Eastern Lightning
Church of Almighty God:
Part 1

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Authored By  :
Bill Kochman

Published On :
May 20, 2023

Last Updated :
May 20, 2023

Identifying Eastern Lightning/The Church of Almighty God, Modern False Christs: Sun Myung Moon And Alan John Miller, Origins: Yang Xiangbin And Zhao Weishan, Weishan Declares Xiangbin To Be Jesus Christ And Almighty God, Flight To The USA, Our Neighborhood Bible Studies, Holy Ghost: Teacher And Comforter, Neighbor Deceived By The Eastern Lightning Cult, Conversation With My Neighbor, Deceptive "Break the Spell" Movie, My Warning To My Friend, China's Multi-Faceted War Against The USA, Xi Jinping's Goal: China As A Superpower, Chinese Power Over Russia And The USA, Satan And His Minions Know The Bible, Weak Christians With No Biblical Foundation, Candidates For Deception, Importance Of Studying God's Word, My Neighbor's Rapid Spiritual Downfall, Eastern Lightning's Videos And Lies, KJV Bible: Inspired But Not A Perfect Work, My Research Of Eastern Lightning, "Break the Spell" Is Very Powerful Deception And Propaganda, The Purpose Of The Movie, Attempt To Seem Fair, Movie Splash Screen Is A Huge Warning

Until about a week ago, despite the fact that it is claimed that they have somewhere between one million and four million followers worldwide, I had never even heard of the so-called Eastern Lightning cult, which is also known as the Church of Almighty God. I imagine that this is due in large part to the fact that they are primarily a Chinese-based cult; although since their founding in 1991, they have spread into a number of other countries as well. So, considering that I myself am a citizen of the United States of America, and not Chinese, exactly why am I writing this current series? Once I have described some of their core beliefs, plus share an event which occurred in my personal life, I believe that the answer will become readily apparent to you.

So exactly who is the Eastern Lightning cult, also known as the Church of Almighty God? Let me begin by explaining the significance of the name Eastern Lightning. As it turns out, according to the cult, their name is based on the following verse which is found in the Gospel of Matthew:

"For as the lightning cometh out of the east, and shineth even unto the west; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be."
Matthew 24:27, KJV

This misguided cult is firmly convinced that the previous verse has already been fulfilled in a person who I will be describing to you shortly. Furthermore, they in fact refer to this person as Almighty God. Shocking? Yes, I know; but this is obviously not the first time that some person who is living in our modern age has made such an erroneous claim, or acquired hundreds or even millions of followers. Let us not forget such individuals such as Sun Myung Moon of the Moonies cult, for example. You can find a long list of such deceived people at the following URL:


In more recent times, there is an Australian named Alan John Miller who in 2007 started a cult in Queensland, Australia called Divine Truth. Miller claims to be the reincarnation of Jesus of Nazareth, while his partner, Mary Suzanne Luck, claims to be the reincarnation of Mary Magdalene. But what did Jesus have to say regarding such false announcements and false claims? Consider the following verses and be warned:

"For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect."
Matthew 24:24, KJV

"And Jesus answering them began to say, Take heed lest any man deceive you: For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many . . . And then if any man shall say to you, Lo, here is Christ; or, lo, he is there; believe him not: For false Christs and false prophets shall rise, and shall shew signs and wonders, to seduce, if it were possible, even the elect."
Mark 13:5-6, 21-22, KJV

"And he said, Take heed that ye be not deceived: for many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and the time draweth near: go ye not therefore after them."
Luke 21:8, KJV

The truth is that these false christs and false messiahs have come and gone for thousands of years; and the body of every single one of them now lies in the grave stone cold dead. So much for their claims of divine messiahship. But regarding Eastern Lightning, a.k.a. the Church of Almighty God, the Wikipedia website offers the following regarding their origin. For the sake of brevity, I've redacted a few points, such as the Chinese equivalents for names, etc. Please note that in the following paragraphs, "roneotyped texts" refers to a kind of mimeographed document:

----- Begin Quote -----

A woman, whose name is never mentioned in the group's literature, but is believed to be Yang Xiangbin, started spreading in 1991 among Chinese house churches, most of them part of The Shouters, roneotyped texts with revelations she said were coming from the Holy Spirit. Chinese authorities state that Yang had a history of mental problems.

Zhao Weishan, a former physics teacher, had a history of membership in a variety of Christian new religious movements. In 1986, Zhao was a member of a Christian house church, and in 1987 he was baptized into a branch of The Shouters which venerated their leader Witness Lee as "Lord Changshou". Zhao rose to a leadership position within the group . . ."

