"The Christianity of history is not Protestantism. If ever there were a safe truth it is this, and Protestantism has ever felt it so; to be deep in history is to cease to be a Protestant." (-John Henry Newman, An Essay on the Development of Christian Doctrine).

"Where the bishop is, there let the people gather; just as where ever Jesus Christ is, there is the Catholic Church". -St. Ignatius of Antioch (ca 110 AD)a martyr later thrown to the lions, wrote to a church in Asia Minor. Antioch was also where the term "Christian" was first used.

“But if I should be delayed, you should know how to behave in the household of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and foundation of truth.” 1 Timothy 3:15

"This is the sole Church of Christ, which in the Creed we profess to be one, holy, catholic and apostolic." -CCC 811

Friday, April 15, 2011

INC member posted his Opinionated Q-A Catechism with Authority

INC chapel along Quirino Highway
Here is the deal. You can't preach truth by deception. I'd like to think that the owner of http://readmeinc.blogspot.com is a HIDING Iglesia ni Cristo minister. See for yourself how he defended his religion in an Question-Answer style (like the Catholic catechism) without citing any official pronouncements from the Iglesia ni Cristo Administration in Central.

The reason why I am saying this is because, in the Catholic Church of Christ, one cannot simply express his/her personal opinion without citing the official position of the Church so as not to fall into a serious error. Preaching about Christ is not about "WHAT I THINK" but it the proper attitude should be "WHAT THE CHURCH THINKS". The Church is NOT about me but it's about ME in the Church.

I would like to think that READMEinc's answers are "authoritative" and therefore they are considered "official" position of the Iglesia ni Cristo. Unless being sanctioned for heresy. Here are some:

Q: Is INC or Church of Christ is not a Christian religion?
READMEinc: First of all, what is the meaning of being a Christian in the dictionary? It is says that, “of, pertaining to, or derived from Jesus Christ or His teachings: a Christian faith.” So, therefore, a true Christian is a follower of Christ’s commandments. He is one who faithfully upholds the teachings of the Lord (Jn. 8:31). One of these teachings concerns the true nature of the lord jesus Christ himself—that he is a man (Jn. 8:40). The fact that he is a man negates any assertion that he is god. Moreover, Christ declared that the only true god is the father, who is a spirit—having no flesh and no bones or without material form as Christ had (Jn. 17:1,3; Lk. 24:39; Jn. 4:24)
Christ, being a man, cannot be God and God, being god, cannot be man (Ezek. 28:2; Hos. 11:9). Even the apostles taught that Christ is man and is a diff. being from god himself (I tim. 2:5). Apostle Paul declared that “there is only one god, the father” who is definitely is not Christ, the son. (I cor. 8:6). Those who upholds beliefs contrary to these are themselves far from being true Christians.
CD2000: It was in Antioch that the "disciples of Christ" were called "Christians" for the FIRST TIME (Acts 11:26).  And throughout the "HISTORY" of these Christians, they are also called the CHURCH or the Christian Church. There was only ONE Church that time.

What do Christians in the First Century believed? Here's the deal.  They believe that Jesus Christ is GOD and yet he is truly MAN.  That's the MAIN reason why he was CONDEMNED to death by the Jewish leaders for "making himself equal with God" (Jn 5:18 --see also Phil. 2).

That was the Jewish Leaders' ACCUSATIONS against Jesus. Being UPRIGHT "Man" why did Jesus refused to correct them if they were DEEPLY in ERROR about WHO Jesus was?  Jesus was a devout Jew, he must know very well the SHEMA.  If not, then Jesus was a "false prophet". He must be an anti-Jewish rebel against Judaism and the prophets of old.

The Gospel according to John has every detail of Jesus having the qualities of God, his pre-existence, and his ONENESS with God the Father! Those who denied having read these assertions by John the Evangelist under the broad daylight were blinded by their bigotry and hatred of the Catholic Church of Christ.

So do you think those who deny the very CENTRAL TEACHINGS of the Christian Faith known to the Antiochians should be called "Christians"  No! I don't think the Iglesia ni Cristo of Felix Manalo cannot and would never be called "Christians" for denying the very Jesus Christ proclaimed by the Holy Scripture as both God and Man (not either). See my earlier post "Catholics are Christians"

