What Should I Do Regarding Desolation in the Church?

What Should I Do Regarding Desolation in the Church?

By Pengbo, US Dear brothers and sisters of Christian Q&A, Greetings! A question has been puzzling me for quite a while. I have sought the help of some pastors and elders, but even they have failed to resolve it. I am writing to share and discuss the matter with you, and hoping you can help. I am a preacher. I used to have the enlightenment and illumination of the Holy Spirit when I read the Lord’s words, I never ran out of things to preach about, and the brothers and sisters of my church enjoyed my sermons and gained some benefit. But somewhere along the line, I no longer felt the Lord’s presence, my sermons became repeats of old topics, and I had nothing new to preach, so my brothers and sisters dozed off during our meetings. Preaching at meetings actually became something I was afraid of doing. Although I continued to preach and work, I was unable to practice the Lord’s words in my life, I didn’t have forgiveness or patience when I dealt with others, and most of my brothers and sisters became busy with business, work, and family. Their faith gradually grew cold and they were unwilling to attend the meetings anymore. When I see so few people coming to the church for the meetings, as a preacher, knowing that I can’t help my brothers and sisters in their spiritual lives makes me feel terrible and indebted to the Lord. We’ve tried to arrange meal activities, group fasting and prayer…but all to no avail. We still can’t feel the Lord’s guidance. So, I want to discuss this problem with you. Why our church has become like this? What should we do to bring the church back to its former self? Xunguang Brother Xunguang, From your letter, we can see you are a person who is willing to seek the truth, and who bears burdens and feels responsible for the brothers and sisters and the church. Your query is a common question in most churches today, and it’s worth seeking and discussing together. Thanks be to God for giving us this opportunity today, and may God guide us to a solution to the problem. I am also a preacher and my church once suffered the same situation as yours did. Just like you, I tried many solutions but to no avail. I came before God many times to pray and seek. Then, I thought of my college classmate Xiang Guangming, who is also a Christian and had previously preached the Lord’s gospel to me. Brother Xiang is quite spiritual, there is always enlightenment and light in his fellowship on the Lord’s words, and he has unique insights into spiritual matters and how to deal with some aspects of church work. Each time I fellowship with him, I always gain a lot. Later, I prayed, asking God to give us a chance to fellowship, and thanks to God’s arrangements, we met. Through my fellowship with Brother Xiang and Brother Yang, I finally received the answer I was looking for. I’d like to share my experience with you in the hope that it will help you. One day, three months ago, Brother Yang and Brother Xiang came to visit me. I told them about my situation and the condition of the church. After listening to what I had to say, Brother Xiang said, “It’s not just one or two churches in such a condition, it prevails among the whole religious community.” His words reminded me of the desolate situation of the temple described in the Bible. Then Brother Xiang shared some Bible verses with me, “And Jesus went into the temple of God, and cast out all them that sold and bought in the temple, and overthrew the tables of the moneychangers, and the seats of them that sold doves, and said to them, It is written, My house shall be called the house of prayer; but you have made it a den of thieves” (Mat 21:12-13). He continued: “Here the Lord Jesus reprimanded the Jewish leaders, saying, ‘you have made it a den of thieves.’ This was because the Jewish leaders didn’t have hearts that feared God. They didn’t follow Jehovah’s laws and commandments, they did things against the laws in God’s temple, and they allowed people to do business in the temple. As a result, the temple that was once filled with the glory of Jehovah and where believers worshiped God became a place to do business and a den of thieves where money was exchanged and livestock bought and sold. These Jewish leaders replaced God’s commandments with man’s teachings. For example, God required man to be filial toward his parents, but they taught that he didn’t need to do that as long as he gave his parents enough money. They were hypocrites who fooled people with outward good behaviors but secretly didn’t follow the Lord’s words. They enlarged their phylacteries, lengthened the tassels of their clothing, and stood conspicuously at crossroads to make long prayers. They donated one tenth of their earnings every month, but secretly they pocketed widows’ possessions, sacrificed lame animals to God, and stole God’s sacrifices. They didn’t practice the Lord’s words themselves, but to protect their status and reputations, they spoke in letters and doctrines about the Scriptures, exalted themselves, and testified how they suffered hardships and paid a price while barely exalting or testifying the Lord. Because the Jewish leaders disobeyed God’s words, lived in sin, and were despised by God, the whole of Judaism was abandoned by the Holy Spirit, and the temple that used to contain God’s glory became a desolate den of thieves. “Churches are in the same state. The pastors, elders and workers do not have hearts that fear God, nor do they follow the Lord’s teachings. They teach brothers and sisters to love each other and love their neighbors as themselves, but they are envious of their coworkers, fight and scheme with each other, and have…

