There is no other way by which man could be saved other than through the Church of Christ.  Only through this could the requirement of God's law (concerning salvation of the sinners by the sinless Christ) be satisfied. Such is the great value of the Church of Christ in God's grand design for the salvation of man. This is the reason why Christ established His Church and died it.
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Belittling the importance of the Church of Christ

The greatest paradox:

The greatest paradox in today's religious scene is the utter disregard by many people for the significance of the Church on the issue of salvation. Nowadays, many Christian-professing preachers peddle the teaching that membership or affiliation with any particular Church is no longer necessary for man's salvation and attainment of eternal life. Man allegedly need not become a member of any Church, let alone the Church of Christ (Iglesia ni Cristo) to gain entrance into heaven.  Their zeal in propagating this opinion is matched only by their enthusiasm in preaching that faith in Christ is enough to be saved.  Their teaching necessarily undermines the Church's reason for being and virtually reduces it to insignificance. Ironically however,  these  same people belong to various religious groups or churches.  

The oft-repeated argument:

 The oft-repeated argument of those who belittle the importance of the Church of Christ is that, "It is Christ not the Church, who will save us;  the Church is not the Savior but Christ, thus, it is Christ not the Church whom we need to attain salvation." The problem  with people who cling tenaciously to such belief is that they either miss or choose to ignore the significant issue.

The more important issue:

There is no dispute in the fact that Christ is the Savior. The whole of Christendom acknowledges this and hence it is a non-issue. In the same vein, it is pointless to take issue on the statement that the Church is not the Savior. In the first place, no preacher teaches that it is. No where in the Bible does it says so, either. The more important issue here, therefore, is not so much who the Savior is, but whom the Savior will save.


The biblical explanation and testimonies why the Church of Christ is indispensable for man's salvation.

And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock
I will build my church, and the powers of death
shall not prevail against it.

(Matthew 16:18, Revised Standard Version)

This declaration of  our   Lord Jesus Christ proves that He did establish a Church.  Concomitant with this all-important statement is His promise that the powers of death shall not prevail against this Church. Death, the Bible informs us, is the payment for man's sins (cf. Rom. 6:23; Rev. 20:14). Hence, the Church was built by the Savior primarily to save man from the punishment for his sins, which is death.

The Church And Christ's Mission of Salvation

Christ's mission

Christ's mission is to save man from eternal damnation. God sent Him "not to condemn the world, but that the world might be  saved through him" (Jn. 3:17, RSV).   As  Apostle Paul emphatically stated  "Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners" (I Tim. 1:15,lbid). He was was appointed by God as the Savior of mankind (cf. Acts 5:31). His mission of salvation is God's love and compassion to man (cf. Rom., 5:8-9).   But Christ, in fulfilling His mission, had to abide by the will and the law of God.   In His own declaration, He came not to destroy the law  but to fulfill it. (Mt 5:17, NKJV).

“Do not think that I came to destroy the Law or the Prophets. I did not come to destroy but to fulfill.  (Mt. 5:17, NKJV)

God' s law concerning sin and punishment

What is God' s law concerning sin and punishment?  The Bible states this, thus:

"The fathers shall not be put to death for the children, neither shall the children be put to death for the fathers: every man shall be put to death for his own sin." (Deut. 24:16, KJV)

God's law stipulates that no man would be held liable for the sin of another. Each one is responsible for his own sin. How then, could Christ, who is without sin (cf. I pt 2:21-22), save the sinner from God's punishment without violating the law concerning the payment of sin?  Apostle Paul teaches us how Christ fulfilled His saving function in compliance with the requirement of God's law.

"having abolished in His flesh the enmity, that is, the law of commandments contained in ordinances, so as to create in Himself one new man from the two, thus making peace" (Eph. 2:15, NKJV)

The creation of the One New Man

In order to fulfill both His saving mission and  the requirement of God's law, Christ created in Himself the "one new man from the two."   Which are these two that constitute this one new man?   The head and the bodyChrist as the head and the Church His body.   Apostle Paul specifically points this out, thus:

 "And He is the head of the body, the church, ... (Col. 1:18, NKJV)

The union of Christ and the Church forms the "one new man."   Christ (the head) and the Church (the body) stand as "one man" before God.   This union paved the way for Christ to be the lawful Savior of the Church.   As the head of the Church, Christ did not violate the law of God by assuming responsibility for the sins of its members. Apostle Paul said: 

For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body. (Eph. 5:23, NKJV)

