Posted by catholicfaithdefender on March 25, Ang Dating Daan: Introduction Nothing under the sun is new, neither is any man able to say: Behold this is new: However, upon further study of its history and of the corpus of Mr. Rather, it is more ironic than absurd, because it really is an old path, simply not in the sense that Mr. Soriano thinks it is. A bit of background first. Schisms are the plague of all schismatics.
Once a group of factious men splits off from the Mystical Body of Christ to follow winds of doctrine more to their liking, little remains to bind them to each other. Hence, whenever someone comes to an irreconcilable doctrinal disagreement with the leadership of the schismatic church, or simply wants power and authority that they have but are not willing to give him, the first schism is followed by further schisms, and factions proliferate.
This is the principle which underlies the history of Ang Dating Daan. Since Soriano is fond of scientific analogies, I will use one myself: The story starts with a man named Felix Manalo, who left the Catholic Church as a teenager. He toyed briefly with a cult called Colorum which claimed direct communication with God, and then joined the Methodist Episcopal Church and became a minister.
He left them as well after deciding they were wrong about observing a Saturday Sabbath, and briefly played the harlot with atheism and agnosticism. In any case, in started a church for himself, which would later claim Protestants to be apostates, and itself to be the one true Church of Christ outside of which there is no salvation. The affair, held at the Gloria Theater in Tondo, Manila was attended by Church members and several Protestant pastors… In August Manalo visited all local congregations before departing for the United States to advance his Bible studies.
He advised the brethren to keep united and protect one another in his absence. One day in September that year he sailed for the U.
True to the nature which this schismatic church inherited in its genesis, it soon begat the father of Ang Dating Daan with another schism. The day before Eliseo Soriano turned seventeen, his parents took him to hear one of his sermons; the topic was, not surprisingly, the true Church of God according to the Bible, and Soriano was convinced.
Perez baptized him, and made him a minister, the only other minister in the whole church. Soriano further claims that this occurred in fulfillment of Zechariah For Soriano to apply it to his little group years later is absolutely inane. Consider how mild the persecutions Soriano has endured really are compared to what the early Church went through. The early Christians were torn to pieces by lions while crowds of heathens laughed at them; Soriano got sued, and lost. They were crucified; Soriano got briefly kicked off television.
Soriano in fact has not endured any more persecution than Mohammed endured, whose persecution consisted of verbal abuse, a boycott, family pressure, and juvenile pranks like people dumping trash on his porch. In any case, Bro. Not surprisingly, Gugulan sued him, and the Philippine Supreme Court ruled in her favor. And somehow, in spite of his ignominious origins, legal troubles, and self contradiction, Soriano has managed to draw a rather large following to himself, including many former Catholics.
He apparently has an extraordinary memory, and amazes his listeners with his ability to regurgitate Scripture passages of the top of his head. Soriano must be very charismatic as well, given the way his followers fawn over him. As noted above, Soriano claims to be the only sincere evangelist. Everyone else is a charlatan, according to him. Naturally, he also claims that he has been predicted by Scripture, specifically Ecclesiastes 9: He is, as he styles himself, the poor wise man who saved his city from destruction.
A poor and wise man saved his city from being destroyed by the army of a great King, but afterwards no one remembered his name. This may be a parable, or it may refer to a real event Scripture records similar occurrences in Judg 9: But in either case, it is narrated as an event which was completed in the past.
Moreover, Soriano has yet to turn aside any armies or save any cities, and given the way he dresses, he clearly is not poor, and given the way he preaches, neither is he wise. Clearly, if he were to preach his gospel to the entire world, his name would not be universally forgotten. In sum, no passage of Scripture refers directly to Mr.
He is simply one of the many false prophets contributing to the great apostasy predicted thereby. Soriano seems to realize that his arguments, while perhaps impressive on the surface, absolutely fall apart upon anything resembling a deeper analysis.
