I Am Really Raptured! — Return to God
By Zhao Xiaoxing, Myanmar
As a child, I stayed with my relatives because of my poor family. I felt I was different from other children of my age, so I became rebellious and played hooky frequently. At age of 11, I was sent to a Christian Rescue Center in the town by my grandpa. Here we, over 40 children of different ages, did the same things every day: getting up at 4:45 a.m., worshiping the Lord at 5 o’clock a.m., and going to school at 6 a.m. I was very happy to listen to the preachers’ sermons about the love and teachings of the Lord Jesus every day, and to live and play with my classmates and friends. Gradually, I came to like this place. Staying with my relatives and monitoring their expressions became things of the past for me.
At age of 13, I was baptized and entered into the Lord. The preachers always said to us, “In order to redeem us, the Lord Jesus was nailed to the cross. Three days later, He resurrected. Then He ascended to heaven after appearing to His disciples for 40 days. He went to prepare a place for us and if it has been prepared He will come again and receive us to Himself. …” Every time I listened to these sermons, I would be full of confidence. Thinking that I would suddenly be caught up into the air to meet with God someday, escaping the suffering of disaster and enjoying the blessings of the kingdom of heaven, I felt very happy and honored and constantly hoped that the Lord would come back soon to take us to heaven.
After graduating from school, I, who had just turned 18, worked in a jade quarry. Here, I saw that the society is dark and evil, and that people swindle and bluff for the sake of fame and gain. At that time, I also wanted to earn more money and live towering above others but I often remembered the teachings of the Lord Jesus, “For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?” (Matthew 16:26). I frequently reminded myself not to scramble for fame and gain, or deceive others for money like the unbelievers. If I did these things, then I could not enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore, I would go on the internet to see some posts of the brothers and sisters in the Lord, or to pay attention to the world news whenever I had time. When I noticed that the disasters in different countries grew more and bigger, I pondered: The day of the Lord’s coming is drawing near, because the signs and prophecies before the Lord’s coming in the Bible have been fulfilled one by one, and the four blood moons also have appeared. With these thoughts, I was always thankful that I was born in the last days and had the chance to be brought into the kingdom of heaven by the Lord.
One day in June of 2016, Sister Xiao, a friend on Facebook, said to me with certainty, “The Lord Jesus has come back and is doing the work of judgment starting with the house of God. …” At her words, I retorted instantly, “When the Lord Jesus comes back, we’ll be caught up in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. Now we’re still on earth. How could the Lord Jesus have returned?” She recommended me, “Let us not define. We should seek and investigate first. If you have any questions or confusion, feel free to ask. We can fellowship together. I believe as long as we seek the truth, then God will lead us.” However, because what she said was different from my thoughts and I had a busy job, I told her that I didn’t have the time to do that. Later, I no longer contacted her.
In July, as I lost my ID card, I needed to go to my hometown to apply for a new one. After I returned home, I had much more time, so I often chatted with my friends on Facebook. One day, I sent a post on Facebook, “‘Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord’ (1 Thessalonians 4:17).” My good friend Lin Jing replied, “I have a different view about the rapture.” When we had a voice chat online, she said, “Rapture doesn’t mean the Lord Jesus will take us into the air to meet Him, but means we are able to follow the footsteps of the Lamp and be raptured up before God. Revelation prophesies, ‘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). Also, the Lord Jesus said, ‘My sheep hear my voice …’ (John 10:27). When the Lord comes back, He will speak words. Where there is God’s voice, there is God’s appearance and work. The wise virgins can recognize the voice of God. So when we hear the voice of God, we can find the footsteps of God’s work and then we’ll return before God’s throne. This is real rapture. If we can’t hear God’s voice but merely blindly live in vagueness, waiting for being lifted up into the air, then we’ll become the foolish virgins. Finally, such people will have to be cast aside by God.”