In 1991, Zhao met Yang Xiangbin and quickly became the main leader of her small group, where he was recognized as "the Man used by the Holy Spirit." According to one estimate, by 1991, the organization had more than a thousand members. In 1992, Yang's revelations propagated by Zhao announced that Yang herself was more than a prophetic voice; in fact, she was the second coming of Jesus Christ on earth and the incarnated Almighty God. Since then, Yang was referred to as "he" rather than "she," as she was in fact regarded as Jesus Christ. Chinese media started taking an interest in the sect, and referred to Yang (sometimes also mentioned as "Deng"), as "the female Christ."

----- End Quote -----

Regarding the aforementioned "The Shouters", due to their somewhat complex history, as well as the difficulty in properly identifying exactly who they were, rather than try to explain them to you in this current series, allow me to point you instead to the following Wikipedia page:


According to other online sources which I accessed while I was conducting research for this current series, at some point, Zhao Weishan and Yang Xiangbin were married. There is one Chinese website called Creaders.net which claims in the English language that they were secretly married in 1993 and did not immediately make it known to their church. As the previous Wikipedia paragraphs explain, Xiangbin became the spiritual force behind the new movement, while her husband, Weishan, basically served as her public relations man. The Creaders.net website offers more details regarding how Yang Xiangbin began to be called Almighty God. Exactly how true this information is, I obviously, and honestly, cannot say. I have again redacted the information in order to keep it short. I have also added a few words in brackets to make for easier reading:

----- Begin Quote -----

Zhao Weishan had hid away for five years in Dengfeng County of Henan since 1991. The first three years he lived with Jiaowai's family and [the] next two years with Zhou Shuangxi's. He selected six women and gave them new spiritual name[s] respectively: All-Almighty, All-Complete, All-Prepared, All Glory, All-Victorious, All-Knowing, All-Reverence and All-Worthy. The seven people gathered in Jiaowai's house every morning, praying and studying together. After that, they began to speak and then wrote words down, which were collected as the book The Utterance of the Seven Spirits.

Xiangbin was called "Almighty" among the six women. She was born on November 18, 1973, 22 years younger than Zhao Weishan . . . After failing the Chinese national college entrance exam, she was so stressful that [she] suffered from a mental breakdown. Zhao Weishan met her in an underground preaching meeting in Datong, Shanxi Province. He showed special care for her and she was attracted by him. Gradually they developed a secret intimate relationship with each other. Yang Xiangbin often declared that she was moved by the Holy Spirit and saw visions. She often gave utterance to her delusions, dreams or visions, and proclaimed as "God's Word" in the name of Christ. Therefore, Zhao Weishan disguised her as a female Christ, the Almighty God and the true God. He announced that people should stop believing in "Almighty Lord", but turn to "God Himself". This is the source of the Church of Almighty God (Eastern Lightning).

In the summer of 1993, Zhao Weishan held a coworker meeting in a female follower's house in Ruyang County of Luoyang, to testify the process of Yang Xiangbin changing to the "Almighty God". A previous follower called Ling Hui (an alias) recalls the scene:

"We sat on the benches in the room, listening to Zhao Weishan and the female God. They said that there were several 'God Himself' before, but now only one, the female God. Zhao Weishan explained that several 'God Himself' was just a step, "God has been incarnated in a female this time. That was Yang Xiangbin." He himself was the high priest. The first time God incarnated in a man, so the second time being a female. I was happy to hear their testimony, because it sounds reasonable."

She learned later that the "Almighty God" and the "high priest" turned out to be a couple. They got married in 1993 and had a child in 1995. Few people in the church knew it. She did not make it public, because it would blaspheme the God to comment on God's flesh. The Book of the Word Appears in the Flesh was later compiled from Zhao and Yang's words, as the classic doctrine of the cult.

----- End Quote -----

Now isn't that just totally crazy? A former Chinese physics teacher, who is said to be a Christian, meets this Chinese woman who claims to have visions, and who claims to receive messages by way of the Holy Spirit, and before you know it, and for reasons which are not clearly explained, determines that she is actually Jesus Christ returned in the flesh, and should now be called Almighty God. Thus, a new cult is born which now has millions of people trapped in their snare. And we are just supposed to accept their account as being true?

