“Knowing God Is the Path to Fearing God and Shunning Evil” (Excerpt 4)

If, in the case of a man who has followed God for many years and enjoyed the provision of His words for many years, his definition of God be, in its essence, the same as that of someone who prostrates himself in homage before idols, then this would signify that this man has not attained to the reality of God’s words. Looking into the cause of this, one sees that he has simply not entered into the reality of God’s words, and for this reason the reality, the truth, the intentions, and the demands upon humanity, all of which inhere in God’s words, have nothing whatsoever to do with him. That is to say, no matter how hard such a man may work on the surface meaning of God’s words, all is futile: Because what he pursues is mere words, therefore what he gets will also of necessity be mere words. Whether the words spoken by God are, in outward appearance, plain or abstruse, they are all truths indispensable to man as he enters into life; they are the fount of living waters that enables him to survive in both spirit and flesh. They provide what man needs to stay alive; the dogma and creed for conducting his daily life; the path, goal, and direction through which he must pass in order to receive salvation; every truth that he should possess as a created being before God; and every truth about how man obeys and worships God. They are the guarantee that ensures man’s survival, they are man’s daily bread, and they are also the sturdy support that enables man to be strong and stand up. They are rich in the reality of the truth of normal humanity as it is lived out by created mankind, rich in the truth by which mankind breaks free from corruption and eludes Satan’s snares, rich in the tireless teaching, exhortation, encouragement, and solace that the Creator gives to created humanity. They are the beacon that guides and enlightens men to understand all that is positive, the guarantee which ensures that men will live out and come into possession of all that is righteous and good, the criterion by which people, events, and objects are all measured, and also the navigation marker that leads men toward salvation and the path of light. Only in the real experience of God’s words is man supplied with the truth and with life; only herein does he come to understand what is normal humanity, what is a meaningful life, what is a genuine created being, what is real obedience to God; only herein does he come to understand how he should care for God, how to fulfill the duty of a created being, and how to possess the likeness of a real man; only herein does he come to understand what is meant by genuine faith and genuine worship; only herein does he understand who is the Ruler of the heavens and earth and all things; only herein does he come to understand the means by which the One who is the Master of all creation rules over, leads, and provides for creation; and only herein does he come to understand and grasp the means by which the One who is the Master of all creation exists, becomes manifest, and works…. Separated from the real experience of God’s words, man has no real knowledge of or insight into God’s words and the truth. Such a man is a downright living corpse, a consummate shell, and all knowledge relating to the Creator has nothing whatsoever to do with him. In God’s eyes, such a man has never believed in Him, nor has he ever followed Him, and so God recognizes him neither as His believer nor as His follower, even less as a genuine created being.

Excerpted from “Knowing God Is the Path to Fearing God and Shunning Evil”

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