Ruminating on what she said, I felt it was reasonable and the rapture might imply it. However, I thought it was an undeniable fact that we finally would be lifted up into the air to meet with the Lord, as there were some related records in the Bible. In the conversation, I asked Sister Lin, “Do you know the Church of Almighty God? I was always told not to like the posts of the Church of Almighty God on Facebook recently.” She said, “Yes, I know. The Church of Almighty God is the sole church in the last days which is openly testifying that the Lord Jesus has returned. The people of the Church of Almighty God understand the Bible well. Many questions are clearly fellowshiped by them. I’ve seen the videos and movies of the Church of Almighty God for a period of time. Now I’m ready to examine carefully Almighty God’s work of the last days.”
At this time, I could get a little anxious. I told her, “You can’t heed and trust only one side. The Lord has come back? How could that be? If the Lord has come back, wherever we are, we can hear the great voices say, ‘The Lord has come back,’ and then we’ll be turned into a spiritual body instantly and lifted up into the air to meet with the Lord. Now we haven’t been raptured or seen people around us be raptured. How could the Lord have come back?” Yet she told me that she had paid attention to and examined the Church of Almighty God for some time. One of her good friends always testified the work of Almighty God in the last days to her and she also went on the internet to investigate the Church of Almighty God. She saw that the Church of Almighty God has grown very fast and that different types of videos, gospel movies, music videos and songs are novel and are shown continuously. Besides, these works have produced the result of bearing witness to God. She clearly felt that the Church of Almighty God has the work and guidance of the Holy Spirit. She advised me, “The Lord’s return is the important matter which concerns whether we can be saved. You’d better investigate with me. The Lord Jesus 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). I think if we seek, then we’ll gain something. Whether it is true or false cannot be defined by us man. God is wise. We think when the Lord comes back, He will directly take us into heaven, yet the Bible says, ‘and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord’ (Hebrews 12:14). We live in the condition of committing and confessing sins every day and can’t become holy. How could we see the Lord’s face?”
Hearing her words, I felt somewhat embarrassed. How did I dare to say I was holy? Though I always relied on the Lord to restrain my behavior, I still wasn’t able to break away from the binds of sin but lived a life where I committed sins and then repented for them, not committing great sins but never stopping committing small sins. It seemed that entering the kingdom of heaven by faith in the Lord was not a simple matter. Thinking of this, when Lin Jing asked me whether I would like to investigate with her, I accepted her invitation. Meantime, I wanted to see whether they could solve my confusion or not, and whether what they preached was the Lord’s return. I remembered that Sister Xiao once testified to me that Almighty God is the Lord Jesus returned. So, the next day, when we chatted on Skype, I also had a voice chat online with Sister Xiao. And then all four of us fellowshiped together.
I had thought we would be taken into the kingdom of heaven when the Lord returned, otherwise it would not be the Lord’s return. So it was hard for me to believe Sister Xiao’s words when she testified that the Lord Jesus has returned and does the work of judgment beginning at the house of God. But she had the patience to explain my confusion. She told me, “Regarding the great mystery of entering the kingdom of heaven, only God Himself knows. However, that we think the Lord will lift us man up into the air to meet with Him when He returns is based on the words of Paul. Paul was a man, he was not Christ. How could the Lord tell him such a huge mystery? Only the Lord Jesus is the King and Lord of the kingdom of heaven. Paul was merely a corrupted person and what he said is surely full of impure human ideas and imaginations. His words are not the truth nor the basis of rapture. Therefore, if we want to examine the rapture and entry into the kingdom of heaven, we must use the words of the Lord Jesus as proof, for only His words are the truth and have authority. The Lord Jesus never said he would carry up man into the air. The Holy Spirit never testified that God’s kingdom would be in heaven. We all know that God created man with the dust on earth in the beginning, allowed us humans to perform our duties and take care of all things on earth, and asked us to obey Him, worship Him and glorify Him. Moreover, the final destination God ordained for man is on earth rather than in heaven. Just as the Lord’s Prayer says, ‘Your kingdom come, Your will be done in earth, as it is in heaven’ (Matthew 6:10). That ‘Your will be done in earth, as it is in heaven’ proves that we man will not be in heaven but on earth in the future. Let’s read Revelation, ‘And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God’ (Revelation 21:2–3). ‘And the seventh angel sounded; and there were great voices in heaven, saying, The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ; and he shall reign for ever and ever’ (Revelation 11:15). ‘… the tabernacle of God is with men,’ ‘new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven,’ and ‘The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ’ in the prophecies adequately prove that after we men truly attain God’s salvation, we will still live on earth rather than be raptured up into heaven as we imagine. God’s kingdom is on earth instead of in heaven. Imagination tells us the rapture means that we will be raptured up into heaven. But if that’s the case, how will these prophecies come to pass? God’s kingdom will descend on earth to let people inherit. However, man insists on ascending to heaven. Doesn’t this go against God’s will?”
