Never Say “No”


The thoughts of God, who declares the end from the beginning and sees into eternity, are higher than the thoughts of man, just as the heavens are higher than the earth (Isa 55:9). So the Bible teaches us to never say “no” to God’s word. It’s because our single act of disobedience can lead us away from the eternal blessings of heaven.

God’s commands are the words of life that lead mankind to eternal happiness and salvation. As God’s holy people, we should always say “yes” to every word of God and follow it.

They left their nets and followed Jesus

God wrote the things of the past in the Bible to teach us. Let’s learn the direction of faith we must have today, through what happened in the Father’s age and the Son’s age.

As Jesus was walking beside the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon called Peter and his brother Andrew. They were casting a net into the lake, for they were fishermen. “Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will make you fishers of men.” At once they left their nets and followed him. Going on from there, he saw two other brothers, James son of Zebedee and his brother John. They were in a boat with their father Zebedee, preparing their nets. Jesus called them, and immediately they left the boat and their father and followed him. Mt 4:18–22

The Apostles Peter, Andrew, James, and John said “yes” when Jesus called them, saying, “Follow me.” The boats and nets, which had been their livelihood tools, were not important to them anymore. They chose the most valuable work they should do, because they believed God loved them. It was not easy for them to follow that path, but now they are enjoying tremendous and eternal glory, aren’t they?

We, too, have our own suffering while walking the path of faith. There are some who say “no” to God’s word, unable to bear the invisible weight of the cross. However, we cannot find a single verse in the Bible from Genesis to Revelation which says that a person was blessed by saying “no” to God’s word. We may become tired and distressed, but it is temporary and through this process God leads us to the kingdom of heaven overflowing with eternal happiness. Not forgetting this fact, we should always say “yes” to God’s call, as the people of Zion.

They did everything just as God commanded them

This is the account of Noah. Noah was a righteous man, blameless among the people of his time, and he walked with God . . . So God said to Noah, “I am going to put an end to all people, for the earth is filled with violence because of them. I am surely going to destroy both them and the earth. So make yourself an ark of cypress wood; make rooms in it and coat it with pitch inside and out. This is how you are to build it: The ark is to be 450 feet long, 75 feet wide and 45 feet high . . . You are to bring into the ark two of all living creatures, male and female, to keep them alive with you . . .” Noah did everything just as God commanded him. Ge 6:9–22

The ark God commanded Noah to build was a massive ship of unimaginable size with the ship-building techniques of his time. Building the massive ship was a very hard task, and it must also have been so difficult to take all kinds of animals into the ark—lions, wolves, snakes, etc. However, Noah said “yes” to God and did everything just as God commanded him. It’s because he had absolute faith in God, who gives us commands for our benefit, looking ahead into our future.

Later, the floodgates of the heavens were opened, and on the earth all the springs of the great deep burst forth; it rained for forty days and the earth was covered with water. The ark, which was built according to God’s instructions, had no anchor, helm or sail—basic parts of a sailboat, but it arrived safely at Mount Ararat and Noah and his family were saved. This was the result of the faith of Noah who followed God by unconditionally saying “amen” to His word, right?

We are now dwelling in Zion—the ark of salvation. Some of us might think that there is still a lack of essential factors in Zion. However, we must never commit the foolish act of saying “no” to God’s word. It is God who leads the work of salvation. Since God said that the gospel would be preached to Samaria and even to the ends of the earth, we should believe that God leads us all through that process.

The Lord had said to Abram, “Leave your country, your people and your father’s household and go to the land I will show you. I will make you into a great nation and I will bless you; I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse; and all peoples on earth will be blessed through you.” So Abram left, as the Lord had told him; and Lot went with him. Abram was seventy-five years old when he set out from Haran. Ge 12:1–4

When God told Abraham to go to the land He would show him, he left his home country where he had been living all his life, and went in obedience to God’s word, even though he did not know where he was going. Those who were blessed by God, including Abraham, Noah, and Peter, had such great faith that they always said “yes” to God’s will. In the age of the Father, those who said “yes” to the Lord [Jehovah] were blessed, and in the age of the Son those who said “yes” to Jesus Christ were blessed. It is the same in the age of the Holy Spirit. Those who obey everything that the Spirit and the Bride have commanded Their children to give them a blissful future, by saying “amen,” can be blessed.

Salvation through God

The story of Gideon appears in the book of Judges. God called Gideon to deliver the Israelites from the oppression of the Midianites. However, Gideon was from a poor humble family and had no influence, and when God commanded him to do that great work, he humbly asked God if he would be able to do it. Then God said to him, “Surely I will be with you; don’t be afraid.” So Gideon obeyed God’s command and gathered an army of Israelites together.

Early in the morning, Jerub-Baal (that is, Gideon) and all his men camped at the spring of Harod. The camp of Midian was north of them in the valley near the hill of Moreh. The Lord said to Gideon, “You have too many men for me to deliver Midian into their hands. In order that Israel may not boast against me that her own strength has saved her, announce now to the people, ‘Anyone who trembles with fear may turn back and leave Mount Gilead.’ ” So twenty-two thousand men left, while ten thousand remained. Jdg 7:1–3

The army of Israel was very small compared with the enemy’s, but God said there were still too many men and told Gideon to let anyone who trembled with fear return home. At that time, there were no powerful weapons and soldiers had to fight with swords, spears and arrows. So the army that had more soldiers was in a much more advantageous position. However, God said that the remaining 10,000 were still too many, and let Gideon choose only 300 men.

From a common-sense standpoint, an army of 300 men was too small for war against an enemy that had several hundreds of times more soldiers, no matter how brave they were. If Gideon had entertained such negative thoughts and said “no” to God’s word every time, what results would have been brought forth in the battle against the Midianites?