Q: Why do INC members having and attending worship services twice a week?
READMEinc: Members of the church of Christ believe that worshiping God is every person’s duty to his creator (Eccl. 12:13; Ps. 95:6). This is why they are diligently attending worship services. During such gatherings, they receive spiritual guidance and nourishment. They are edified and made strong in the faith (I cor. 14:26). The early Christians worshiped on the first of the week (Sunday). But there were times when they worshiped everyday (Acts 2:6)—as the church deemed it necessary. In our case, we hold worship services twice a week as the church has decided through the authority of the church administration (Mt. 18:19) and in obedience to God’s admonition (Jn. 4:23; Heb. 10:25). It is during such services when we receive religious instruction to guide us in life.
CD2000: Members of the historical and Catholic Church of Christ diligently follow Christ's commandments to REMEMBER him often by the "Breaking of the Bread" (Luke 22:19; 1 Corinthians 11:24), not only during the First Day of the Week but all throughout the week early Christians celebrate the "Breaking of the Bread" DAILY (as you used Acts 2:46).

We wanted to remember the Lord everyday not in empty praises but through the Breaking of the Bread. Daily celebration of the Holy Mass is celebrated in every parish (see Acts 2:46). Aside from the daily Masses, Catholic Charismatic Groups have also their weekly Bible Studies and Praise Fests and Worships. Catholics have many ways where they can express their "worship" of God (could be in Charismatic groups or Nevanas etc) but the climax of all our worship is in the Holy Mass (Breaking of the Bread).

Q: Why then INC do not have statues of saints, Virgin Mary and Jesus Christ in their chapels?
READMEinc: INC neither keep such images nor worship them because such practices are prohibited by god. He declared: “Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven images or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth: Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them…”. (Exo. 20: 4-5). Furthermore, the bible says, “…those who worship idols and all liars—the place for them is the lake burning with fire and sulfur, which is the second death.” (Rev. 21:8)
CD2000: The Catholic Church had been the first to condemn "idolaters" from the time of the Church Fathers. In fact, it was condemned in the Second Council of Nicaea in the year 787 A.D. The Catholic Church Catechism clearly outlined those prohibitions from Catholic Tradition and from the Holy Scripture. The same Catechism condemns such practices.
CCC 2114 "Idolatry is a perversion of man’s innate religious sense. An idolater is someone who ‘transfers his indestructible notion of God to anything other than God’"
But did God ABSOLUTELY forbid Jews from making "any graven images or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth" (Ex. 20:4-5)?

Actually, the same GOD said to make them.
Exodus 25:18-20 - "And you shall make two cherubim of gold [i.e., two gold statues of angels]; of hammered work shall you make them, on the two ends of the mercy seat. Make one cherub on the one end, and one cherub on the other end; of one piece of the mercy seat shall you make the cherubim on its two ends. The cherubim shall spread out their wings above, overshadowing the mercy seat with their wings, their faces one to another; toward the mercy seat shall the faces of the cherubim be".
In one passage from 1 Chronicles 28:18-19, David gave Solomon the plan:
"for the altar of incense made of refined gold, and its weight; also his plan for the golden chariot of the cherubim that spread their wings and covered the ark of the covenant of the Lord. All this he made clear by the writing of the hand of the Lord concerning it all, all the work to be done according to the plan"
David’s plan for the temple, which the biblical author tells us was "by the writing of the hand of the Lord concerning it all," included statues of angels.
Ezekiel 41:17–18 describes graven (carved) images in the idealized temple he was shown in a vision, for he writes, "On the walls round about in the inner room and [on] the nave were carved likenesses of cherubim."
Read more Here, and Here!

Q: Why do INC not baptizing babies that is opposite to what were Catholic Church and other religions does?
READMEinc: The lord Jesus Christ teaches that to qualify for baptism, one must first prove his faith after believing in the gospel preached to them by God’s messengers (Mk. 16:15-16; Rom. 10:15-17). INC do not baptize infants because they do not yet have the faculty and the capability for understanding and believing in gospel. Moreover, since baptism is to be administered for the forgiveness of one’s sins (and to commit a sin is to transgress God’s law of which little children are not capable of doing) infants, therefore, should not be baptized at the age of their lives (Acts. 2:38; I Jn. 3:4). Baptism is not for infants or children who have not reached the age of discretion.
CD2000: Infant baptism is not prohibited in the Bible. In the same way, adult baptizm is never prohibited by the Church founded by Christ. Nor the rights of every soul, including children and those incapable of assenting due to illness or abnormalities are entitled to salvation through Christ's baptism?

In fact, adult baptism is common to Catholic converts during Easter Sunday. The same tradition when the Early Church baptized adult CONVERTS from Judaism.

Why is it that the Church baptizes children who "have no assent to the Christian belief? The answer is Biblical.

Christ said, the Kingdom of God belongs to children (Lk 18:15-18).

