How to Become Overcomers
Slowly, I walked on the way back home, looking at the falling leaves and the yellow weeds along the road, the misery in my heart increasing.
The Lord didn’t come back in the year 2000 as we wished, which was a heavy blow to me, and my faith still hadn’t recovered. A week ago, I went to the provincial capital to attend a blending joyfully, hoping to receive some new light and messages that could build up and strengthen my spirit, so that I could lead the brothers and sisters in our area to follow the path led by Brother Li and to be made into overcomers as soon as possible. However, when I saw that some co-workers I knew had turned to do business, that the believers were faint and weak in pray-reading and prophesying, and that the blending which used to be lively became especially desolate now, I felt much weaker than ever.
A gust of fall wind blew up and made me shudder. I prayed to the Lord in my heart, “Oh my Lord! Who can make us the overcomers actually?”
When I returned home, my wife came forward and said, “You are back. Someone has waited for you for a long time. Come quickly!” I put down my bag and went to the sitting room. It was Brother Xiao, my classmate.
Brother Xiao was an elder with high status in our Local Church. Not only was he strong in spirit and rich in prophesying, but his prophecies touched the hearts of the brothers and sisters and benefited our lives a lot. It’s more than a decade since we last met and we only had morning revival and simple fellowship on the phone occasionally. Today, we could have the chance to meet. I felt this was prepared by the Lord and that maybe he could bring me some new light and massages. After a few conventional remarks, we pray-read and prophesied Brother Li’s massages, and then began to fellowship some realistic matters. Sister Hu and Sister Zhang came when we talked in high spirits. After the introductions, I told them about the blending I had attended. Hearing my words, the two sisters lowered their heads disappointedly.
I looked at them and spoke out my feelings, “Since we were not made the overcomers in 2000 as Brother Li said, most of the believers have lost their faith to pursue and so have I.”
After my words, Brother Xiao said, “Ever since Brother Li passed away before he could be raptured alive, I’ve felt that there’s something wrong. If God truly guides our path, then why has this path failed us?”
I felt Brother Xiao’s words were reasonable and said, “We weren’t made into overcomers in 2000. This is a huge problem. Maybe, the message of Brother Li was from man, and wasn’t actually one of the Holy Spirit’s revelations. But we can still trust in the Lord’s promise. We weren’t made into overcomers in 2000, but this doesn’t mean that we won’t become overcomers in the future. In Revelation 14, it is prophesied that the first fruits will be reaped before the harvest to enjoy the blessings of the new Jerusalem. These ‘first fruits’ are the overcomers. So it’s completely valid for us to seek to become overcomers in this age. No doubt about it!”
Sister Zhang agreed with me, “Pursuing the path of overcomers is absolutely correct. This accords with the Lord’s will and it will never change. And Brother Li made the way to become overcomers so clear to us. So long as we walk the path Brother Li led us to, we will become overcomers!”
Brother Xiao frowned and said, “But we’ve been practicing morning revival every day, practicing the vital groups to mingle our spirits with the Lord at every meeting. We’ve all been practicing for so many years, but we don’t see any changes at all, so I don’t think this path will make us overcomers.”
At Brother Xiao’s words, Sister Hu had a sour taste in her mouth, and then she looked askew at him questioning, “How could we not become overcomers?! Brother Li said that when we digest and assimilate the Lord’s words and constitute them into us through praying, studying, reciting, and preaching, and let the Spirit mingle Himself with us, then we will attain the overcoming life. With the overcoming life, we will be able to overcome this world and to overcome Satan, and we will eventually become overcomers!” After saying these words, she snorted with disdain, drank some water, and continued, “It is just a matter of time!”
Hearing the viewpoint of Sister Hu, Brother Xiao said, “We’ve followed this path for over ten years now. But we have almost nothing to show for it, and the Holy Spirit has done nothing to confirm that we’re on the right path. Except for learning a few new words and ideas here and there, has anyone been truly renewed and transformed? Who has become an overcomer? Not a single one of us! Is this not the reality of the situation? Even Brother Li himself failed to become an overcomer. So if we follow the same path, how could we possibly become overcomers?”
I said, “Even though Brother Li left this world without being raptured alive, this doesn’t prove that he led us down the wrong path. We still need to call on the Lord’s name, pray-read the Lord’s words, exercise our spirit, and build up the church by prophesying. Then we will become the overcomers of this age. In this crucial period of time, we co-workers must work hard to support our brothers and sisters and strengthen their faith. This is what it means to be faithful to the Lord! It’s okay for us to reflect on the path we have taken, but we must trust in the Lord’s promise. We must not despair or lose hope!”
