I Learned to Discern False Christ at Bible Study Meetings
At present, many brothers and sisters dare not listen to sermons with their guards down for fear of being deceived by false Christs. But shutting our doors and keeping to ourselves like this will delay our life progress, and even cause us to miss the opportunity to welcome the Lord. We may even be abandoned by Him. Actually, as long as we grasp the principles of differentiating false Christs, we will automatically not be deceived by them. After attending somemeetings, not only did I grasp the principles of differentiating false Christs, but I also got good news.
In March 2018, Sister Li and I went to visit a sister who was feeling weak. When we got to the sister’s home, her niece happened to be there. After introductions, I learned that her niece, Sister Chen, also believed in the Lord, so we four fellowshiped together. From the conversation, I felt Sister Chen fellowshiped with insight and that there was light in her words. Later, Sister Chen proposed that we should study the Bible together. The rest of us agreed happily. Then we read and fellowshiped the scriptures about signs oftogether. From Sister Chen’s fellowshiping, I understood that nowadays believers in the Lord cling to the material world and their faith and love have grown cold; the pastors and elders preach the same old platitudes, scheme against one another, grow jealous of one another and get into disputes, and so on. All these show the degree of desolation in the churches, and are signs of the last days. Also, the fulfillment of the prophecy of the four blood moons, and the occurrence of all sorts of disasters, are signs that the last days have appeared. I had never thought that now is the time of the last days, and the Lord was coming soon! When thinking of these things, I got excited. Though in the church I had heard the pastors explain these scriptures, they didn’t explain them as clearly as the sister did, and I never had such a sense of urgency. I never thought that a sister as young as Sister Chen could give such fresh and lively fellowshiping. I decided to listen carefully.
Next, Sister Chen brought together some of the prophecies in the Bible and fellowshiped about the manner of the Lord’s return, the Lord’s coming again to do the work of judgment, and the significance of God’s judgment, etc. I listened to it all with relish and came to understand that the reason why we keep sinning constantly is that a sinful nature still exists inside us. Thus, the Lord prophesied that in the last days He would do a stage of judgment work to purify our corrupt disposition thoroughly and save us from our sins. The more I listened to the sister’s fellowshiping, the more enlightening I felt it was. Though I had listened to sermons in the church for many years, I had never heard such a clear sermon. Later on, Sister Chen played us many dance and song videos, videos of hymns and recitations of God’s words, and sketches as well. They were refreshing to watch, as I had never seen such programs before. The hymn videos were much better than those I watched in the church, especially the videos Attachment to God and All the Way in Your Company, the lyrics of which were just like what I was thinking in my own mind! I was moved after listening to them. Before I knew it, it was already rather late, and we made a date to study the Bible another time. On the way home, the happiness in my heart and the expectation of the next meeting made me croon hymns praising the Lord.
After getting home, I thought about the fellowshiping in the meeting. I felt I had gained much and also understood more about many scriptures which I didn’t understand before. Suddenly a thought came to me: Was what Sister Chen preached the way of Eastern Lightning? The pastors had reminded us many times that Eastern Lightning preaches very lofty sermons but that we must not listen to them. At that time, I was rather worried, and an intense battle raged in my heart: If my suspicions were right, should I still go to the meeting next time? But there was light in Sister Chen’s fellowshiping, which the pastors didn’t have in their preaching; also, what she fellowshiped was based on the Bible and gave me spiritual pleasure. These feelings were all true. All these clearly showed that her fellowshiping had the working of the Holy Spirit. I thought, “I shouldn’t blindly listen to the pastors. If thehas really come back, but I didn’t listen, I would miss the opportunity to welcome the Lord, and would regret it for a lifetime, wouldn’t I?” So I decided to attend the following meeting.
At the next gathering, I told Sister Chen about my apprehensions: “Now in the church, the pastors often tell us about false Christs deceiving people during the last days and that we shouldn’t listen to sermons with our guards down, or else we’ll be deceived easily. So, for fear of being deceived, we daren’t listen to any other sermons.’”
