The Basic Beliefs of The Church of Almighty God
(1) The Tenets of The Church of Almighty God
The tenets of Christianity originate from the Bible, and the tenets of The Church of Almighty God originate from all of the truths that have been expressed by God since the time of creation during the work of the Age of Law, Age of Grace, and Age of Kingdom. That is to say, the Old and New Testaments, and the Bible of the Age of Kingdom—The Word Appears in the Flesh—expressed by the returned Lord Jesus of the last days, Almighty God, are the basic beliefs and the tenets of The Church of Almighty God. The Old Testament records Jehovah God’s work of decreeing laws and commandments and guiding the life of man during the Age of Law; the New Testament records the work of redemption carried out by the Lord Jesus during the Age of Grace; and The Word Appears in the Flesh is all of the truths for the purification and salvation of mankind expressed by Almighty God during the Age of Kingdom, as well as an account of God’s work of judgment during the last days. The fundamental beliefs of The Church of Almighty God are all of God’s utterances during the three stages of work, that is, all of the truths expressed by God during these three stages of work. These are the basic beliefs and the tenets of The Church of Almighty God.
Christianity was born of the work of the Lord Jesus in the Age of Grace, but the Lord Jesus Christ it believes in only did the work of redemption in the Age of Grace. The incarnate Lord Jesus was crucified and served as man’s sin offering, delivering man from the hands of Satan and releasing him from the condemnation and imprecation of the law, and man had but to come before God and confess his sins and repent to be forgiven his sins and enjoy the bounteous grace and blessings bestowed by God. This was the work of redemption carried out by the Lord Jesus. Although man’s sins were forgiven by the redemption of the Lord Jesus, man was not expunged of his sinful nature, he was still bound and controlled by it, and could not help but commit sin and resist God by being arrogant and conceited, striving for fame and gain, being jealous and disputatious, lying and deceiving people, following the wicked trends of the world, and so on. Man had not broken free from the bondage of sin and become holy, and thus the Lord Jesus prophesied many times that He would come again to carry out the work of judgment of the last days, saying: “And if any man hear My words, and believe not, I judge him not: for I came not to judge the world, but to save the world. He that rejects Me, and receives not My words, has one that judges him: the word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day” (John 12:47–48). “For the Father judges no man, but has committed all judgment to the Son … And has given Him authority to execute judgment also, because He is the Son of man” (John 5: 22–27). It is also written in the First Epistle of Peter, chapter 4 verse 17, that “For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God.” Almighty God, Christ of the last days, is the returned Lord Jesus. He has expressed all of the truths for the purification and salvation of man, has carried out the work of judgment beginning at the house of God, and has fully accomplished the prophecies of the Bible. The Word Appears in the Flesh expressed by Almighty God is “what the Spirit says to the churches” (Revelation 2:7) prophesied in the Book of Revelation, and is an account of God’s work of judgment in the last days. The work of judgment done by Almighty God is the final stage of work of God’s salvation for mankind, and is also its most fundamental and crucial stage. If man wishes to be saved by God and enter the kingdom of heaven, he must accept Almighty God’s work of judgment, and in this have been fulfilled the words of the Lord Jesus: “And at midnight there was a cry made, Behold, the bridegroom comes; go you out to meet him” (Matthew 25:6). “Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear My voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with Me” (Revelation 3:20). Only if man accepts and experiences the judgment and chastisement of Almighty God’s words can he know the holiness and righteousness of God, know the substance of man’s corruption by Satan and the truth of it, truly repent before God, rid himself of sin, become one who obeys God and worships God, and be gained by God. Only then will he be qualified to enter God’s kingdom, inherit God’s promises and blessings, and gain the beautiful destination.
God began the work of saving mankind following His creation of the world, and His management plan for the salvation of man will not be completed until He finishes the work of judgment beginning at the house of God during the last days. From the words and all the truths God has expressed in the three stages of work, we are entirely able to see that, whether it be God’s work done by using man in the beginning during the Age of Law, or His work during the two times He was incarnated in the Age of Grace and the Age of Kingdom, all are the utterances and the expression of the truth of one Spirit; in substance, it is one God that speaks and works. Therefore, all the truths expressed by God during the three stages of His work—being the words of God as recorded in the Bible and The Word Appears in the Flesh as expressed by Almighty God, Christ of the last days—form the basic beliefs and tenets of The Church of Almighty God.
(2) About The Word Appears in the Flesh
The Word Appears in the Flesh is the personal utterances of Almighty God, Christ of the last days, and is all the truths that God has expressed to purify and save man during His work of judgment of the last days. These truths are the direct expression of the Holy Spirit, the revelation of God’s life and substance, and the expression of God’s disposition and what He has and is. They are the only path through which man can know God and be purified and saved. The words expressed by Almighty God are the supreme principle of man’s actions and conduct, and there are no higher aphorisms for the life of man.
