: In a dark society such as this, where the demons are merciless and inhumane, how could the king of devils, who kills people in the blink of an eye, tolerate the existence of a God who is lovely, kind, and also holy? How could it applaud and cheer the arrival of God? These lackeys! They repay kindness with hate, they have long since disdained God, they abuse God, they are savage in the extreme, they have not the slightest regard for God, they plunder and pillage, they have lost all conscience, and have not a trace of kindness, and they tempt the innocent into senselessness. 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!” (“Work and Entry (8)” in The Word Appears in the Flesh). Comparing God’s words to the reality, I saw the dark and evil demonic substance of the CCP government in perfect clarity. To maintain its dark rule, it keeps a tight grip on its people, and stops at nothing to delude and deceive them. Superficially, it purports to provide religious freedom—but in secret, it arrests, oppresses, persecutes, and murders people across the country who believe in God. It even tries to put them all to death. How cunning, brutal, and reactionary the devil is! Where is the freedom? Where are the human rights? Are they not all tricks by which to deceive people? Can people glimpse any hope or light living beneath its dark rule? How can they be free to believe in God and pursue the truth? Only then did I recognize that God had permitted this persecution and tribulation to befall me, that He had used it to show me the viciousness and brutality of the CCP government, to show me its demonic substance that is in enmity to the truth and hostile to God, and to show me that the people’s police, whom the government vigorously promotes and touts as punishing evil, advocating good, and promoting justice, are the accomplices and minions it has meticulously nurtured, a bunch of executioners who have the faces of men but the hearts of beasts, and who would kill in the blink of an eye. To try to outlaw and eradicate God’s work, and to force me to reject and betray God and yield to its despotic power, the CCP government stopped at nothing in torturing and ravaging me—yet little did it know that the more it tortured me, the more clearly I saw its devilish face, and the more I despised and rejected it from the depths of my heart, making me truly yearn for God and trust in God. What’s more, it was precisely because of the guards’ torture that I unwittingly came to understand what it truly means to love what God loves, and hate what God hates, what it means to turn one’s back on Satan and turn one’s heart to God, what it is to be barbaric, what the forces of darkness are, and, furthermore, what it is to be malicious and insidious, and fake and deceitful. I was grateful to God for letting me experience this environment, for allowing me to tell right from wrong and see the right path of life that I should take. My heart—which had been duped by Satan for so long—was finally awakened by God’s love. I felt that there was great meaning in my having the fortune to experience this tribulation and trial, that I had truly been shown special favor.

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After trying everything else, the evil police came up with another plan: They found a pastor from the Three-Self Church who knew who I was to expose me. She said I believed in Almighty God and had once tried to spread the gospel to her—but she had refused. And she also attempted to get me to turn my back on God. Seeing this evil servant who had reported many brothers and sisters who spread the gospel, and hearing all the wicked words that spilled from her mouth—words that vilified, slandered, and blasphemed against God—my heart was filled with fury. I wanted to shout at her, asking why she was so unconscionably hostile to God. Why was it that she enjoyed so much of God’s grace, yet had joined forces with evil demons to persecute God’s chosen ones? In my heart, there was unspeakable sadness and pain. I also felt a great sense of remorse and indebtedness; I truly hated myself for how, in the past, I had not tried to pursue the truth, and had never known anything but the enjoyment of God’s grace and blessings like a naive child, giving no thought to the pain and humiliation God had endured for the sake of our salvation. Only now, when I was deep in this den of fiends, did I sense just how hard it was for God to work in this filthy, corrupt country, and just how great the pain He had suffered was! Truly, God’s love of man carries great pain. He does the work of saving mankind whilst enduring man’s betrayal. Man’s betrayal has brought Him nothing but pain and hurt. No wonder God once said: “Even in the space of just one night, they may go from a smiling, ‘kind-hearted’ person to an ugly-looking and ferocious killer, suddenly treating their benefactor of yesterday as their mortal enemy, without rhyme or reason” (“God’s Work and Man’s Practice” in The Word Appears in the Flesh). Today, although I had fallen into the clutches of the devil, I would not betray God no matter what. Regardless of how great the hardship I suffered, I would not be a Judas for the sake of saving my own skin, I would not cause pain and grief for God. As a result of my being sold out by this pastor from the religious community, the evil police stepped up their torture. She, meanwhile, stood to one side and said: “You don’t know good from bad. You deserve this! You don’t appreciate my kindness. You deserve to be tortured to death!” Hearing these vicious, evil words incensed me—but I also felt an inexplicable sense of sadness. I wanted to cry, but I knew I must not. In my heart, I secretly prayed: O God! I would that You gain my heart. Although I can’t do anything for You at the moment, I wish to bear victorious testimony to You before Satan and this wicked person, utterly shaming them, and through this bringing comfort to Your heart. O God! I would that You protect my heart, and make me stronger. If I have tears, may they flow inward—I cannot let them see my tears. I should be happy because I understand the truth, for You have polished my eyes, giving me the ability to differentiate, and clearly see the nature and substance of Satan, which is to oppose You, betray You, and tear down Your work. Amid refinement, I have also seen how Your wise hand arranges all. I wish to keep on cooperating with You, until victory is Yours. After praying, in my heart there was the strength to not rest until I had completed my testimony to God. I knew that this had been given to me by God, that God had given me great protection and greatly moved me. The evil police wanted to use the wicked person to make me betray God, but God is a wise God, and He employed the wicked person as a counterexample to show me the rebellious nature of corrupt mankind, stimulating my resolve and faith to satisfy God. What’s more, I had some knowledge of God’s wise work, I saw that God rules and maneuvers all that there is in service to perfecting the people of God. This is the ironclad fact of God’s use of wisdom to defeat Satan.

