THE IGLESIA NI CRISTO BELIEVES IN THE LORD JESUS CHRIST
DOES the Iglesia Ni Cristo (Church of Christ) believe in the Lord Jesus Christ? Yes, indeed. However, the belief of the Iglesia Ni Cristo regarding the Lord Jesus Christ is what the Bible teaches about Him, no more, no less. What the apostles teach about Christ is how the Iglesia Ni Cristo recognized the Lord, for Apostle Paul warned us that:
“But I am afraid that just as Eve was deceived by the serpent's cunning, your minds may somehow be led astray from your sincere and pure devotion to Christ. For if someone comes to you and preaches a Jesus other than the Jesus we preached, or if you receive a different spirit from the one you received, or a different gospel from the one you accepted, you put up with it easily enough.” (II Corinthians 11:3-4 NIV)
The Apostle Paul warned the Christians that there will be deceivers that will teach a “different Jesus” – “preaches a Jesus other than the Jesus we preached.” Thus, the belief of the true Christians concerning the Lord Jesus Christ is the belief taught by the apostles. Because the teachings of the apostles are written in the Bible, hence, the “Jesus” that true Christians must recognize is the “Jesus” of the Bible. Regarding those teachings not taught by the apostles, or not written in the Bible, this is what Apostle Paul tells us:
“I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting the one who called you by the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel- which is really no gospel at all. Evidently some people are throwing you into confusion and are trying to pervert the gospel of Christ. But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach a gospel other than the one we preached to you, let him be eternally condemned!” (Galatians 1:6-8 NIV)
Apostle Paul said, “…turning to a different gospel…trying to pervert the gospel of Christ.” They will “pervert” the Gospel or the teachings of the Bible, thus, teaching a “different Christ” – different from what the apostles preached (and written in the Bible).
For this reason, the Church Of Christ indeed believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, but our belief regarding the Lord is what the Bible teaches about Him. The Iglesia Ni Cristo upholds the teachings of the apostles written in the Bible regarding the Lord Jesus Christ.
WHAT THE BIBLE TEACHES ABOUT CHRIST
On what the Bible teaches about Christ is how the Iglesia Ni Cristo recognized Him.
Jesus is the Christ of God
We accept Jesus as the Christ of God:
“But what about you? he asked. ‘Who do you say I am?’ Peter answered, ‘The Christ of God.’” (Luke 9:20 NIV)
The Bible clearly stated that “Jesus is the Christ of God.” If Jesus is God, then God (Jesus) is the Christ of God. This is an absurdity. Thus, let us stick to what the Bible teaches about Jesus, that He is “the Christ of God.”
Jesus as the Son of God
We accept Jesus Christ as the Son of God:
“Simon Peter answered, "You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” (Matthew 16:16 NIV)
Although the apostles teach that Jesus is the Son of the living God, however, the Bible also tells us that Jesus, the Son of God, is a man:
“And when the centurion, who stood there in front of Jesus, heard his cry and saw how he died, he said, ‘Surely THIS MAN WAS THE SON OF GOD!’” (Mark 15:39, NIV, emphasis mine).
Thus, the Bible clearly teaches that Jesus is the Son of the living God, and not the living God.
Jesus as Lord
We accept Jesus Christ as our Lord:
“So, all the people of Israel should know this truly: GOD HAS MADE JESUS — THE MAN YOU NAILED TO THE CROSS — BOTH LORD AND CHRIST.” (Acts 2:36, New Century Version, emphasis mine)
Christ’s lordship does not prove that He is God, because if so: (1) God (Jesus) is only made “Lord” by another God for the Bible said, “God has made Jesus – the man you nailed to the cross-both Lord and Christ”; and (2) God (Jesus) is a “man nailed to the cross.”
When the Apostle Peter teaches that Jesus is Lord, he also mentioned that Jesus was made Lord by God and “a man nailed to the cross.”
Jesus as Savior
We accept Jesus Christ as our Savior:
“The God of our fathers raised up Jesus, whom you had murdered by hanging Him on a tree. GOD EXALTED THIS MAN TO HIS RIGHT HAND AS RULER AND SAVIOR, to grant repentance to Israel, and forgiveness of sins.” (Acts 5:30-31, Holman Christian Standard Bible, emphasis mine)
Jesus is our Savior, but He became our Savior because “God exalted this man to His right hand as ruler and Savior.” Although, Jesus is our Savior, but the Bible also mentioned that He is a man exalted by God.
Jesus as the Mediator between God and Men
We accept Jesus Christ as the Mediator between the one true God and men:
“For there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus” (I Timothy 2:5, NIV, emphasis mine)
Apostle Paul’s statement clearly said that “there is one God.” And we are certain that the “one God” referred to by Apostle Paul is not the Lord Jesus, because he also mentioned that “the man Christ Jesus” is the “one mediator between God and men.”
LET US UPHOLD WHAT THE BIBLE
TEACHES ABOUT JESUS CHRIST
Let us uphold what the Bible teaches about the Lord Jesus Christ – the man Jesus Christ is the one mediator between God and men, for those who do not acknowledge Jesus Christ as “coming in the flesh” such person is the deceiver and the antichrist:
“Many deceivers, who do not acknowledge Jesus Christ as coming in the flesh, have gone out into the world. Any such person is the deceiver and the antichrist.” (II John 1:7 NIV)
Those who do not acknowledge Jesus Christ as “coming in the flesh” as those “who don’t believe that Jesus Christ came to earth as a human being”:
“Watch out for the false leaders-and there are many of them around-who don't believe that Jesus Christ came to earth as a human being with a body like ours. Such people are against the truth and against Christ.” (II John 1:7 Living Bible)
If Jesus is not the one true God, who is? This is what the apostles teach us:
“Praise be to THE GOD AND FATHER OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ.” (Ephesians 1:3 NIV, Emphasis Mine)