Most likely this is why he forbids his followers from interpreting the Bible. God did not give anybody the right to interpret the Bible! Do not interpret it. Doing this is a clear act of deception. We will see again and again that Soriano breaks his own rule and interprets the Bible, and does a poor job of it at that.
And of course, the idea that the Bible is so clear that no one needs to interpret it is itself unbiblical. My first instinct when I read the above passages from Mr.
Soriano was to quote 2 Peter 3: One would think, then, that Soriano would avoid this passage. However, he does not, for in a later article Soriano teaches that yes, the Bible does need to be interpreted after all. He quotes 2 Peter 3: We really should know how to use the bible. We should not perceive it as something so simple that anybody can readily interpret. In fact, it is the opposite! The Bible is not a plain as it may seem to be. The Holy Scriptures has the highest degree and the utmost quality of words and wisdom any book could offer that a man can read in his lifetime….
The Bible is unique and more special than any other book essential to our salvation. Hence, not anybody can just stand up and explain, elucidate, or even interpret the words of the Almighty Himself! But I will make a brief digression first. Soriano illustrates his point with an example: Reproached of men, and despised of people. Still, in 1 John 5: Is He a worm, a man, or a God? This is one of the greatest debates in the religious world; but how can we, in our humble being, be able to understand this seemingly complicated issue?
Is it possible for us, human beings, to comprehend complexities such as these? Soriano, that is why Jesus established a Church against which the gates of hell would not prevail Matt For although almost anyone could see that Psalm God guided the successors of the apostles, the bishops of the early Catholic Church, men like St. Ignatius of Antioch and St. Athanasius of Alexandria, to explain to their flocks the mystery of the Incarnation of the Second Person of the Blessed Trinity, true God, in the true man Jesus Christ, and this understanding, received from the apostles and transmitted and developed by the same bishops of the early Catholic Church, was finally codified at Catholic ecumenical Councils such as Nicaea and Chalcedon.
Christendom has never been without authentic Christian teachers, the successors of the apostles. Incidentally, this is the same logic that Dan Brown uses in The Da Vinci Code to argue that Jesus was a mere man who taught peace and worshiped the sacred feminine.
You see, once one decides to reject the entire historical record as a forgery written by power hungry men, one can make up any cockamamie story about the past one wants to, and this is how Soriano deceives his followers into believing that his doctrines, so foreign to Christian history, actually represent authentic apostolic teaching.
Soriano concludes this article by relating the means of properly interpreting the Bible. First, one must have the Spirit of God, which requires one to fear the Lord and keep His commandments. He reconciles his statements thus far with his dictum that no man may interpret the Bible by insisting that the Bible interprets itself, and that if one has the Spirit of God and searches the Scriptures diligently, one will find the explanation of the passage one does not understand in some other passage somewhere else.
Tremendous insights can be gained into biblical interpretation through historical, grammatical, and linguistic analysis, and this often requires reference to non-biblical literature. Try figuring out what archegos means, for instance, without referring to extra-biblical Greek writings it is used only once in the entire New Testament: Archeology and geography also throw light on much of what is obscure in Holy Scripture. Finally, the Church Fathers, who held on to the traditions which they received from the apostles 2 Thess 2: But Soriano would cut off his flock from these tools, and from education in the methods of biblical exegesis, and leave them adrift all by themselves to try to interpret these ancient texts, written in a language and culture far removed from their own, and expect them to just be able to read and understand.
And naturally, they will fail. Then, they will have to turn to Bro. This is where his self-contradiction reaches its consummation.
All of these show the need for a teacher who has the Spirit of God so that one may understand the Word of God. Nothing less would be able to lead one to truth and guide one until the end.
And God is faithful that he would not leave his people alone without one. Fortunate, indeed, is one who has found that true preacher. As attested to by many, God is really with Bro.
He can see what others do not and has the understanding of the Word of God not found in anyone even among sages. And for that, how blessed is the Philippines! And if you truly care for truth, you must make sure you are being led by someone with an understanding given by God, and teaching things of God — like a spring that never runs dry. There is no secret in the Bro. The Bible gives its own explanation in John 3: