God’s Word Is Not Limited in Bible!
My name is Li Qiang. I’m 36 years old. In August of 2004, I believed in the Lord Jesus. When I knew that the Lord suffered a lot for saving mankind and that He was crucified to bear the sins of us, I was deeply moved by the Lord’s love and resolved to follow Him all my life. Thereafter, I was zealous in my pursuit, studied the Bible hard, actively attended Bible study groups, prayer groups, choir groups and Paul’s growth group. In the meetings, I often heard the pastors and elders taught us, “The Bible says, ‘All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness’ (2 Timothy 3:16). So, the Bible is the only standard for our belief and life. All of God’s work and word are in the Bible. Any belief apart from the Bible is a heresy. Now there is a denomination called Eastern Lightning. They preach everywhere that the Lord Jesus has already returned and that He has come into the flesh, done a stage of new work and expressed many truths. This saying is not in accordance with the Bible. God’s work and word are all recorded in the Bible. We should believe in God according to the Bible. The Lord will never do new work and express new word outside the Bible. We believe in God only through the Bible!” Hearing their words, I thought: I have read the Bible every day since I believed in the Lord. I understand many wonderful and wise deeds of God from the Bible, and this finally made me filled with confidence in Him. The Bible is indeed the only standard for our belief and life. The pastors and elders preached about guarding against Eastern Lightning almost in every meeting. I thought: Maybe Eastern Lightning goes against the Bible. Otherwise, why do the pastors and elders never forget to talk about it at every gathering? From then on, the teaching of the pastors took root in the deepest depths of my heart. In the past decade, no matter who told me that the Lord Jesus has returned or told me any other preachings, I all thought: Any belief departing from the Bible is a heresy and is unbelievable. I must hold on to the Lord’s way.
From 2012, I suddenly found that brothers and sisters were weak in spirit, cold in faith, and the meeting attendance gradually dropped off. Originally, the church which could contain three thousand people in the meeting were full, but now there were only several hundred people. The whole church was empty. During the small group meetings, some sold insurance, some did direct sale, some sold cosmetics and some introduced boyfriends or girlfriends. Faced with such plight, I felt pain in my heart. I often prayed to the Lord to purify and revive the church. I didn’t understand why the church became like this, so I decided to go to other churches and have a look. From 2012 to early 2015, I went to over ten churches. After I visited all of them, I found that they didn’t have the work of the Holy Spirit, which was just the same as my church. In the meetings, the preachers gave sermons about offerings, calling the believers for donation, or talked about how to resist Eastern Lightning, and it seemed as if they had nothing to preach about except those. Facing such conditions, I could only pray to the Lord, “Dear Lord Jesus, why do all the churches become like this? Where are you? When will you come back? O Lord! I long for your appearance.”
One day in March of 2015, Brother Wang, who went to other places to work, gave me a call in the early morning. He told me that he had already come back and asked me to go to his home to have a get-together at 7:00 pm. Moreover, he said he had something important to talk with me face to face. After agreeing to it, I was in turmoil. I thought: Brother Wang has believed in the Lord for a short time. In the past, it was I that invited him actively each time. But today, as soon as he came back, he invited me of his own accord and said that he had something important to tell me. What is the important thing? In recent years, I realize that many brothers and sisters have believed in Eastern Lightning in every church. Does Brother Wang also believe in Eastern Lightning? If so, I must bring him back.
At night, I went to Brother Wang’s home on time. He let me into the home warmly. After a short chat, he gave me a typescript. After taking it, I felt confused within: He said that he had something important to talk with me. Why does he speak nothing but just give me this typescript? Is what he will say all in it? Is it related to Eastern Lightning? Brother Wang looked at me and said earnestly, “These are truths about understanding God. They are very beneficial for us believing in and understanding God. You can have a look.” Seeing his earnest expression, I thought: If it is really related to Eastern Lightning, I will measure it according to the Bible. I took the typescript watchfully and prayed to God in my heart silently, asking God to quiet and safeguard my heart. Then, I calmed down and read what was written in it. With reading, I was attracted by the contents of the typescript unknowingly. I saw the following words, “Originally, God created a humanity that in His eyes was very good and close to Him, but they were destroyed by flood after rebelling against Him. Did it hurt God that such a humanity just instantly vanished like that? Of course it hurt! So what was His expression of this pain? How was it recorded in the Bible? It was recorded in the Bible in these words: ‘And I will establish My covenant with you, neither shall all flesh be cut off any more by the waters of a flood; neither shall there any more be a flood to destroy the earth.’ This simple sentence reveals God’s thoughts. This destruction of the world pained Him very much. In man’s words, He was very sad. We can imagine: How did the earth that was once full of life look like after being destroyed by the flood? What did the earth, that was once full of human beings, look like at that time? No human habitation, no living creatures, water everywhere and utter devastation on the surface of the water. Was such a scene God’s original intention when He created the world? Of course not! God’s original intention was to see life all across the land, to see the human beings He created worshiping Him, not just for Noah to be the only one worshiping Him or the only one who could answer His call to complete what was entrusted to him. When humanity disappeared, God saw not what He had originally intended but the complete opposite. How could His heart not be in pain? So when He was revealing His disposition and expressing His emotions, God made a decision. What kind of a decision did He make? To make a bow in the cloud (that is, the rainbows that we see) as a covenant with man, a promise that God would not destroy mankind with a flood again. At the same time, it was also to tell people that God had destroyed the world with a flood, so that mankind would forever remember why God would do such a thing.
