Is the Iglesia Ni Cristo a Cult?
Is the Iglesia Ni Cristo a cult? Have you ever heard people say that the Iglesia Ni Cristo is a false religion? What is the truth?
Is the Iglesia Ni Cristo a Cult?
INC International Edition
Topic: Is the Iglesia Ni Cristo a Cult’?
Johnny Martin, Quezon City, Philippines
Minister of the Gospel
Brother Johnny Martin: Is the Iglesia Ni Cristo a cult? You know, some people say that it is, but is it really? Find out for yourself right now, because that’s what we’ll be talking about today. I’m Johnny Martin, and you’re watching the Iglesia Ni Cristo International Edition.
Joining us this week are Brother Glenn David in Sydney, Australia. Brother Bernard Daos in San Francisco, California, and Brother Anthony Brandon in Toronto, Canada. Hi, brothers, and thank you for joining us in our discussion.
Ministers : Hello, Brother Johnny.
Brother Johnny: Now, brothers and dear viewers, at the outset of this program, we put forward the question, “Is the Iglesia Ni Cristo a cult?” But before we go any further, let’s watch this video clip of a pastor of a church who talks about the Iglesia Ni Cristo with his members. This is a part of what he said.
[On-screen text graphics]
TOPIC: IS THE IGLESIA NI CRISTO A CULT?
Speaker : We are not ignorant to the methodologies that Satan uses to try and get us off track, and the same thing happens in these cults. This isn’t new. Iglesia de Cristo is not a new revelation. Now, it didn’t start until 1914. It was started by a man named Felix Manalo. Now I thought about this for a minute. There’s a pastor, Felix, and he was Filipino, and you’ve never seen him and Felix Tan in the same place at the same time. I’m just teasing. This guy’s significantly older than Felix. Felix is my age.
Felix Manalo, 1914 in the Philippines. The phrase Iglesia Ni Cristo in Tagalog actually means Church Of Christ, not like the Church Of Christ denomination, much different. They are THE Church Of Christ according to them. The only church that, Christ said, is going to heaven. Even the building is going to heaven, which is pretty cool. Now, I don’t know if it’s good enough to be in heaven, because it’s made out of stuff from here, but whatever trips your trigger, right? The main portion of Iglesia Ni Cristo denies the trinity.
Brother Johnny: Alright, brothers. In that video clip, we can see that this pastor refers to the Iglesia Ni Cristo as a ‘cult’, and makes inaccurate or misleading statements about us. Brothers, what are your reactions, please?
Minister of the Gospel
Brother Anthony Brandon: I’d like to start out by correcting one of the statements that he made, that we teach that our buildings are going to go to heaven. Dear viewers, it is not the teaching of the Church Of Christ, that our worship buildings are going to go to heaven. What we should understand is the church is what Jesus Christ is going to be saving on the Day of Judgment. It is the people, not the building. So, we would appreciate it if at least he would teach or deliver our teachings to his listeners, the right way. I don’t know where he got that information, Brother Johnny, and hopefully he can clarify for us where he got that.
San Francisco, California
Minister of the Gospel
Brother Bernard Daos: Another thing that the pastor mentioned is that he stated that the main portion of the members of the Iglesia Ni Cristo, they deny the doctrine of the trinity, which is the belief that there is one God, in three persons, namely God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. But once again, we’d like to correct the statement being made, because if anyone would be listening to this pastor, they would come to the understanding that there are some of the members of the Iglesia Ni Cristo that uphold the doctrine of the trinity. However, we would like to clearly state that is simply not true, because all of the members of the Iglesia Ni Cristo, all throughout the world, we are united in believing what the Bible says about the one true God, the Father, and we do not uphold, in fact we reject, the doctrine of the trinity.
Minister of the Gospel
Brother Glenn David: In hindsight, Brother Johnny, we are very glad that this pastor has taken an interest in the Iglesia Ni Cristo. This pastor happens to be based in Hawaii, where we have several local congregations, so we would like to extend an invitation to him and his members of his church, his congregation, to come to attend our worship services, our evangelical missions, our Bible studies, so that all the more they can receive an accurate knowledge and understanding of our beliefs and practices inside the Church Of Christ, which are solely based on the Holy Bible.
Brother Johnny: Now, Brother Anthony, let me go with you with this question please. You know, what about others calling the Iglesia Ni Cristo as a ‘cult’? Does it shock us? Are we surprised that others have labeled the Iglesia Ni Cristo as a ‘cult’?