Sister Chen said: “In the Bible, Jehovah God said: ‘And lest your heart faint, and you fear for the rumor that shall be heard in the land’ (Jer 51:46). The Bible also says: ‘For God has not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind’ (2Ti 1:7). From these scriptures we can see that God has put power and courage in our hearts. When God is with us, there is nothing we need to fear, because God is almighty and everything in the world is in His hands. Timidity and fear are from Satan; when we don’t have God in our heart, we’ll feel timid and fearful. Just like King Saul: When he had God in his heart, he won every battle; but when he rebelled against God and was deserted by God, he became rather timid in his heart when facing the giant, and even let his negativity infect his army. And there was David, just a shepherd boy with no weapon in his hand. But he had a place for God in his heart and believed that no matter how savage the enemy was he was still under the dominion of God. So, when facing the giant, he wasn’t timid. Timidity and fear are from Satan. If we refuse to listen to the true way because of being timid or scared, haven’t we just fallen for Satan’s scheme? We all know that it has been mentioned many times in the Revelation that: ‘He that has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches’ (Rev 2:7). This is the enlightenment of the Holy Spirit, and also is God’s reminder that in the matter of investigating the true way, we should listen, understand, and judge so that we can understand His desire. It is also recorded in the Bible that: ‘So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God’ (Rom 10:17). From this scripture we can see that hearing and investigating the way are the preconditions for our believing in the true way. If we hadn’t listened to the Lord’s gospel in the beginning, how could we have come before the Lord? Only after listening to and investigating the way that others preach to us can we judge whether it is the true way or not. The sheep of the Lord listen to the Lord’s voice. So, only after listening can we know whether it is the Lord’s voice or not and do we have the opportunity to welcome the Lord’s return. God has our backs, and He is our support. So, is there anything we need to be afraid of?” Sister Chen’s fellowshiping was quite rational. The Lord is almighty. With the Lord as my support, what did I have to fear? At that time, I began to feel calmer.
Sister Chen continued to say: “As for the matter of false Christs emerging in the last days to deceive people, let’s see what the Lord Jesus said: ‘Then if any man shall say to you, See, here is, or there; believe it not. For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall show great signs and wonders; so that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect. Behold, I have told you before’ (Mat 24:23-25). When the Lord said this, His intention was that in the matter of waiting for the Lord’s return, we should be cautious and discriminating. And He has clearly told us the false Christs’ characteristics—manifesting great signs and wonders—so that we don’t get deceived. However, the Lord’s intention is not that we take the attitude of not listening to those who are preaching the Lord’s return or not seeking for the appearance of false Christs in the last days. The Lord says He will come quickly. If we avoid and refuse all those who preach the gospel of the Lord’s return for fear of being deceived by false Christs, isn’t this like closing our doors and staying at home or not eating for fear of choking? In doing so, how can we welcome the Lord’s return? Actually, it’s easy for us to not be deceived by false Christs. As long as we understand the truth of distinguishing the true Christ from false Christs, we’ll naturally neither be deceived by false Christs nor miss the opportunity to welcome the Lord’s coming. So, how can we distinguish the false Christs? Let’s fellowship about this aspect of the truth.”
I thought every word that Sister Chen said was reasonable. It seemed so right to say that if we passively defended against whoever said the Lord has returned for fear of being deceived by false Christs, wouldn’t we miss the opportunity to welcome the Lord’s coming? If we could distinguish false Christs, we need not worry about being deceived by them. So when hearing Sister Chen say that she would fellowship the truth of discerning the true Christ from false Christs, I listened more carefully.
At this time, Sister Chen read two paragraphs of words: “It is not difficult to inquire into such a thing, but it requires each of us to know this one truth: He who isshall possess the essence of God, and He who is God incarnate shall possess the expression of God. Since God becomes flesh, He shall bring forth the work He intends to do, and since God becomes flesh, He shall express what He is, and shall be able to bring the truth to man, bestow life upon him, and point the way for him. Flesh that does not have the essence of God is decidedly not the incarnate God; of this there is no doubt” (“What It Means to Truly ”). “If, during the present day, there is to emerge a person who is able to display signs and wonders, cast out demons, heal the sick, and perform many miracles, and if this person claims that they are Jesus who has come, then this would be a counterfeit produced by evil spirits which imitate Jesus. Remember this! God does not repeat the same work. Jesus’ stage of work has already been completed, and God will never again undertake that stage of work. … Thus, God carries out one stage of work in every age. Once each stage of His work has been completed, it is soon imitated by evil spirits, and after Satan begins to follow on the heels of God, God changes to a different method. Once God has completed a stage of His work, it is imitated by evil spirits. You must be clear about this” (“Knowing God’s Work Today”).