Bible,easter,Baptism,life

Can People Be Saved Into the Heavenly Kingdom Through Baptism

August 27 Dear Sister Wang: Peace to you in the Lord! I’m very glad to receive your letter. In your letter you say: “I’ve always believed that we believers in the Lord have been reborn and saved and become an entirely new being because of having been baptized, so we are qualified to enter the heavenly kingdom, for the Lord once said, ‘He that believes and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believes not shall be damned’ (Mark 16:16). But some brothers and sisters said: ‘Though we have been baptized and accepted the Lord’s salvation, we still live in sin and are unable to cast off the bondage of sin, so we must accept God’s work of judgment and purification in the last days for admission into the heavenly kingdom.’ I am very confused by this. Can people be saved and enter the heavenly kingdom through baptism? The question you have raised also puzzles many brothers and sisters in the Lord. And I was not an exception. It was not until recently when I attended a meeting—where the preacher, Sister Li, just happened to give a sermon about this aspect, which made me feel a special kind of brightness in my heart—that I came to understand the relationship between baptism and entry into the heavenly kingdom. Next I will share with you something that the sister fellowshiped that day and my gains. Sister Li said, “In Matthew 28:19-20, it says, ‘Go you therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatever I have commanded you: and, see, I am with you always, even to the end of the world. Amen.’ From the verses, we can see: Baptism is just a kind of ritual of accepting the work of the Lord Jesus and it represents our formally becoming a Christian and returning before the Lord. It also represents that we can enjoy the Lord’s care and protection as well as blessings, and that we have received the sin offering. But it doesn’t mean that we have been reborn and saved and can enter into the heavenly kingdom. We have to admit the fact that we still cannot help but often commit sins though we have been pardoned for our sins. For example, we still lie and cheat in pursuit of reputation and status. When others harm our interests, we can still hate them, utterly incapable of practicing tolerance and patience as the Lord Jesus requires. When confronted with natural and manmade disasters, or trials and tribulations, we blame and betray God. When God’s work is not in accordance with our own conceptions, we deny, judge, and oppose God. These are facts for all to see. The Bible says, ‘Be you holy; for I am holy’ (1 Peter 1:16). And 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). Therefore, because God is holy, only those who have freed themselves of sin and have been cleansed can enter the heavenly kingdom. Although we believers in the Lord have been baptized, we still have corrupt dispositions and can still sin and resist God. We have not yet been cleansed and changed and become an entirely new being. So how can we be qualified to enter into God’s kingdom?” Then, the sister shared with us a passage of words: “A sinner such as you, who has just been redeemed, and has not been changed, or been perfected by God, can you be after God’s heart? For you, you who are still of your old self, it is true that you were saved by Jesus, and that you are not counted as a sinner because of the salvation of God, but this does not prove that you are not sinful, and are not impure. How can you be saintly if you have not been changed? Within, you are beset by impurity, selfish and mean, yet you still wish to descend with Jesus—you should be so lucky! You have missed a step in your belief in God: You have merely been redeemed, but have not been changed. For you to be after God’s heart, God must personally do the work of changing and cleansing you; if you are only redeemed, you will be incapable of attaining sanctity. In this way you will be unqualified to share in the good blessings of God, for you have missed out a step in God’s work of managing man, which is the key step of changing and perfecting. And so you, a sinner who has just been redeemed, are incapable of directly inheriting God’s inheritance.” After listening to this passage and the sister’s fellowship, I understood: In the Age of Grace, the Lord Jesus only performed His redemption work. By believing in the Lord our sins are absolved and we are saved through our faith. But this saved refers to no longer being convicted by law and sentenced to death. It doesn’t mean that we are completely holy, much less does it mean that we can enter into the kingdom of heaven. This is because though our belief in the Lord Jesus pardons our sins, our sinful nature is still deeply rooted within us, and we can still resist God, betray God, and consider God as an enemy. Evidently, if our corrupt satanic dispositions are not resolved, we will be unqualified to enter the kingdom of heaven. The Lord Jesus said, “I have yet many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. However, when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will show you things to come” (John 16:12-13). The Lord’s words…

Christians wait for the Lord’s return and the rapture

Question: Through your fellowship, we see that our thoughts about the Lord’s return and the rapture really did just come from our own conceptions. We have already seriously gone against the Lord’s words. That being said, how should we wait for the Lord’s return and the rapture now? Can you talk about this in a bit more detail?