Seeing that they weren’t going to get me to say anything they wanted, they spared no expense—be it manpower, or material and financial resources—to go up hill and down dale asking for proof that I was a believer in God. Three months later, all their rushing about had come to nothing. In the end, they played their trump card: They found a master interrogator. It was said that everyone who was brought to him was subjected to his three forms of torture, and no one had ever not confessed. One day, four police officers came and said to me: “Today we’re taking you to a new home.” Next, they pushed me into a prisoner transport van, cuffed my hands behind my back, and put a hood over my head. The situation made me think they were taking me out to secretly execute me. In my heart, I couldn’t help but panic. But afterward I thought of the hymn I used to sing when I believed in Jesus: “Since the earliest times of the church, those who follow the Lord have had to pay a high price. Tens of thousands of spiritual kinfolk have sacrificed themselves for the gospel, and thus they have gained everlasting life. Martyrdom for the Lord, I am prepared to die a martyr for the Lord.” That day, I finally understood the hymn: Those who follow the Lord must pay a high price. I too was prepared to die for God. To my surprise, after getting in the van, I inadvertently overheard the conversation between the evil police. It seemed they were taking me somewhere else to be interrogated. Ah! They weren’t taking me to be executed—and I’d been preparing to die a martyr for God! Just as I was thinking this, for some unknown reason one of the police tightened the strings of the hood over my head. Soon after, I started feeling uncomfortable—it felt like I was being suffocated. I found myself wondering if they really were going to torture me to death. At that moment, I thought of how Jesus’ disciples had sacrificed themselves to spread the gospel. I wasn’t going to be a coward. Even if I died, I wouldn’t beg them to loosen it, much less would I admit defeat. But I couldn’t control myself: I passed out and collapsed onto them. Seeing what was happening, the police quickly loosened the hood. I started foaming at the mouth, then couldn’t stop vomiting. It felt like I was going to vomit my insides out. I felt dizzy, my head empty, and I couldn’t open my eyes. I had no strength anywhere in my body, as if I’d been paralyzed. It felt like there was something sticky in my mouth that I couldn’t get out. I’d always been frail, and after being abused like this I sensed I was in trouble, that I might stop breathing at any time. Amidst the pain, I prayed to God: “O God! If You wish me to bear the testimony of death to You, I gladly submit to You, and gladly use death to satisfy You. I know that those who die in God’s name do not die, but sleep. I trust that whatever You do, it is righteous, and I would that You protect my heart, so that I can defer to all that You orchestrate and arrange.” Sometime later, the van arrived at a hotel. At that time, my whole body felt weak and I couldn’t open my eyes. They carried me to a sealed room. All I could hear was the sound of many minions of the CCP government standing around discussing me, saying that seeing me was like seeing how Liu Hulan had been. What an eye-opener, how impressive! She’s even tougher than Liu Hulan was! Hearing this, my heart surged with excitement. I saw that Almighty God was bound to be victorious, that Satan was under God’s feet! I thanked and praised God for giving me faith and obedience. At this moment, I forgot the pain. I felt tremendously gratified to be glorifying God.