Sister Chen continued fellowshiping: “From these two paragraphs we can see that Christ is the truth, the way, and the life. The way to distinguish the true Christ from false Christs is done mainly by seeing whether they can express the truth, and can do the work of saving mankind. At the end of the Age of Law, the Lord Jesus came. He expressed many truths according to mankind’s needs, performed many miracles, and did the work of redeeming humanity through His crucifixion. He started the Age of Grace and concluded the Age of Law. God is always new and never old and does not repeat His work. In the last days, the returned Lord Jesus won’t repeat the work that He has done in the past—performing signs and wonders, healing the sick and casting out demons, or redeeming humanity through crucifixion, because that stage of the work has already been accomplished. The Lord Jesus predicted that in the last days false Christs would show great signs and wonders to deceive people, so, if when He returns the Lord still does these things, wouldn’t He be contradicting Himself? The Bible predicts that in the last days the Lord will return to open the scroll, unveil the mysteries, do the work of judgment starting with God’s family, separate the goats from the sheep, put people into the category they belong in, reward the good and punish the evil, and so on. False Christs are evil spirits who fake Christ. They’re incapable of expressing the truth, doing the work of ushering in a new age and bringing the old age to an end. They certainly can’t unveil the mysteries or do the work of saving mankind. They can only imitate the work that the Lord Jesus has done. All they can do is manifest some signs and wonders to deceive those muddle-headed people who don’t possess discernment.”
After I listened to what she said, my heart and mind were full of clarity, and I said to the sister: “In the past, the pastors merely told us false Christs would appear in the last days and that to avoid being deceived, no matter who says the Lord has returned we shouldn’t listen. But they never fellowshiped about how to distinguish the true Christ from false Christs. Sister, after hearing what you said, I understand it all clearly now, and also know how to distinguish the true Christ from false Christs.”
During the following gatherings, the sister fellowshiped with me about the truth of seven signs of the Lord’s return, the meaning of, and so on. The more I listened, the more enlightened my heart was, and the more I wanted to listen. At the same time, I came to the conclusion that Sister Chen understood so many truths. Later, she said: “I only came to an understanding of these aspects of the truth that I communicated in the recent meetings from reading many of God’s words after accepting Almighty God’s work in the last days. Almighty God is the returned Lord Jesus. He has expressed several million words, opened the scroll, expressed a disposition that is dominated by righteousness, done the work of judgment starting with God’s family, and revealed all of the mysteries of God’s management plan. If Almighty God didn’t reveal all these mysteries, we would never understand these truths even if we read the Bible for our entire lives.” On hearing this, I was surprised, thinking: “The Lord Jesus has returned? Almighty God is the returned Lord Jesus? Could it be that what I’ve heard these days is really the way of Eastern Lightning?” So I could not help asking Sister Chen: “Are you preaching the way of Eastern Lightning?” She smiled: “Sister, we’ve all heard of Eastern Lightning, but do we know what Eastern Lightning refers to? And where Eastern Lightning comes from?” I shook my head, not knowing how to reply.
Sister Chen continued: “Since we’ve no idea, we can search the Bible and see what the Lord said about this. In the entire Bible, many scriptures mention lightning, such as: ‘And out of the throne proceeded lightning and thunder and voices’ (Rev 4:5). ‘For as the lightning comes out of the east, and shines even to the west; so shall also the coming ofbe’ (Mat 24:27). From these scriptures we can see that the lightning comes from God, and it refers to God’s work and God’s words; the East refers to the place where God does His work of the last days. Now, the gospel of the kingdom of Almighty God has been spreading throughout all of China. People from various denominations who pursue the truth and truly want God have returned before Almighty God. Millions of people are enjoying God’s words, receiving the judgment, cleansing, salvation and perfection of God’s words, and bearing witness to God’s wonderful deeds. God has made a group of overcomers in China, and has gained a group of people who are of one heart and one mind with Him. God’s work has finally concluded with His glorification and is moving rapidly from the Far East—China—to the West. The Church of Almighty God has been established in dozens of major countries and regions all over the world, which is the complete fulfillment of the prophecy of the Lord Jesus: ‘For as the lightning comes out of the east, and shines even to the west; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be’ (Mat 24:27). About Eastern Lightning, we’ll understand more after watching a video of recitation of God’s words.”