“Was the destruction of the world at that time something God wanted? It was definitely not what God wanted. We might be able to imagine a small part of the pitiful sight of the earth after the destruction of the world, but we cannot come close to imagining what the scene was like at the time in God’s eyes. We can say that, whether it is the people of now or then, nobody is able to imagine or appreciate what God was feeling when He saw that scene, that image of the world following its destruction by flood. God was forced to do this by man’s disobedience, but the pain suffered by God’s heart from this destruction of the world by flood is a reality no one can fathom or appreciate. That is why God made a covenant with mankind, through which He aimed to tell people to remember that God once did something like this, and to swear to them that God would never destroy the world in such a way again. In this covenant we see God’s heart—we see that God’s heart was in pain when He destroyed this humanity. In the language of man, when God destroyed mankind and saw mankind disappearing, His heart was weeping and bleeding. … From that point, God placed all of His expectations of humanity on Noah’s family, hoping they could live under His blessings and not His curse, hoping that they would never see God destroy the world with a flood again, and also hoping that they would not be destroyed” (“God’s Work, God’s Disposition, and God Himself I” in The Word Appears in the Flesh). After reading these words, I seemed to have felt God’s sorrow and pain for the mankind who was destroyed by flood due to their corruption and decadence, feel God’s expectations of mankind and understand His mercy and care for mankind. In the past, I only knew that the mankind in Noah’s day was evil and licentious and the earth was filled with violence. God had Noah build the ark, giving people of that time 120 years to repent. But their hearts were hard, and they refused to repent, so God destroyed them by flood. As for what God’s mood was after He destroyed the world by flood, I didn’t know it at all. I became curious about these words immediately and thought: Where do these words come from? They are something that I have never heard before in the church and they are also the light which I can’t understand when reading the Bible. I read all the words without a break. Seeing me finish reading, Brother Wang asked me with a smile, “What do you think about the fellowship of the truth in this typescript?” I replied, “I have believed in the Lord for years, but I have never found any one who can fellowship God’s thoughts and ideas which lie behind the things He did in such detail. These words are indeed very helpful for people to know God and understand His will. They are wonderful!” Hearing what I said, Brother Wang gave me some other typescripts with a smile and said, “If you think they are good, there are still some, you can take them home and have a good look. Three days later, please come here again. I’ll show you a movie related to disclosing the mystery about the Bible.” After hearing his words, I took the typescripts from his hands, putting them into my bag carefully and then went downstairs.
On my way home, I thought: The contents of the first typescript given by Brother Wang don’t go against the Bible, and instead, they have more details than the Bible, which can make me understand God’s will more clearly. But then I thought: Where do these words come from? Do the words in the other typescripts he gave me just now go against the Bible? He asked me to watch the movie concerning disclosing the mystery about the Bible several days later. What will it talk about? Nevertheless, I haven’t watched it now, so I can’t guess wildly. I’d better watch it first. In the following two days, I checked the verses in the typescripts with the Bible carefully. After I made sure that they were all the same, I began to read them at ease. The more I read them, the more I felt the words written in them were great. They couldn’t be said by man. They were completely from the Holy Spirit. I had great enjoyment and was supplied in spirit. After I finished reading them, I longed for watching the movie concerning disclosing the mystery about the Bible mentioned by Brother Wang. I was very curious about how to disclose the mystery about the Bible in the movie. These typescripts were so wonderful, making me understand many things which I couldn’t know by reading the Bible before. I thought the movie would surely benefit me a lot.
