“Now the serpent was more cunning than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said to the woman, ‘Has God indeed said, ‘You shall not eat of every tree of the garden’?’ And the woman said to the serpent, ‘We may eat the fruit of the trees of the garden; but of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God has said, ‘You shall not eat it, nor shall you touch it, lest you die.’’ Then the serpent said to the woman, ‘You will not surely die.’ For God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.’ So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree desirable to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate. She also gave to her husband with her, and he ate. Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves coverings. And they heard the sound of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God among the trees of the garden. Then the LORD God called to Adam and said to him, ‘Where are you?’ So he said, ‘I heard Your voice in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; and I hid myself.’ And He said, ‘Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree of which I commanded you that you should not eat?’ Then the man said, ‘The woman whom You gave to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I ate.’ And the LORD God said to the woman, ‘What is this you have done?’ The woman said, ‘The serpent deceived me, and I ate.’ So the LORD God said to the serpent:
‘Because you have done this,
You are cursed more than all cattle,
And more than every beast of the field;
On your belly you shall go,
And you shall eat dust
All the days of your life.
And I will put enmity
Between you and the woman,
And between your seed and her Seed;
He shall bruise your head,
And you shall bruise His heel.’
To the woman He said:
‘I will greatly multiply your sorrow and your conception;
In pain you shall bring forth children;
Your desire shall be for your husband,
And he shall rule over you.’
Then to Adam He said, ‘Because you have heeded the voice of your wife, and have eaten from the tree of which I commanded you, saying, ‘You shall not eat of it’:
‘Cursed is the ground for your sake;
In toil you shall eat of it
All the days of your life.
Both thorns and thistles it shall bring forth for you,
And you shall eat the herb of the field.
In the sweat of your face you shall eat bread
Till you return to the ground,
For out of it you were taken;
For dust you are,
And to dust you shall return.’
And Adam called his wife’s name Eve, because she was the mother of all living. Also for Adam and his wife the LORD God made tunics of skin, and clothed them. Then the LORD God said, ‘Behold, the man has become like one of Us, to know good and evil. And now, lest he put out his hand and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live forever’—therefore the LORD God sent him out of the garden of Eden to till the ground from which he was taken. So He drove out the man; and He placed cherubim at the east of the garden of Eden, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to guard the way to the tree of life.”
Who Stands against the Righteousness of God?
Genesis chapter three makes it clear that God has forbidden anyone who stands against His righteousness from entering His Garden. It is God’s will to make it absolutely impossible for anyone who opposes His righteousness to go into His Garden. This shows us that if we really want to enter Heaven, then we must never stand against the righteousness of God. For all of us, we can go to Heaven only if we believe in God’s righteousness; if we otherwise oppose the righteousness of God, we can never be saved from sin, nor reach even the doorstep of Heaven. Therefore, whoever yearns to enter the Kingdom of Heaven sincerely must believe in God’s righteousness without fail.
Genesis 3:1 says, “Now the serpent was more cunning than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made.” This passage shows just how cunning the one who stands against God’s Word of Truth is. It is none other than Satan who stands against God and His righteousness. This Satan is extremely cunning and shrewd. Those who belong to Satan and oppose God are also extremely cunning and wily. They are all standing against God cunningly and treacherously.
When Satan tempted man, he said the following words: “Has God indeed said, ‘You shall not eat of every tree of the garden’?” Eve then said, “We may eat the fruit of the trees of the garden; but of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God has said, ‘You shall not eat it, nor shall you touch it, lest you die.’” Satan preys on people’s weaknesses, and with his deceptive words he cunningly corrupts their faith. That is how Satan woks so deceitfully and cunningly to stand against God.
However, there is no one who can be happy by opposing the Word of God outright. Although the Devil is standing against God, he will ultimately face the judgment of the wrath of God. Even among human beings, there also are adversaries of the righteousness of God. Just like Satan, these people are also very cunning in their opposition to the people of God and His righteousness.
Satan is working deceitfully among people. His servants work to deceive mankind, so that people may not realize the Truth that Jesus took upon all the sins of the world by being baptized by John the Baptist. That is the very first thing that Satan does. Those who are deceived by Satan say that while Jesus took away original sin, He did not take away their personal sins. Anyone who says so is someone who has been deceived by the cunning Satan. By misleading people into believing like this, the Devil makes it impossible for them to go to Heaven even though they believe in Jesus Christ as their Savior. Since God has placed a flaming sword to guard the Garden of Eden and prevent such people from entering, not just anyone can go to Heaven.
