Breaking Through Encirclements

Then my wife let the two sisters know that Brother Guan had come and spoken something. Sister Zhang asked me what I thought when I came face-to-face with this matter. Then I told her my weakness in my heart and my understanding a moment ago. She smiled and said, “Thanks be to God! Your understanding is pure. This is God’s guidance to you.” My wife said in disbelief, “Given that we don’t take the wrong way, why did Brother Guan say that? He is a great leader who has believed in the Lord for many years.” I looked at her and said, “Oh, he just wanted us to return to the former church.” Sister Zhang said to us with a smile, “All that we see today is their external appearance. But we haven’t seen through their nature and essence. The Lord Jesus once said, ‘But woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for you shut up the kingdom of heaven against men: for you neither go in yourselves, neither suffer you them that are entering to go in’ (Matthew 23:13). And ‘Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for you are like to white washed sepulchers, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men’s bones, and of all uncleanness’ (Matthew 23:27). Externally, the Pharisees served God with loyalty. However, when the Lord Jesus came to do His work, their nature in resisting God was revealed. They wildly opposed and condemned the work of the Lord Jesus, releasing various fallacies to deceive the Jewish people, and using many sorts of methods to hinder people from seeking and investigating the true way. Their intent and purpose was to ban God’s work and appropriate God’s chosen people forever. Let’s take a look at what are the differences between religious leaders nowadays and them.” Then she asked me to read some text of Almighty God’s word, “Those who read the Bible in grand churches recite the Bible every day, yet not one understands the purpose of God’s work. Not one is able to know God; moreover, not one is in accord with the heart of God. They are all worthless, vile men, each standing on high to teach God. Though they brandish the name of God, they willfully oppose Him. Though they label themselves believers of God, they are ones who eat the flesh and drink the blood of man. All such men are devils who devour the soul of man, demons who purposefully disturb those who try to step onto the right path, and stumbling blocks that impede the path of those who seek God. Though they are of ‘robust flesh,’ how are their followers to know that they are antichrists who lead man in opposition to God? How are they to know that they are living devils who specially seek souls to devour?” (“All Who Do Not Know God Are Those Who Oppose God” in The Word Appears in the Flesh). Through God’s words and the sister’s fellowship, I came to understand in my heart that the reason these leaders persistently disturbed and obstructed our belief in Almighty God was because they were antichrists in nature who opposed God. God wishes to save us today, but they did everything they could to drag us into hell. If their substance had not been revealed by God’s words, I had nearly been cheated by them. At that time, my wife said in surprise, “It turns out they came to harm us. Well, they won’t stop until they drag man to hell. From today forward, I won’t believe in their words.”

the Church of Almighty God

Then Sister Mu read another passage of God’s words for us, “In every step of work that God does within people, externally it appears to be interactions between people, as if born of human arrangements, or from human interference. But behind the scenes, every step of work, and everything that happens, is a wager made by Satan before God, and requires people to stand firm in their testimony to God. Take when Job was tried, for example: Behind the scenes, Satan was making a bet with God, and what happened to Job was the deeds of men, and the interference of men. Behind every step that God does in you is Satan’s wager with God—behind it all is a battle” (“Only Loving God Is Truly Believing in God” in The Word Appears in the Flesh). Sister Zhang fellowshiped, “From God’s words, we see that when anything crops up, externally it appears to be the deeds of men. In fact, Satan is making a bet with God behind the scenes. For instance, when Satan tempted Job, although his wife advised him to curse Jehovah God, he penetrated Satan’s deception and stood witness for God by his confidence in Him. Moreover, he reprimanded his wife that she was a foolish woman. Through Job’s experience, we should know that, for each man that God looks upon with favor and wants to save, Satan will test and disturb him frenziedly, as well as attack him by all sorts of methods so as to cause him to forsake and betray God, losing the chance of salvation finally.”

