The Plague Is Upon Us: How to Obtain God’s Mercy and Protection

Look Back in History and Seek God’s Will

It is recorded in the Old Testament that the people of Sodom were evil, promiscuous, and corrupt, and that the city was brimming with bloodlust and slaughter, so much so that the people there even wanted to kill angels. Repentance never even occurred to them, and so God rained fire down upon them from heaven and destroyed them all. Those well-versed in the Bible, however, know that before God brought calamity upon the city, Abraham beseeched God on Sodom’s behalf. Here is an extract of this record from the Bible: “And Jehovah said, If I find in Sodom fifty righteous within the city, then I will spare all the place for their sakes. … And he said, … Peradventure ten shall be found there. And He said, I will not destroy it for ten’s sake” (Genesis 18:26–32). These verses not only reveal God’s righteous disposition, but even more so give us a sense of God’s great mercy and lenience. God would have spared Sodom if fifty righteous people could be found there, and He would also have spared the city if just ten righteous people could be found. In spite of how deeply corrupt and wicked people were, God still hoped they would repent. It is a painful fact that not even ten righteous people could be found in such a large city, and so God ultimately had no choice but to destroy it.

God Hopes That People Can Repent

Disasters are occurring one after another, and God’s will is for us to come before Him to repent. He wishes for everyone to repent and does not want anyone to perish. Two thousand years ago, the Lord Jesus said, “Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand” (Matthew 4:17). At this point, some of you may say, “Unbelievers don’t believe in God and cannot possibly repent. After gaining faith in the Lord, however, we often cry bitterly before Him as we pray. We admit our past sins, and we won’t do anything bad again. We can be tolerant and patient with others. We can give to charity and make donations and help others, even we can spend all our time toiling and working for the Lord, and we won’t betray the Lord even if we’re arrested and put in prison. Isn’t this true repentance? If we steadfastly practice in this way, then the Lord will protect us and keep us from being swept away by the disasters.” But is this really the case? The Lord Jesus once said, “Whoever commits sin is the servant of sin. And the servant stays not in the house for ever: but the son stays ever” (John 8:34–35). After we gain faith in the Lord, we can be humble and patient, we can help others, and we can make sacrifices, expend ourselves, preach the gospel, bear witness to the Lord, and we have some external good behaviors. What we cannot deny, however, is that the corrupt dispositions that lie within us, such as arrogance, conceitedness, crookedness, deceit, selfishness, and ignobility, have not been cleansed, and we are still capable of sinning all the time. For example, we know very well that the Lord requires us to be honest, but controlled by our selfish, despicable nature, as soon as something infringes upon our own personal interests, we can’t help but tell lies and engage in deceit; controlled by our arrogant, conceited nature, we always make others do what we say no matter what it is, and when they don’t we get angry and lecture them; and when disasters and trials befall, we complain and blame the Lord. These are just a few examples. Our sins are like weeds — they grow right back after being cut down. Even if we cry bitterly every day as we pray and confess our sins, we still do not change. Can this be true repentance? Who could guarantee that God would protect such a person in the midst of the disasters? True repentance is when someone’s satanic corrupt dispositions are entirely cleansed and changed, when they no longer do evil, commit sin, or resist God. It’s when they can truly submit to God and worship God. Only people like this are fit to inherit God’s promises and blessings and enter the kingdom of heaven. Just as it says in the Bible: “[Y]ou shall therefore be holy, for I am holy” (Leviticus 11:45). “Blessed are they that do His commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city” (Revelation 22:14).

How to Achieve True Repentance and Gain God’s Protection

How then can we achieve true repentance? The Lord Jesus once said, “I have yet many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. However, when He, the Spirit of truth, is come, He will guide you into all truth: for He shall not speak of Himself; but whatever He shall hear, that shall He speak: and He will show you things to come” (John 16:12–13). “For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God” (1 Peter 4:17). “Sanctify them through Your truth: Your word is truth” (John 17:17). The Lord prophesied that He would return in the last days, that He would express more and higher truths than in the Age of Grace, and that He would perform a stage of work to judge and cleanse man. This is so that we can be freed from the bonds of sin once and for all and be cleansed and transformed. Because the work the Lord Jesus did in the Age of Grace was the work of redemption, people could have their sins forgiven by believing in Him. People were not cleansed of their sinful nature, however. Only by accepting the Lord’s work of judgment in the last days, having our corrupt dispositions cleansed and changed, and never again doing evil, committing sin, or resisting God, can we be said to have truly repented. Only then will we come under God’s protection and survive the disasters.

Take Heed of God’s Admonitions

Almighty God says, “All manner of disasters will befall, one after another; all nations and places will experience calamities: Plague, famine, flood, drought, and earthquakes are everywhere. These disasters are not just happening in one or two places, nor will they be over within a day or two; rather, instead they will expand across a greater and greater area, and become more and more severe. During this time, all manner of insect plagues will arise one after another, and the phenomenon of cannibalism will occur everywhere. This is My judgment upon all nations and peoples” (“Chapter 65” of Utterances of Christ in the Beginning in The Word Appears in the Flesh). “If mankind wishes to have a good fate, if a country wishes to have a good fate, then man must bow down to God in worship, repent and confess before God, or else the fate and destination of man will be an unavoidable catastrophe” (“God Presides Over the Fate of All Mankind” in The Word Appears in the Flesh). “My final work is not only for the sake of punishing man, but also for the sake of arranging the destination of man. Moreover, it is so that all people may acknowledge My deeds and actions. I want each and every person to see that all I have done is right, and that all I have done is an expression of My disposition. It is not man’s doing, much less nature, that brought forth mankind, but I, who nourish every living being in creation. Without My existence, mankind will only perish and suffer the scourge of calamity. No human being will ever again see the beauteous sun and moon, or the verdant world; mankind shall encounter only the frigid night and the inexorable valley of the shadow of death. I am mankind’s only salvation. I am mankind’s only hope and, even more, I am He on whom the existence of all mankind rests. Without Me, mankind will immediately come to a standstill. Without Me, mankind will suffer catastrophe and be trampled underfoot by all manner of ghosts, though no one takes heed of Me. I have done work that can be done by no other, and hope only that man can repay Me with some good deeds” (“Prepare Sufficient Good Deeds for Your Destination” in The Word Appears in the Flesh).



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