“If therefore you shall not watch, I will come on you as a thief, and you shall not know what hour I will come on you” (Revelation 3:3).
“Be you therefore ready also: for the Son of man comes at an hour when you think not” (Luke 12:40).
“For as the lightning, that lightens out of the one part under heaven, shines to the other part under heaven; so shall also the Son of man be in His day. But first must He suffer many things, and be rejected of this generation” (Luke 17:24–25).
“And at midnight there was a cry made, Behold, the bridegroom comes; go you out to meet him” (Matthew 25:6).
“Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear My voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with Me” (Revelation 3:20).
“And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory” (Matthew 24:30).
“Behold, He comes with clouds; and every eye shall see Him, and they also which pierced Him: and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of Him. Even so, Amen” (Revelation 1:7).
Relevant Words of God:
For several millennia, man has longed to be able to witness the arrival of the Savior. Man has longed to behold Jesus the Savior riding a white cloud as He descends, in person, among those who have pined and yearned for Him for thousands of years. Man has also longed for the Savior to return and be reunited with them; that is, longed for Jesus the Savior, who has been separated from people for thousands of years, to come back, and to once again carry out the work of redemption that He did among the Jews, to be compassionate and loving toward man, to forgive the sins of man and bear the sins of man, and even bear all of man’s transgressions and deliver man from sin. What man longs for is for Jesus the Savior to be the same as before—a Savior who is lovable, kind, and venerable, who is never wrathful toward man, and who never reproaches man, but who forgives and takes on all of man’s sins, and who will even, as before, die upon the cross for man. Since Jesus departed, the disciples who followed Him, as well as all of the saints who were saved in His name, have been desperately pining for Him and awaiting Him. All those who were saved by the grace of Jesus Christ during the Age of Grace have been longing for that exultant day in the end time when Jesus the Savior descends on a white cloud to appear before all people. Of course, this is also the collective wish of all those who accept the name of Jesus the Savior today. Everyone in the universe who knows of the salvation of Jesus the Savior has been desperately yearning for Jesus Christ to suddenly arrive to fulfill what Jesus said while on earth: “I shall arrive just as I departed.” Man believes that, following the crucifixion and resurrection, Jesus went back to heaven upon a white cloud to take His place at the Most High’s right hand. In like manner, Jesus shall descend again upon a white cloud (this cloud refers to the cloud that Jesus rode upon when He returned to heaven), among those who have desperately yearned for Him for thousands of years, and He shall bear the image and wear the clothing of the Jews. After appearing to man, He shall bestow food upon them, and cause living water to gush forth for them, and shall live among man, full of grace and full of love, vivid and real. All such notions are what people believe. Yet Jesus the Savior did not do this; He did the opposite of what man conceived. He did not arrive among those who had yearned for His return, and He did not appear to all people while riding upon the white cloud. He has already arrived, but man does not know Him, and remains ignorant of Him. Man is merely awaiting Him aimlessly, unaware that He has already descended upon a “white cloud” (the cloud which is His Spirit, His words, His entire disposition and all that He is), and is now among a group of overcomers that He will make during the last days.
Excerpted from “The Savior Has Already Returned Upon a ‘White Cloud’” in The Word Appears in the Flesh
If, as man imagines, Jesus will come again and, in the last days, still be called Jesus, and still come on a white cloud, descending among men in the image of Jesus: would that not be a repetition of His work? Is the Holy Spirit capable of clinging to the old? All that man believes are notions, and all that man understands is according to the literal meaning, and also according to his imagination; they are at odds with the principles of the work of the Holy Spirit, and do not conform to the intentions of God. God would not work in that way; God is not so foolish and stupid, and His work is not so simple as you imagine. Based on everything that man imagines, Jesus will come riding on a cloud and descend in your midst. You shall behold Him who, riding a cloud, shall tell you that He is Jesus. You shall also behold the nail marks in His hands, and shall know Him to be Jesus. And He shall save you again, and shall be your mighty God. He shall save you, bestow upon you a new name, and give each of you a white stone, after which you shall be allowed to enter the kingdom of heaven and be received into paradise. Are such beliefs not the notions of man? Does God work according to the notions of man, or does He work counter to the notions of man? Do not the notions of man all derive from Satan? Has not all of man been corrupted by Satan? If God did His work according to the notions of man, would He not then become Satan? Would He not be of the same kind as His own creations? Since His creations have now been so corrupted by Satan that man has become Satan’s embodiment, if God were to work in accordance with the things of Satan, would He not then be in league with Satan? How can man fathom the work of God? Therefore, God would never work according to the notions of man, and would never work in the ways you imagine. There are those who say that God Himself said that He would arrive on a cloud. It is true that God said so Himself, but do you not know that no man can fathom the mysteries of God? Do you not know that no man can explain the words of God? Are you certain, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that you were enlightened and illuminated by the Holy Spirit? Surely it was not that the Holy Spirit showed you in such a direct manner? Was it the Holy Spirit who instructed you, or did your own notions lead you to think so? You said, “This was said by God Himself.” But we cannot use our own notions and minds to measure the words of God. As for the words spoken by Isaiah, can you with absolute certainty explain his words? Do you dare to explain his words? Since you do not dare to explain the words of Isaiah, why do you dare to explain the words of Jesus? Who is more exalted, Jesus or Isaiah? Since the answer is Jesus, why do you explain the words spoken by Jesus? Would God tell you of His work in advance? Not a single creature can know, not even the messengers in heaven, nor the Son of man, so how could you know?