The Christians of The Church of Almighty God read the words expressed by Almighty God in The Word Appears in the Flesh every day, just as believers of Christianity read the Bible. All Christians take the words of God as their life’s guide and as the highest of all life’s aphorisms. In the Age of Grace, Christians all read the Bible and listened to the preachings of the Bible. Some changes gradually occurred in people’s behavior, and they committed fewer and fewer sins. Likewise, through reading the words of Almighty God and experiencing the words of Almighty God, Christians of The Church of Almighty God gradually understand the truth and break free from the bondage of sin, their satanic dispositions are cleansed and changed, they no longer commit sins and resist God, and become truly obedient to God. Facts prove that only by reading God’s words and by practicing and experiencing God’s words, can man’s corrupt dispositions be purified and transformed and can man live out the image of the real man. These are facts that no one can deny. The words of God recorded in the Bible were expressed as God worked in the Age of Law and the Age of Grace, while The Word Appears in the Flesh is the words expressed by God in the work of the last days. The source of both is from the Holy Spirit, and both are the expressions of one God. Almighty God’s words and work have totally fulfilled the prophecies in the Bible, just as the Lord Jesus said: “I have yet many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. However, when He, the Spirit of truth, is come, He will guide you into all truth: for He shall not speak of Himself; but whatever He shall hear, that shall He speak: and He will show you things to come” (John 16:12–13). So, too, is it recorded in the Book of Revelation that, “He that has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches” (Revelation 2:7). “And I saw in the right hand of Him that sat on the throne a book written within and on the backside, sealed with seven seals. … behold, the Lion of the tribe of Juda, the Root of David, has prevailed to open the book, and to loose the seven seals thereof” (Revelation 5:1, 5).
Today, we have all seen one fact: All of the words expressed by Almighty God are the truth, and they have authority and power—they are the voice of God. No one can deny or change this! The Word Appears in the Flesh has long been freely available on the Internet for people of all countries and territories to seek out and investigate. No one dares to deny that they are the words of God, or that they are the truth. God’s words are driving the whole of mankind onward, people have begun to gradually awaken amid the words of God, and they are gradually accepting the truth, knowing the truth, and being led by God into the Age of Kingdom. The Age of Kingdom is the age when Almighty God’s words rule on earth. Each and every one of God’s words will be accomplished and fulfilled. Just as all believers in God acknowledge the Bible today, people who believe in God will acknowledge in the near future that The Word Appears in the Flesh is God’s utterances in the last days. Today, The Word Appears in the Flesh is the basis of the beliefs of The Church of Almighty God, and it will surely become the foundation of existence for the whole of mankind in the next age.
(3) About the Names of God and the Three Stages of God’s Work
Following his corruption by Satan, man lives under the domain of Satan and his corruption has grown ever deeper. Man cannot rid himself of the bonds of sin, and all need the salvation of God. In accordance with the needs of corrupt mankind, God has done three stages of work in the Age of Law, in the Age of Grace, and in the Age of Kingdom. In the Age of Law, God did the work of decreeing laws and commandments and guiding the life of man. In the Age of Grace, God became flesh and, upon the basis of His work in the Age of Law, carried out the work of crucifixion and redeemed man from sin. In the Age of Kingdom, God has once more become flesh and, upon the basis of the work of redemption of the Age of Grace, carries out the work of judgment beginning at the house of God, expresses all of the truths for the purification and salvation of man, and leads us onto the only way for the pursuit of purification and salvation. Only if we gain the truth as our life, becoming those who obey and worship God, will we be qualified to be led into the kingdom of God and receive God’s promises and blessings. The three stages of work of God’s salvation of man are closely connected, each stage is indispensable, each goes higher and deeper than the last, they are the three stages of work performed by one God in different ages, and only the three stages of God’s work are the complete work of God for the salvation of mankind.
The three names—Jehovah, Jesus, and Almighty God—are the different names God has taken in the Age of Law, the Age of Grace, and the Age of Kingdom. God takes different names because His work varies in different ages. God uses a new name to start a new age and represent the work of that age. God’s name was Jehovah in the Age of Law, and Jesus in the Age of Grace. God uses a new name—Almighty God—in the Age of Kingdom. This fulfills the prophecies in the Book of Revelation in the Bible: “And to the angel of the church in Philadelphia write…. Him that overcomes will I make a pillar in the temple of My God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write on him the name of My God, and the name of the city of My God, which is new Jerusalem, which comes down out of heaven from My God: and I will write on him My new name” (Revelation 3:7–12). “I am Alpha and Omega, the Beginning and the Ending, said the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty” (Revelation 1:8). Although God’s names and work in the three ages are different, there is only one God in substance, and the source is the same.
God’s three stages of work to save man are the work of one God. Though God performs a different work in each age and takes a different name in each age, God’s substance never changes; thus, Jehovah, Jesus, and Almighty God are the same one God. Jesus was the appearance of Jehovah, and Almighty God is the returned Lord Jesus, and so Almighty God is the one true God who created the heavens and the earth and all things, commands all things, and holds sovereignty over everything, and He is the everlasting and one and only Creator.
In the three stages of the work of saving man, God has revealed His entire disposition to man, allowing us to see that God’s disposition is not only mercy and love, but also righteousness, majesty, and wrath, that His substance is holiness and righteousness, and is truth and love, and that God’s disposition and God’s authority and power are not possessed by any created or non-created being. From the time of creation to the end of the world, regardless of how God works, or how His name changes, or how God chooses to appear to mankind, God’s substance never changes, God is God, and all the words He speaks are the truth. Heaven and earth shall pass away, but God’s words shall never disappear, and each and every one of them shall be accomplished!