Brother Anthony: No, brother Johnny, we’re not surprised. In fact, this person is not the first one to call the Iglesia Ni Cristo a ‘cult’. In fact, if we were to quote from a book entitled, The New International Dictionary of the Christian Church, the general editor of this book is J.D. Douglas, and on page 776 of that book, we can read this:
The Philippines has produced its own cult’s, most significantly the Iglesia ni Kristo, or Church Of Christ, founded in 1914 by Felix Manalo and claiming a membership of several million.
[Source: The New International Dictionary of the Christian Church, J.D. Douglas, Page 776]
Brother Anthony: Now, long before that particular pastor called the Iglesia Ni Cristo a ‘cult’, there have been others that have said the same thing. What we should notice in the book that we just quoted from, they’re giving information about the Iglesia Ni Cristo. They are saying that the membership of the Iglesia Ni Cristo is several million people.
Brother Glenn: The book also says that Brother Felix Manalo is the founder of the Iglesia Ni Cristo, which is absolutely not true. The book is wrong to say that, because we do not believe, and we do not teach, that Brother Felix Manalo is the founder of the Iglesia Ni Cristo. This is not our doctrine. What we believe, and what we teach, is that it is our Lord Jesus Christ who is the founder of the Church, based on Matthew 16:18 and John 10:16. Our doctrine is that Brother Felix Manalo is the instrument that the Lord God used, or the Messenger of God, for the Iglesia Ni Cristo to be reemerged in the Philippines, in 1914.
Brother Bernard: And it’s important to note, Brothers, that when others call the Iglesia Ni Cristo a ‘cult’, it might not sit well with them, and that’s because of how we have come to understand the word cult today. In fact, the word cult has a negative connotation.[07:15]
Brother Johnny: Well, Brother Bernard, what does the word cult mean? How does the dictionary define the word cult, and did the word cult originally have a negative meaning?
Brother Bernard: Well, for that answer let’s turn to the Webster’s New Collegiate Dictionary, and this is what we can read on page 274:
cult n. [French and Latin: F culte, for L cultus, care, adoration…
1: formal religious veneration: WORSHIP
2: a system of religious beliefs and ritual; also: its body of adherents
3: a religion regarded as unorthodox or spurious; also: its body of adherents
[Source: Webster’s New Collegiate Dictionary page 274]
Brother Bernard: How did the dictionary define the word cult? Originally, ‘cult’ comes from the Latin word ‘cultus’, which means care or adoration. However, through the passage of time, the term or word ‘cult’ incurred other meanings. Today, it is more commonly used to refer to a religion that is regarded as unorthodox or spurious or false. It is, in this sense, that the critics use the word ‘cult’ in referring to the Iglesia Ni Cristo. So, by referring to the Iglesia Ni Cristo as a ‘cult’, they are implying that the religion we are in is a false religion.
Brother Johnny: So, Brother Glenn, who gave the word ‘cult’ its negative connotation?
Brother Glenn: Well, Brother Johnny, if we were to read from a book entitled Strange Gods, Contemporary Religious Cults in America, the author, which is William J. Whalen, this is what we could read from page 3. It says this:
Some evangelicals seem to extend the term ‘’cult’’ to any group that differs from their understanding of Christianity.
[Source: Strange Gods, Contemporary Religious Cults in America, William J. Whalen, Page 3]
Brother Glenn: So, who originated the use of the term cult in referring to what they regard as spurious or false religions? Well, the Protestants, because a long time ago, they were the ones branded as cults by the Catholic Church, but now the so-called evangelicals or Protestants, are the ones using the word ‘cult’ to refer to other groups that hold beliefs different from their own. And what should we notice in the way they use the word ‘cult’ with its negative connotation? Well, the word ‘cult’ is applied on the basis of their own opinion, as to which religion is spurious or not.
Brother Johnny: Now, dear friends, we saw how others, like the preacher in the video, refer to the Iglesia Ni Cristo as a ‘cult’.
Brother Johnny: What is the main reason that this preacher, and even others, view the Iglesia Ni Cristo as a ‘cult’ or a false religion? That’s the question we’ll answer when we come back from the break. You’re watching the Iglesia Ni Cristo International Edition. Stay with us.