Many of today’s Christians in this world are spiritually deceitful. Although they all profess to believe in Jesus Christ as their Savior, their faith is actually placed in Christian doctrines, claiming that while Jesus took away original sin, they have to offer prayers of repentance every day to remit away their personal sins. They therefore argue that one can enter Heaven only if he washes away his sins every day.
But where in the Bible is this said? If man just tries hard enough, can he establish a better righteousness than the righteousness of God accomplished by Jesus? Can the filthy and ugly virulence of man and all his sinful nature be eradicated through his own prayers of repentance, which are nothing more than products of man’s own effort? Is it really possible for any human being to enter Heaven through his own effort, rather than relying entirely on the righteousness of God? The answer to all these questions is a resounding no.
The notion that we can somehow reach our salvation through our own effort is an utterly deceptive and cunning lie. Yet now as before, this world is overflowing with such cunning liars. All who stand against the righteousness of God before Him are cunning liars. Even though they profess to believe in God, they are actually ignorant of His righteousness, and that is why they are standing against this righteousness of God. These people oppose God’s righteousness in an extremely cunning way.
God wants to be the true God to all creatures and mankind. This God is a truly benevolent God for all of us. He is our Supreme Being. His Word is the absolute Truth, it needs no reasoning, and it is good and beautiful. God speaks to us out of necessity and for our own benefit.
Even now, those who stand against God are standing against the righteous. These cunning and treacherous foes had existed from long ago, and in today’s Scripture, we see one of them, the serpent, saying to Eve, “Did God really tell you not to eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil? Did He forbid you from eating the fruit of every tree of the garden?” Eve then uttered faithless words, saying to the serpent, “We may eat the fruit of the tress of the garden; but of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God has said, ‘You shall not eat it, nor shall you touch it, lest you die.’”
Satan had asked Eve an extremely cunning and deceitful question: “Has God indeed said, ‘You shall not eat of every tree of the garden’?” If this is not a cunning question, what else could it be? By deceiving Eve so deviously and treacherously, Satan undermined her faith in the Word of God, and by thus tricking her into eating the forbidden fruit, he made her drift away from God. Simply put, the Devil deceived mankind. He lied to Eve by saying, “You will not surely die.” This was nothing more than Satan’s scheme to stand against the righteousness of God. Just as Satan had schemed to adulterate the Word of God back then, so does he use the same devious method today.
Do you know how God’s adversaries stand against Him? These people actually do believe in God. But they absolutely do not believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, the Word of God that constitutes His righteousness. Rather than accepting everything in the Word of God as the absolute Truth, they think some parts of the Bible are not from God. So they try to interpret the Word in human perspective.
What is their assessment of God? They corrupt God into a fickle God, claiming that God saves those whom He said He would kill, that His Word is not the absolute commandment, and that because God is the God of love, He spares even sinners. When these people think of God, they think of Him only as the God of love, ignoring the fact that He is also the God of justice. But God is not this kind of God; He is the God of Truth. Our God is a just God who sends anyone who has sin to hell. He does not gloss over people’s sins, just because they happen to be Christians somehow. Does God allow even sinners to enter Heaven? No, of course not. Does He consider anyone who believes in Jesus to be righteous, even if this person remains sinful? No, that is not the case.
Only after I grasped the righteousness of God did I finally realize that God was the God of Truth and justice. Anything God has ever said even just once, He will fulfill it without fail. How do His adversaries stand against God then? They stand against God with their own righteousness, refusing to believe in God and His Word of Truth, and claiming that God is unjust. In the end, because they do not believe in the Word of God, they will all be destroyed. Those who stand against God today claim that Jesus took away only original sin, but where in the Bible does it say that only original sin was taken away?
Those who stand against God distort His Word. Just as Satan had twisted the Word of God when he tempted Eve, so do these people also corrupt the Word of God. Satan had induced Eve’s lips to utter words of disbelief; he lured her to his side and made her doubt God’s Word. Was it not Satan who led her to distort God’s Word and say, “You shall not eat it, nor shall you touch it, lest you die”? The Devil still goes into people and adulterates the Word of God. Those who are deceived by Satan corrupt the very Word of God itself, claiming, “God took away only your original sin, not your personal sins. So you have to be sanctified by offering prayers of repentance every day.” But this is nothing more than repeating Satan’s own words. It is precisely such people who are standing against God. You have to realize that the enemies of God stand against Him cunningly.
