It is mainly for the purpose of worshiping God together that the Iglesia ni Cristo continues to build houses of worship. Unlike the apostles and the early Christians who could not build houses of worship because they were being severely persecuted.
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On building houses of worship

Letter to the Editor:
GOD'S MESSAGE, March 2004, p.3

I  HAVE  SEEN  PHOTOS   of   many   of   your houses of worship on the special  issue of your magazine (April 2003 issue I believe).  I  admire  the  style   and   architecture your  chapels.   I   notice that  you  usually quote Haggai 1:8 and other verses in the Old  Testament   to   support   your   practice of building houses of worship.   However, there doesn't seem to be any  verse in the New  Testament  regarding   the  command of building houses of worship. In fact, we cannot read in the Bible that Christ or the Apostles built houses of worship. How then do you explain your practice of constructing houses of worship;

Fedelino Parto
Ontario, Canada

Editor's reply:

Thank you for your interest in the Iglesia n Cristo and for taking the time to read our magazine.

Although there is no mention in the Bible that our Lord Jesus Christ and the apostles built houses of worship, this does not mean that Christ did not give importance to the house of worship nor did He prohibit building it.

Before our Lord Jesus Christ ascended to heaven, He stated that whoever believes in Him will do what He does and even “greater things”:

“I am telling you the truth: whoever believers in me will do what I do – yes, he will do even greater things, because I am going to the Father.” (Jn. 14:12, Today’s English Version)

One of the great things or great works according to the Holy Scriptures is the temple or the house of worship:

“And the temple which I build will be great, for our God is greater than all gods.

“Behold I am building a temple for the name of the LORD my GOD, to dedicate it to Him …” (II Chron. 2:5, 4, New King James Version).

Thus, one of the great things that will be done by disciples of our Lord Jesus Christ is the building of houses of worship.

Our Lord Jesus Christ and the apostles did not build a temple or a house of worship because there was already a temple where they could congregate during their time. And to prove how valuable the temple is to our Lord Jesus, He did not allow this to be desecrated and be turned into a house of merchandise by driving away all those who were buying and selling in the temple which He called “My Father’s house” (Jn. 2:14-16).

14 And He found in the temple those who sold oxen and sheep and doves, and the money changers doing business. 15 When He had made a whip of cords, He drove them all out of the temple, with the sheep and the oxen, and poured out the changers’ money and overturned the tables. 16 And He said to those who sold doves, “Take these things away! Do not make My Father’s house a house of merchandise!” (Jn. 2:14-16, NKJV)

Moreover, in obedience to God’s command for them to congregate for worship (I Cor. 14:26, 15; Heb. 10:25) there were times when the apostles and the early Christians gathered together daily in the temple for this purpose:

“Day after day they met as a group in the Temple …” (Acts 2:46, TEV)

It is also mainly for this purpose of worshiping God together that the Iglesia ni Cristo continues to build houses of worship. Unlike the apostles and the early Christians who could not build houses of worship because they were being severely persecuted; they were in fact on the run (Acts 8:1, 3), most of the time they had to hold gatherings secretly.

Now Saul was consenting to his death.  At that time a great persecution arose against the church which was at Jerusalem; and they were all scattered throughout the regions of Judea and Samaria, except the apostles.

As for Saul, he made havoc of the church, entering every house, and dragging off men and women, committing them to prison. (Acts 8:1, 3, NKJV)

The situation of the Church of Christ in these last days could well afford her to build houses of worship for God’s glory.

As the true believers of Christ in these last days, we are expected to do greater things. One of which is to build houses of worship.  



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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