[On-screen graphic INC International Edition]
Brother Johnny: Welcome back, everyone, to the Iglesia Ni Cristo International Edition. Today, we’re tackling the question: Is the Iglesia Ni Cristo a ‘cult’? Is it a false religion?[10:25]
Brother Johnny: The question that was asked before the break was this one: What is the main reason that others view the Iglesia Ni Cristo as a ‘cult’ or a false religion? Well, let’s go back to hear what the preacher in Hawaii said.
Speaker: You cannot be a Christian and believe that Jesus is not fully God and fully man. You can’t be a Christian, and the reason why we say that is because, if Jesus was not God, He has no authority to take away our sin. If Jesus was not man, He could not be the sacrifice for our sins. He has to be both. The doctrine of the trinity is incredibly difficult to try and explain to people, and I understand that, but the fact that Jesus, the Holy Spirit and the Father are all one God, in three separate persons, but still one, is something that we cannot negotiate on for Christianity.
Now, if that very point is the one that we need to talk to the minister of our Iglesia Ni Cristo friends, then use that point. Everybody in the New Testament times knew that Jesus was equating himself with being God. There is no reason to deny the deity of Christ, but these cults, and the only reason that I would call them a cult is because they deny the deity of Christ.
Brother Johnny: Okay, brothers, I am sure that you have reactions, after hearing all the things that the pastor said in that video clip. Brother Glenn, beginning with you, what can you say in response to all that he said?
Brother Glenn: Well, there are three things that I would like to point out, Brother Johnny. First, it’s his position that true Christians believe that Jesus is fully God and fully man or having a dual nature. Secondly, he claims that anyone who does not subscribe to this belief, that Jesus is both God and man, is not and cannot be a Christian, and third, according to him true Christianity upholds the belief in the Triune God. What I can say for now is that all these things that this ‘so-called’ pastor said are not true, and later on in this program we will prove that later.
Brother Bernard: And, Brother Glenn, three more points that caught my attention was the pastor’s bold claim that everybody in the New Testament times knew that the Lord Jesus Christ was equating himself with God, or claiming to be God, and then he goes on to point out that there’s no sound reason to deny or reject the deity of our Lord Jesus Christ, and then he concludes, furthermore, by saying that the Iglesia Ni Cristo a false religion, because we do not believe that Jesus Christ is God. All of these statements are false statements, and this we will show in our discussion.
Brother Johnny: Okay, let’s tackle these points. You know, earlier, the pastor said that Christians believe that Jesus is both fully God and fully man, having dual nature, and that anyone who does not believe that is not and cannot be a Christian.[13:44]
Brother Johnny: Well, Brother Anthony, can we read in the Bible, that Jesus is both fully God and fully man? What did the Christians in New Testament times believe about our Lord Jesus Christ?
Brother Anthony: If we’re going to answer that question, Brother Johnny, I believe the best one to answer first would be our Lord Jesus Christ Himself. So, if we take His own statement, what did our Lord Jesus Christ say about Himself? What we’re going to read is here in the book of John in chapter eight. We’re going to read verse 39 and verse 40. In John 8:39 and 40, the Holy Scriptures say this to us:
…Jesus said, “If you were really Abraham’s children, you would do the things Abraham did. I am a man who has told you the truth which I heard from God, but you are trying to kill me. Abraham did nothing like that.
[John 8:39 New Century Version]
Brother Anthony: If we’re going to ask our Lord Jesus Christ about His nature or state of being, does He Himself teach that He is both God and man? According to His statement, He very clearly and precisely says, I am a man, and that is the teaching that we uphold as members of the Church Of Christ or the Iglesia Ni Cristo.
Now, others might say, “Well, wait a minute. Maybe that’s not a complete teaching.” Our Lord Jesus Christ was not lying and He was not telling a half truth. Can we read in this particular verse, or in any verse of the Bible, where Jesus Christ said, I am a man, and I am God, or I am true man or true God and true God at the same time? There’s no such a thing in the Bible, and I’m sure that if that pastor is reading his Bible, he would know that himself.
Brother Glenn: Also, Brother Anthony, if I could also add, our Lord Jesus Christ also showed that He is truly different from the true God, when He said, “I am a man who has told you the truth which I heard from God.” So, Christ who heard the truth is different from the God from whom the truth was heard.
