One day in April, 1999, an elderly sister of our local Three-Self church brought two young brothers to my house, and they preached God’s work of the last days to me, who was thirsty and hungry in the spirit at that time. Through seeking and investigating for over a month, I was certain that Almighty God is the returned Lord Jesus. I was very happy that the Lord Jesus whom I had longed for every day had really come back. I thought, “I must tell this good news to those brothers and sisters who are still waiting for the Lord to return.” But little had I expected that when I, full of faith, went everywhere preaching the gospel, news of my accepting God’s work of the last days reached the pastors and elders of the Three-Self church. Then Satan’s temptations and attacks came upon me one after another …
My Former Co-worker Huang Tried to Deceive Me Using the Words of the Lord Jesus
Early one morning, my former co-worker Huang in the Three-Self church came to my house angrily. I thought, “I have been on good terms with her; today I must tell her the news that God has come back.” So I said to her with a smile, “Auntie! I haven’t seen you for so long. Today I will tell you some very good news…” But she interrupted me in a harsh tone, with her finger pointing at me, “Have you converted to the ‘Eastern Lightning’? Don’t you know that there will appear false Christs in the last days? It is written, ‘Then if any man shall say to you, See, here is Christ, 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’ (Matthew 24:23-24). Why didn’t you guard against them? How could you have been deceived by them? Your doing so is betraying the Lord. During these years, you have undergone so many sufferings in building up the church, preaching the gospel, and sustaining the brothers and sisters for the Lord; haven’t you undergone all those sufferings in vain? When the Lord comes back, you will be forsaken by Him.” Upon hearing that, I immediately remembered the words that the brothers and sisters of the Church of Almighty God had said when fellowshipping about these verses. So I said with great calmness, “Do you know the intended meaning of these words of the Lord? The Lord said them in order to tell us that we should be cautious and have discernment when waiting for His coming, and not to forbid us to seek His return because of the appearance of false Christs during the last days. If we treat every message telling us that the Lord has come as a false one without seeking the truth or making any investigation, how can we possibly meet the returned Lord? Through reading the words of Almighty God these days I have realized that Almighty God is the returned Lord Jesus. My following Almighty God is keeping up with the new work of God rather than betraying the Lord….” At my words, she left in a huff.
Afterward, she came to my house almost every two days. Every time she came, she spoke some blasphemies and words to disturb me, but I had a firm faith and remained unwavering whatever she said. Besides, I became ever more disgusted with her. Finally I told her, “Don’t come again. No matter what you say, I will not listen to you.” My uncompromising attitude enraged her, and after that she never came again.
The Leaders of the Local Three-Self Church Tried to Entice Me to Leave God by Offering to Install the Aluminum Alloy Doors and Windows
A few days later, when I was doing my housework, five people, the leadership of the Three-Self church, came to my house. At the sight of them, I became nervous in my heart, and I thought, “When Sister Huang came alone, she was so rude and unreasonable. Now several people come together; how will they treat me? Can I withstand it?” The more I thought, the more afraid I felt. My heart thumped, and I immediately prayed in my heart, “O God! May You keep my heart and give me the words I should say so that I can stand fast and will not betray You when Satan disturbs me.” At that moment, these words of Almighty God occurred to me: “Be not afraid; Almighty God of hosts must be with you. He will be your support and your shield” (“The Twenty-sixth Utterance” in The Word Appears in the Flesh). God’s words gave me faith and strength. “Yes, God is my support; I should be afraid of nothing.” I calmed down, not so nervous or afraid. After taking a few breaths, I said with a smile, “Please come in and have a seat.” I had thought that they would be rude and unreasonable like Sister Huang, but unexpectedly, a sister said to me with a smile, “Sister, we heard that you have accepted the ‘Eastern Lightning.’ We are all worried about you. We are to blame for that, because we have not cared for you much before. We come to see you today, and we wish you to turn back quickly. Besides, we want to see what your family lacks so that the church can help you.” With that they inspected my house. Then a sister in charge of the affairs of the Three-Self church took my hands and said, “Sister, your family is really in need. You see, the doors and windows are in so bad a condition that your rooms must be very cold in winter. They really should be replaced! Besides, you have elderly parents, and they have to suffer cold. If you are willing to come back to our church and believe in the Lord firmly, we will have the doors and windows of your house replaced with aluminum alloy ones without any charge, as we have brothers and sisters from every walk of life. What do you think about it?” At the time, another sister who was also in charge of the affairs of the Three-Self church patted me on the shoulder and said, “Right! Sister, you have had a good faith in the Lord! You have built up a church for the Lord. Don’t worry. Our church will not leave you uncared-for. From now on, when your family has any difficulty, just tell us, and we will help you.” At their words, my heart was warmed up, and I thought, “It’s true that the doors and windows should be replaced, but we have been in straits for money and can’t afford the expense, so that our parents are cold with us. They say that if we lack anything, just tell them. And they also promise to replace our doors and windows without any charge. What a good thing! If I agree to go back to the Three-Self church, I will not need to spend money to replace the doors and windows.” But then I thought, “That is not right! Today God has carried out His new work. If I go back there, will I not lag behind God’s work?” At that moment, the story of the rich man in the Bible who received good things in his lifetime but went to hell after his death came to my mind. So I thought, “Right! If I am forsaken by God, I can never buy back such an opportunity no matter how much I pay. But the doors and windows indeed should be replaced. What should I do?” Then I suddenly remembered a passage of God’s word that Sister Yang of the Church of Almighty God had read to me: “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” (“Only Loving God Is Truly Believing in God” in The Word Appears in the Flesh). So I realized: Behind what is happening now is Satan’s wager with God. It is up to me whether I choose to betray God or stand firm in my testimony to God. Every word of Almighty God is truly the truth. Through His words He has not only revealed the mysteries of God’s management of mankind, but also disclosed the corrupt nature within man and shown man the way to be saved and enter the kingdom of heaven. If I abandon the true way for the sake of the aluminum alloy doors and windows, my belief in God will be in vain. I must see through the scheme of Satan. Nothing is more important than to gain life. Then I immediately prayed in my heart, “O God! They are trying to pull me back to the Three-Self church with petty favors. I know this is Satan’s scheme. May You watch over me and keep me from betraying You. Amen!” After the prayer, I said to them decidedly, “Thank you for your kindness. We don’t need you to have our doors and windows replaced. We ourselves can have them replaced. You can go now!” Though my attitude was very firm, they were still all smiles, and said, “You don’t need to spend any money. Don’t be in a hurry to reply. Think it over again.” With these words they went away.
Although I knew that was Satan’s scheme, I kept thinking about it at night. After I lay down, I began to consider it, tossing in my sleep, “If I go back to the Three-Self church and believe in the Lord there, the brothers and sisters there will support me, and the church will have our doors and windows replaced, but I will be forsaken by the Lord. Oh! …”
The next day, Sister Yang of the Church of Almighty God came. She found a passage of God’s word in light of my state: “The building of the kingdom is aimed directly at the spiritual realm. In other words, the battle of the spiritual realm is made plain directly among all My people, and from this can be seen that all people are always warring, not just in the church, but even more in the time of the kingdom, and that although man is in the flesh, the spiritual realm is revealed directly, and man engages with the life of the spiritual realm. … In My plan, Satan has ever snapped at the heels of every step, and, as the foil of My wisdom, has always tried to find ways and means to disrupt My original plan” (“The Eighth Utterance” of God’s Utterances to the Entire Universe in The Word Appears in the Flesh). After reading these words, she fellowshiped, “From God’s words we see clearly that this is a battle of the spiritual realm, in which Satan has tried its utmost to disrupt and disturb God’s work of saving man. Because you are a new believer and have yet to lay the foundation, Satan has tried to disturb and attack you time and again in order for you to betray God. When its scheme failed, it tried another. It wanted to use those material things to tempt you and harm you. Such an action is actually a kiss of death. You should never be fooled by it. In Satan’s performance, we can see it is base and shameless in substance. We should see through its scheme and stand firm in our testimony to God.” After hearing her fellowship, I thought, “What a near thing that was! When Satan disturbed me with a hard tactic last time, I saw through it. So it used a soft one this time. It used both hard and soft tactics against me! I was almost fooled by it. I must be careful from now on lest I be trapped by it.”