At any rate, according to the aforementioned website, due to persecution from the Chinese Communist Party -- Weishan was sentenced to three years of hard labor and re-education due to being accused of being involved with an evil cult -- Yang Xiangbin and Zhao Weishan escaped to the United States in the year 2,000, along with five other core members of their cult. The Creaders.net site claims that they used false identities and false job descriptions in order to get into the country. In 2001, Zhao Weishan petitioned for political asylum, based on religious persecution. Apparently it was granted to them, and their son followed them from China some time after that. Outside of the restraints of the Chinese Communist Party, their movement began to grow even more. According to another source, at last report, they were living in the borough of Queens on Long Island, which is a part of New York City.

Given the outrageous and blasphemous claims which have been made by Yang Xiangbin and her husband, I am sure you already understand why I chose to raise an alarm regarding this very dangerous cult. Please note that by saying "dangerous", I am not referring to physical danger, but rather to a spiritual danger, and the very powerful deception which has not only taken over this Chinese couple, but also their millions of followers.

Sadly, it is this very deception, and how it has affected one of my own neighbors and friends, which prompted me to write this current series. Being as I wish to protect his identity and privacy, I will be very vague in the following sentences. This man is a few years older than myself, and as far as I know, has been a lifelong Christian. I believe he was formerly a member of the Roman Catholic Church, but came out of that denomination, after becoming disillusioned with it. No surprise there.

At any rate, for quite some time now, he and I, as well as another sister in the Lord, have occasionally been having impromptu, informal Bible studies. We just get together and start talking about different things, and before long, one of my friends will ask me a Bible-related question. Well, that is all it takes. We will end up talking for an hour or longer, as I share different verses from the Bible with them, in order to answer their question. I am sure many of you know exactly what I am talking about. Once God opens that spiritual Word spigot, it is hard to turn off, because one verse after another fills your mind. But is that not what Jesus said the Holy Spirit would do? Consider this set of Bible verses:

"But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you."
John 14:26, KJV

"Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come."
John 16:13, KJV

"But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned."
1 Corinthians 2:14, KJV

"If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him."
James 1:5, KJV

"Open thou mine eyes, that I may behold wondrous things out of thy law."
Psalm 119:18, KJV

To continue, a few days ago, my female friend called me to inform me that our male companion had been watching certain Chinese videos on YouTube, and that as a result, he was no longer reading the Bible. Furthermore, he wanted her to view the same videos, in the hope that she too would stop reading the Bible as well. To say the least, I was shocked to hear this news from her. In fact, to be quite honest, I was quite incredulous, and I could not believe that this had actually occurred. I basically told her "Surely you must have simply misunderstood what he told you." However, she continued to insist that this was in fact what our friend had said.

As you can imagine, I was rather troubled by this news, and I wanted to speak with my male friend for myself. Well, two days later, the Lord gave me an opportunity to find out the truth regarding the matter when my male friend came up to my apartment because he needed some help with his cell phone. I, of course, took advantage of the situation to question him regarding what our female friend had told me. Expecting him to tell me that she had simply misunderstood him, I was dumbfounded when he proceeded to confirm exactly what she had told me.

At that point in time, I wasn't even sure what this cult was called, because I had only heard its name a few times. But as we were talking, my male friend then proceeded to show me a segment of one of their videos on YouTube. I later discovered that the Church of Almighty God -- a.k.a. Eastern Lightning -- has several thousand videos on YouTube. My friends, I only had to watch a few minutes of the video before realizing that what this cult teaches comes from the bowels of Hell!

In the closing scenes of this film -- which is an almost three-hour long movie called "Break the Spell: Welcome the Second Coming of Jesus Christ" -- there is a middle-aged Chinese woman named Sister Fu Jinhua who is speaking with a small gathering of people. The movie has an English audio track. It is what she says to her friends which shocks me. Keeping in mind that Almighty God is the name that they use for their founder, Yang Xiangbin -- they also refer to her as Incarnate God or God Incarnate -- consider what Sister Fu says to them:

----- Begin Quote -----

"Great thanks be to Almighty God. Today, Almighty God, Almighty God has saved us all. Almighty God's words let us understand what believing in God is. Almighty God's words let us know the truth and gain discernment so we no longer have blind faith in the Bible or religious pastors and elders. We have broken free from the control of the letters of the Bible and religious leaders. We have broken the spell that trapped our belief in the Lord for years."

----- End Quote -----

That is EXACTLY why this movie is called "Break the Spell." Eastern Lightning -- a.k.a. the Church of Almighty God -- is not just talking here about breaking free from organized religion; they are also talking about breaking free from the constraints of the Holy Bible, so that they can believe some things which are OUTSIDE of the Bible. I will be sharing more regarding this point later on in this series.