Excerpted from “The Vision of God’s Work (3)” in The Word Appears in the Flesh
The appearance of God refers to His arrival on earth to do His work in person. With His own identity and disposition, and in the way that is innate to Him, He descends among mankind to conduct the work of initiating an age and ending an age. This kind of appearance is not a form of ceremony. It is not a sign, a picture, a miracle, or some kind of a grand vision, and even less is it a kind of religious process. It is a real and actual fact that can be touched and beheld by anyone. This kind of appearance is not for the sake of going through the motions, or for any short-term undertaking; it is, rather, for a stage of work in His management plan. The appearance of God is always meaningful and always bears some relation to His management plan. What is called “appearance” here is completely different from the kind of “appearance” in which God guides, leads, and enlightens man. God carries out a stage of His great work each time He reveals Himself. This work is different from that of any other age. It is unimaginable to man, and has never been experienced by man. It is work that starts a new age and concludes the old age, and it is a new and improved form of work for the salvation of mankind; moreover, it is work that brings mankind into the new age. This is what the appearance of God signifies.
Excerpted from “The Appearance of God Has Ushered in a New Age” in The Word Appears in the Flesh
Now the new work of God has begun, and it is also the beginning of a new age. God brings into His house those who have been redeemed to begin His new work of salvation. This time, the work of salvation is more thorough than in times past. It is not the Holy Spirit working in man to cause him to change on his own, nor is it the body of Jesus appearing among men to do this work, and least of all is this work done through other means. Rather, it is God incarnate doing the work and directing it Himself. He does it in this way in order to lead man into the new work. Is this not a great thing? God does not do this work through a part of humanity or by means of prophecies; rather, God does it Himself. Some may say that this is not a great thing and that it cannot bring man ecstasy. But I will say to you that the work of God is not merely this, but something much greater and much more.
This time around, God comes to do work not in a spiritual body, but in a very ordinary one. Moreover, not only is it the body of God’s second incarnation, it is also the body through which God returns to the flesh. It is a very ordinary flesh. You cannot see anything that makes Him stand out from others, but you can gain from Him previously unheard-of truths. This insignificant flesh is what embodies all the words of truth from God, undertakes God’s work in the last days, and expresses the whole of God’s disposition for man to understand. Do you not desire greatly to see the God in heaven? Do you not desire greatly to understand the God in heaven? Do you not desire greatly to see the destination of mankind? He will tell you all these secrets—secrets that no man has been able to tell you, and He will also tell you of the truths that you do not understand. He is your gate into the kingdom, and your guide into the new age. Such an ordinary flesh holds many unfathomable mysteries. His deeds may be inscrutable to you, but the entire goal of the work He does is sufficient enough to allow you to see that He is not, as people believe, a simple flesh. For He represents the will of God and the care shown by God toward mankind in the last days. Though you cannot hear His words seeming to shake the heavens and earth, though you cannot see His eyes as a flame of fire, and though you cannot receive the discipline of His iron rod, nevertheless you can hear from His words that God is wrathful and know that God is showing compassion for mankind; you can see the righteous disposition of God and His wisdom, and, moreover, realize God’s solicitude for all mankind. The work of God in the last days is to allow man to see the God in heaven living among men on earth, and to enable man to know, obey, revere, and love God. This is why He has returned to the flesh for a second time.
