Tag: The Incarnation
incarnation meaning|II. On the Truth of the Incarnation
We all know that the Lord Jesus prayed in Gethsemane and called God in heaven by the name of Father. But why did the Lord say, “I am in the Father, and the Father in Me” (John 14: 10), and “I and My Father are one” (John 10:30)? In fact, the mystery of God’s incarnation is hidden within this. Now the Lord has returned to express the truth and uncovered this mystery to us.
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The Two Incarnations Complete the Significance of the Incarnation
Two thousand years ago, when the Lord Jesus appeared to work in the flesh, almost no one knew that He was God Himself. Only when Peter was enlightened by the Holy Spirit could he recognize that the Lord Jesus is Christ and the Son of the eternal God.
Two thousand years later, the Lord Jesus becomes flesh again and has come as the Son of man. This fulfills the Lord Jesus’ prophecy, “Be you therefore ready also: for the Son of man comes at an hour when you think not” (Luke 12:40).
The Two Incarnations Complete the Significance of the Incarnation
Each stage of work done by God has its own practical significance. Back then, when Jesus came, He was male, and when God comes this time, He is female. From this, you can see that God created both male and female for the sake of His work, and with Him there is no distinction of gender. When His Spirit comes, He can take on any flesh He pleases, and that flesh can represent Him; whether male or female, it can represent God as long as it is His incarnate flesh. If Jesus had appeared as a female when He came, in other words, if an infant girl, and not a boy, had been conceived by the Holy Spirit, that stage of work would have been completed all the same. If that had been the case, then the present stage of work would have to be completed by a male instead, but the work would be completed all the same. The work done in either stage is equally significant; neither stage of work is repeated, nor does it conflict with the other. At the time, Jesus, in doing His work, was called the only Son, and “Son” implies the male gender. Why is the only Son not mentioned in this current stage? Because the requirements of the work have necessitated a change in gender from that of Jesus. With God there is no distinction of gender. He does His work as He wishes, and in doing His work He is not subject to any restrictions, but is especially free. Yet every stage of work has its own practical significance. God became flesh twice, and it is self-evident that His incarnation during the last days is the final time. He has come to make known all His deeds. If in this stage He did not become flesh in order personally to do work for man to witness, man would forever cling to the notion that God is only male, not female. Before this, all humanity believed that God could only be male and that a female could not be called God, for all humanity regarded men as having authority over women. They believed that no woman could take on authority, only men. What is more, they even said that man was the head of woman and that woman must obey man and could not surpass him. In times past, when it was said that man was woman’s head, this was directed at Adam and Eve, who had been beguiled by the serpent—not at man and woman as they had been created by Jehovah in the beginning. Of course, a woman must obey and love her husband, and a husband must learn to feed and support his family. These are the laws and decrees set forth by Jehovah that humankind must abide by in their lives on earth. Jehovah said to woman, “Your desire shall be to your husband, and he shall rule over you.” He spoke thus only so that humankind (that is, both man and woman) might live normal lives under the dominion of Jehovah, and so that the lives of humankind might have a structure, and not fall out of their proper order. Therefore, Jehovah made appropriate rules for how man and woman should act, though this was only in regard to all the created beings living on the earth, and bore no relation to God’s incarnate flesh. How could God be the same as His created beings? His words were directed only toward the humankind of His creation; it was in order for humankind to live normal lives that He established rules for man and woman. In the beginning, when Jehovah created humankind, He made two kinds of human being, both male and female; and so there is the division of male and female in His incarnate fleshes. He did not decide His work based on the words He spoke to Adam and Eve. The two times He has become flesh have been determined entirely according to His thinking at the time He first created humankind; that is, He has completed the work of His two incarnations based on the male and the female before they were corrupted. If humanity took the words spoken by Jehovah to Adam and Eve, who had been beguiled by the serpent, and applied them to the work of God’s incarnation, would not Jesus also have to love His wife as He ought? This way, would