By Yang Laidi I’m Yang Laidi, sixty-two years old this year. In 1985, because my husband had health problems, our […]
Knock, and It Shall Be Opened to You
In 1989, I accepted the of the Lord with my mother. After I believed in the Lord, I often attended meetings and read the , and so I came to know that God created the heavens and earth and all things in them. At that time, our preachers told us, “Whatever difficulties you face, just ask the Lord to help you, for He said, ‘Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and you shall find; knock, and it shall be opened to you: For every one that asks receives; and he that seeks finds; and to him that knocks it shall be opened’ (Matthew 7:7-8). So when we have difficulties, the Lord will speak to us through the Bible if we to Him.” Since then, I committed to the Lord everything, whether important events in my life or matters of daily living. The Lord really listened to my prayers and fulfilled everything I had prayed for. So I regarded the Bible as precious all the more, and I took it with me wherever I went, almost unable to be separated from it.
One Sunday in September, 1997, I came to the meeting as usual. Our preacher, an elderly sister, said, “Thank the Lord for His grace in enabling us brothers and sisters to gather before His throne today. I believe that God will give us the rich supply of His living water of life according to what we lack. I invited these two young sisters to fellowship with us today. If you have any questions, please feel free to ask them.” I had been deeply admiring the elderly sister, for she began to believe in the Lord at the age of 18, and she wore out three copies of the Bible during fifty years. But that day she unexpectedly invited two sisters over 20 to give messages. “How many days have they believed in God?” I belittled them in my heart, but I didn’t say anything, for they were invited by the elderly sister. As I was fond of singing, when the young sisters taught us to sing a hymn “A River of Water of Life” composed from Revelation 22:1-5, I felt it was fresh and beautiful, and so my heart became somewhat calm.
Then they taught us to sing a new song “ Has Appeared in the East of the World.” I felt it was very good too, lively as well as dynamic, and more inspiring than the hymns we had sung before. At the time I was no longer prejudiced against them so much. Suddenly, one of them said that God had personally opened the little scroll and started a stage of work to judge and purify man upon the foundation of the Bible. With that she put the Bible aside and took out a copy of The Scroll Opened by the Lamb. At the sight of that, my thoughts were in a tumult: They are believers in God, but they put the Bible aside. This is absolutely wrong. How can a believer in the Lord not read the Bible? Our senior preacher has worn out three copies of the Bible during her several decades of belief in God. The Bible is the basis of our belief in God. We shall never abandon it! Just when I was about to refute them, I saw the elderly sister frequently nodding her approval of what they said. So I bit the words back, thinking, “Since the elderly sister approves of them, I’m afraid, I can’t confute them by my little knowledge of the Bible; if I try, that will embarrass me. It is better for me to talk with the elderly sister after they leave, and I will tell her it is absolutely wrong to depart from the Bible, for it is written: ‘All scripture is given by inspiration of God …’ (2 Timothy 3:16). Since the Bible is given by inspiration of God, it represents the will of God. Whether we keep to the Bible is an important matter that concerns whether we will be blessed or cursed in the future. We mustn’t be careless in it and be misled by these two young sisters.” I was alarmed and nervous and rather disturbed throughout the meeting. At last the meeting was over. When I looked at the elderly sister, I felt that she seemed to very much approve of what the young sisters had fellowshiped about, for she still looked steady and joyful. So I couldn’t but murmur in my heart, “Why did you keep silent? How could you just allow them to preach those things outside the Bible? Are you still a good steward of the Lord? …”
On my way home, the more I thought about that, the more anxious I became. “I have read the Bible for nearly ten years, but now they asked us to put the Bible aside, and the elderly sister seemed not to mind it at all. Is this according to what the Lord required of us? Now most brothers and sisters in the church have accepted the words of Almighty God. If I refuse, will I miss the opportunity to welcome the return of the Lord?” Then I thought, “I cannot accept the words of Almighty God and put the Bible aside as they did. Then what shall I do?” Confused and worried, I felt as if the path under my feet had become uneven. I came home in a fluster.
Seeing uneasiness on my face, my husband asked me, “Why do you look restless? Is there anything bothering you?” I said anxiously, “Well, you can hardly imagine it. Today two young sisters came to our church and gave messages, and they said that the has returned and opened the little scroll. Look, this is the book they gave me. They said it is the new word of God, and told us to read it—The Scroll Opened by the Lamb—from now on. As you know, we have been reading and studying the Bible throughout the many years of our belief in the Lord. The Bible has benefited us greatly. We should never give it up.” My husband said with surprise, “Oh? Can there be such a thing?” He thought for a while and said, “I think what you said is right. We should have a conscience toward the Lord, and as a believer in God, we should not depart from the Bible.” His affirmative answer strengthened my faith to hold to the Bible.
In the evening, I knelt before the Bible and prayed to the Lord with eagerness and asked Him to guard His sheep from being stolen. In the days that followed, I still read the Bible. On Sunday, I went to the gathering place early with the Bible. I also put the book The Scroll Opened by the Lamb into my bag, for I did not know how to treat it and wanted to know what the elderly sister and the others thought about it. When I saw the elderly sister, I poured out my opinion about it. At my words, she smiled a calm smile and said, “My young sister, this is indeed not a small matter. We don’t know what will be the consequences if we jump to conclusions. Pray much with an earnest heart before the Lord, and I believe that the Lord will enlighten and illuminate us to understand His will.” (I knew later on that she had begun to examine the way two weeks earlier than that and was convinced that it is the true way.) Little had I expected that she would say such words, but judging by her attitude, she seemed to have reached the final conclusion on this matter. At night, I tossed about in bed, unable to fall asleep. I thought, “The elderly sister has believed in God for many years, and she is a person of discernment. When there was confusion in the Three-Self Church and the religious leaders persecuted her and pushed her aside, she found out the will of God through prayer and determinedly gave up her position and joined the house church. I admire her for what she did, and I believe that she would not jump to conclusions this time without praying and seeking. But the book The Scroll Opened by the Lamb goes beyond the Bible. This is by no means right. O Lord, what shall I do?” At that moment, I thought of the elderly sister’s exhortation to me, so I knelt down before the Lord and prayed to Him, “The gracious Lord , the Author and Perfecter of our faith, now all my brothers and sisters read The Scroll Opened by the Lamb, and they said it is Your new word. Throughout many years, none of the believers in You have ever departed from the Bible, but the Bible verses are not fellowshiped about in the meetings now. How should I believe in You? O Lord, may You give me directions, for You are a lamp to my feet and a light to my path. I am waiting for You to guide me.”