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King James Bible Audio Drama with Music and Sound Effects

Monday, March 25, 2013

Ang Dating Daan - Cult Profile

Members Church of God International MCGI
('Ang Dating Daan')
by Justyn

Cult Organization:

Members Church of God International (MCGI) - ('Ang Dating Daan') : Formerly Church of God in Christ, the Pillar and Ground of the Truth or Mga Kaanib sa Iglesia Ng Dios kay Kristo Hesus, Haligi at Saligan ng Katotohanan sa Bansang Pilipinas, Inc.

Brief History
Born from a poor family in Pasay City, Philippines, Soriano claim to be an “exceptional, consistently receiving the highest honors… and was awarded the highest possible grade in the entire history of his grade school.”*

Unfortunately, he did not finish his secondary schooling due to an alleged “skirmish” with his acting school directress over a topic on religion. Soriano’s follower took this not as a “twist of fate but rather [an alleged] manifestation of God’s work of hand bringing him to his real destiny.”* 

His parents were members of Iglesia ng Dios Kay Kristo Hesus, Haligi at Suhay ng Katotohanan founded in 1936 by a former Iglesia ni Cristo (1914) follower namely Nicolaz Perez.

Perez along with Teofila Ora left the I.N.C. fold in 1922 probably after learning that Jesus Christ was Mighty God but “not” the Almighty God and proceeded to establish the Iglesia Verdadero de Cristo. It did not took long for the two former leaders of I.N.C. (1914) to develop discord among themselves.

This occurrence drove Perez to register his new group under the name, Iglesia ng Dios Kay Kristo Hesus, Haligi at Suhay ng Katotohanan Soriano’s desire to read and memorize the Scripture was prompted by his membership in Perez’ group at a young age of 17 years old.

His followers noted of his “zealous [ness] in his religion.”* His skill in “explaining” and remembering the Bible verses was noticed by the other members so that he became “a preacher, a debater and a minister”* of the said group. He was even believed to be a “special confidante of Perez, explaining to him the teachings and the mysteries of the word of God.”* 

Unknown to many, he was said rumored to be groomed as the successor of Perez after he dies. In 1975 just after Perez’ death, some members were stunned when the leadership was passed on to Levita Gugulan, a woman. At first, Soriano might have yielded to that decision but it did not take long before he along with a few others rebelled against Gugulan’s leadership. They believed that women as leaders in church are not biblically supported.

It was reported that in 1976, Soriano and his allies were excommunicated by Gugulan. And the following year (1977), he registered a new group namely,
Iglesia ng Dios kay Kristo Hesus, Haligi at Saligan ng Katotohanan.

Which later evolved to,

Mga Kaanib sa Iglesia ng Dios kay Kristo Hesus, Haligi at Saligan ng Katotohanan sa Bansang Pilipinas, Inc. (1990) and Bayan ng Katotohanan (1993).

Most likely because of a lawsuit filed by Gugulan’s group with reference to the “name” of Soriano’s newly founded organization called,

Iglesia ng Dios kay Kristo Hesus, Haligi at Saligan ng Katotohanan

which is somewhat similar with the former’s group name
“Iglesia ng Dios kay Kristo Hesus, Haligi at Suhay ng Katotohanan.”

This episode continues to cause confrontation between the two religious groups.

Update 4-Jan-2003: Now since the highest court of the land (the Philippine Supreme Court) ruled, once in for all, in favor of Gugulan's group, the name of Soriano's church was drastrically changed to: "Iglesia Ni YHWH at ni YHWSA HMSYH" (Church of YHWH and YHWSA HMSYH).

Update 4-Nov-2004: Now they prefer to be known as, Members Church of God International (MCGI).

Method of Evangelization

He spreads his teachings through the radio waves and lately used the television and internet facilities. He is fond of vehemently opposing various religious groups by attacking their non-essential doctrines like tithing and church appellations, as well as, personalities of a number of religious leaders. One effective methodology of Soriano in captivating many gullible individuals into his fold by means of philosophical debates where he normally sets it up in their home turf (i.e. locale).

It can be observed that majority of the live audiences are from the Ang Dating Daan group capable of yelling instead of listening intently to what the opponent speaker is saying. Soriano on the other hand is a skilled heckler who tends to annoy and harass his opponent.

As a result, this poor fellow who has really no idea totally whatsoever about Soriano’s tactics will be prompted to either abandon the subject that he started or just leave the spiritual arena.

Many Elisarians  will immediately assume that their self-styled messenger “won” the religious debate not knowing that it was just his being a skilled heckler that made him triumph.

A Christian apologist needs to be wary with every statement he utters because Soriano has a reputation of focusing on minor word details propelling him to neglect the whole subject of the debate. This is done by playing back a particular video taped segment recorded by an accomplice ADD camera man so the whole audience would know how the speaker allegedly “contradicts” himself.

Manner of Bible Teaching

To build an impression with his members and audience, Soriano parades himself as a self-styled Bible teacher who “knew” the Hebrew and Greek words of the Scripture.

One instance while attempting to answer a question from a caller about the belief in “many gods” he reached out an old version of Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible possibly to show off to the listeners and viewers that the Hebrew word elohim is a “proof” in itself of “many gods.”

Bible scholars like James Strong will not validate Soriano’s doctrine of polytheism just because of the word “elohim.”

Indeed, a careful study will reveal that even when the plural Hebrew word “elohim” is used only one God is meant (e.g. Dt. 6:4).

What's more, he does not subscribed to proper Bible hermeneutics by studying the original Hebrew & Greek languages of the Scripture including it’s geograpical, historical, cultural and religious background but condemns it.