On the fourth morning, I went to Brother Wang’s home eagerly. As soon as I got indoors, I said, “Brother Wang, I have finished reading all the typescripts you gave me. Thank the Lord! These words are very good. I think they are from God, which let me know the light that I can’t understand when reading the Bible. Today, please let me watch the movie first.” Brother Wang said, “OK!” As soon as the movie was turned on, I saw a title Ironclad Proofs—Disclose the Mystery About the Bible and heard the host saying, “Focus on ‘Ironclad Proofs’, focus on God’s work, and focus on the destiny of mankind!” The fresh subject attracted my heart at once. I watched it with a great interest. In the video, the main character Feng Jiahui mentioned: “The Bible is the only standard for our belief and life. Moreover, the whole Bible is the perfect word of God and is inspired by God, without any error.” I nodded and approved with satisfaction, “Right, this point is absolutely correct. The pastors and elders in our church all fellowship in this way.” Then Brother Shen said, “In the age of Law, the temple was so desolate that it became a den of thieves where money was changed and oxen, sheep, and doves were sold. This is because the Lord Jesus did a new work outside the temple. Similarly, today the church is desolate because the work of the Holy Spirit has moved and God has done a new work.” At his words, Feng Jiahui stood up right away and said, “This is exactly Eastern Lightning. This person believes in Eastern Lightning. All of God’s work is in the Bible. Any belief beyond the Bible is a heresy.…” I was shocked within, “What? Brother Shen in the movie believes in Eastern Lightning! This is the movie of Eastern Lightning. Are those words I read these days from Eastern Lightning? It seems that Brother Wang really believes in Eastern Lightning. I couldn’t stay there at ease. But I thought of those words I had read these days, which explained God’s will behind the things He did in the Bible so detailedly and made me get an understanding of God. I thought: What is really going on here? These years, I have been listening to the words of the pastors and elders, guarding against Eastern Lightning, and never have a careful knowledge of Eastern Lightning. Now many brothers and sisters strong in their belief have accepted Eastern Lightning. If what Eastern Lightning preaches is the true way, but I guard against it all the time, will I be abandoned by the Lord?” Thinking of these, I prayed to the Lord earnestly, “Lord, I have followed you for so many years. I have been dreaming of you coming soon. Though Eastern Lightning testifies you have come back and done a new work, the pastors and elders all say that Eastern Lightning leaves the Bible and the message of Eastern Lightning is beyond the Bible. I also think Your work is all recorded in the Bible. How can believing in the Lord stray from the Bible? So, I have been abiding by it and guarding against Eastern Lightning carefully all the time. But these days, I read the words given by Brother Wang, I feel very enjoyable and am supplied. I think they not only don’t stray from the Bible but the truths in them can make me understand the Bible more clearly. They are obviously from God. O Lord! If what Eastern Lightning testifies is really Your return, may You enlighten and lead me so that I can understand it. I’m unwilling to miss the chance. If it is not the work done by You, may You lead and protect me so that I can distinguish it.” After praying, I felt very peaceful and at ease in my heart. I decided to get to know about Eastern Lightning carefully, and not to make a conclusion blindly until I had finished watching the movie. Therefore, I quieted my heart and continued to watch it.
I saw in the video, Brother Shen saying, “If God’s work is all in the Bible and any belief beyond the Bible is a heresy as we think, why did John say, ‘And there are also many other things which Jesus did, the which, if they should be written every one, I suppose that even the world itself could not contain the books that should be written’ (John 21:25). This proves that not all of Jesus’ word and work are recorded in the New Testament. Thus, the saying ‘Outside the Bible there are no God’s work and word’ doesn’t accord with the fact. We should also know that whether the Old Testament or the New Testament, it came into being from man’s record after God finished one stage of His work. The Bible at the very beginning was only the Old Testament. All of the Lord Jesus’ work and word went beyond the Old Testament. If according to ‘Any belief beyond the Bible is a heresy’, won’t we condemn the Lord Jesus? Brothers and sisters, from these facts we can see the saying ‘Outside the Bible there is no God’s work and word and any belief beyond the Bible is a heresy’ is groundless. Almighty God says, ‘During the time of Jesus, Jesus led the Jews and all those who followed Him according to the Holy Spirit’s work in Him at the time. He did not take the Bible as the basis of what He did, but spoke according to His work; He paid no heed to what the Bible said, nor did He search in the Bible for a path to lead His followers. Right from when He began to work, He spread the way of repentance—a word of which there was absolutely no mention in the prophecies of the Old Testament. Not only did He not act according to the Bible, but He also led a new path, and did new work. Never did He refer to the Bible when He preached. During the Age of Law, no one had ever been able to perform His miracles of healing the sick and casting out demons. So, too, were His work, His teachings, and the authority and power of His words beyond any man in the Age of Law. Jesus simply did His newer work, and even though many people condemned Him using the Bible—and even used the Old Testament to crucify Him—His work surpassed the Old Testament; if this were not so, why did people nail Him to the cross? Was it not because it said nothing in the Old Testament of His teaching, and His ability to heal the sick and cast out demons? … To people, it appeared as if His work had no basis, and there was much of it that was at odds with the records of the Old Testament. Was this not man’s error? Does doctrine need to be applied to the work of God? And must God work according to the foretelling of prophets? After all, which is greater: God or the Bible? Why must God work according to the Bible? Could it be that God has no right to exceed the Bible? Can God not depart from the Bible and do other work? Why did Jesus and His disciples not keep the Sabbath? If He were to keep the Sabbath and practice according to the commandments of the Old Testament, why did Jesus not keep the Sabbath after He came, but instead washed feet, covered head, broke bread, and drank wine? Is this not all absent from the commandments of the Old Testament? If Jesus honored the Old Testament, why did He break with these doctrines? You should know which came first, God or the Bible! Being the Lord of the Sabbath, could He not also be the Lord of the Bible?’” (“Concerning the Bible (1)” in The Word Appears in the Flesh).