They Tried to Entice Me to Go Back to the Three-Self Church by Offering to Build a House for Me
I thought I could believe in Almighty God without disturbance after that. But unexpectedly, they came again a few days later, and they even brought Sister Gu, a real estate developer, along with them. When I saw Sister Gu get out of the car and walk in style toward my house, I was astounded, “They bring Sister Gu along with them. What high prestige she usually enjoys! I never expected that she would come to my house.” At the thought, I quickly went out to welcome her. When she met me, she caught me by the hand and said with a smile, “Sister, I come to see you. Sister, where does your husband work? How much money can he get a day?” I told her the truth. Little had I imagined that after hearing what I said, she looked at me with a pitying eye, saying, “Golly! He only gets that little a day. It’s not even adequate to support the family, let alone to build a house.” I blushed at her words, thinking, “We earn so little money, which is nothing in her eyes. What a disgrace!” Then she continued, “Sister, if you can come back to the church to believe in God properly and help to manage the church, the church will provide whatever your family lacks. And I’ll find a good job for your husband; the pay will be much higher than his present wages. Besides, I will use some leftover building materials to build a house for you for free.”
I was surprised and amazed to hear what she said. I thought, “Even some leftover building materials of hers can be used to build a house, while I have got in debt for the purchase of this small house, not to mention having the money to build a big one. I have been dreaming of living in a bright spacious house, but I supposed there was scarcely a hope that we would build a big one in my life. Unexpectedly, such a good thing happens to me today!” At that moment, the big house seemed to be standing before my eyes with my family living in it. I was hesitant and really wanted to promise them to go back. “This is really a stroke of luck. How can I refuse such a good offer! But if I accept it, I will be a betrayer of God!” My heart was pained so much at the thought, and there was a fierce battle in it. I, helpless, could only pray in my heart, “O God! They offer me such great benefits today, and I want very much to agree to go back to the Three-Self church and attend meetings there. But I know that their promise to build a house for me and find a good job for my husband is Satan’s scheme and that their purpose is for me to leave You. However, I almost cannot overcome it. At the thought of the house, I feel so weak within. O God! What should I do? May You guide me!” After the prayer, the devil’s temptation of the Lord Jesus recorded in the Bible came to my mind: “Again, the devil takes him up into an exceeding high mountain, and shows him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them; And said to him, All these things will I give you, if you will fall down and worship me. Then said Jesus to him, Get you hence, Satan: for it is written, You shall worship the Lord your God, and him only shall you serve” (Matthew 4:8-10). The words of the Lord Jesus allowed me to have discernment of Satan’s scheme. I thought, “They all know my family is poor, so they try various means to entice me to abandon the true way. This shows that Satan is really full of cunning tricks, and I cannot be fooled by it.” I just sat there silent, constantly praying in my heart and asking God to keep me. Seeing me hesitant, another sister urged me tenderly, “Sister, this is God’s love! Other people are unworthy to receive this offer even if they ask for it. Only you are qualified, because you have built up a church here for the Lord and managed it so well. You are a person well pleasing to the Lord, and you have rendered great service in His eyes. Be sure to seize this good opportunity! Think it over. The door of the church is opened to you all the time, and we welcome you back anytime. We’ll go now.”