Upon hearing those words, I immediately told my friend that what Sister Fu was saying to her friends was an attack on the Word of God, and an outright devilish deception. I don't remember my exact words now, but I made it clear to my friend that they were wrong. I further explained to him that right now, the Chinese Communist Party is fully engaged in a war against the United States of America. This war is NOT just a physical war which involves military hardware. It is also a multi-faceted propaganda war, the goal of which is not only to utterly destroy the United States physically, but also economically, politically, socially and spiritually. The atheist Chinese Communist Party wants to confuse, divide and in fact destroy American Christianity.

The reason why China is engaged in this often unseen war, is because under its current leader, Xi Jinping, it's determined to become the sole superpower of the world, outmaneuvering Russia and the United States in every area. For the record, Xi Jinping simultaneously occupies three positions in China. He is the general secretary of the Chinese Communist Party, the chairman of the Central Military Commission, and also the president of the People's Republic of China. He has occupied these positions for a decade, which makes him the paramount leader of China. He is a very powerful man.

Currently, Xi Jinping even has Vladimir Putin in his pocket, thanks to the war in Ukraine. Concerning the United States, aside from all of the controversies surrounding Joe Biden, China is America's second largest creditor nation after Japan. In other words, in a financial sense, China has got the United States by the throat. If some day China were to call in the debt, America would be sunk. I talk about this issue in detail in the series called "When the Pipers Come Knocking".

Furthermore, not only is China currently engaged in a multi- faceted propaganda war against the United States, but it is using every means at its disposal to carry out this war. That includes the Internet, computer and cell phone apps, radio, television, music, movies, the publishing industry, etc. Let us also not forget spyware and other means of surveillance. In short, anything which Communist China can use to influence and shape American politics, and the worldview of everyday American citizens, is surely being used.

At any rate, I went on to explain to my male friend that not only does the Devil know the Word of God -- look at how he tempted Jesus by quoting verses from the Old Testament when the Lord was led into the wilderness for forty days -- but the enemies of God most certainly know the Bible as well. In fact, some of those deceivers know the Bible better than a lot of church-oriented Christians who don't take the time to seriously study God's Word for themselves.

As I explain in a number of my other articles, such weekend Christians prefer to be spoon-fed small bits of the truth by their priest, pastor or minister when they attend church once a week. They adopt the attitude "Well, he is the minister, so he must surely know what he is talking about." But what if he is wrong? In short, they place their faith in a man, and in whatever doctrines are traditionally taught at their church, instead of going directly to the Word of God themselves. As a result, very few of them possess a strong foundation in God's Word, because many modern churches just don't devote a lot of time to sharing God's Word. They are more interested in music and bake sales and other such worldly nonsense.

Either that, or the Bible may be preached from the pulpit, but it is so twisted and distorted so that it conforms to whatever that particular church wants to teach and preach, that it may no longer even be Scriptural truth. Either one of these situations in fact makes people perfect candidates for deception, because they have no way of differentiating between the Devil's lies and Biblical truth.

In fact, I have shared this very same important lesson with my two neighbors with whom I often fellowship, on multiple occasions. I constantly impress upon them the importance of studying the Bible, and understanding God's Word, so that they don't fall under deception. Sadly, in the case of the man, it appears that my warnings fell on deaf ears, because he is now totally deceived by the Eastern Lightning cult.

What makes this situation even more tragic, is the fact that a number of months ago, I spent a few hundred dollars and bought him a cell phone, so that he could visit my website, study my work, and hopefully learn more about God's Word. Even though he was fully aware of why I gave him the phone -- I invited him to visit my site multiple times -- rather than do that, he would repeatedly tell me "Well, I read the Bible." Then he went to YouTube instead and became deceived by this cult. Now he is not reading the Bible at all! Maybe he should have listened to me.

To continue, my friend told me that he had already watched about four of Eastern Lightning's deceptive YouTube videos; and from our conversation, I gathered that he had intentions to watch more of them. What also shocked me was the speed with which my friend had become deceived. You see, the last time we had spoken -- which was only a few weeks earlier -- he seemed to be strong in his faith in the Lord, and in his belief that the Bible is God's inspired Word. Now here he was a number of weeks later telling me that he had stopped reading the Bible altogether, because the Eastern Lightning videos had convinced him that the Bible is flawed and full of lies, deceptions, distortions and inaccuracies, some of which -- according to Eastern Lightning -- were committed by the Apostles themselves.

In fact, during our conversation in my apartment, my friend repeatedly accused the Apostle Paul of not obeying the Lord in some way, even though he could not show me in the Bible where this was supposedly found. I gave him several chances to show me the actual verses, but he just wasn't able to do it.