Can your eyes discern those opposing the righteousness of God? We cannot discern these adversaries through their outward appearances because they are skilled in cunning tricks. Rather than confronting directly, they plant doubt in people’s minds and thereby corrupt their faith in the Word of God indirectly. In other words, they make people corrupt God’s Word by themselves. This is the very wile of the cunning, scheming, and arrogant Satan. What we must all grasp here is that whatever the Word of God says, we have to accept it as it is. To otherwise add our own thoughts is a sin.
Right now, countless Christians are standing against God with their mistaken faith in Christian doctrines. They are opposing the righteousness of God united together. Long ago, when men built the Tower of Babel gathered together in the plain of Shinar, they tried to free themselves from the reign of God, saying, “Let us build a tower tall enough to reach the top of the sky! Let’s make a name for ourselves so that we may not be scattered!” But God confused the language of these arrogant people and scattered them around. From then on chaos descended on human beings, their languages were confused, and they fell into complete disarray.
Christian denominations throughout the whole world now believe according to their own whim, far removed from the Word of God. Is there then any difference of faith between those who believe according to the Word of God and those who don’t? Yes. Right now, the only people who believe according to the written Word of God are those who have been born again by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. Among those who have no faith in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, there is absolutely no one who believes in the Word of God exactly as it is. This means that the opponents of the Word of God are corrupting the Word cunningly. Just as Eve in her faithlessness had distorted God’s Word from warning of certain death to just possible death, so are Christians today also corrupting the Word of God. They claim that although their original sin was taken away, when it comes to their personal sins, they still have to offer prayers of repentance every day to reach sanctification, attain salvation, and then eventually be glorified to enter the Kingdom of Heaven. But is this kind of faith right? No, of course not! Was Eve right to distort God’s Word by saying, “God said, ‘You shall not eat it, nor shall you touch it, lest you surely die’”? No, she was wrong. Likewise, the notion that one can somehow enter Heaven through his own effort is also a preposterous belief.
People try to attain salvation through their own endless effort precisely because they neither know nor believe in the righteousness of God. Many Christians today say that if they believe in Jesus and faithfully offer prayers of repentance, and if God has chosen them, then they will go to the Kingdom of Heaven, but if God has otherwise not chosen them, then they will be forsaken. You have to realize clearly here that none other than this kind of faith is one that stands against the righteousness of God.
Take a look around you to see just how many people are standing against the righteousness of God. God has made it clear that He does not allow such people to enter Heaven. He said that the tree of life is beyond the reach of those who have their own human standard—that is, those who have already eaten from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil to possess their own moral benchmark. Deceived by Satan, many people have departed from the true faith in the Word of God to have their own standard of good and evil, and these people do not consider God’s Word as the absolute Truth, but instead they try to become gods on their own. God drives out such people from the Garden of Eden and forbids them from reentering there. In other words, God casts out those who have their own absolute standard of good and evil rather than recognizing the supremacy of God. He does not allow them to eat His Word by faith, nor does He permit them to know the God-spoken Truth. Countless people today are studying theology, reading the Bible, and researching the Scriptures, but of these people, those who stand against God’s righteousness are all driven out of His Garden. Anyone who interprets the Word of God according to his own fleshly thoughts is someone who has nothing to do with the righteousness of God, and therefore it is absolutely impossible for him to eat the bread of everlasting life by faith. Such people are not only ignorant of the Word written in the Bible, but they are also driven out from the Truth of God. This is all because they are standing against God’s righteousness.
God seals off the Kingdom of Heaven from those who stand against His righteousness, so that they would never be able to enter. So people must escape from the opponents of the righteousness of God and return to the faith that believes in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, the Word of God. They must return to this faith in the Word of God, and they must believe with amen when told that Jesus took away all the sins of the world through His baptism received from John the Baptist. They must search the Word of God once again to see exactly how Jesus took upon the sins of the world and carried them to the Cross, and they must be saved by verifying and grasping this Word of God and believing in it. Only then can human beings driven out of the Garden of Eden return to God and to the Garden of Eden.