After they left, the more I thought about that, the more I felt distressed. “Even if all the members of my family work, we will not be able to build a big house in our lifetime. Now as long as I go back to the Three-Self church, we can live in a big house without spending a cent. This is indeed a hard-to-come-by opportunity! But I cannot betray God! Hadn’t I believed in God for the sake of waiting for the Lord’s return? If I forsake God for the sake of the house, won’t I be finished?” The more I thought about this, the more distressed and troubled my heart was. I wished I could both get the house and be saved if I went back to the Three-Self church. In the few days that followed, I kept thinking about the matter, whether when I walked or was seated. Whenever I looked at the old house, I was distressed and felt that every part of it was offensive to the eye—the bricks had become dark, the rooms were dim, and the ground was low. The more I looked at it, the more I felt suffocated. I sighed all day long, and couldn’t fall asleep at night, just thinking about the things that had happened in that period. “Oh! Believing in God is too hard!” In weakness, I prayed to God, “O God! I know this is a battle of the spiritual realm in which Satan uses material benefits to entice me, but I have no power to overcome sin. Please guide me! …”
Just when I was hesitating at the crossroads, not knowing which way to choose, Sister Yang came again. After I told her what had happened to me, she said, “Sister, God says: ‘My word is the truth, the life, and the way, is a sharp double-edged sword, and can defeat Satan’ (‘The Twelfth Utterance’ in The Word Appears in the Flesh). Faced with Satan’s attack, we can only overcome it by coming before God and relying on God’s words. God’s word says: ‘Because of God’s incarnation, Satan makes every attempt to accuse and wants to attack God by doing so. However, God does not retreat on that account, and He just speaks among men and works among men, letting men know Him through His incarnate flesh. But Satan becomes irritated, and it also puts in a lot of efforts on God’s people, trying to make them become passive, draw back, and even get lost’ (‘The Interpretation of the Thirteenth Utterance’ in The Word Appears in the Flesh). ‘When you are tempted, you should say: “My heart belongs to God, and God has already gained me. I cannot satisfy you—I must devote my all to satisfying God.” The more you satisfy God, the more God blesses you, and the greater the strength of your love for God; so, too, will you have faith and resolve, and will feel that nothing is more worthy or significant than a life spent loving God’ (‘Only by Experiencing Painful Trials Can You Know the Loveliness of God’ in The Word Appears in the Flesh). This is another temptation from Satan. Satan tries to hinder you from keeping up with the new work of God through the people around you. The work God does this time is the work of concluding the age. Now is the time to decide man’s life and death and his fate and end. One’s success or failure hinges on his choice. If we miss the opportunity, we will regret for a lifetime. Satan also knows that God’s work is drawing to an end. Now it is conducting desperate struggles, exerting itself to the utmost to disturb God’s work. It knows that we have a greedy nature, so it uses some material benefits to disturb us. As we only have a superficial understanding of the truth, we may keep our faith in God when faced with small benefits, but we can hardly overcome it when faced with great ones. If we follow Satan, our life will be ruined. God’s wisdom is exercised based on Satan’s schemes. God makes our faith perfect through Satan’s sieges. If we have true faith in God, we will be able to give up the interests of our flesh to follow God. Although our flesh is weak, when we understand that we will have the hope of being saved if we keep up with God’s new work and that we will live out a life of meaning if we love God, we will be able to overcome the temptation of any material benefits and declare to Satan that we are determined to forsake it, and Satan will naturally draw back.”
Through reading God’s words and hearing Sister Yang’s fellowship, I had the true discernment of the spiritual battle and the schemes of Satan. I thought, “It is really not easy for God to save man! When God saves man, Satan tries to entrap man, and it persistently fights with God for man. Satan wants to pull me into hell through those religious leaders, so it has tried different tactics to disturb me. Outwardly, they were for my interests, but in truth, they tried to entice me to forsake God. Satan is so sinister and malicious. If its sinister intention had not been exposed through the words of God, I wouldn’t have known it!” When I thought of this, it gave me the chills. “If God had not used the sister to water me time and again, I might have been deceived by Satan. That was a near thing! This time I have really gained some insight and discernment. From now on, I will read God’s words seriously and equip myself with the truths of all aspects to bear testimony to God.”