He went on to say, “Over so many years, we all thought any belief apart from the Bible was a heresy. Today, after reading Almighty God’s word, we know God doesn’t work according to the Bible or works by consulting the Bible, much less does He look for paths in the Bible to lead His followers. Rather, He works beyond the Bible and brings man a newer way and does a newer work. God is the Ruler of all things. He is not only the Lord of the Sabbath but the Lord of the Bible. He absolutely has the right to go beyond the Bible and does a newer work according to His own plan and mankind’s need at that time. So, ‘Outside the Bible there are no God’s word and work and any belief apart from the Bible is a heresy’, this saying is untenable.”
Brother Shen’s fellowship was well-founded and irrefutable, and especially this passage of Almighty God’s word he read had authority and power. I saw that Feng Jiahui bowed her head, having nothing to say and the co-workers of the church also looked at each other in embarrassment. At that moment, I also felt very embarrassed. I wondered within, “I am familiar with the verse read by Brother Shen, but why did I not realize that? God’s almightiness and marvelousness cannot be fathomed by man. How can a Bible record all of them?” Particularly, Almighty God’s words directly pointed out that “which came first, God or the Bible! Being the Lord of the Sabbath, could He not also be the Lord of the Bible?” Thinking it over, whether the Old Testament or the New Testament, it came into being from the followers’ record at that time after God finished His work. When Moses guided the Israelites out of Egypt, God didn’t let Moses guide the Israelites out of Egypt and through the Red Sea according to the record of the Bible. The Five Books of Moses in the Old Testament were written by Moses when he was in the wild. The work of the Lord Jesus was not based on the Bible. He spread the way of repentance, which was also not recorded in the Old Testament. These all proved that God doesn’t confine His own work within the Bible. How could man limit Him according to the Bible? Why did I never think about these questions?
In the movie, another brother of the Church of Almighty God said, “We all read the Bible in the past, but we weren’t clear about the real state of the Bible. Today Almighty God’s word has disclosed it: ‘No one knows the reality of the Bible: that it is nothing more than a historical record of God’s work, and a testament to the previous two stages of God’s work, and that it offers you no understanding of the aims of God’s work. Everyone who has read the Bible knows that it documents the two stages of God’s work during the Age of Law and the Age of Grace. The Old Testament chronicles the history of Israel and Jehovah’s work from the time of creation until the end of the Age of Law. The New Testament records Jesus’ work on earth, which is in the Four Gospels, as well as the work of Paul—are these not historical records? Bringing up the things of the past today makes them history, and no matter how true or real they might be, they are still history—and history cannot address the present, for God does not look back on history! And so, if you only understand the Bible, and understand nothing of the work God intends to do today, and if you believe in God but do not seek the work of the Holy Spirit, then you do not understand what it means to seek God. If you read the Bible in order to study the history of Israel, to research the history of God’s creation of all the heavens and earth, then you do not believe in God. But today, since you believe in God, and pursue life, since you pursue the knowledge of God, and do not pursue dead letters and doctrines or an understanding of history, you must seek God’s will of today, and you must look for the direction of the Holy Spirit’s work. If you were an archeologist you could read the Bible—but you are not, you are one of those who believe in God, and you had best seek God’s will of today” (“Concerning the Bible (4)” in The Word Appears in the Flesh).