What she said hit me like a whack on my head. It turned out that the wish of being lifted up into the air I so long upheld originated entirely from Paul’s imaginations. There are so many God’s words in the Bible which prophesy: The kingdom of heaven will descend on earth; God will come to the earth to dwell with man; the kingdoms of this world will become the kingdoms of our Christ; God’s will shall be carried out on earth, as it is in heaven. These words are written clearly in black and white. I often read them, and even recited the Lord’s Prayer every day, but I didn’t have any understanding on them. When it came to this important matter of entering the kingdom of heaven, I didn’t pursue according to God’s words but held to Paul’s word. Was this believing in God? It seemed that the Church of Almighty God indeed has the work of the Holy Spirit. They really had some pure understanding of the Bible and answered the questions clearly and plainly. For all that my dream of many years was shattered, what they fellowshiped was in accordance with the Bible and the will of the Lord. All they said was true. I thought: This time I will be listening carefully and figure out the rapture and entry into the kingdom of heaven.
And then Brother Zhang read two passages of words of Almighty God. Almighty God says, “Humanity entering into rest means that all of humanity will live within God’s light and under His blessings; there will be none of Satan’s corruption, nor will any unrighteous things occur. Humanity will live normally upon earth, and they will live under God’s care. When God and man enter into rest together, it will mean that humanity has been saved and that Satan has been destroyed, that God’s work among man has finished entirely. God will no longer continue to work among man, and man will no longer live under Satan’s domain. Therefore, God will no longer be busy, and man will no longer rush about; God and man will enter into rest simultaneously. … Man’s place of rest is on earth, and God’s place of rest is in heaven. While man rests, he will worship God and also live upon earth, and while God rests, He will lead the remaining portion of humanity …” (“God and Man Will Enter Into Rest Together”). “‘Being caught up’ is not being taken from a low place to a high place as people imagine. This is a huge mistake. Being caught up is referring to My predetermining and selecting. It is targeted at all those I have preordained and chosen. … This is most incompatible with people’s notions. Those who have a share in My house in the future are all people who have been caught up before Me. This is absolutely true, never-changing, and cannot be refuted by anybody. This is the counterattack against Satan. Anyone I preordained shall be caught up before Me” (“The One Hundred and Fourth Utterance”).
Hearing the word of Almighty God, I felt it is very practical. I thought: When Satan and the evil one have been destroyed, there will be no dark and evil forces in the world. The life God arranges for man on earth is most beautiful. If we humans lead the truly happy life, God will no longer have to labor for us. This is really so good! I’ve always taken the rapture to be so vague. God created man, the globe and mankind’s living environment in order to make mankind live on earth, manifest Him and have lordship over all things. In the future, the kingdoms of this world will become the kingdoms of Christ. The heaven is God’s throne and God’s place of rest. How could man ascend to heaven haphazardly? Being lifted up into the air to meet with the Lord is indeed man’s imagination. Almighty God’s words really have unraveled all mysteries of the kingdom of heaven. At that time, I was especially excited. It was so nice that I had the fortune of examining Almighty God’s work of the last days.