After the Pentecost, thus Peter declared,
Act 2:38-39 "Repent, and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. For the promise is to you and to your children"
Infants are considered children. The Church considers CHILDREN inclusive in the "HOUSEHOLD" a single UNIT being baptized by the Apostles. Unless otherwise specified that a "household" doesn't include children.
Acts 16:33 He took them in at that hour of the night and bathed their wounds; then he and all his family were baptized at once.

1 Cor. 1:16 I baptized the household of Stephanas also; beyond that I do not know whether I baptized anyone else.
True enough CIRCUMCISION in Judaism is Christian equivalent of BAPTISM. On the 8th day, Jesus as a Child was circumscised without his assent to the Judaic Law but every Jewish child is entitled for the promised made to them by God.

In the truest sense of Christianity that traces its history from the Apostolic times, children too, are entitled for that baptism which saves (1 Pet. 3:21)

Q: Why do INC not celebrating Valentines day?
READMEinc: To love God and to love one’s neighbor are the two commandments of the Lord Jesus Christ (Mt. 22:36-40). Therefore, loving god and loving our fellowmen are good acts. But, the celebration of Valentines day is not in anyway connected with these great commandments. We do not celebrate it because its practices and customs bear close association with paganism. Valentines day is the feast day celebrated on the 14th of February in honor and veneration of two so called martyr saints, both of whom are believed to have the name valentine (The new catholic encyclopedia). This feast is closely associated with the ancient roman feast of Lupercalia, observed on the 15th of February (Funk and wagnalls new encyclopedia). According to the catholic dictionary, pagan boys drew the names of girls “in honor of the goddess Februata Juno”. To observe practices connected with Valentines day is to compromise the teachings of the bible which such pagan customs and practices.
CD2000: In truth, Iglesia ni Cristo members celebrate the Valentine's Day-- exchanging cards and flowers in secrecy.  Even Protestants and some Muslims do the same. Why? It's because it's a day for those who knows what LOVE is. That's one of the biggest lie they can ever claim.

If the Iglesia ni Cristo thinks that the Valentine's Day is something officially "Catholic" feast, I am so sorry to tell them that they are not. But St. Valentine is a Catholic Saint. There's no doubt about it. Perhaps that's the reason why the Iglesia ni Cristo cult strictly forbids it to its members because it bears a Catholic history in it. 

Unknowingly their cult is heavily dependent on Catholic Church's contribution to the civilization of the world. To mention a few are the Bible, the Gregorian Calendar, Democracy, Freedom, Human Rights, Ecumenism, bridging understanding through Religious Dialoge, UN recognized World Youth Day etc.

Q: Why do INC not celebrating Christmas Day every 25th of December?
A: The popular belief that Christ was born on dec. 25 is nothing but a myth. The holy scriptures does not specify the date of the Lord’s birth. On the contrary, historical events point to dec. 25 as the birth date of the pagan Roman sun-god, Sol invictus, “The unconquered sun” (The new schaff-herzog encyclopedia of religious knowledge). And because the celebration of Christmas has been riddled with pagan ways and practices, we do not take part of it. The apostles admonished: “…give up living as pagans do with their futile notions. Their minds are closed, they are alienated from the life that is in god…” (Eph. 4: 17-18) It is not our intention at all to ignore the birthday of the savior when we do not participate in the celebration of Christmas. What we refuse to do is to take part in the pagan practices attached to the celebration.
CD2000: It's another deception. Iglesia ni Cristo members do celebrate Christmas. They enjoy Christmas break, they receive Christmas Bonuses, attend Christmas parties, exchange Christmas Cards, give gifts, and children join Catholic children do Christmas caroling.

PASUGO December 1956, p. 34: (written by Benjamin T. Villalba)
“It strikes people as odd that members of the Church of Christ (Iglesia ni Cristo) do not celebrate Christmas. (ang Iglesia ni Cristo ay tuwirang hindi nagdiriwang ng Pasko ng kapanganakan ni Cristo).”
PASUGO December 1957, p. 28: (written by Emeliano I. Agustin) (Poem)
“Ang diwa ng Pasko ay kapayapaan; (The essence of Christmas is peace)
Nang mundong naglunoy sa lusak ng Buhay; (When the world ***)
Mabuting balita sa kinalulugdan; (Good news anticipated)
Pagsilang ni Jesus sa abang sabsaban." (The Birth of Jesus in a manger)
The UNOFFICIAL opinion became OFFICIAL for READMEinc had spoken with authority with his INC "catechism". (Source taken from http://readmeinc.blogspot.com/2009/08/accusations-questions-and-etc-about-inc.html)

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