God still be God? And this being so, would He still be able to complete His work? If it be wrong for God’s incarnate flesh to be female, then would it not also have been an error of the greatest magnitude for God to have created woman? If people still believe that it would be wrong for God to be incarnated as female, then would not Jesus, who did not get married and was therefore unable to love His wife, be as much in error as the present incarnation? Since you use the words spoken to Eve by Jehovah to measure the truth of God’s incarnation in the present day, then you must use Jehovah’s words to Adam to judge the Lord Jesus who became flesh in the Age of Grace. Are these not one and the same? Since you take the measure of the Lord Jesus according to the male who had not been beguiled by the serpent, then you may not judge the truth of today’s incarnation according to the female who had been beguiled by the serpent. This would be unfair! Measuring God in this way proves that you lack rationality. When Jehovah twice became flesh, the gender of His flesh was related to the male and the female who had not been beguiled by the serpent; it was in accordance with the male and the female who had not been beguiled by the serpent that He twice became flesh. Do not think that the maleness of Jesus was the same as that of Adam, who was beguiled by the serpent. The two are completely unrelated, they are males of two different natures. Surely it cannot be that the maleness of Jesus proves He is the head of all women but not of all men? Is He not the King of all the Jews (including both men and women)? He is God Himself, not just the head of woman but the head of man as well. He is the Lord of all creatures and the head of all creatures. How could you determine the maleness of Jesus to be the symbol of the head of woman? Would this not be blasphemy? Jesus is a male who has not been corrupted. He is God; He is Christ; He is the Lord. How could He be a male like Adam who was corrupted? Jesus is the flesh worn by the most holy Spirit of God. How could you say He is a God who possesses the maleness of Adam? In that case, would not all of God’s work have been wrong? Would Jehovah have been able to incorporate within Jesus the maleness of Adam who was beguiled by the serpent? Is not the incarnation of the present time another instance of the work of God incarnate, who is different in gender from Jesus but like Him in nature? Do you still dare say that God incarnate could not be female, because woman was the first to be beguiled by the serpent? Do you still dare say that, as woman is the most unclean and the source of the corruption of humankind, God could not possibly become flesh as a female? Do you dare to persist in saying that “woman shall always obey man and may never manifest or directly represent God”? You did not understand in the past, but can you now go on blaspheming the work of God, especially the incarnate flesh of God? If this is not clear to you, best mind your tongue, lest your foolishness and ignorance be revealed and your ugliness exposed. Do not think that you understand everything. I tell you that all you have seen and experienced is insufficient for you to understand even a thousandth of My management plan. So why then do you act so haughty? That little bit of talent and tiny bit of knowledge you have are insufficient for Jesus to use in even a single second of His work! How much experience do you actually possess? What you have seen and all that you have heard in your lifetime and what you have imagined are less than the work I do in a single moment! You had best not nitpick and find fault. You can be as arrogant as you want, but you are nothing more than a creature not even the equal of an ant! All that you hold within your belly is less than what is in an ant’s belly! Do not think, just because you have gained some experience and seniority, that this entitles you to gesticulate wildly and talk big. Are not your experience and your seniority the product of the words I have uttered? Do you believe that they were in exchange for your own labor and toil? Today, you see that I have become flesh, and on this account alone there is in you a glut of concepts, and no end of notions therefrom. If not for My incarnation, even if you were possessed of extraordinary talents, you would not have so many concepts; and is it not from these that your notions arise? If Jesus had not become flesh that first time, would you even know of the incarnation? Is it not because the first incarnation gave you knowledge that you have the impudence to try to judge the second incarnation? Why, instead of being an obedient follower, are you subjecting it to study? When you have entered into this stream and come before the incarnate God, would He allow you to research Him? You can research your own family history, but if you try to research the “family history” of God, would the God of today allow you to conduct such a study? Are you not blind? Do you not bring contempt upon yourself?