Sister Xiao and Brother Zhang fellowshiped with me about many truths. Brother Zhang also told me, “Now, Almighty God incarnate is doing the work of judging, chastising and purifying man. If we are able to go out from the Age of Grace to keep up with God’s new work, finally be cleansed and brought by God to a beautiful destination, then we’ll be the people who attain rapture and enter into God’s kingdom and enjoy the eternal blessing. Just as God’s words say, ‘Those who are able to stand firm during God’s work of judgment and chastisement during the last days — that is, during the final work of cleansing — will be those who will enter into the final rest with God; therefore, those who enter into rest will all have broken free of Satan’s influence and been obtained by God only after having undergone His final cleansing work. These people who have been ultimately obtained by God will enter into the final rest. … Only God’s work of cleansing will cleanse humanity of their unrighteousness, and only His work of chastisement and judgment will bring to light those disobedient things among humanity, thereby separating those who can be saved from those who cannot, and those who will remain from those who will not. When His work ends, those people who remain will be cleansed and enjoy a more wonderful second human life upon the earth as they enter a higher realm of humanity; in other words, they will enter into humanity’s day of rest and live together with God. After those who cannot remain have undergone chastisement and judgment, their original forms will be entirely revealed; after this they will all be destroyed and, like Satan, will no longer be allowed to survive upon the earth. The humanity of the future will no longer contain any of this type of people; these people are not fit to enter the land of the ultimate rest, nor are they fit to enter the day of rest that God and man will share, for they are the targets of punishment and are the wicked, and they are not righteous people’ (“God and Man Will Enter Into Rest Together”).
“Nowadays, Almighty God’s work has reached unprecedented new heights and shaken various sects of the religious world. In mainland China, many brothers and sisters who truly believe in God have been raptured to before God’s throne. God’s kingdom gospel is now spreading rapidly to all the nations and places. All those who accept God’s work of the last days are eating, drinking and taking pleasure in God’s word to their hearts’ content. They understand many truths they have not understood before and have entry into life every day, living in the fun. Besides, they no longer desperately await the Lord, and are no longer weak and negative as before and no longer thirsty and hungry, but live in a free and happy realm, obeying God’s sovereignty and arrangement. No matter what kind of tribulations and trials they go through, they are able to rely on God to overcome and stand testimony. Is this kind of new life not the life of rapture? I hope we can all become ‘a man child who was caught up to God’s throne’ mentioned in Revelation 12:5.”
Thanks be to Almighty God! Through the fellowship of the brothers and sisters, I had reaped great benefits. Almighty God’s word reveals the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, and makes me truly understand the true meaning of rapture, wake up from a vague belief and certain about Almighty God’s work of the last days. Thinking back the environment God arranged for me, as a child, I was rebellious and often complained at my life and family financial situation. Afterward, even though I believed in the Lord, I didn’t worship the Lord wholeheartedly in order to know Him, but I was full of extravagant desires, and awaited my rapture into the kingdom of heaven to enjoy the eternal blessings, so that I took being raptured and blessed as the sole support in my life. I even continuously rejected God’s second coming in my heart because of His work that didn’t conform to my conceptions and thwarted my desires. A sinner such as me, who lived with a rebellious disposition, how could I see God’s face? How could I be worthy of entering God’s kingdom? I am too much in need of God’s salvation. Only if I accept the work of judgment done by Almighty God to get my sinful nature within eliminated, could I attain cleanliness to become a real person and have the chance of entering the kingdom of God. As is clear, God’s work is so very practical. God is so almighty and wise!
Afterward, I learnt that Sister Lin Jing was also certain about and accepted Almighty God’s work of the last days, and attended meetings with the local brothers and sisters. Thank God for gracing and choosing us. Through my experience, I saw God’s wonderful deeds. If I had not lost my ID card and not gone home to apply for a new one, how could I have time to chat with my friends online and have the chance to listen to the brothers and sisters from the Church of Almighty God testify that the Lord has come back? If I had not talked about the rapture with my friends, I would have missed the chance of being caught up before God’s throne. Thank God for His wonderful arrangements and orchestrations. I am willing to follow Almighty God all my life.
Source by : Find the shepherd