Now, if you have read my series entitled "Is the KJV Bible the Inerrant Word of God?", then you may know that while I believe that the KJV Bible is inspired, and while I've also used it as my Bible of preference for over fifty years now, even I recognize that it is not a perfect work. In fact, the KJV translators never once claimed that their translation was a perfect, error-free work.

While some diehard KJV defenders will obviously not like to hear this, the truth of the matter is that the King James Version of the Bible has in fact been manipulated by both religious and political forces for the past four hundred plus years. Yet, in spite of this fact, as I explain in the companion series called "In Defense of the KJV Bible", I still believe that the KJV is the best translation that we have today. It is certainly a lot better than the NIV, The Message, and a number of other perverted versions of the Bible.

What my male friend also repeatedly told me during our talk is that he truly feels in his heart that what the Eastern Lightning cult states in their videos is the truth. The only thing that I could offer in return was to tell him directly to his face that I strongly believe that he is deceived. Of course, he did not agree with my assessment, so to this day he remains very deceived. The reason why I could not offer him a stronger rebuttal at that point in time, is because I had not yet researched the cult, read any of their material, or watched any of their videos, other than those few minutes I mentioned earlier.

Furthermore, just as he had done with our female neighbor and sister in the Lord, my friend tried to convince me to also watch some of the Church of Almighty God videos, in the hope that I too would see the light and accept their wayward beliefs. In the end, I promised him that I would watch some of them, and then share my personal assessment of them with him. Thus, after he left my home, I spent the rest of that evening, and well into the early hours of the next morning, conducting personal research. In fact, I have continued to research the cult since our conversation that day.

What I have learned over the past several days is that in addition to their YouTube channel, the Eastern Lightning cult also has at least two websites, apps for both iPhones and Android phones, a study group on WhatsApp, and I am not sure what else. Thus far, I have read some material on one of their two websites, read their background information on the Wikipedia website, looked at additional information on a few other websites, and last of all, I have also watched a few video clips, as well as their full-length movie called "Break the Spell: Welcome the Second Coming of Jesus Christ". To refresh your memory, it was a short segment of this same movie which I watched when my friend was visiting my home. Everything I have shared with you thus far in this series was discovered after my conversation with him; so he is not yet aware of what I have learned regarding Eastern Lightning.

At this point in our discussion, I would like to offer you my personal review of the aforementioned movie. To say the least, from beginning to end, the film is a rather powerful deception. At two hours and forty-two minutes in length, it is a very long-winded propaganda piece. While the actors who play the part of the representatives of Eastern Lightning in the movie quote dozens of Bible verses -- most of which are related to the Return of Jesus Christ -- every single verse, without exception, is distorted and taken out of context.

As I said earlier, the Devil knows the Bible quite well, and so do many of his human minions. They can quote verse after verse, and appear to be speaking the truth. They can be very convincing. In fact, they will even mix in a certain amount of truth, as they do in this movie. However, in the end, the thin veneer of truth is simply a disguise to hide the lies and deceptions which lie underneath. This movie is proof of that.

Another deceptive tactic which the creators of this film use is to try to appear fair. However, even that is a ruse which they use so that they can then present their version of the truth. But, of course, that truth always leads back to their leader, Yang Xiangbin/Almighty God, who they claim is Jesus Christ returned in the flesh. In other words, they'll present certain beliefs which are commonly held by modern Christians, and then turn around and tear them down one by one, so that Eastern Lightning's interpretation of the Scriptures is the only right one.

It became obvious to me that the clear purpose of the movie is to deceive hungry sheep who are looking for the truth -- who may not yet have a strong foundation in God's Word -- as well as established Christians who are longing for Christ's Return, into believing that all of the verses they share in the movie, confirm and prove that Yang Xiangbin is in fact Jesus Christ secretly returned in the flesh for those who supposedly have eyes to see and ears to hear. In other words, the film is pure Eastern Lightning apologetics from beginning to end.

The craziest thing is that on the opening screen, even before one starts to watch the actual movie, there is a huge red flag which warns the viewer that the entire movie is one big deception. That red flag is found in these words:

Despite that bald-faced lie which claims that God appeared in the flesh in China in 1991, many thousands of people -- including some Christians, such as my friend and neighbor -- have watched the movie, and apparently been deceived by its message. My friends, it is mind-boggling to me that even some established Christians have fallen for this deception. To date, more than 55,000 people have watched the film on YouTube.

Please go to part two for the continuation of this series.

⇒ Go To The Next Part . . .

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