Christ is the Savior of the Churchhis body

Christ is the Savior, but He can only save the Church which is His body and none other.  There is that law of God that should be obeyed that is "every man shall be put to death for his own sin" (Deut 24:16).   The sacrificial death of Christ is not for the sin of all men but only for His Church, His body.   God's law does not allow Christ to save those outside of His Church.   To partake in the  saving grace of Christ's death, one should therefore be in union with Christ through His Church:

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. (II Cor. 5:21, Good News Translation)

Man should first be in union with Christ so that Christ could assume responsibility for his sin. To be in union with Christ is to become a member of His Body or His Church (cf. Rom. 12:4-5; I Cor. 1:9; Col 1:18; 3:15).   Without being so, man would be separate from Him and therefore  he himself, not Christ, would pay for his own sin.   It would be unlawful for Christ to save those who are not in union with Him through His Church.  He   would   be  violating God's law if He should do so.   And surely He would not violate God's law because He said so Himself.   Instead, He would tell them point  blank:

"I said therefore unto you, that ye shall die in your sins" (Jn- 8:24, KJV).

The Church of Christ

But which Church is the body of Christ and hence the true beneficiary of Christ's sacrificial   death?   Which Church was purchased b the precious blood of Christ?  Acts 20:28 provides us a clear answer:

"Take heed therefore to yourself and to all the flock over which the Holy Spirit has appointed you overseers, to feed the church of Christ which he has purchased with his blood." (Acts 20:28, Lamsa)

The Church of Christ (Iglesia ni Cristo) is the Church which Christ purchased with His blood. This is the Church which benefited from Christ's death.   It is the only the Church embraced by Christ's saving grace in consonance with the requirements of God's law.

There is no other way by which man could be saved other than through the Church of Christ.  Only through this could the requirement of God's law (concerning salvation of the sinners by the sinless Christ) be satisfied. Such is the great value of the Church of Christ in God's grand design for the salvation of man. Such is the reason why Christ established the Church and died it.

Testimonies Concerning The Church Relevance To Salvation

Not surprisingly, there are many religious authorities   who test to the  biblical   truth   that   the Church is essential in man's salvation.   Their  assertions virtually prove that man's salvation is precisely the Church's reason for being.   Their pronouncements unequivocally declare that salvation cannot be possible apart from the Church of Christ.

From the Catholics:

The book, The Papal Encyclicals, tells us what a Roman Catholic Pontiff thinks about the Church of Christ:

"... the Church of Christ, which been divinely instituted for the sake of souls and of eternal salvation. "  (p.153) (emphasis ours)

Another Catholic book records the same testimony concerning the importance of the Church of Christ  in man's attainment of salvation. The book Father Smith instructs Jackson, has the following testimony:

'The Church of Christ today must be in nature, in power, in teaching, what it was when it served men through the twelve Apostles. It is to this Church that all are obliged to belong in order to be saved. Those people who through their own grave fault do not know the true Church, or, knowing it, refuse to join it, cannot be saved." (pp- 35-36) (emphasis ours)

These pronouncements conform with the teachings of the Bible. It is for this reason alone that they should be taken seriously.

From the Protestants:

Even Protestants, who are themselves adherents of the "faith-alone concept" of salvation, have their share of testimonies on the importance of the Church of Christ.  A Protestant book entitled, A Time to Unite, records the following statements:

"Are you in the Church of Christ? Are you a member of His Church? It is a great privilege. The Church is the bride whom He loves and perfects. The Church is His body which He nourishes and cherishes. The Church is His temple which He fills with His Holy Spirit. The gates of hell shall not prevail against it.  It is a great privilege to be a member of the Church of Christ... The way to belong to the Church of Christ is to belong to Christ." (p. 27)

On page 31 of the same book, it is also stated that, "The Church is the body of Christ, and Christ is the Savior of the body; then all who are saved are in that body, and outside that body there is no salvation."  (emphasis ours)

From the Seventh Day Adventist:

And if all these still do not suffice, here is another testimony from Ellen G. White of the Seventh Day  Adventist Church. Says she:

The church of Christ is God's appointed agency for the salvation  of men." (.Steps To Christ, p, 55)  (emphasis ours)

The message is plain and simple

The above declarations are self-explanatory. The message is plain and simple—be a  member of  the Church of Christ in order  to be saved. The veracity of this message is affirmed by the Bible and thus should silence those who deny the indispensability of the Church of Christ for man's salvation.   


For a more detailed explanation of the above subject:
Click this link to UniqueBibleStudy.com Lesson #28 - The Master Plan Of God For The Salvation Of Man     (a new window will be opened)


Source: The above are excerpts from Pasugo Jan-Feb.1993 article - Church of Christ: Reason for Being by Ruben D. Aromin

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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