Answer: The saints’ hopes of being raptured are mainly based on the Lord Jesus’ own words: “I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you to myself; that where I am, there you may be also” (Jhn 14:2-3). We interpret the Lord Jesus’ words based on our own conceptions and imaginations. We think that because the Lord Jesus ascended to heaven on a cloud, the place the Lord has prepared for mankind must be in heaven. Therefore, we have been waiting for the Lord Jesus to return and raise us into heaven. In addition, we particularly revere Paul’s words: “Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord” (1 Thessalonians 4:17). Therefore, we started to hope that the Lord would raise us into heaven when He returns. Different people have different understandings of the rapture. Most people think that when the Lord arrives, He will raise the saints up into heaven to meet Him. We have hoped for this kind of rapture for many years. Well, what is the rapture really? Most people aren’t quite clear about that. The mystery of the saints’ rapture was only revealed when Almighty God arrived. Almighty God says, “People imagine that ‘rapture’ means rising from below unto up high. That is utterly wrong. Rapture means selection after having been predestined by Me, and refers to all those who were predestined and are chosen, … and nothing is more at odds with the conceptions of man. All who have a share in My future household will have been taken before Me: This is the absolute truth, it is immutable, it can be refuted by no man, and it strikes back against Satan. All who were predestined by Me will be taken before Me” (from Utterances and Testimonies of Christ in the Beginning). Almighty God’s words are very clear. “Being caught up” is not what we think—being taken into the air from the earth and meeting the Lord in the clouds. Nor is it being taken up to heaven. It means that when God returns to earth to speak His words and do His work, we will hear God’s voice and will be able to follow Him and obey His work in the last days. This is the true meaning of being caught up before God’s throne. All who can distinguish the Lord’s voice, find the truth in Almighty God’s words, accept the truth, and return to Almighty God are the wise virgins. They are the gold, silver and precious stones that have been “stolen” by the Lord and returned to His house because they are all of good caliber and can understand and accept the truth. They can understand God’s voice. They are the ones that have truly received the rapture. They are the overcomers who will be made when God does His work as He secretly descends to earth in the last days. Ever since Almighty God started His work of the last days, more and more of the people that truly thirst for God’s appearance have recognized His voice in Almighty God’s words. One after another, they have accepted God’s work of judgment in the last days. They have been caught up before God’s throne to meet with Him face-to-face and accepted the watering and nourishing of His words. They have gained true knowledge of God. Their corrupt dispositions have been cleansed and they have managed to live out the reality of the truth in God’s words. They have already obtained God’s abundant salvation. These people have already been made overcomers before the great catastrophes arrive. They have been obtained by God as the firstfruits. Those who hold onto their own conceptions and imaginings and blindly wait for the Lord to come and take them up to heaven, they who reject God’s work of judgment in the last days are the foolish virgins. They are the ones who will be forsaken by God. They are destined to suffer in the disasters; they will cry and gnash their teeth. This is a fact. from the movie script of Awakening from the dream   »You may be interested in reading more on our Gospel Reading page about The Rapture. Peace be with you all! Dear brothers and sisters, if you have any understanding or enlightenment from God, you’re welcome to share with us.1. Via the online chat window at the bottom right corner of the screen.2. Send an email to info@testifygod.org.We sincerely hope we’ll grow spiritually through sharing with each other.

Almighty God‘s words

Question: How does Almighty God do His work of judgment in the last days? How does He express His words to judge, cleanse and perfect man? This is the truth that we desperately need to know now. If we realize Almighty God’s work, then we can really hear God’s voice and be raised up before God’s throne. Please tell us in more detail!