Soon after, the “interrogation expert” the police had spoken of arrived. As soon as he entered, he shouted: “Where is that stupid bitch? Let me have a look!” He walked in front of me and grabbed me. After slapping me dozens of times on the face, he gave me several hard punches to the chest and back, then took off one of his leather shoes and hit me across the face with it. After being beaten by him like this, I lost the feeling that there was something I couldn’t get out of my mouth or stomach. The daze left my head and I could open my eyes. Feeling gradually came back to my limbs, and strength started to return to my body. Next, he roughly grabbed my shoulders and pushed me back against the wall, ordering me to look at him and answer his questions. Seeing I wasn’t paying him any attention enraged him, and he tried to get a reaction from me by vilifying, slandering and blaspheming God. He used the most contemptible, despicable means to bait me, and said ominously: “I’m deliberately tormenting you with what is unbearable to your flesh and soul, to make you suffer pain that no normal person could suffer—you’re going to wish you were dead. In the end, you’ll beg me to let you go, and that’s when you’ll speak sense, and say that your fate isn’t in God’s hands—it’s in mine. If I want you to die, it’ll happen straight away; if I want you to live, you’ll live; and whatever hardship I want you to suffer, that’s what you’ll suffer. Your Almighty God can’t save you—you’ll only live if you beg us to save you.” Faced with these despicable, shameless, contemptible thugs, wild animals, and evil demons, I really wanted to fight them. At that moment I thought of a hymn of life experience: “The heavens and the earth and everything in them were created by God, and it is natural and right for God to enjoy them. The king of devils occupies them shamelessly; Satan is guilty of the most heinous crime; tens of thousands of spiritual kinfolk must arise” (“Running Toward the Bright Path” in Follow the Lamb and Sing New Songs). What had I done to rise up? By not even saying anything to refute them, simply letting them torment me however they wished—in this, was I being too weak? My heart was filled with fury. I felt like I couldn’t contain it; I wanted to cry out, to fight back, to declare to them: “A human would never beg for mercy from a dog!” I believed that this was a sense of justice—but to my surprise, the more I thought this way, the darker I became inside. I found myself without words of prayer, unable to think of any hymns. My thoughts grew cloudy, I didn’t know what to do, and at that point I started to feel a little afraid. I quickly calmed myself before God. I reflected upon myself, and tried to know myself, and at that moment God’s words of judgment came to me: “What you admire is not the humility of Christ…. You do not love the loveliness or wisdom of Christ …” (“Are You a True Believer of God?” in The Word Appears in the Flesh). “Does following your own desires reveal My likeness? Will that satisfy My heart? Are you someone who has sincerely observed My intentions? Are you someone who has truly tried to understand My heart? Have you indeed offered up yourself for Me? Have you truly spent yourself for Me? Have you pondered over My words?” (Utterances and Testimonies of Christ in the Beginning). Every word of God’s judgment pierced my heart. Yes—I had seen Christ as too small, I had admired power and influence, not the humility of Christ, much less had I admired the wisdom of God’s hidden work. God uses His wisdom to defeat Satan, He uses His humility and hiddenness to reveal the true face of Satan, and to gather evidence to punish the wicked. I, meanwhile, relied on satanic philosophies to regard the work of Christ, always trying to get a tooth for a tooth and an eye for an eye, believing that to be good is to be taken advantage of, that all lay loads on a willing horse. Why, when we are persecuted, should we let the evil police do as they wish? Is it the lot of those who believe in God to be bullied, oppressed, and aggrieved? As a result of my arrogant nature, I had been unwilling to endure humiliation, much less bullying and oppression. This had made me look down my nose at Christ’s wise work and not cherish the humility and hiddenness of Christ. Instead, I believed that sense of justice, strength of character, and dignity lay in fighting with them. Little did I know that Satan wished to incite me to fight back against them, forcing me to acknowledge the fact of my belief in God in order to convict me. If I really did fight them with impulsive courage, would I not have fallen prey to their deceitful schemes? I was truly thankful to God for His timely chastisement and judgment of me, which gave me protection amidst my rebelliousness, so that I saw through the deceitful schemes of Satan, and recognized the venom of Satan within myself, and gained a little knowledge of what God is and God’s humble and hidden life substance. I thought of how Christ faced being persecuted, hunted, and killed by the CCP devil, and how all mankind passed judgment on Him, and condemned Him, and slandered Him, and abandoned Him. Throughout, He bore all this silently, enduring all this pain to carry out His work of salvation, never fighting back, and never complaining. I saw just how kind, and beautiful, and honorable God’s disposition is! Meanwhile, I—a filthy, corrupt person—had wanted to fight back when persecuted by the evil demons, I had wanted to use my impulsive courage to uphold my supposed dignity, to fight for my own justice based on my own will. Where was the sense of justice in this? And where was the strength of character and dignity? In this, was I not showing my ugly satanic face? Was I not revealing my arrogant nature? Where was any truth in this? Thinking this, my heart was filled with remorse. I made up my mind to imitate Christ. I was willing to submit to this environment and try my best to cooperate with God, leaving no opportunity for Satan.

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