If only the work of Jesus was done, and was not complemented by work in this stage of the last days, man would forever cling to the notion that Jesus alone is the only Son of God, that is, that God has only one son, and that anyone who comes thereafter by another name would not be the only Son of God, much less God Himself. Man has the notion that anyone who serves as a sin offering or who assumes power on God’s behalf and redeems all humankind, is the only Son of God. There are some who believe that as long as the One who comes is a male, He may be deemed the only Son of God and God’s representative. There are even those who say that Jesus is the Son of Jehovah, His only Son. Are such notions not overblown? If this stage of work were not done in the final age, then toward God the whole of humankind would be veiled under a dark shadow. If this were the case, man would think himself higher than woman, and women would never be able to hold their heads up, and then not even a single woman could be saved. People always believe that God is male, and moreover that He has always despised woman and would not grant her salvation. If this were the case, would it not be true that all women, who were created by Jehovah and who have also been corrupted, would never have the opportunity to be saved? Then would it not have been pointless for Jehovah to have created woman, that is, to have created Eve? And would not woman perish for eternity? For this reason, the stage of work in the last days is to be undertaken in order to save the whole of humankind, not just woman. If anyone should think that were God to be incarnated as female, it would solely be for the sake of saving woman, then that person would indeed be a fool!
The work of today has pushed forward the work of the Age of Grace; that is, the work under the entire six-thousand-year management plan has moved forward. Though the Age of Grace has ended, there has been progress in God’s work. Why do I say time and again that this stage of work builds upon the Age of Grace and the Age of Law? Because the work of this day is a continuation of the work done in the Age of Grace, and an advance over that done in the Age of Law. The three stages are tightly interconnected, with each link in the chain closely tied to the next. Why do I also say that this stage of work builds on that done by Jesus? Supposing that this stage did not build on the work done by Jesus, another crucifixion would have to take place in this stage, and the redemptive work of the previous stage would have to be done all over again. This would be meaningless. And so it is not that the work is completely finished, but that the age has moved forward and the level of the work has been raised higher than before. It can be said that this stage of work is built on the foundation of the Age of Law and upon the rock of Jesus’ work. God’s work is built stage by stage, and this stage is not a new beginning. Only the combination of the three stages of work may be deemed the six-thousand-year management plan. The work of this stage is done on the foundation of the work of the Age of Grace. If these two stages of work were unrelated, then why is the crucifixion not repeated in this stage? Why do I not bear the sins of man, but instead come to judge and chastise man directly? If My work to judge and chastise man and My coming now not by the conception of the Holy Spirit did not follow the crucifixion, then I would not be qualified to judge and chastise man. It is precisely because I am one with Jesus that I come directly to chastise and judge man. The work at this stage is built entirely on the work in the preceding stage. That is why only work of this kind can bring man, step by step, into salvation. Jesus and I come from one Spirit. Even though We are unrelated in Our fleshes, Our Spirits are one; even though the content of what We do and the work that We take on are not the same, We are alike in essence; Our fleshes take different forms, but this is due to the change in era and the differing requirements of Our work; Our ministries are not alike, so the work We bring forth and the dispositions We reveal to man are also different. That is why what man sees and understands this day is unlike in the past, which is because of the change in era. For all that They are different in the gender and the form of Their fleshes, and that They were not born of the same family, still less in the same time period, Their Spirits are nonetheless one. For all that Their fleshes share neither blood nor physical kinship of any kind, it cannot be denied that They are the incarnate fleshes of God in two different time periods. That They are the incarnate fleshes of God is an irrefutable truth, even though They are not of the same bloodline and do not share a common human language (one was a male who spoke the language of the Jews and the other a female who only speaks Chinese). It is for these reasons that They have lived in different countries to do the work that it behooves each one to do, and in different time periods too. Despite the fact that They are the same Spirit, possessed of the same essence, there are no absolute similarities between the outward shells of Their fleshes. All They share is the same humanity, but as far as external appearance of Their fleshes and the circumstances of Their birth are concerned, They