After we spoke our viewpoints, Brother Xiao said, “You said that the path Brother Li led would make us into overcomers, and that we only need to practice according to Brother Li’s path to become overcomers. Are there any prophecies testifying to this? Anyone who understands the Bible knows that God will make overcomers before the disaster. The prophecy in Revelation says: ‘And to the angel of the church in Philadelphia write; These things said: Because you have kept the word of my patience, I also will keep you from the hour of temptation, which shall come on all the world, to try them that dwell on the earth. Behold, I come quickly: hold that fast which you have, that no man take your crown. Him that overcomes will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write on him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which comes down out of heaven from my God: and I will write on him my new name. He that has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches’ (Revelation 3:7-13). ‘He that has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches; To him that overcomes will I give to eat of the hidden manna, and will give him a white stone, and in the stone a new name written, which no man knows saving he that receives it’ (Revelation 2:17). ‘For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God’ (1 Peter 4:17). The Bible prophesied what the Holy Spirit says to the churches, theof the Philadelphia Church, that His judgment must begin with the house of God, etc. This is what the Lord Jesus will do when He returns. That is to say, the Lord will do the work of judgment beginning from God’s house to make a group of overcomers. It’s clear that God Himself will do the work of making overcomers in the last days. No one can replace Him. You said just now that Brother Li led us down his path to make us into overcomers. Could Brother Li do the work of judgment beginning at the house of God? Did he say the same things that the Holy Spirit says to the churches? Did he speak the words that judge and purify mankind? In reality, Brother Li is a corrupt human, just like us all. He couldn’t speak God’s words or judge and purify mankind. So could he show other people the way to become overcomers? Brother Li had worked for decades. Everything he preached about being renewed, transformed, conformed, and glorified, have we achieved any change after our years of practice and work? Have we attained holiness? Was there ever any testimony borne by an overcomer made in the Local Church? Actually, we are all clear that no matter how much Brother Li’s sermons accord with man’s conceptions and imaginations, they are essentially human concepts and human understanding that bear no connection at all to the truth expressed by God. Thus, if we pursue and practice according to the path he led, how can we gain the truth, be free from sins, attain holiness, and become overcomers? Moreover, even Brother Li himself failed to become an overcomer. So, how could he possibly show other people how to become overcomers? How could we say his path would lead us to become overcomers? The clever should see through this fact. So, if someone says that Brother Li’s path will make us into overcomers, this goes completely against the reality of God’s work, and has absolutely no basis in God’s words. The overcomers are made by God’s work of judgment in the last days. They are not made by mankind in any way.”
At his words, I was shocked and thought: Thanks to Brother Xiao’s fellowship, I understand that it is God that makes us the overcomers, not Brother Li. Thinking of this, I stared at Xiao Liang.
Brother Xiao scratched his head, looked at us, and then said shyly, “Sorry! Maybe my words are so plain that make you hard to accept, but what I said is the fact indeed.”
My wife said with a smile, “Ah! That’s OK. I feel as if we have walked to the edge of a precipice. This is truly dangerous, so it is good for us to understand these matters.”
Sister Zhang said excitedly, “That’s it! We have been following Brother Li’s path to be overcomers for years and years now, and have practiced according to this path of renewing, transformation, conformation, and attaining glory. But instead of having true knowledge of God, we grow more and more arrogant, thinking that we know more about the Bible and spiritual doctrines than anyone else. We despise the brothers and sisters from other denominations, while in reality, we are merely engaging in idle prattle about Brother Li’s spiritual theories rather than obeying the words of the Lord Jesus. We are merely listening to and practicing man’s words, and worshiping man. We only have men in our hearts, and don’t have any place for God or revere God in our hearts. How could people like us become overcomers? Brother Li’s path does not lead us to become overcomers, but rather deviates from the Lord’s way. The overcomers are made by God’s work of judgment in the last days. They are not made by mankind in any way.”
I said with emotion, “Yes. If Brother Li’s path really led us to become overcomers, then at the very least, he himself should become an overcomer. But in reality, Brother Li passed away instead of becoming an overcomer. So how could he possibly show other people how to become overcomers? In our Local Church we live the church life. Every day, we talk about being renewed, transformed, conformed, and glorified. Our calls are loud enough to hear in heaven. Every single thought that we have is obsessed with becoming enthroned and ruling. But we haven’t been transformed in the slightest, let alone love and care for our Lord. We have no patience or tolerance for our brothers and sisters, and even go so far as to envy and scheme against one another for profit and recognition, causing all kinds of strife. How could we possibly become overcomers in such a sorry state? Man’s work can’t replace God’s work. That much is obvious. No matter how well men know the Bible and preach about spiritual knowledge and doctrines, they still can’t do God’s work! If we follow men all the way until the end, we will surely become hypocritical Pharisees, and we will all become arrogant and self-righteous antichrists. And after all of this, we’re all still dreaming about entering the kingdom of heaven. Are we not deluding ourselves?”
I felt it hard to calm down at this moment. I walked slowly to the desk and couldn’t help feeling kind of sad in my heart, thinking: Brother Xiao’s fellowship makes sense and fully convinces me. It seems that the overcomers are indeed made by God’s work of judgment in the last days. I’ve followed Brother Li’s path diligently throughout all my many years of belief. I really thought I could become an overcomer through practicing like this. It has never crossed my mind that it could all be in vain! Thanks to Brother Xiao’s fellowship, I understand such an important truth today. This is the Lord’s blessing. I do need to re-examine whether the path I’ve taken is after the Lord’s will.
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