Excerpted from “Did You Know? God Has Done a Great Thing Among Men” in The Word Appears in the Flesh
It is not difficult to inquire into such a thing, but it requires each of us to know this one truth: He who is God incarnate shall possess the essence of God, and He who is God incarnate shall possess the expression of God. Since God becomes flesh, He shall bring forth the work He intends to do, and since God becomes flesh, He shall express what He is, and shall be able to bring the truth to man, bestow life upon him, and point the way for him. Flesh that does not have the essence of God is decidedly not the incarnate God; of this there is no doubt. If man intends to inquire into whether it is God’s incarnate flesh, then he must corroborate this from the disposition He expresses and the words He speaks. Which is to say, to corroborate whether or not it is God’s incarnate flesh, and whether or not it is the true way, one must discriminate on the basis of His essence. And so, in determining whether it is the flesh of God incarnate, the key lies in His essence (His work, His utterances, His disposition, and many other aspects), rather than external appearance. If man scrutinizes only His external appearance, and as a result overlooks His essence, this shows that man is benighted and ignorant. External appearance cannot determine essence; what’s more, the work of God can never conform to the notions of man. Did not Jesus’ outward appearance run counter to the notions of man? Were not His countenance and dress unable to provide any clues as to His true identity? Did not the earliest Pharisees oppose Jesus precisely because they merely looked at His external appearance, and did not take to heart the words in His mouth? It is My hope that each and every brother and sister who seeks the appearance of God will not repeat the tragedy of history. You must not become the Pharisees of modern times and nail God to the cross again. You should carefully consider how to welcome the return of God, and you should have a clear mind regarding how to be someone who submits to the truth. This is the responsibility of everyone who is waiting for Jesus to return riding upon a cloud. We should rub our spiritual eyes to make them clear, and not become mired in words of exaggerated fantasy. We should think about the practical work of God, and take a look at the practical aspect of God. Do not get carried away or lose yourselves in daydreams, always longing for the day when the Lord Jesus, riding upon a cloud, suddenly descends among you, and takes you who have never known or seen Him, and who do not know how to do His will. It is better to think upon more practical matters!
Excerpted from Preface to The Word Appears in the Flesh
You do not know what God is, you do not know what Christ is, you do not know how to revere Jehovah, you do not know how to enter into the work of the Holy Spirit, and you do not know how to distinguish between the work of God Himself and the deceptions of man. You know only to condemn any word of truth expressed by God that does not conform to your own thoughts. Where is your humility? Where is your obedience? Where is your loyalty? Where is your desire to seek the truth? Where is your reverence for God? I tell you, those who believe in God because of the signs are surely the category that shall be destroyed. Those who are incapable of receiving the words of Jesus who has returned to flesh are surely the progeny of hell, the descendants of the archangel, the category that shall be subjected to everlasting destruction. Many people may not care what I say, but I still want to tell every so-called saint who follows Jesus that, when you see Jesus descend from the heaven upon a white cloud with your own eyes, this will be the public appearance of the Sun of righteousness. Perhaps that will be a time of great excitement for you, yet you should know that the time when you witness Jesus descend from the heaven is also the time when you go down to hell to be punished. That will be the time of the end of God’s management plan and it will be when God rewards the good and punishes the wicked. For the judgment of God will have ended before man sees signs, when there is only the expression of truth. Those who accept the truth and do not seek signs, and thus have been purified, shall have returned before the throne of God and entered the Creator’s embrace. Only those who persist in the belief that “The Jesus who does not ride upon a white cloud is a false Christ” shall be subjected to everlasting punishment, for they only believe in the Jesus who exhibits signs, but do not acknowledge the Jesus who proclaims severe judgment and releases the true way and life. And so it can only be that Jesus deals with them when He openly returns upon a white cloud. They are too stubborn, too confident in themselves, too arrogant. How could such degenerates be rewarded by Jesus? The return of Jesus is a great salvation for those who are capable of accepting the truth, but for those who are unable to accept the truth it is a sign of condemnation. You should choose your own path, and should not blaspheme against the Holy Spirit and reject the truth. You should not be an ignorant and arrogant person, but someone who obeys the guidance of the Holy Spirit and longs for and seeks the truth; only in this way will you benefit.
Excerpted from “By the Time You Behold the Spiritual Body of Jesus, God Will Have Made Heaven and Earth Anew” in The Word Appears in the Flesh