are not alike. These things have no impact on Their respective work or on the knowledge that man has of Them, for, in the final analysis, They are the same Spirit and none can separate Them. Even though They are not related by blood, Their entire beings are in the charge of Their Spirits, which allocate to Them different work in different time periods, and Their fleshes to different bloodlines. The Spirit of Jehovah is not the father of the Spirit of Jesus, and the Spirit of Jesus is not the son of the Spirit of Jehovah: They are one and the same Spirit. Similarly, the incarnate God of today and Jesus are not related by blood, but They are one, this is because Their Spirits are one. God can do the work of mercy and lovingkindness, as well as that of the righteous judgment and of chastisement of man, and that of calling down curses on man; and in the end, He can do the work of destroying the world and punishing the wicked. Does He not do all of this Himself? Is this not the omnipotence of God? He was able both to promulgate laws for man and to issue him commandments, and He was also able to lead the early Israelites in living their lives on earth, and to guide them in building the temple and altars, holding all the Israelites under His dominion. Because of His authority, He lived on earth with the people of Israel for two thousand years. The Israelites dared not rebel against Him; all revered Jehovah and observed His commandments. Such was the work that was done by virtue of His authority and His omnipotence. Then, during the Age of Grace, Jesus came to redeem the whole of fallen humankind (not only the Israelites). He showed mercy and lovingkindness to man. The Jesus that man saw in the Age of Grace was filled with lovingkindness and was always loving toward man, for He had come to save humanity from sin. He was able to forgive men their sins until His crucifixion completely redeemed humankind from sin. During this period, God appeared before man with mercy and lovingkindness; that is, He became a sin offering for man and was crucified for the sins of man, so that they might forever be forgiven. He was merciful, compassionate, patient, and loving. And all those who followed Jesus in the Age of Grace likewise sought to be patient and loving in all things. They were long-suffering, and never fought back even when beaten, cursed, or stoned. But during the final stage it can no longer be so. The work of Jesus and Jehovah was not entirely the same even though They were of one Spirit. The work of Jehovah did not bring the age to an end, but guided the age, ushering in the life of humankind on earth, and the work of today is to conquer those in the Gentile nations who have been deeply corrupted, and to lead not only God’s chosen people in China, but the entire universe and all humankind. It may appear to you that this work is being done only in China, but in fact it has already begun to spread abroad. Why is it that people outside China seek the true way, time and time again? It is because the Spirit has already set to work, and the words spoken today are directed toward people throughout the universe. With this, half of the work is already under way. From the creation of the world to the present, the Spirit of God has set this great work in motion, and has moreover done different work in different ages and among different nations. The people of each age see a different disposition of His, which is naturally revealed through the different work that He does. He is God, filled with mercy and lovingkindness; He is the sin offering for man and man’s shepherd; but He is also man’s judgment, chastisement, and curse. He could lead man to live on earth for two thousand years, and He could also redeem corrupted humankind from sin. Today, He is also able to conquer humankind, who does not know Him, and to prostrate them under His dominion, so that all submit to Him fully. In the end, He will burn away all that is unclean and unrighteous within people throughout the universe, to show them that He is not only a merciful and loving God, not only a God of wisdom and wonders, not only a holy God, but furthermore, a God who judges man. To the evil ones among humankind, He is burning, judgment, and punishment; to those who are to be perfected, He is tribulation, refinement, and trials, as well as comfort, sustenance, the provision of words, dealing, and pruning. And to those who are eliminated, He is punishment and retribution. Tell Me, is God not almighty? He is capable of any and all work, not just the crucifixion, as you imagine. You think too little of God! Do you believe that all He can do is redeem the whole of humankind through His crucifixion, and that’s it? And after that, you will follow Him up to heaven to eat of the fruit from the tree of life and drink from the river of life? … Could it be that simple? Tell Me, what have you accomplished? Do you have the life of Jesus? You were indeed redeemed by Him, but the crucifixion was the work of Jesus Himself. What duty have you fulfilled as a human being? You have only outward piety, but you do not understand His way. Is that how you manifest Him? If you have not attained the life of God or seen the entirety of His righteous disposition, then you cannot claim to be one that has life, and you are not worthy to pass through the gate of the kingdom of heaven.