Then Sister Chen played a video of recitation of God’s words—The Seven Thunders Peal—Prophesying That the Gospel of the Kingdom Shall Spread Throughout the Universe, in which there is a passage of God’s words that says: “Throughout the universe I am doing My work, and in the East, thunderous crashes issue forth endlessly, shaking all nations and denominations. It is My voice that has led all men into the present. I cause all men to be conquered by My voice, to fall into this stream, and submit before Me, for I have long since reclaimed My glory from all the earth and issued it forth anew in the East. Who does not long to see My glory? Who does not anxiously await My return? Who does not thirst for My reappearance? Who does not pine for My loveliness? Who would not come to the light? Who would not look upon the richness of Canaan? Who does not long for the return of the Redeemer? Who does not adore Him who is great in power? My voice shall spread throughout the earth; I will face My chosen people and speak more words to them. Like the mighty thunders that shake the mountains and rivers, I speak My words to the whole universe and to mankind. Hence the words in My mouth have become man’s treasure, and all men cherish My words. The lightning flashes from the East all the way to the West. My words are such that man is loath to give them up and at the same time finds them unfathomable, but rejoices in them all the more. All men are glad and joyful, celebrating My coming, as if an infant had just been born. By means of My voice, I shall bring all men before Me. Thenceforth, I shall formally enter into the race of men so that they will come to worship Me. With the glory that I radiate and the words in My mouth, I shall make it such that all men come before Me and see that the lightning flashes from the East and that I have also descended unto the ‘Mount of Olives’ of the East. They will see that I have already long been on earth, no longer as the Son of the Jews but as the Lightning of the East. For I have long since been resurrected, and have departed from mankind’s midst, and then reappeared with glory among men. I am He who was worshiped countless ages before now, and I am also the infant forsaken by the Israelites countless ages before now. Moreover, I am the all-glorious Almighty God of the present age! Let all come before My throne and see My glorious countenance, hear My voice, and look upon My deeds. This is the entirety of My will; it is the end and the climax of My plan, as well as the purpose of My management: to have every nation worship Me, every tongue acknowledge Me, every man repose his faith in Me, and every people be subject unto Me!”
After watching the video, I felt shocked. Every sentence is filled with power and authority—only God could say these words. God’s words clearly tell us that Eastern Lightning refers to the work and words of Christ of the last days—Almighty God. It turns out that the Lord Jesus has already returned incarnate among us to save us by expressing the truth, and many people have turned back toward God after hearing His voice. Previously, the pastors said many believers were stolen by Eastern Lightning after hearing their teachings. Not until now did I understand that because God has unveiled all of the mysteries, people who truly believe in God were conquered after listening to God’s words, and then they returned before God. Then I fully acknowledged that Almighty God is the returned Lord Jesus. I had never realized that the Lord really has returned. What’s more, I had the privilege of encountering the coming of the Lord, and for that, I was truly blessed! I thanked God for guiding me and allowing me to hear His voice and welcome the Lord’s return. Then I accepted God’s new work happily.
Later, whenever I had spare time, I would read God’s words, listen to hymns and watch all kinds of videos of The Church of Almighty God. I also got together and fellowshiped with the brothers and sisters. After a period of time, my progress in life was apparent, and I feel that the truths that I’ve understood in the last three months is more than I had gained from believing in the Lord for the previous five years. Not only do I know more and more about God’s work, I have also restored my original faith and love and again perceived the work and guidance of the Holy Spirit. Thank God! From now on I will seek the truth with diligence. No matter what difficulties I meet, I will resolutely follow God to the end.
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