How can anyone who is standing against God ever enter His Kingdom? It is only too fitting for God to cast all the opponents of His righteousness to hell. Among those cast into hell, there is no one who doesn’t deserve it. If they were heading to hell because they stood against God unknowingly, then God would have given them an opportunity to know His righteousness and believe in it. However, despite the fact they can go to the Kingdom of God if they realize the righteousness of God and believe in His Word, they have chosen not to believe and to stand against God, and that is why they are going straight to hell. So they have no one else to blame but themselves. All those who do not believe in God’s Word of righteousness, and who are instead standing against Him deceived by Satan, will surely suffer forever in the fire of hell. Those still opposing Jesus Christ who has become the righteousness of God were not just born in this world once to die only once—this is not the end of the story for them, but they will face God’s judgment afterwards. The judgment of God is an everlasting judgment.
How does the Bible describe hell? Mark chapter nine says that hell is a forever-burning place, where the fire is never extinguished and the worms never die. Sinners will suffer forever from the burning fire of hell. When we turn to the Old Testament, it says that if anyone broke the Word of God, a handful of witnesses were enough for this offender to be stoned to death right on the spot. Disobeying the Word of God is such a serious offence that whoever broke it was killed even without a trial. Even when the offender was dead, stones were thrown at the dead body continuously until they piled up to be his tomb. Today also, there is no forgiveness for anyone who does not believe in the gospel Word of the water and the Spirit that has become the righteousness of God, and instead stands against this gospel.
Yet the cunning adversaries of God standing behind the pulpit still claim that God would not send anyone to hell, thus piling up the wrath of God. They say that God’s Word is not so strict, and that since God is quite tolerant, He would accept all people regardless of how they believe, so long as they are humanly virtuous.
But this is complete nonsense. The Word of God is like a double-edged sword of Truth. It is not just strict, but it is razor-sharp to infallibly judge everyone who must be judged. That is just how cold and stern God’s Word is. Even though many people are interpreting the Word of God according to their own thoughts, the day is coming when they will all regret. They weigh on God’s Word all on their own, interpreting it in whatever way they want, but this in itself shows that they are standing against the righteousness of God in their complete ignorance.
Do You Know Just How Many People on This Planet Are Standing against the Righteousness of God?
Among Christians throughout the whole world, there are many who are still standing against God and His righteousness. Would God have any desire to let such people come into Heaven? No, He would rather want to burn them with the punishing fire of hell. The only reason why God has tolerated them until now is because there still are a few people on this earth who, though their number is small, believe in His Word of righteousness and follow it, and through these people God wants others to return to Him.
Christians who say that Jesus took away only original sin but failed to take away their personal sins must turn around and know and believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. These Christians argue that they can be sanctified incrementally every day to eventually become completely sinless. But this faith of theirs is what stands against the righteousness of God. The true righteousness of God is that Christ came to this earth and blotted out all the sins of this world once for all with His baptism. But despite this, many people are still corrupting this Truth of the gospel, and they will therefore be judged by God without fail.
As the Devil deceived Adam and Eve into standing against the righteousness of God, so have today’s people also fallen into Satan’s trap and come to oppose God. How can Christians today ever receive the remission of sins just by offering prayers of repentance? If any Christian believes that he can somehow reach sanctification by offering prayers of repentance every day, then it can only mean that he has been deceived by Satan’s cunning wiles. Satan is so cunning that he has thoroughly indoctrinated today’s Christians into believing that they can receive the remission of sins only by offering prayers of repentance. That’s why their faith has gone astray.
They say that there are two types of repentance. The first type of repentance occurs when one repents and receives the remission of sins by believing in the crucified Jesus. The second type of repentance occurs when one washes away his personal sins by offering prayers of repentance every time he commits sin, saying, “Lord, please forgive me.” So these Christians beg the Lord to forgive their sins every day, but isn’t this a mistaken faith? Given the fact that Jesus went to the Cross after shouldering all the sins of the world once for all by being baptized by John the Baptist, why do today’s Christians try to wash away their sins through their own prayers of repentance? If they have received the remission of sins by their first repentance, then isn’t it wrong for them to ask the Lord to once again forgive their sins every time they commit sin? Many Christians today think that they are saved just by professing to believe in Jesus as their Savior. And yet they also think that they have to be forgiven from the daily sins committed in everyday life. That’s why they have come to belong to a cunning faith. This means that they have been deceived by the cunning and treacherous Satan.