Brother Shen continued, “From God’s words, we see that the Bible is only a historical record of God’s former works and it can’t save man. The Bible can by no means be compared with God. God is the spring of living water of life. His word and utterance flow unceasingly and unmeasurable. However, the record of the Bible is very limited. This is a fact that no one can deny. God is an ever-new and never-old God. In each age, He does new work and expresses new words. Like in the Age of Grace, the Lord Jesus did a new work and expressed new words. But the Jewish priests and Pharisees of that time held on to the Old Testament. They not only rejected and condemned the Lord Jesus, but even nailed Him on the cross, committing a monstrous sin. Today, Christ of the last days, Almighty God, expresses all the truths, which are not recorded in the Bible at all. Since there is no record, the Bible can’t substitute for God’s work and word in the last days. We can no longer hold on to the Bible. We should seek God’s present will and search for the work of the Holy Spirit. Only this is after God’s heart.”
Through Almighty God’s words and what the two witnesses fellowshiped in the movie, I understood: God’s work is always new and never old. When the Lord Jesus began to work, the work done by Jehovah in the Age of Law became history. All the believers walked forward with the work of the Lord Jesus. If people held on to the Old Testament, they would be like the Pharisees. When the Lord Jesus started to work, the Pharisees held on to the Old Testament to reject and condemn Him, thinking that the way He spread was a heresy, and finally nailed Him on the cross in accordance with the Old Testament, committing a monstrous sin of resisting God. If I still hold on to the mistaken view that any belief beyond the Bible is a heresy, I will very likely walk the Pharisees’ way of failure and be punished at last for holding on to the Bible to resist God. It seems that I must seek and investigate the Eastern Lightning.
In the movie, the veteran co-worker Brother Zheng said to Feng Jiahui, with tears brimming in his eyes, “Jiahui, is it right to follow the religious world to condemn Eastern Lightning as a heresy? Can the religious world represent God? The religious world began to condemn God’s work from the Age of Grace. When the Lord Jesus came, the religious world condemned Him and nailed Him onto the cross. The religious leaders are all the ones who serve God but resist God. They have condemned God since ancient times. Jiahui, the religious world believes in God but resists God. Don’t you see this fact clearly? Do you remember? In the past when we preached, we had endless words. The brothers and sisters were moved when listening and were full of faith. And they preached the Lord’s gospel enthusiastically. That was from the Holy Spirit’s working, and not man’s ability. And now? No new light in preaching. The brothers and sisters have no enjoyment and they gossip or doze off. Some simply don’t come. We’ve done everything we could, but without the Holy Spirit working, we are simply working in vain. Just as the Bible says, ‘Except Jehovah build the house, they labor in vain that build it: except Jehovah keep the city, the watchman wakes but in vain’ (Psalm 127:1). Jiahui, now, not only that our church has no working of the Holy Spirit, but the entire religious world has no working of the Holy Spirit. It can be seen that the Holy Spirit’s work has moved. It’s enough to prove that God’s new work has already begun. It’s time to think it over.” When I watched this, my eyes blurred by tears. I understood: The root of the church’s desolation is that God has left the churches of the Age of Grace and has started the new work. Without being upheld by the work of the Holy Spirit, the pastors and elders have no message to preach and the brothers and sisters return to the world one after another. In order to prevent brothers and sisters from following Eastern Lightning, they can only preach sermons about guarding against Eastern Lightning. It seems that the leaders in the religious world believing in God but resisting God is a fact. I had been deceived by the pastors and elders for these years, stubbornly holding on to the Bible and condemning Eastern Lightning so that I stepped on the way of believing God but resisting Him. God ignored my rebellion and still arranged Brother Wang to send His words to me (Later, I knew that those typescripts were all the newest word of Almighty God. Brother Wang didn’t tell me the real situation because he was worried that I was dominated by the mistaken view “Outside the Bible there are no God’s words”, so that I would refuse to read Almighty God’s words and lose the chance of being saved by God.) God also arranged him show me the gospel movie of Almighty God’s work in the last days in accordance with my conception of holding on to the Bible. From these, I saw God’s good intentions of saving man. I deeply felt that I was unworthy of God’s such salvation. After a period of investigation, I was absolutely certain that the Eastern Lightning is indeed the new work done by the Lord Jesus and that Almighty God is indeed theof the Lord Jesus. Thank Almighty God for His salvation!
- Extended Reading:
- All Scripture, Inspired by God? What Is the Truth?