Brother Johnny: Now Brother Bernard, what about the followers of our Lord Jesus Christ, His followers whom He chose during the time when He was here on earth, like the apostles.[16:11]
Brother Johnny: Did the apostles believe and teach that our Lord Jesus Christ was both God and man? Did they teach that Christ had dual nature?
Brother Bernard: Well, Brother Johnny, to find out what the apostles taught and what they believed, let’s consult the apostles, as recorded in the Holy Scriptures, in the book of Acts chapter 2, we will read verse 14, and also verse 22. This is what is recorded:
But Peter, standing up with the eleven, raised his voice and said to them, “Men of Judea and all who dwell in Jerusalem, let this be known to you, and heed my words. “Men of Israel, hear these words: Jesus of Nazareth, a Man attested by God to you by miracles, wonders and signs which God did through Him in your midst, as you yourselves also know –
[Acts 2:14 New King James Version]
Brother Bernard: We can clearly see that the one speaking in this verse is the Apostle Peter, and what did Apostle Peter preach? He preached on the day of the Pentecost. He said, men of Israel, men of Jerusalem, hear these words: Jesus of Nazareth, a man. So, clearly to Apostle Peter, he did not declare that Jesus was God and man, or that He had a dual nature.
Brother Anthony: And just to go a little bit further with that same line of thinking, if we’re looking at what Apostle Peter said, he made a comparison between Christ and God. He mentions there that God attested to Jesus Christ. So, Jesus Christ is not the one doing the attesting. It was God who did the attesting concerning Jesus Christ. That clearly shows that they are two different beings. Now, if we follow the logic of the pastor, where he’s trying to say, again, that Christians believe that Jesus Christ has dual nature, both God and man at the same time, then what about Apostle Peter? Is Apostle Peter a true Christian or not, because his teaching is Jesus Christ is a man, and what about others who listened to Apostle Peter and agreed with his teaching? Are they not Christians, because this pastor says that Jesus Christ must have two natures?
Brother Glenn: Therefore, Brother Anthony, like we were saying, if not believing the doctrine that Christ has dual nature, that He’s both fully God and fully man, disqualifies one from being a true Christian, then that would result in the wrong conclusion that the apostles themselves are not Christians. The apostles were, obviously. They were true Christians, and they did not believe that Christ is both, true God and true man. They preached that our Lord Jesus Christ is a man in nature. He had flesh and bones.
Brother Johnny: Brother Glenn, if I can stay with you please, you know, some might be wondering, what about Apostle Paul? When Peter was there with the other apostles and preached on the day of Pentecost, that our Lord Jesus Christ is a man, Apostle Paul had not yet been called into the Church Of Christ. After Apostle Paul had been called and commissioned by the Lord, what did Paul teach about our Lord Jesus Christ? Did the Apostle Paul believe and teach that Christ was both God and man?[19:33]
Brother Johnny: What did the Apostle Paul say was the true nature of our Lord Jesus Christ?
Brother Glenn: We could read the answer here, Brother Johnny, in I Timothy, chapter 2, verse 5:
For there is one God and one Mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus,
[I Timothy 2:5 New King James Version]
Brother Glenn: So, the Apostle Paul was the one speaking here. He’s teaching about our Lord Jesus Christ, and he writes that our Lord Jesus Christ is a man. So, notice, dear viewers, Apostle Paul said the man Christ Jesus. He did not say the God man Christ Jesus, nor did he say Christ Jesus, who is both God and man.
Brother Anthony: And again, dear brothers and dear viewers, we should notice here, that Apostle Paul makes a distinction between God and our Lord Jesus Christ. How does he show a difference between the true God and our Lord Jesus Christ? He mentions, there, that there is one God, and there is one mediator, the man Jesus Christ or Christ Jesus. What we should understand in that distinction is there is God, and a mediator. The mediator is not God, and God is not the mediator. The mediator is our Lord Jesus Christ. So, categorically, Jesus Christ is not God according to the teaching of Apostle Paul. Again, we’d have to ask the question, if Apostle Paul is not teaching that Jesus Christ has dual natures, then is Apostle Paul a true Christian? Of course, we understand that he was converted to Christianity, a true Christian, a preacher of the truth, and we would follow the teachings that he and the other apostles have set forth.