However, Gideon always said “yes” to God when He reduced his army from 32,000 men to 10,000, and then from 10,000 to 300. Since he believed that God would accomplish His holy will even with a small number of men, he was able to achieve the great work of delivering Israel from the oppression of the Midianites by defeating 135,000 enemy soldiers with only 300 men.

In these last days, too, we must believe that God leads the gospel work; we can’t do it ourselves. Do you think God, who is the operator of the whole universe, can’t accomplish things on this earth which is like a speck of dust on the scales? God has promised that the gospel will be preached to the whole world, and He will never break this promise. Today, we should have the same kind of faith that Gideon had when he went out to the enemy camp, believing God’s word.

“I know that his command leads to eternal life”

Joshua, too, always said “yes” to God’s command when he led the Israelites in the conquest of Canaan. It’s because he believed God’s promise to him.

After the death of Moses the servant of the Lord, the Lord said to Joshua son of Nun, Moses’ aide: “Moses my servant is dead. Now then, you and all these people, get ready to cross the Jordan River into the land I am about to give to them—to the Israelites. I will give you every place where you set your foot, as I promised Moses . . . Be strong and courageous, because you will lead these people to inherit the land I swore to their forefathers to give them. Be strong and very courageous. Be careful to obey all the law my servant Moses gave you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, that you may be successful wherever you go. Do not let this Book of the Law depart from your mouth; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful. Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” Jos 1:1–9

Is there any greater blessing than this? There is no weapon more powerful than God’s words of promise. Joshua was also probably afraid in front of the great city of Jericho, right? However, he believed God was with him, so he could overcome his fear and go out in obedience to God’s word.

God told Joshua to have the people march around the city once each day and seven times on the seventh day and then shout out together. Then Joshua conveyed this command to them. As all the people arose and shouted, the city of Jericho collapsed like a crumbled sheet of paper (Jos 6:1–21).

This is not something limited to the time of Joshua. God’s promise to Joshua applies to us who have received the mission of Joshua today. God has promised that we will be prosperous and successful in whatever we do and wherever we go. So there is nothing to be afraid of, right? God is with us, going ahead of us, pushing us from behind, and standing right beside us to help us. We need to look at the power of God who manages and controls the whole universe, not the city of Jericho. This attitude of faith is followed by God’s blessings.

“There is a judge for the one who rejects me and does not accept my words; that very word which I spoke will condemn him at the last day. For I did not speak of my own accord, but the Father who sent me commanded me what to say and how to say it. I know that his command leads to eternal life . . .” Jn 12:48–50

Jesus said that Father’s command, God’s word itself, leads to eternal life. So He always said “yes” to God’s word and set the example of obedience to the point of death. Our ancestors of faith, such as Noah, Abraham, Peter, and John, never said “no” to God. It’s because they firmly believed that everything God said was a teaching for their salvation.

In order to know what is in your heart

Sometimes in our life of faith, hardships befall us. Everyone hopes that something fearful and difficult will not happen. Why, then, do these kinds of challenges happen to us? The Bible says that God gives us trials in order to know what is in our hearts.

Be careful to follow every command I am giving you today, so that you may live and increase and may enter and possess the land that the Lord promised on oath to your forefathers. Remember how the Lord your God led you all the way in the desert these forty years, to humble you and to test you in order to know what was in your heart, whether or not you would keep his commands. He humbled you, causing you to hunger and then feeding you with manna, which neither you nor your fathers had known, to teach you that man does not live on bread alone but on every word that comes from the mouth of the Lord. Dt 8:1–3

It was not because Canaan was far away that the Israelites walked forty years in the desert. It was only about a ten-day journey from Egypt to Canaan. The reason God made them wander in the desert for forty years was to test their faith in order to know whether they would say “yes” or “no” to God’s word.

The Old Testament is a shadow, and the New Testament is the reality. Why, then, does God allow us to walk the journey of faith in the spiritual desert today? Even at this moment, God sees whether we give up in the face of hardship or try to overcome it by relying only on God. The God whom Noah met is our God. The God whom Abraham met is our God now. The God whom Joshua and Gideon met is leading the gospel work in this age. So we should preach the gospel with bold faith, not being afraid or discouraged. As the rest of the woman’s offspring in the Bible prophecy, let us always live with pride, realizing who our spiritual Father and Mother are.

If you fully obey the Lord your God and carefully follow all his commands I give you today, the Lord your God will set you high above all the nations on earth. All these blessings will come upon you and accompany you if you obey the Lord your God . . . You will be blessed when you come in and blessed when you go out. Dt 28:1–6

God has taught us, humans, how to be blessed, through the teachings of the Bible. If we obey God’s word, we will receive God’s overflowing blessings wherever we go and whatever we do. However, there are some who do not fully believe this and pursue other methods. Saying “amen” to God’s word and accepting it fully brings forth an abundant spiritual harvest. However, following our own thoughts results in blocking the blessings God has prepared for us.

Obedience is having enough faith to never say “no” to God. If we have ever said “no” to God, let us repent and participate in the work of salvation from now on. We are at a loss about what to do when we have problems on this small earth. However, God—the Creator of the universe—leads us to the way of salvation, knowing our beginning and end as well as our past and future.

I earnestly ask all of you, brothers and sisters in Zion, to always carry out your duties as God’s children and follow God’s will by saying “amen” wherever God leads you, so you can always live a blessed life. Let us fill ourselves with God’s word every day and preach God’s will to all people, until the day we go back to our heavenly home and participate in the glorious banquet of heaven.