They Tried to Coerce Me Into Betraying God With the Arrest of the CCP
Because I didn’t reject them last time though I didn’t accept their offer, they came to my house again several days later. Upon entering the room, a man who was in charge of the Three-Self church asked me with a smile, “Sister, have you thought it through these days?” I thought, “Do you still want to entice me to go back to your church? I will not be fooled by you this time.” So I straightened up and said, “I have decided that I will follow Almighty God to the end. Since God has come to carry out the new work, I cannot lag behind it. You don’t need to come to persuade me anymore; I have discernment myself. Don’t come again. As for the house, there is no need for you to worry about it.” At my words, he turned hostile all at once. Staring at me, he said ferociously, “I tell you, now the government is trying to arrest the believers in Almighty God everywhere. If the arrested ones don’t come clean, they can beat them to death with impunity. And I also warn you, if you dare to go to our church preaching the gospel again, I will call the police to arrest you!” At the sight of his ferocious look, I felt somewhat afraid, and I thought, “Is that so serious? What if I am arrested by the CCP and beaten to death?” But immediately I realized that there was Satan’s scheme in it and that Satan was trying to use my weakness, the fear of death, to attack me. At the thought, I prayed to God in my heart and asked Him to guide me to overcome Satan’s temptation. Then the words of the Lord Jesus occurred to me: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell” (Matthew 10:28). And these words of Almighty God also occurred to me: “Man’s life originates from God, the existence of the heaven is because of God, and the existence of the earth stems from the power of God’s life. No object possessed of vitality can transcend the sovereignty of God, and no thing with vigor can break away from the ambit of God’s authority. In this way, regardless of who they are, everyone must submit under the dominion of God, everyone must live under God’s command, and no one can escape from His control” (“Only Christ of the Last Days Can Give Man the Way of Eternal Life” in The Word Appears in the Flesh). The words of the Lord Jesus and Almighty God made me strong in the spirit immediately. “Right! What shall I fear? No matter how ferocious the CCP, it can only kill my body but cannot kill my soul, for man’s life is controlled by the hands of God and the CCP has no right to decide anyone’s life or death. Whether I will be arrested for believing in God or not is also in the hands of God. I cannot bow to Satan. This is the time God tests me and also the time Satan is making a bet with God. I will stand firm in my testimony to God, and will never compromise with Satan!” When I thought of this, I held myself upright and said to them with justice and severity, “The life and death of each person are determined by God. Don’t threaten me with the arrest of the government; I am not afraid of that. No matter what you say, I will still believe in Almighty God and preach the gospel to my brothers and sisters, for that is my duty. No matter what I encounter in the future, it was predestined by God, and I am ready and willing to accept it. If you are not afraid of becoming Judas, the betrayer of the Lord, just go and report!” At my such words, all of them were dumbfounded with anger, and they left in dejection. After that, they never came again. I saw the power of God’s word. God’s word is truly a sharp sword and can defeat Satan!
Later, I devoted myself heart and soul to the gospel preaching. I am grateful to God for saving me. If God had not moved the sister to come again and again to fellowship about His words with me, when faced with Satan’s such frenzied disturbances, I couldn’t have overcome it. May all the glory be to Almighty God!
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God’s Words Rescued Me From Satan’s Sieges was last modified: July 23rd, 2019 by Find the Shepherd
My husband attempted to obstruct me from believing in God, which made me distressed. Only after I experienced this spiritual warfare did I realize this was a wager made by God and Satan and was God’s blessing in disguise as well.
Their lost, confused, afraid, anxious, yearning and numb hearts found comfort. They were no longer doubtful or disappointed because they felt that now there was hope and something to rely on. The Son of man standing in front of them would be behind them for eternity, He would be their strong tower, their refuge for all time.