Too many Christians think blindly that they can go to the Kingdom of Heaven if only they are pious enough, but they are completely mistaken. If the Bible says that one can enter the Kingdom of Heaven if he knows and believes in the gospel of the water and the Spirit that constitutes the righteousness of God, then this can only mean that Christians who are heading to hell despite believing in Jesus are mistaken to believe that they are washed from sin through their own prayers of repentance. Isn’t their faith clearly wrong then? When we turn to the Bible, we can see that those who prophesy, drive out demons, and do many wonders are those who actually practice lawlessness. Jesus says to them, “I do not know you at all.”
Then why did these people end up with a fallacious faith? Is it because they don’t believe in Jesus as their Savior? Or is it because they were not chosen by God, and therefore they are forsaken despite believing in Jesus? Those who belong to Satan say that if one knows and believes that Jesus Christ is the Savior, then this person was already chosen in Christ. However, God the Father says that He has already chosen everyone in Christ. It is by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, rather than standing against the righteousness of God, that people today can receive the remission of sins once for all. The problem, however, is that many Christians have been deceived by the cunning Satan into believing that the remission of sins is received by offering prayers of repentance. Indeed, they try so hard to attain the remission of sins by offering so many prayers of repentance that they are not only foolish, but they are actually diluting the gospel of the water and the Spirit given by Jesus and corrupting the world.
To put it more harshly, those who are now standing against the righteousness of God are the same as Satan. It’s written in today’s Scripture passage, “Then the serpent said to the woman, ‘You will not surely die. For God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil’” (Genesis 3:4-5). These words of Satan are the same as the words of the false prophets of this present age who claim, “If you believe in Jesus and offer many prayers of repentance, you will be sanctified to become like God, and you will enter the Kingdom of Heaven.” This notion that original sin is remitted by believing in Jesus and personal sins by diligently offering prayers of repentance every day, and that Christians are thereby made God’s perfect and completely righteous people to enter His Kingdom, is the same as the lie that Satan had told Adam and Eve to deceive them. And these words are the words of those who are standing against the righteousness of God. Everyone deceived by the Devil invariably makes such a claim.
But you must not be deceived by these enemies claiming that you can receive the remission of sins by faithfully offering prayers of repentance. So many Christians are shedding so many tears every time they offer prayers of repentance, all because they’ve been instructed that the Kingdom of God cannot be entered without tears and sacrifice. Even though they are absolutely sure that this is the only way they can be sanctified, they could not be more wrong. All these people are just being deceived by Satan.
As a hymn correctly points out, your sins cannot be blotted out even if you cry and shed a thousand tears. Do your sins disappear whenever you offer prayers of repentance? No, that is far from the Truth; on the contrary, it is not just by repenting but by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit that you can receive the remission of sins and attain your salvation. You may know the hymn that goes,
“Weeping will not save me!
Though my face were bathed in tears,
That could not allay my fears,
Could not wash the sins of years!
Weeping will not save me. …
Faith in Christ will save me.
Let me trust thy weeping Son,
Trust the work that He has done,
To His arms, Lord, help me run;
Faith in Christ will save me.”
Most Christians love to sing this hymn inspired by their feelings. But, even as they sing the same hymn that conveys the impossibility of washing any sin away with tears, they are completely oblivious to the real meaning of this hymn.
Adam and Eve accepted the words of Satan saying to them, “In the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God” (Genesis 3:5). Were their eyes really opened then? No, far from this, their spiritual eyes that saw the dominion of God were completely blinded. What can you see when your eyes are too blind to see the dominion of God? All you can see is just your own flesh and what’s evil and demonic.
Is anyone made sinless to enter Heaven if he just tries hard not to commit sin? You shouldn’t try to wash away your sins by shedding tears. In a widespread trend, many Christians today say that since Jesus Himself washed Peter’s feet personally, they are right to try to wash away their sins with prayers of repentance. But is everything okay if you just wash your feet clean? You may think that since you believe in Jesus, you will go to the Kingdom of Heaven as long as you offer prayers of repentance faithfully and thoroughly. But this is not the case, for Heaven is entered only by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. That is how you are sanctified to become a child of God and a righteous person without sin. If you have to wash your feet until the day you die in order to become righteous—that is, if you have to wash away your daily sins by offering prayers of repentance every day—then can you really say that you believe in the work of Jesus? No, this can only mean that you are relying on your own work. Since the latter entails your own effort to wash your feet, it is not Jesus’ work.