Brother Bernard: Well, brothers, if we can also go back to what the pastor said earlier, when he made a bold claim that everyone in the New Testament times, clearly knew that Jesus was equating Himself with God, or even claiming to be God. We know that this is a false statement. Why are we so sure? Because over and over again, we can read from the Bible that the early Christians believed our Lord Jesus Christ was a man in His nature. This was proven by Apostle Peter earlier, this was proven by Apostle Paul’s statement earlier, and of course those two statements would declare that Jesus Christ is a man in nature, because this is in fact what our Lord Jesus Christ Himself taught, that He is a man in nature and not true God and true man at the same time.
Brother Glenn: Therefore, the true Christians, or the true servants of God, they believe in the teaching of the Bible that our Lord Jesus Christ is a man as far as His true nature or state of being is concerned. The Bible does not teach the so-called deity of Christ, and that is all the reason that we should reject it. The members of the true Church Of Christ, we refuse to accept the false doctrine of Christ’s alleged deity, as well as the false doctrine of the so-called trinity.
Brother Johnny: So, it would be safe to say, dear viewers, before listening to this particular pastor who’s claiming that Jesus has a dual nature, that He’s God and man, it would be better for people to listen to the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ. It would be better to listen to the Lord Jesus Christ, and the apostles and our Lord Jesus Christ are united in saying the Lord Jesus Christ is a man in nature. He is a man in a state of being. He is not the true God.
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Brother Johnny: Now, since other people don’t know the truth about Christ and His true nature, well, it only shows that they don’t truly know the true Christ. What is revealed about people who do not know the true Christ? We’re going to talk about that next, after the break. The Iglesia Ni Cristo International Edition will be right back. Don’t go away.
[On-screen text graphics]
INC International Edition
Brother Johnny: Welcome back, everyone, to the Iglesia Ni Cristo International Edition. We have been addressing the question, is the Iglesia Ni Cristo a ‘cult’, since it does not believe that Christ is God? Well, we’ve already presented the biblical proof that the Iglesia Ni Cristo is not a ‘cult’ or a false religion, just because it does not believe that Christ is God. In fact, the Bible has shown us that the true Church Of Christ believes that Christ is a man, and not God. The ones who believe that Christ is God, well, they do not know the true Christ. So, that leads us to this question.[24:22]
Brother Johnny: Brother Anthony, if we can go with you first with this question, what is revealed about people who do not know the true Christ?
Brother Anthony: We should let our Savior, our Lord Jesus Christ, be the one to answer that, Brother Johnny. Dear viewers, we’re going to read what is recorded here in the book of John, in chapter 10, in verse 14. We’ll also read verse 27 and 28. Our Lord Jesus Christ says this:
I am the good shepherd; and I know My sheep, and am known by My own.
[John 10:14 New King James Version]
My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me.
[John 10:27 New King James Version]
And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand.
[John 10:28 New King James Version]
Brother Anthony: Brother Johnny and dear viewers, when there are those that are insisting that Jesus Christ has dual nature, meaning to say that He’s both God and man at the same time, it simply proves to us that they are not sheep of our Lord Jesus Christ. How do we know this? In the verses that we just read, our Lord Jesus Christ mentions there that He is known by His sheep. How will we know if we know Him? Okay, Jesus Christ Himself also mentions they listen to His voice. Our Lord Jesus Christ has already explained to us, in a verse that we referred to earlier, in John 8:40, that He is a man.
So, if someone says otherwise, they are not listening to the voice of our Lord Jesus Christ. What is the result? They should not be considered as one of our Lord Jesus Christ’s sheep. Now, if they’re not sheep, what danger have they fallen into? The danger that they will not receive eternal life, because eternal life is reserved for those whom Jesus Christ, Himself, recognizes as His sheep. The teaching that Jesus Christ has dual nature is very dangerous, and one that we should avoid falling into the trap of following and believing.
Brother Bernard: Therefore, brothers, if it’s the sheep of our Lord Jesus Christ, they are the ones who truly know the Lord Jesus Christ, because they follow what the Lord Jesus Christ is teaching, especially when He taught that He was a man in His nature of being. We need to go back to what the pastor said earlier about those who uphold the doctrine that Jesus Christ is truly God and truly man, or that Jesus Christ has dual nature, because those are the ones who do not know our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, those who uphold the doctrine of the dual nature of Christ, they are not the true Christians. They are not the sheep of our Lord Jesus Christ, and as we read earlier, if they’re not sheep of our Lord Jesus Christ, they are not entitled to salvation when our Lord returns.
