cult

Discussion in 'Other Christian Denominations' started by billwald, Apr 7, 2006.

  1. billwald

    billwald
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    The first two definitions in the Webster's Seventh Collegiate Dictionary - the last one published before the bastardization of the English language became popular - would include Christianity as a cult under the definitions. The word has become to mean any religious sect we disagree with.
     
  2. Doubting Thomas

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    So true.
     
  3. SpiritualMadMan

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    My definitional useage is this...

    Cult - any (religious) organization that intentionally Occults, denies, or Illegitimizes the Gospel of Christ.

    Sect - any Religious Organization that contains the Gospel of Christ but which occults it through practice, traditions or doctrine. A sect can also be any group which significantly differs in doctrine or practice in a way in which you dislike or personally can't believe there is scriptural Support for...

    Mike Sr.
     
  4. Jarthur001

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    My definition of a cult....

    There will always be 2 things you will find in ALL cults.

    1) They attach the deity of Christ.
    (this always happens in a cult)

    2) Have other writings outside the Bible that they hold to.
    (you will also find this...yet sometimes you will have to look for it. Case in point..JWs have no book they hold dear...but they are hooked on a magazine that is printed in NY...that they feel is just as much from God as the Bible)


    In Christ...James
     
  5. Marcia

    Marcia
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    The word "cult" is not connected to the word "occult."

    There is a theological definition of cult and a sociological one. The sociological one has to do with a group that is authoritative, secretive, manipulative, controlling of members, and tries to isolate members. It does not have to be a religious group, but usually is.

    The theological definition from a Christian view is that a cult denies or changes one or more essentials of the Christian faith such as the deity of Christ, the Trinity, the bodily resurrection of Christ, the nature of God, the nature of Christ, etc. These cults usually are also authoritative and controlling and have the same traits as the sociological definition.

    The occult is a set of practices forbidden by God which include divination, sorcery/magick, and/or spirit contact (see Deut. 18:10-14). A cult can have occult practices but practicing the occult does not mean one is necessarily in a cult.
     
  6. DHK

    DHK
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    # What is a cult?

    1. Generally, it is a group that is unorthodox, esoteric, and has a devotion to a person, object, or a set of new ideas.
    1. New Teaching - has a new theology and doctrine.
    2. Only True Teaching - often considers traditional religious systems to be apostate and it alone possess the complete truth.
    3. Strong Leadership - often an individual or small but powerful leadership group holds control of the group’s teachings and practices.
    4. Asset Acquirement - often requires tithing and/or property transfer to the religious system.
    5. Isolationist - to facilitate control over the members physically, intellectually, financially, and emotionally.
    6. Controlling - exercises control over the members. Sometimes this is through fear, threatening lose of salvation if you leave the group. Sometimes through indoctrination.
    7. Indoctrination - possesses methods to reinforce the cult’s beliefs and standards where opposing views are ridiculed and often misrepresented.
    8. Apocalyptic - to give the members a future focus and philosophical purpose in avoiding the apocalypse or being delivered through it.
    9. Experience - various practices including meditation, repetition of words and/or phrases, and ‘spiritual’ enlightenment with God are used as confirmation of their truth.
    1. Depravation - sleep and food deprivation which weakens the will of the subject.
    2. This is uncommon, though practiced by more severe cults
    10. Persecution - predictions of being persecuted and often combined with claiming any opposing views demonstrated against them as a form of persecution.
    2. Many have a non-verifiable belief systems
    1. For example, they would teach something that cannot be verified.
    1. A space ship behind Hale-Bop comet
    2. Or, that God, an alien, or angel appeared to the leader and gave him a revelation
    3. The members are seeded angels from another world, etc.
    2. Often, the philosophy makes sense only if you adopt the full set of values and definitions that it teaches.
    1. With this kind of belief, truth becomes unverifiable, internalized, and easily manipulated through the philosophical systems of its inventor.
    3. The Leader of a Cult
    1. Often charismatic who is considered very special for varying reasons:
    1. The leader has received special revelation from God.
    2. The leader claims to be the incarnation of a deity, angel, or special messenger.
    3. The leader claims to be appointed by God for a mission
    4. The leader claims to have special abilities
    2. The leader is often above reproach and is not to be denied or contradicted.
    4. Cult ethos
    1. Usually seek to do good works, otherwise no one would join them.
    2. They are usually moral and possess a good standard of ethical teaching.
    3. Many times the Bible is used or additional "scriptures" are penned.
    1. The Bible, when used, is always distorted with private interpretations.
    4. Many Cults recruit Jesus as one of their own and redefine him accordingly
    5. Cult groups vary greatly.
    1. From the ascetic to the promiscuous.
    2. From esoteric knowledge to very simple teachings.
    3. From the rich and power to the poor and weak.

    http://www.carm.org/cults/cultic.htm
     
  7. BobRyan

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    Indeed. When the Jews considered that sect of Jews that were starting off in the "Christian" direction (Messiah-ian? Messian?) they called them "a sect" the way we think of as a cult.

    They were following a single charismatic leader and were straying from the accepted teachings of the established religious leaders.

    That is all it really meant.
     
  8. mcneely

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    Sounds like an outline for a very specific "cult", DHK. I wonder who this is describing? :rolleyes:

    ---Justin
     
  9. Snitzelhoff

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    Oh, yes, Justin, VERY specific, as it covers everything from Heaven's Gate to the Mormons. Whom do YOU think it's describing?
     
  10. mcneely

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    Well excuuuuuuuse me! :eek:
    I was eluding to the raging battle going on in here about the RCC.

    ---Justin
     

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