Those who believe that salvation is reached through their own effort have been deceived by the wiles of Satan. Take a look at them now offering prayers of repentance deceived by the Devil already. Far from receiving the remission of sins, they have fallen deeper into sin to struggle even more. While there is no question that Satan is indeed an evil spirit, human beings that have fallen prey to his deception are even more wicked. A proverb in Korea says, “More troublesome than an ill-tempered mother-in-law is a mean sister-in-law pretending to be nice.” Like this saying, those deceived by Satan are even more dangerous than Satan himself, for we see them pretending to care about us but are actually trying to lead us to stand against God. And those who play right into their hands are indeed foolish. They are only acting as though they cherish God, pretending to believe in God and to glorify Him, all the while glorifying no one else but the Devil himself. When such people ask God to accept glory, who will really be glorified? It’s the Devil standing between man and God who will be glorified.
Genesis 3:6 says, “So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree desirable to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate. She also gave to her husband with her, and he ate.” When Eve saw the tree, it looked very enticing for both her sight and palate. Just like Eve, it’s quite understandable why so many people today are attracted by the enticing notion that their original sin was taken away by Jesus and their personal sins are washed away by offering prayers of repentance every day. After all, doesn’t it sound rather convincing to hear that Jesus washed Peter’s feet to teach us that we are sanctified through our daily prayers of repentance? But in reality, Jesus Christ did this to teach that as the Lamb of Passover, He had blotted out all the sins of Peter including his personal sins once for all.
Mainstream Christianity insists that one can be forgiven from his original sin when he starts to believe in Jesus, but for his personal sins, he has to offer prayers of repentance every day. This notion seems plausible to everybody, from religious men to nonbelievers. It does look like a wise move, doesn’t it? But you have to realize here that believing like this is to fall into the Devil’s trick. Anyone who believes in the necessity of prayers of repentance is already standing at the doorstep of hell.
As we believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, all our sins have been remitted away and we have become sinless. However, because our acts are always insufficient, we still continue to commit sin even after attaining our redemption. So we need to ruminate on the Truth every day, remembering that there is no sin left as Jesus Christ took away all our sins. Does it seem foolish to believe like this? The prevailing belief among most Christians is that original sin was taken away by Jesus and personal sins are washed away by offering prayers of repentance every day, and this faith is what the world approves, not to mention its wide appeal. So it may seem like a wise move to believe like this, but you should realize that the road to hell is paved with the wisdom of man and the wisdom of Satan.
Even though the believers in the gospel of the water and the Spirit may seem foolish to our eyes, they are wise in God’s sight. Although the world may see them as fools, they are truly wise. Those who believe in only the blood of the Cross made of worldly knowledge and wisdom rather than in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, and who believe that they must offer prayers of repentance, believe in Jesus Christ cunningly and deceitfully. They will therefore all go to hell.
Don’t Christians appear cultured? Don’t’ they look like intellectuals? Isn’t it wonderful for Christians to get together once a week and feel good about themselves as a happy family? If they happen to attend a big church, they get approving nods from the people of the world as well. When someone asks, “Which church do you attend?” they can proudly give the name of their church. Although it may seem quite wonderful and wise to attend a church whose name is recognized by everyone like this, you have to realize that the Devil stood against God because he was overflowing with his own wisdom, and that he will be cast into hell for this folly.
Why do people go to hell? It’s because they don’t believe in the righteousness of God; because they believe according to their own thoughts; and because they have sin in their hearts. All these are right answers. To add one more answer here, people go to hell because they challenge the righteousness of God with their own righteousness. Those who presume themselves to be better and wiser than God keep on challenging Him time after time, denying everything He says. God may tolerate them for a while at first, but if they continue to challenge Him, God will eventually strike them down and throw them into the bottomless pit.