Not only is God a Spirit, He can also become flesh. He is, moreover, a body of glory. Jesus, though you have not seen Him, was witnessed by the Israelites—the Jews of that time. He was at first a fleshly body, but after He was crucified, He became the body of glory. He is the all-encompassing Spirit and can do work in every place. He can be Jehovah, or Jesus, or Messiah; in the end, He can also become Almighty God. He is righteousness, judgment, and chastisement; He is curse and wrath; but He is also mercy and lovingkindness. All the work He has done is capable of representing Him. What manner of God do you say He is? You cannot explain. If you truly cannot explain, you should not come to conclusions about God. Do not draw the conclusion that God is forever a God of mercy and lovingkindness just because He did the work of redemption in one stage. Can you be certain that He is only a merciful and loving God? If He is merely a merciful and loving God, why will He bring the age to an end in the last days? Why will He send down so many disasters? According to people’s notions and thoughts, God should be merciful and loving to the very end, so that every last member of humankind can be saved. But why, in the last days, does He send down such great disasters as earthquake, pestilence, and famine to destroy this evil humankind, which regards God as an enemy? Why does He allow man to suffer these disasters? As for what manner of God He is, no one among you dares to say, and none is able to explain. Can you be certain that He is the Spirit? Do you dare say that He is none other than the flesh of Jesus? And do you dare say that He is a God who will forever be crucified for man’s sake?
III. Essential Words on the Mysteries of God’s Incarnation
In the Age of Grace, God incarnated and became the Lord Jesus who came to redeem mankind, and the Jewish Pharisees said that the Lord Jesus was only a man. In the last days, God has incarnated and become Almighty God who has come to do His work of judgment, and the pastors and elders of the world of religion also say that Almighty God is just a man, so what is the matter here? From the outside, God incarnate looks to be an ordinary, normal person. But within Him there lives the Spirit of God; He is able to express the truth, express the voice of God and do God’s work, so is God incarnate a man, or God?
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Why Did God Become Incarnated to Carry Out His Work in the Age of Grace?
God says, “During the last days, God incarnate has come to earth chiefly in order to speak words. When Jesus came, He spread the gospel of the kingdom of heaven, and He accomplished the work of redemption of the crucifixion. He brought an end to the Age of Law, and abolished all the old things. The arrival of Jesus ended the Age of Law and ushered in the Age of Grace; the arrival of God incarnate of the last days has brought an end to the Age of Grace. He has come chiefly to speak His words, to use words to make man perfect, to illuminate and enlighten man, and to remove the place of the vague God within man’s heart. This is not the stage of work that Jesus did when He came. When Jesus came, He performed many miracles, He healed the sick and cast out demons, and He did the work of redemption of the crucifixion. As a consequence, in people’s notions, they believe that this is how God should be. For when Jesus came, He did not do the work of removing the image of the vague God from man’s heart; when He came, He was crucified, He healed the sick and cast out demons, and He spread the gospel of the kingdom of heaven. In one regard, the incarnation of God during the last days removes the place held by the vague God in the notions of man, so that there is no longer the image of the vague God in man’s heart. Through His actual words and actual work, His movement across all lands, and the exceptionally real and normal work that He does among man, He causes man to know the reality of God, and removes the place of the vague God in man’s heart. In another regard, God uses the words spoken by His flesh to make man complete, and to accomplish all things. This is the work that God will accomplish during the last days.”