Answer: Studying how Almighty God does His work of judgment in the last days is very important to our ability to obtain salvation by pursuing the truth. Almighty God works in the last days by expressing truths to judge and cleanse people. He does this solely to lift His saints into the kingdom of heaven. However, many believers in the religious community do not understand God’s will. They think the Lord will return and directly raise all of the saints into the heavenly kingdom. They don’t believe He will conduct the work of judgment and chastisement because, well, if He judged and chastised people, wouldn’t He be condemning and punishing them too? Therefore, they refuse to accept God’s work of judgment in the last days; they only wait for the Lord to descend on a cloud and raise them into the heavenly kingdom. In truth, this is a complete misunderstanding of God’s will. The Lord Jesus did His work of redemption to pave the way for the work of judgment in the last days. God’s final objective is to cleanse and save humanity, allowing them to rest in the heavenly kingdom. However, God’s work of redeeming and saving man is planned; it proceeds in steps. It doesn’t all just happen at once. The Lord Jesus has completed His work of redemption and has promised to come back and receive the saints. However, no one really knows how God takes the saints in the last days. In reality, when God comes to receive His saints in the last days, He brings them to His throne first to judge them, cleanse them and perfect them into overcomers. Isn’t this how saints are raised into the kingdom of heaven? Still, this isn’t something that’s easy for people to understand. Before they can go before God’s throne, they must experience judgment, chastisement and cleansing. That’s why people have formed their own conceptions about God’s work of judgment in the last days. Then tell me, is God’s chastisement and judgment really a blessing? Or is it condemnation and punishment? Many people don’t understand this. Let’s see what Almighty God says about it, Almighty God says, “What God curses is the disobedience of man, and what He judges are the sins of man. Although He speaks harshly, and without the slightest sensitivity, He reveals all that is within man, and through these stern words He reveals that which is essential within man, yet through such judgment, He gives man a profound knowledge of the essence of the flesh, and thus man submits to obedience before God. The flesh of man is of sin, and of Satan, it is disobedient, and the object of God’s chastisement—and so, to allow man to know himself, the words of God’s judgment must befall him and there must be employed every kind of refinement; only then can God’s work be effective” (“Only by Experiencing Painful Trials Can You Know the Loveliness of God” ). “Today God judges you, and chastises you, and condemns you, but know that your condemnation is so that you might know yourself. Condemnation, curse, judgment, chastisement—these are all so that you might know yourself, so that your disposition might change, and, moreover, so that you might know your worth, and see that all of God’s actions are righteous, and in accordance with His disposition and the needs of His work, that He works in accordance with His plan for man’s salvation, and that He is the righteous God who loves man, and saves man, and who judges and chastises man. … God has not come to kill, or destroy, but to judge, curse, chastise, and save” (“You Should Put Aside the Blessings of Status and Understand God’s Will for the Salvation of Man” ). “All of you live in a place of sin and licentiousness; you are all licentious and sinful people. Today you not only can see God, but more importantly, you have received chastisement and judgment, received such deepest salvation, that is, received God’s greatest love. All that He does is true love for you; He has no ill intention. It is because of your sins that He judges you, so that you will examine yourselves and receive this tremendous salvation. All this is done to work man. From beginning to end, God has been doing His utmost to save man, and He is certainly not willing to completely destroy the men He created with His own hands. Now He has come among you to work; isn’t this even more salvation? If He hated you, would He still do work of such magnitude to personally lead you? Why should He suffer so? God does not hate you or have any ill intention toward you. You should know that God’s love is the truest love. It is only because of people’s disobedience that He has to save them through judgment; otherwise, they would not be saved. As you do not know how to lead a life or how to live, and you live in this licentious and sinful place and are licentious and filthy devils, He does not have the heart to let you become even more depraved; neither has He the heart to see you living in the filthy place like this, being trampled by Satan at will, or the heart to let you fall into Hades. He only wants to gain this group of you and thoroughly save you. This is the main purpose of doing the conquering work on you—it is just for salvation” (“The Inside Truth of the Conquering Work (4)” ). God’s work of judgment in the last days does not seek to condemn people; God does not want to kill people. He wants to make people acknowledge that they’ve been thoroughly corrupted by Satan. He wants them to know their nature and essence: They resist God and betray God. He wants them to know His righteous and holy disposition that cannot be offended. His work seeks to awaken men’s…

bible,christinity,cross

Question: People are sinful, but the sin offering of the Lord Jesus is forever effective. As long as we confess our sins to the Lord, He will forgive us. We are sinless in the Lord’s eyes, so we can enter the kingdom of heaven!