What about the fallen angel? Why was Lucifer, who had been a glorious angel, cast down to the earth? Why was hell reserved for him? It was because he had challenged God. Likewise, it’s because people dare to challenge God with their own thoughts that their sins do not disappear, and it’s because their sins remain intact that they are bound to hell. All the creatures made by the Lord God should obey Him. How wonderful would it be if those under God would obey His Word and serve Him forever in His vast and everlasting dominion, since the eternal glory of God would then be their own glory? If you don’t want to end up like the angel who was driven out overnight for challenging God, you should listen carefully to the Word of God and believe in it exactly as it is.
God said to Lucifer, the fallen angel,
“For you have said in your heart:
‘I will ascend into heaven,
I will exalt my throne above the stars of God;
I will also sit on the mount of the congregation
On the farthest sides of the north;
I will ascend above the heights of the clouds,
I will be like the Most High.’
Yet you shall be brought down to Sheol,
To the lowest depths of the Pit” (Isaiah 14:13-15). God is saying that He made hell on account of those who challenge Him with their own thoughts. Do you think God made hell because He wanted to? No, that is absolutely not who our God is. If God had made hell intentionally out of malevolence, He would not be just.
God made us humans to grant us happiness. He will cast out those who challenge Him and send to Heaven those who believe in His Word. God wants everyone to listen to His Word and go to Heaven. But because those destined to hell end up there from trying to climb up to God, God cannot do anything about such people either. You have to realize here just how many people are heading straight to hell all from challenging God.
Most Christians think that they have a better chance to go to Heaven by attending big and recognized churches than small and non-denominational churches. In a similar vein, the Jews in the days of Jesus also thought that it was far more probable for them to go to Heaven through the Temple of Jerusalem than through the straw-thatched houses of the countryside. In the parable of the good Samaritan, a man robbed by thieves was taken to an inn, and in all likelihood, this inn was a humble house in a country village. The inn here implies God’s Church that has the Word of Truth to save and heal every kind of sinner. In contrast, the Temple of Jerusalem was built tall and beautiful. The peak of its tall tower was embellished with dazzling engravings, but if you keep climbing it, you will go to hell. Many Christians boast of their churches and denominations, bragging about their size, history, tradition, and so forth, but those who climb up to God with such superficial merits of men will all go to hell. Anyone who challenges God will be cast into hell without a second thought.
That is what Genesis chapter three addresses. God says that He will drive out anyone who challenges Him and prevent him from entering Heaven. However, human beings are still challenging God, aren’t they? People often say that there is no one righteous. But why should there be no one righteous, when the Bible is filled with so many righteous people? Whether you turn to Psalms, Proverbs, or Ecclesiastes, you will see the righteous and sinners mentioned in all. The Bible is already speaking of the righteous and sinners from Genesis. On the first day of His creation, God divided the light from the darkness, and He called the light Day, and the darkness He called Night (Genesis 1:4-5). This means that He has divided the righteous from sinners with the absolute Truth, the gospel of the water and the Spirit. Yet contrary to the Word of God, people say that there is no one righteous. This is defying God. People challenge God so much. If there is no one righteous in the Bible, then why did Jesus come to this earth and save sinners?
Can God Make a Sinner Righteous?
To say that God cannot make mankind righteous is imposing a limit on the power of God. God is more than able to make mankind righteous. The Bible says that there is nothing that God cannot do. But people say that there is no one righteous based on their own thoughts. Such people will go to hell without fail. If they have at least elementary education, they should read the Bible before speaking such words, even if it’s just one chapter. A blind man speaks only what he feels through the sense of touch. As sinners are spiritually blind, they think they know the whole Bible from just reading one passage. So based on a single passage that says, “There is none righteous, no, not one” (Romans 3:10), they argue that there is no one righteous according to the Bible.
Have you ever heard about Plato's allegory of the cave? Most Christians are enslaved and imprisoned in the cave of their respected denominations just like the prisoners in the metaphor. What is worse is that they don’t know their trapped status and don’t even want to escape from such a situation. They think something awful will happen to them if they leave their church. Those who have once fallen into sin and stumbled over it, and whose hearts therefore retain their sins, end up falling into the fallacious doctrines of mainstream Christianity when they believe in Jesus. And because their sins are written in their hearts, they can never escape from the trap of seemingly plausible doctrines. The reason why they can’t believe that there are righteous people no matter how the Bible says so is also because they have sin in their hearts. They are incapable of moving beyond their confines. They have no idea just how offensive their views are to God, and so they keep on challenging Him, so much so that when I watch them, I think to myself, “If I were the Creator, I would have scrapped them and made them all over again.” Countless people are heading to hell from this, and they all deserve this fate.
