There is no significant connection between a church being the worldwide and its being able to save all men.
Salvation depends on the positive response of the people
to God’s specific command.

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God saves regardless of number

Letter to the Editor:
GOD'S MESSAGE, April-June 1995, p.2

THE  BIBLE STATES  that God wants all men to be saved (cf. I Tim. 2:4, TEV). Salvation is for and through the Church (cf. Eph. 3:9-10, Ibid.). Do you think that your Church which is not yet worldwide can save man? And is it not against God's desire to save the few?

I believe that only the majority Church of today (majority group of believers today, not  during Noah's time) could stand along with God's desire  to save mankind, especially when He gave His assurance to them—"What I have planned, that I will do." (Is. 46:11, Ibid.)

Ermilita Monilar
Dangcagan, Bukidnon, Philippines

Editor's reply:

     IT IS TRUE THAT GOD WANTS all men to be saved. As to how men would be saved, Apostle Paul stated: “Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth” (I Tim. 2:4, KJV). Hence, in order for man to attain salvation, he should first come to the knowledge of the truth. For this reason, our Lord Jesus Christ said to His disciples: “Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned” (Mk. 16:15-16, Ibid.). Those who believe in the gospel should be baptized into the one body or Church headed by Christ, which is called the Church of Christ (cf. Rom. 12:4-5; Col. 1:18; Rom. 16:16; Acts 20:28, Lamsa).

     It is clear that salvation is open to all. God wants or desires to save all men. But it does not mean that all men will be saved. Salvation is not for those who do evil works and live in wickedness. One’s attainment of salvation depends on his response to God’s call. You argued that since the Iglesia ni Cristo is not a worldwide church, it cannot save man. That a church must be worldwide in scope to save man is a wrong assumption. There is no significant connection between a church being worldwide and its being able to save all men. Salvation depends on the positive response of the people to God’s specific command. Contrary to your belief, the Bible states that those who will not be saved are as many as the grains of sand on the seashore (cf. Rev. 20:7-9, KJV). Salvation rests on God’s righteousness, which is revealed in the gospel, the power of God for salvation (cf. Rom. 1:16:17, NIV). How can man benefit from God’s righteousness? II Corinthians 5:21 states, thus: “Christ was without sin, but for our sake God made him share our sin in order that in union with him we might share the righteousness of God” (TEV). One who achieved union with Christ is joined with Him. Thus, he has become a new being (cf. II Cor. 5:17, Ibid.). The new being referred to is the one new man which has Christ as the head and the Church as His body (cf. Eph. 2:15; Col. 1:18). Thus, it is righteous for Christ to suffer for the sins of those whom He will save in as much as they have become members of His body (cf. Rom. 12.4-5).

     A church does not need to be a church of either the majority or the minority to be saved. Salvation is open to everyone who will follow God’s command. Those who have become members of Christ’s body are the only believers who “could stand along with God’s desire to save mankind.”

     They are in one organization, one body, one church, not churches, not the “majority” of believers who belong to various religious organizations today (cf. Eph. 4:4).

     Since the beginning, God has chosen His own people. During Noah’s time, God elected and saved Noah and His family; there were only eight of them. God elected the ancient Israelites who were few in number – a “small nation.” There were millions of people who lived during the biblical times but only a few were elected because only a few followed His laws. In these last days, many people are searching for the truth, but only a few will find it and consequently attain salvation and the promised eternal life. Though God wishes to save all men, man should do his part in responding to the divine call to become members of Christ’s body (cf. Jn. 10:9; I Cor. 12.27).

     It is important to note that God has a standing policy in electing or choosing His own people. The Bible states, thus:

     “For the foolishness of God is wiser than man’s wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than man’s strength. Brothers, think of what you were when you were called. Not many of you were wise by human standards; not many were influential; not many were of noble birth. But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong. He chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things – and the things that are not – to nullify the things that are, so that no one may boast before him.” (I Cor. 1:25-29, NIV)

     Salvation is strictly for the elect. This is God’s policy. And those elected by God are those who have conformed to His teachings. They are the only ones assured of God’s salvation.


Bible Study Suggestion: If you have further questions, please feel free to visit the Iglesia ni Cristo congregation nearest you. A minister or an evangelical worker would be happy to answer any biblical question you have in mind. For the latest Worship Service Directory of Iglesia ni Cristo Locales and Congregations outside the Philippines, please visit www.iglesianicristoworshipservice.com or just click link at home page.

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