Answer: Lord Jesus absolves mankind’s sins, but that doesn’t mean we don’t sin. That doesn’t mean we have been freed from the control of our sins or have been cleansed. Lord Jesus absolves our sins. What does “sin” really refer to in this context? We all know adultery, theft, etc. Anything that violates laws, commandments or God’s words is a sin. Any action that resists, condemns or judges God is also a sin. Any blasphemy against God is a sin, a sin that cannot be absolved! In the Age of Grace, Lord Jesus martyred himself for our sins. Only those that pray to the Lord and repent will not be condemned or sentenced to death. That is to say, God will no longer see them as sinners. People who are absolved of their sins can pray directly to God and share in His grace. That is the true meaning of “absolution”. Although our sins were absolved by Lord Jesus, that doesn’t mean we have stopped sinning and resisting God. Because sinning is in our nature, we are still able to resist and betray God and take Him as our enemy. How can people like that be qualified to enter the heavenly kingdom? It’s just as Almighty God said, “A sinner such as you, who has just been redeemed, and has not been changed, or been perfected by God, can you be after God’s heart? For you, you who are still of your old self, it is true that you were saved by Jesus, and that you are not counted as a sinner because of the salvation of God, but this does not prove that you are not sinful, and are not impure. How can you be saintly if you have not been changed? Within, you are beset by impurity, selfish and mean, yet you still wish to descend with Jesus—you should be so lucky! You have missed a step in your belief in God: You have merely been redeemed, but have not been changed. For you to be after God’s heart, God must personally do the work of changing and cleansing you; if you are only redeemed, you will be incapable of attaining sanctity. In this way you will be unqualified to share in the good blessings of God, for you have missed out a step in God’s work of managing man, which is the key step of changing and perfecting. And so you, a sinner who has just been redeemed, are incapable of directly inheriting God’s inheritance” (“Concerning Appellations and Identity” ). Lord Jesus’s work of absolution only absolved our sins; it didn’t resolve our corrupt nature. Our inner arrogance, selfishness, deceitfulness, and other aspects of our satanic nature still remain. This corruption is deeper than sin; it is much more tenacious than sin. It is the source of our resistance of God. If these satanic temperaments are not resolved, people will continue to sin, resist God and judge and condemn Him according to their own conceptions. When they suffer and are persecuted, they can deny God and betray Him as Judas did. When they hold positions of power, they establish independent kingdoms in resistance to God. Some people steal God’s offerings and offend His disposition; they will be condemned and extinguished by God. Now most pastors and leaders in the religious community do not implement the words of Lord Jesus. They interpret the Bible based on their own conceptions. They treat the words of biblical people as if they’re the words of God. They exalt people’s words instead of testifying about Lord Jesus’s words. This makes the faithful revere people and follow people. They have no place for Lord Jesus in their hearts. They become trapped and controlled by their religious leaders’ dominion. This is especially true when Lord Jesus returns to do His works. Those priests and leaders do not pursue or study God’s works. Instead, they condemn His works, judge Him and blaspheme against Him. They spread lies to trick their believers and lock them in the church. They publicly take God as their enemy and offend God’s disposition. This is the most serious resistance of God that there is. This is a sin that cannot be absolved! Their evil behavior in resistance to Lord Jesus is even more egregious than the Pharisees’ was! Therefore, if people’s nature, their resistance of God, is not resolved, if their satanic corruption is not cleansed, they’ll be capable of any evil behavior in resistance of God. How can these kinds of people enter the heavenly kingdom? Therefore, according to His management plan to save mankind and the actual requirements of corrupt humanity, God expresses many different aspects of the truth in the last days, and carries out His work which fulfills the prophecy in the Bible, “Judgment must begin at the house of God,” and is to resolve the key problem that corrupt mankind is controlled by their satanic nature. That is the way that man will gradually free themselves from their corrupt satanic disposition, stop rebelling against and resisting God, become able to truly obey and revere God. Only then will they be cleansed and enter the kingdom of heaven. from the movie script of Stinging Memories Peace be with you all! Dear brothers and sisters, if you have any understanding or enlightenment from God, you’re welcome to share with us.1. Via the online chat window at the bottom right corner of the screen.2. Send an email to info@testifygod.org.We sincerely hope we’ll grow spiritually through sharing with each other.

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