People simply assume that there is no one righteous because they have never really believed in God properly nor tried to know Him. It’s because they themselves have never experienced being justified that they are so sure there is no one righteous. In other words, they think there is absolutely no one righteous precisely because they themselves are sinners. When they look into their own hearts, it’s completely inconceivable for them to become righteous at all.
Then how else should we describe Noah, Abraham, Paul, and Peter, all of whom the Bible says were righteous? God said, “Noah was a just man, perfect in his generations” (Genesis 6:9). The Apostle Paul said, “There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus” (Romans 8:1). Doesn’t this mean that those who are in Christ are righteous? That there is no condemnation means that there is no sin; since no sin is imputed, whoever is in Christ Jesus is righteous. In other words, because our sins were passed onto Jesus Christ, we are the righteous people who have neither sin nor any reason to be judged.
However, those who believe that there is no one righteous cannot explain this passage. If there is anyone who keeps challenging the witnesses of the gospel of the water and the Spirit just because he doesn’t know any better, he is heading straight to hell. Actually, before we were born again through the gospel of the water and the Spirit, we had also challenged God. I know a certain man who spent 70 years of his life as a missionary. Like everyone else, he was also born as a sinner from his very birth, but he tried to go the Heaven by doing good deeds. But all that he accomplished in his life was just challenging God, only to end up in hell. People keep trying to defy God endlessly. So many people are challenging God that there is hardly anyone who isn’t defying Him. Do you realize just how many people among both laymen and pastors alike have not received the remission of sins, trapped in a vicious circle to fall down to the spiritual bottom after sinning, climb back up to barely restore themselves, only to fall again? So many pastors have been driven out of their churches for committing sin that it’s impossible to list them all.
No other expression describes what these people are doing more accurately than to say that they are trying to climb up to God. When we watch closely those who have not received the remission of sins, we can see clearly that they can’t receive the remission of sins because they are challenging God. They stand against God and challenge Him just because they don’t like what they hear from those preaching the gospel, but all that results from this is their own loss, making them unable to receive the remission of sins and dooming them to hell. I am not sure if they realize this, but that’s what they keep on doing. Sometimes even God’s servants challenge God. You just can’t be blessed if you keep challenging God like this. It’s absolutely critical for you to beware of defying God. My fellow believers, daring to climb up to God is none other than standing against God and His righteousness. Just as the Devil had stood against God long ago, so are human beings also standing against God. The way they stand against God is by this very act of challenging God with their own thoughts.
My fellow believers, it is by believing in God that you can go to His Kingdom. And it is by knowing the Truth that you can believe in Him. If you are too insufficient, just say humbly, “Lord, I don’t know anything; please teach me.” You will then no longer be challenging God. It’s such people on whom God bestows His mercy. However, many pastors are challenging God with their own thoughts. I just can’t understand why they continue to deceive their congregation even as they themselves have not received the remission of sins, as if their prosperity and ministry would last forever. It’s so ridiculous. Just how long do they think they would live that they keep deceiving their own conscience and their hearts before God? It’s preposterous. The very notion of challenging God is laughable.
My fellow believers, remember that people end up in hell because of their arrogance. All the people in the Bible that went astray and were judged by God ended up in hell because they had challenged God. So I ask you to never challenge God, remembering clearly just how terrifying its consequences are. And when you see those who have not received the remission of sins challenging God, speak bluntly to them to stop this folly. Be as blunt as possible, telling them straight forwardly, “Don’t be so arrogant!” Rather than just trying to engage them on an intellectual level with lofty words, teach them clearly who they really are, saying to them, “You have no idea what you are talking about, and so stop being so presumptuous. Why do you keep challenging God? Aren’t you nothing but a sinner?”
Let us then remind all these people that if they pretentiously challenge the authority of God, they will be cast into hell. Everyone who stands against the gospel of the water and the Spirit, the Truth of God, will be punished without fail. Those who still do not know the gospel of the water and the Spirit, and therefore have not united with God, shouldn’t be challenging Him, but they should kneel down before Him and ask, “How can I be saved from sin?”