Mainly he is fond of building his doctrine out of Ang Biblia (a local translation of ASV) and some English translation rather than consulting the original languages.


Although ADD members claim to believe the Bible as their only source of authority, this is half-true.

They also believe Eliseo Soriano is the “sent one” or “sugo” the reason why he alone does the Bible explaining.

In other words, an individual member could not just explain the Bible out of his own personal study. This can be observed by watching his TV program, “Ang Dating Daan,” and “Itanong Mo Kay Soriano” a bible exposé program wherein he is always the main speaker concerning Bible interpretations.

I have also talked to many ADD regulars (i.e. manggagawa) and tried to ask them some Bible questions but they declined and directed me instead to their founder.  

Other Supplementary Materials

They publish their “Ang Dating Daan” series for old and prospective converts. They normally give these free of charge.

Unbiblical Beliefs

1. Rejects the Trinity doctrine and believe the following:   
Father - Almighty God and over-all Savior. Greater than the Son and the Spirit.
Son - Mighty God but not the Almighty God like His Father. He is equal to the Father as God but not greater than the Father because He was sent. Greater than the Holy Spirit.
Holy Spirit - part of the Father and the Son and also called God but not a Person. Aside from believing these “three Gods,” he also insists that there exist “many gods” because of 1 Cor. 8:5.
2. He believes the Father who is the Living God was the overall Savior who must be given credit for all the things He has done by sending saviors during the times past (Hebrews 1:1-2).

3. Believes Jesus is a Mighty God but not the Almighty God. Does not believe that He is the only Savior of humanity.

The two kinds of salvation that Jesus will do:
(1) He was sent primarily to be the savior of the house of Israel (Matthew 15:24) during his humanity (Matthew 1:21) but he is just one among the sent ones to be the savior.

(2) On his Second Coming, he will save the believers (members of Soriano’s group). Moses was also sent by the Father to become an instrument of salvation and savior to the Israelites (Acts 7:35-37), while the Apostle Paul (Acts 13:46-47) was a savior to the Gentiles up to the ends of the earth. Timothy was to be the next savior after the apostle Paul’s death.
4. Jesus the Son of the Living God also needs a savior who is his Father, the Living God as allegedly stated in Hebrews 5:7-9. They also believe that Jesus is God and man (though not fully man but just “like” man) quoting Philippians 2:6-7.

5. The meaning of the “house of God” in Psalms 127:1 during the Old Testament is “Church of God” (Iglesia ng Dios) and the name of that church is: Iglesia ng Dios kay Kristo Hesus, Haligi at Saligan ng Katotohanan (Church of God in Christ Jesus The pillar and the ground of the truth Philippines). They also believe that a person may be saved even though he has not heard of Soriano’s teachings. He is judged by God according to his conscience.  Believes not everybody can preach the Bible but must therefore be a “sent one” who is none other than the founder himself.

It is difficult to document every doctrine that Soriano holds because they usually do not put everything into writing. Doctrinal teachings of Soriano may vary from worker to worker.

According to one Filipino pastor and author, Soriano is in the process of constructing his doctrine. His beliefs are yet to be develop in the future.

Christian pastors and leaders who are concerned about the spiritual welfare of the Filipinos must also be vigilant about this group so that they could address the spiritual hunger of a growing population because if not false teachers  like Soriano will and as a result they  will again be one of those “unpaid bills of the church” as one Christian author states.

Manner of Polemics

1. Church name - “If your group is the ‘true church’ can you cite a verse in the Bible stating the name of your church?

2. God - “If Jesus knows everything can you cite a passage which says it is so?”

3. Holy Spirit - If the Holy Spirit is also the Alpha and the Omega can you give me a verse that says it does?

How to Start a Conversation with "Ang Dating Daan" (ADD) Member

1. Upon knowing that the person is already an ADD member, you can start by asking how long he/she has been an ADD convert and what made him/her embrace the ADD teachings.

2. You can start by conversing with that person by telling him/her that, “I happen to watch the ADD TV program one time. May I ask you something?”

3. You can ask them also about their belief in the Father and the Son emphasizing on their deity.

Things to Remember When Witnessing to an ADD Member

1. Do not witness with an ADD member unless you yourself are grounded in the orthodox faith of the Scripture.

2. Always say “you” and not “your group” to avoid him/her from thinking that you are attacking their “church.”

3. Know what they believe so that the person will not think that you are ignorant of their teaching. From my many years of experience, a number of cultist tend to lend a listening ear when I tell them that I usually encounters inconsistencies in their groups doctrines when it does not square with the teachings of the Bible. This becomes my springboard to an open discussion.

4. Focus on one subject at a time like about “God,” “salvation,” and “full deity and humanity of Christ.” They have the tendency to jump from one topic to another.

5. If possible, have someone intercede for you while you discuss with them or you can pray and listen at the same time while they are talking so the Holy Spirit would move on your behalf. Always remember, you cannot convert a cultist in just one sitting but you can “plant a seed of doubt” while some Christians pours the “water” next time knowing that someday God will make that seed grow and cause that person to be saved.

Notes: Taken from the Ang Dating Daan website.
Most of the information came from isolated interviews from a number of regular worker (mangangaral) of the ADD. The information presented here are stated accurately as possible without any misrepresentations. If there are any mistakes or error, please notify the author immediately.  

Source: The Bereans: Apologetics Research Ministry. P.O. Box 221, Ayala, Alabang, Post Office 1799, Muntinlupa City, Philippines  

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