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The True Meaning of “I and My Father Are One” in John 10:30
After the Lord Jesus was baptized in the Jordan River, there was a voice from heaven, saying, “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased” (Matthew 3:17). Isn’t the Lord Jesus God’s beloved Son? Why is it said He Is God Himself? In fact, there is a mystery within. Almighty God, Christ of the last days, has come and expressed words, revealing this mystery.
Almighty God says, “There are still those who say, ‘Did not God expressly state that Jesus was His beloved Son?’ Jesus is the beloved Son of God, in whom He is well pleased—this was certainly spoken by God Himself. That was God bearing witness to Himself, but merely from a different perspective, that of the Spirit in heaven bearing witness to His own incarnation. Jesus is His incarnation, not His Son in heaven. Do you understand? Do not the words of Jesus, ‘I am in the Father, and the Father in Me,’ indicate that They are one Spirit? And is it not because of the incarnation that They were separated between heaven and earth? In reality, They are still one; no matter what, it is simply God bearing witness to Himself. ”
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Gospel Movie Extract 2 From “The Gospel Messenger”: Christ Is God Incarnate
Almighty God says, “Jesus did a stage of work which only fulfilled the substance of ‘the Word was with God’: The truth of God was with God, and the Spirit of God was with the flesh and was inseparable from Him, that is, the flesh of God incarnate was with the Spirit of God, which is greater proof that Jesus incarnate was the first incarnation of God. This stage of work fulfilled the inner meaning of ‘the Word becomes flesh,’ lent deeper meaning to ‘the Word was with God, and the Word was God,’ and allows you to firmly believe the words that ‘In the beginning was the Word.’ Which is to say, at the time of creation God was possessed of words, His words were with Him and inseparable from Him, and the final age makes even clearer the power and authority of His words, and allows man to see all of His words—to hear all of His words. Such is the work of the final age. … Because this is the work of the second incarnation—and the last time that God becomes flesh—it fully completes the significance of the incarnation, thoroughly carries out and issues forth all of God’s work in the flesh, and brings to an end the era of God’s being in the flesh” (“Practice (4)”).
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God’s Voice | The Mystery of the Incarnation (4)
The Bible says: “And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached to the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory” (1 Timothy 3:16). Brothers and sisters, God’s appearance in the flesh is a great mystery and is the truth that must be understood. However, few people are able to understand what the incarnation is. Back when the Lord Jesus appeared and worked in the flesh, many people saw His ordinary, normal appearance and thus treated Him as a person, saying: “Is this not Joseph’s son? Is this not a Nazarene?” The Pharisees not only didn’t recognize the Lord Jesus as God incarnate, but they also wantonly condemned and opposed Him and finally nailed Him to the cross. Clearly, if we don’t understand what the incarnation is, we will be apt to become those who believe in God but resist Him.
So, what is the incarnation? How should we know the incarnate God? Given that we don’t understand this aspect of the truth, can we recognize the Lord when He returns? Is it not extremely easy for us to commit the mistakes of the earliest Pharisees? So, understanding this aspect of the truth is critical for us knowing God and welcoming the return of the Lord.
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Daily Word of God | “The Mystery of the Incarnation 3” | Excerpt 114
Though we all know that the Lord Jesus is the incarnate God, no one has understood the mystery of the incarnation for thousands of years. Only now that Almighty God has come in the last days and revealed the mystery of the incarnation through His words, have we finally understood the truth of it. Continue reading “Daily Word of God | “The Mystery of the Incarnation 3” | Excerpt 114″
Daily Word of God | “Corrupt Mankind Is More in Need of the Salvation of the Incarnate God” | Excerpt 82
The Bible says: “And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached to the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory” (1 Timothy 3:16). Brothers and sisters, God’s appearance in the flesh is a great mystery and is the truth that must be understood. Continue reading “Daily Word of God | “Corrupt Mankind Is More in Need of the Salvation of the Incarnate God” | Excerpt 82″