Brother Glenn: On the other hand, for the members of the Iglesia Ni Cristo, we uphold the clear teaching of the Bible that our Lord Jesus Christ is man in nature. We are not a ‘cult’. We are not a false religion. We are the true followers of the teachings of our Lord Jesus Christ, and have been promised salvation. Christ said that He is a man and that is what the members of the Iglesia Ni Cristo, or Church Of Christ, believe about Him.
Brother Johnny: And that’s a very important point you’ve just made, Brother Glenn. Now, Brother Bernard, let me go to you with this question: Since the Bible does not contain the teaching that Christ is true God and true man, well, where does it come from?[27:56]
Brother Johnny: Who defined that it was an article of faith that Jesus is truly God, and when and where did that happen?
Brother Bernard: Brother Johnny, for that answer, I’d like to quote from a book entitled The Discourses on the Apostles’ Creed, and this book was written by a Catholic, Reverend Clement H. Crock, and it also has a nihil obstat by Arthur J. Scanlan, and an imprimatur by Patrick Cardinal Hayes, and this is what we can read as recorded on page 206 of this book:
Thus, for example, it was not until 325 A.D., at the Council of Nicaea, that the Church defined for us that it was an article of faith that Jesus is truly God.
[Source: Discourses on the Apostles’ Creed, Clement H Crock, nihil obstat by Arthur Scanlan, imprimatur by Patrick Cardinal Hayes, p. 206]
Brother Bernard: As we have read, based on this book written by a Catholic priest, it is the Catholic Church that is the one that defined an article of faith that Jesus Christ is truly God. When and where did they declare that Jesus Christ is God? According to what we have read, at the Council of Nicaea in 325 A.D.. Now, we must understand that this council, where they declared that Jesus Christ is truly God, happened hundreds of years after the death of the apostles, hundreds of years after the Bible was completed, and this is the very reason why the Bible does not contain the doctrine that Christ is true God and true man.
Brother Anthony: And since this teaching is not a biblical doctrine, what we should understand is it’s a false teaching. Protestants, and even those in other groups who uphold this teaching that Jesus Christ is both God and man, and even the doctrine of the trinity, should understand where this teaching really came from. It was a doctrine that was defined by the Catholic Church.
Brother Johnny: Now, Brother Glenn, why else are we sure that the teaching that Christ is God is erroneous or false?
Brother Glenn: Well, let’s read a book entitled Jesus, God and Man. A priest named Raymond E. Brown wrote this Catholic book. It has a nihil obstat by John A. Schuilen, and an imprimatur by William E. Cousins, and this is stated on page 30:
Jesus is never called God in the Synoptic Gospels, and a passage like Mark 10:18 would seem to preclude the possibility that Jesus used the title of himself. Even the fourth gospel never portrays Jesus as saying specifically that he is God. The sermons which Acts attributes to the beginning of the Christian mission do not speak of Jesus as God. Thus, there is no reason to think that Jesus was called God in the earliest layers of New Testament tradition. This negative conclusion is substantiated by the fact that Paul does not use that title in any epistle written before 58.
[Source: Jesus, God and Man, Raymond E. Brown nihil obstat by John A. Schuilen, and an imprimatur by William E. Cousins, Page 30]
Brother Glenn: The Catholic priest says that Jesus never called God in the Synoptic Gospels, Matthew, Mark, and Luke, and even in the fourth gospel, John. It never portrays Jesus as saying that He’s God, and so what does it prove? The teaching that Christ is God is not in the Gospel. According to the author as well, even the sermons written in the book of Acts do not speak of Jesus as God. Therefore, what does it conclude? There is no reason to think that Jesus was called God in the earliest days of the New Testament.
Brother Bernard: So, if only Catholic and other religious authorities, and other preachers, would use the Bible as their sole basis, they can also clearly see the truth that the Lord Jesus Christ is not the true God.
Brother Johnny: Now, Brother Anthony, others might say that they don’t disagree with the teaching that Christ is a man, but then again they would say, like the pastor in the video we watched earlier, Christ is both God and man.
Brother Johnny: Well, could it be that our Lord Jesus Christ is truly God and truly man?