Sister Mu also fellowshiped, “Right. Satan used these leaders to attack and threaten you over and over again, that was meant to cause you to deny God and betray Him and forsake the true way, which is exactly Satan’s plot. We must see clearly the battle in the spiritual realm.” After hearing the two sisters’ cmmunication, I thought it over and said, “Actually, Satan is making a wager with God. Satan attacked our weakness through the words of these leaders with the intention of letting us forsake the true way and leave God out of timidness. Satan is too insidious.” My wife added, “Satan is purely evil! If it were not for God’s words and your fellowship, how could we know it is Satan’s trick?” I said happily, “Since we have learned about it, we should break through Satan’s encirclement by depending on God, stand witness for Him and take practical action to shame Satan.” Sister Zhang was also pleased to say, “Brother, sister, shall we get together to communicate about God’s words more in the future? It is only through this way that we can equip ourselves with more truths and be confident in God’s work in the last days soon.” I responded, “Great. How much better it would be if you could come to communicate with us every day.” Sister Mu said with smile, “Then this is it.”

One morning several days later, when I got up and went to the window, I found everything outside covered in heavy snow, and could not help rubbing my hands. Then I put on my lambskin hat and cotton gloves, went straight to the courtyard, and began to sweep the snow to the gate. After the snow removal, I walked into the room, lighted the coal stove and made the fire burn up, while my wife was cleaning our home. Just at that moment, my brother-in-law came with his wife. His wife said impatiently as soon as she got indoors, “How could you behave like that? Leader Wang and Co-worker Guan have spoken so much to you; why did you not listen to them? Today they especially asked us to come and advise you against believing in the Eastern Lightening. This shows that they take care of our life.” Hearing her words, I firmly said, “If they were really responsible for our life, they should lead us to investigate the work of Almighty God and meet the return of the Lord.” My wife then said frankly, “How could they possibly do us a good turn? They only fear that we won’t listen to them after believing in Almighty God.” Upon hearing this, the wife of my brother-in-law said in an irritable voice, “What makes you say so? Actually, they simply ask you to return to the church, nothing else. Just take my advice. With our relationship, never will I harm you.” My brother-in-law added, “Think about how we treated you these years. Don’t you cherish our kinship just for believing in Almighty God? Do you know how much we have given to you? Do you have the heart to separate yourselves from us now? Does your conscience allow you to do so?” After hearing what they said, I felt awful sorry, thinking: The couple indeed helped us a lot. They must be particularly bitter right now. What would I do? Anyway, they will absolutely not make me give up the true way, for I’m sure that Almighty God is the coming of the Lord Jesus. But how will they see me if I insist on believing in Almighty God? Will they say I am ungrateful? At that point, there was a seesaw battle in my heart, making me feel miserable. I silently prayed for God to give me a way out. Suddenly, one of God’s phrases came across my mind, “Everything that happens to people is when God needs them to stand firm in their testimony to Him” (“Only Loving God Is Truly Believing in God” in The Word Appears in the Flesh). Then I thought back to the communications of Sister Zhang and Sister Mu a few days ago. Whenever we are faced with something, it bears a relationship to the spiritual battle, that is, Satan is making a bet with God and we should stand firm in our testimony to God. Thinking about this, my heart suddenly brightened. I said, “Brother, sister, I understand you are doing for our good. Just for this reason, I even more need to tell you that Almighty God is the very return of the Lord Jesus. Only when we keep pace with the work of Almighty God in the last days can we be saved by God. How about I read a passage of God’s words for you? You will know whether it is the utterance from the return of the Lord Jesus.” Then I took up the book of God’s words to read, but my sister-in-law suddenly got to her feet, saying gruffly, “We come here to persuade you. You don’t turn back but preach the gospel to us. We won’t listen to you.” With this said, she left in anger holding her husband’s hand.

Behind them, I went out to close the door. Then I walked to the courtyard and saw the sky had cleared up. With the beautiful sunlight shining on the pines outside the courtyard, the snow on the trees began to melt. The pines seemed to have just undergone a baptism, looking exceptionally green tall and straight in sharp relief against the snow-covered ground. I felt very glad in my heart and knew it was God’s word that led me to break through the encirclement and stand firm in my testimony. I give thanks to Almighty God! All the glory goes to Him!

Source: Find the Shepherd

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