Brother Anthony: Well, let’s ask our God Himself. I mean, would He allow that a man would also be considered God in state of being? To get our answer, Brother Johnny and dear viewers, we’re going to look at what is recorded here in the Holy Scriptures. In the book of Ezekiel, in chapter 28 in verse two, says:
Son of man, say to the leader of Tyre, ‘Thus says the Lord God, Because your heart is lifted up And you have said, I am a god, I sit in the seat of gods in the heart of the seas,; Yet you are a man] and not God, Although you make your heart like the heart of God –
[Ezekiel 28:2 New American Standard Bible]
Brother Anthony: What does the Bible teach us concerning one who is a man, a human being? God Himself says, “You’re a man, not God.” Now, some might try to argue with our use of this verse and say, “Well, wait a minute. God, there, is speaking in particular to the prince of Tyre”, but is the point of this verse that He’s speaking to the prince of Tyre?”
No. When God makes it clear to him, “You are not God.”, what was God’s point of reference in that? He says, “You are a man, and not God”. Our Lord Jesus Christ taught, Himself, that He is a man. He taught us that He’s a man. So, categorically, He says, “You are a man. You are not God.”, and that is what we uphold as members of the Church Of Christ, the biblical teaching that a man is not God.
Brother Glenn: Adding to that, Brother Anthony, in John 8:40, when our Lord Jesus Christ declared that He is a man, well, what’s the equivalent of that? Well, He is saying that He is not God, because according to God Himself, man is not God.[34:06]
Brother Johnny: However, Brother Bernard, what about this? Does the true God agree or allow that He is truly God, as well as truly man?
Brother Bernard: Well, for the answer, again, let’s ask God, as recorded here in the book of Hosea, chapter 11, verse nine. This is the Holy Scriptures:
I will not execute the fierceness of My anger; I will not again destroy Ephraim. For I am God, and not man, The Holy One in your midst; And I will not come with terror.
[Hosea 11:9 New King James Version]
Brother Bernard: The pronouncement of the one true God is crystal clear. He said, “I am God, and not man.” So, just as we read earlier, when God declared that man is not God, God is now also making it clear that God is not man. Thus, we have proven clearly from the Holy Scriptures, that the teaching of other religions, that the Lord Jesus Christ is truly man and truly God, is clearly against the teaching of the Bible. It is not a biblical teaching.
Brother Glenn: On the other hand, what the Bible shows is that our Lord Jesus Christ is a man as far as His nature or state of being is concerned. The Bible does not say that the Lord Jesus Christ is the true God, or that He’s truly God and truly man. The Iglesia Ni Cristo/Church Of Christ accepts and upholds the teaching of the Holy Scriptures that the Lord Jesus Christ is a man in state of being. He is a human being.
Brother Johnny: Now, does the pastor who calls the Iglesia Ni Cristo a ‘cult’, cite any Bible verses to try and prove that Christ is God? Well, that’s what we will find out in the next episode of the Iglesia Ni Cristo International Edition.
But for now, we’d like to thank Brother Glenn David in Sydney, Australia, Brother Bernard Daos in San Francisco, California, and Brother Anthony Brandon in Toronto, Canada, for giving us Bible based answers, so that as the Apostle Peter said to the members of the Church, you will be ready to speak up and tell anyone who asks why you’re living the way you are, which we could read in First Peter three, fifteen.
Well, that does it for us here on the Iglesia Ni Cristo International Edition. We hope you’ll join us again next time. I’m Johnny Martin and thank you so much for watching, and as we come to the end of the program, we invite you to join us for a short prayer.
Our loving, merciful Father in heaven. We are so thankful unto You, Dear God, for being with us throughout the duration of this program. We have received Your message, Your truths, Your Holy Spirit, and may this message continue to be relayed to the people of this world, especially those who have not yet known Your truth inside the true Church, the Iglesia Ni Cristo, that they too may have the opportunity to receive Your Gospel, to be baptized inside the true Church Of Christ, to receive the promised salvation.
In as much as You were merciful in calling us, dear Father, call our loved ones, our friends. Call our viewers inside Your holy Church, so that dear Father they will be with us in glorifying Your most holy name. Our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, please also mediate our prayers to our Father. Continue to give unto us Your benediction and saving grace, so that all the more we may be brought closer to our Father, especially the promised salvation You are reserving for Your true disciples. Father, we fully believe You’ve heard our prayer. Above us all, You have blessed the Church Administration.
We pray for all these things, Dear God, only through the name of Your son, our loving Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen.
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