IFB Cultic Element

Discussion in 'Fundamental Baptist Forum' started by Ulsterman, Sep 2, 2006.

  1. Ulsterman

    Ulsterman
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    In your opinion is there a cultic element in the independent Baptist movement, and if so, what should be done about it?
     
  2. thjplgvp

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    A cult is defined by their belief in Christ. Whom Christ is, is not a matter of speculation amongst IFB's therefore I submit there are no cults in the IFB.

    Whether a congregation is accused of worshiping their pastor or holding him in high esteem is a matter for the congregation and not the world at large. He and they stand or fall to their own master and not you or I.

    There are very clear directions on how to handle people in the local church and it is up to each individual local body to handle those problems percieved or otherwise.

    thjplgvp
     
  3. Mexdeaf

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    Strictly theologically speaking, thjplgvp is correct. Etymologically speaking, however, the dictionary also defines a 'cult' as being 'devoted attachment to, extravagant admiration for, a person, principle, etc.' So by that definition there are cults in the IFB movement.

    IMHO the 'cult' problem is really more of a 'parachurch ministry' problem. If one congregation puts their pastor on a pedestal, that is their problem. However, if that pastor gets a big writeup in the 'Flaming Church' periodical, and the editor of the periodical invites said pastor to preach some conferences with him and 'puffs' him so he becomes Bro. Baptist Bigshot, then it becomes something else altogether. Most, if not all of the IFB cults evolve from parachurch ministries.

    What to do about it? If'n I were a pastor in the USA, I would be very wary of what periodicals and parachurch ministries (especially Bible colleges) that I promoted to my folks, and whom I allowed to take the pulpit. Not to say that pastors don't, but sometimes they just don't guard the sheep like they ought to. One time when my former pastor was out of town, he had a missionary in to speak for us and the guy just ripped us up one side and down the other over strictly preference stuff. My pastor actually got up in the next service and apologized to us for allowing the guy to preach. He was much more careful to 'vet' his guest speakers after that.

    That's my take.
     
  4. tinytim

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    I know it is an extreme, but W
    Westboro is a cult....

    Other than that, I would hesitate calling any IFB a cult...Some are way off base, but to call them a cult is extreme.
     
  5. TheWinDork

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    it's there... of course, in fairness, that cult'ish element is prevalent in alot of denominations, not just the IFB. As an ex-pentecostal, I can tell you, first hand, that the cult'ish mindset can be found in those circles. and I sure it's in many other denominations as well. Not just in the IFB circles. :eek:

    -WTD :type:
     
  6. thjplgvp

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    Mexdeaf,

    No doubt there are some if not many who who fall into the "GQ" of the IFB. :smilewinkgrin: And you are also correct that some preachers should inspect the "pulpit supply" a little more carefully. Perhaps I am totally out of the loop up here in North East Oklahoma and to far removed from mainstream IFB's but I would be curious whom would be considered a cult figure per your post. Instead of posting said names just PM me.

    Also I am not familiar with all the men who are IFB though I am aware that some sections of the USA are more, hmmm, shall we say (IMO) extreme in their views on personal and ecclesiastical separation. I would still have a hard time believing them to be cultish though their congregations 'being caught up in pride' might be considered as such at times.

    thjplgvp
     
  7. gb93433

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    I have known some very godly IFB people and some who make ashamed to even know them being called Christians. I have known some who I would trust very much and others I would trust to be liars.

    This kind of stuff depends on the person not the politics in an organization.
     
  8. Hope of Glory

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    Most IFB churches that I am familiar with could be considered cultic in that they practice idolatry by worshipping the KJV, sometimes even the book itself and calling it a sin to deface it by writing notes in it.
     
  9. Ulsterman

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    OK, I understand the theological parameters employed in defining a "cult". Now take this quotation from David Cloud, (let's not turn this into a Cloud bashing exercise), who cites one IFB Pastor as believing that "UFOs are real, and if you doubt it you are an unbeliever. If _________ says two plus two equals five, and you don’t agree, you are an unbelieving “jack leg” and a “bloated egotist.” He believes the CIA has implanted brain transmitters in children, old people, blacks, and prisoners (p. 243) and operates underground alien breeding facilities (p. 256). He believes in blue aliens with blue blood (pp. 85, 86), black aliens with green blood (p. 244), and grey aliens with clear blood (pp. 310-11). He believes that Adam originally had water in his veins instead of blood (p. 185). He believes that the CIA flies around in space ships developed from technology gained when the government made a deal with aliens to allow them to kidnap children and use their organs as food and to experiment on U.S. citizens (pp. 291, 295-297)."

    Now this individual is highly regarded and followed by some IFB's. Indeed I have encountered missionaries, here in the UK, who quote him verbatim, and who accept every aspect of his teachings almost without question.

    Does this man, for example, represent a cultic element? Are there others like him, and should they not be treated similarly to J. W's, Mormons, Charismatics, & New Evangelicals. I am not asking if the IFB movement is cultic - I am an IFB, but I am asking if there are cultic elements sheltering under our banner, and if so how should they be dealt with?
     
  10. thjplgvp

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    Most certainly this is opinion and not fact. I could just as easily say most SBC's are cultic because they worship education. My statement would be foolish and I suspect yours is also.

    thjplgvp
     
  11. thjplgvp

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    Since I do not know the specifics of David Clouds inference I will not make any judgements. Though many of the men in the IFB are too quick to condemn those who do not agree with them this does not make them cult leaders. IMO this is foolish comparisons, are all fundamentalists terrorists?

    Are there progressives under our banner, are their reformed Calvinists under our banner, are their liberals under our banner, are their still people who preach against Billy Graham, long hair, and pants under our banner? Of course, praise God we still have liberty in Christ. If these men offend you tell them. It is still a matter for the local church and not a bill board.

    There are IFB men whom I would not walk accross the street to hear they are arrogant, they doctrinally deficient and somehow they have maintained a following as a pastor or evangelist. Their people have the word of God and have been told to study to show themselves approved unto God, their scriptures are the same as ours, and their people have the same admonitions as ours. Therefore come out from among them, choose you this day etc. If a man wishes to be ignorant let him be ignorant.

    Again I say there are no cults in the IFB.
    I gotta go teach my followers.:tongue3: Just joking.

    thjplgvp
     
  12. TheWinDork

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    You are referring to Peter S. Ruckman. and Yes, there are alot of people who parrot his beliefs and sayings. "Peter Ruckman says this..." and "Peter Ruckman Says that"... there's another kind of Parrot, the Hyles Parrot..."Jack Hyles said this" and "Jack Hyles Said that".... My question to these people is usually, "What did JESUS say?"

    Some people say Ruckmanites are cultists... I just say they're followers of a MAN..... Who's views toward the King James Version of the Bible are VERY EXTREME Contrary to what some people might think, not all KJV Believers are Ruckmanite. In fact, some of us tend to dislike him highly. I'm quite shocked that any missionary would even remotely even take ruckman and his wack job beliefs seriously.

    I, Like you, Enjoy David Cloud's writings, But I am not a "Cloud'ite" as some of referred to me as. In fact, very recently, David Cloud released an article telling his readers... "I am not your Guru, do not follow me, please!" Which was awesome of him to do, and it says alot about his personality and character.

    So, in closing, would I say these people are cultist? In some ways yes. and if they get into a Church, they can cause alot of trouble.

    -WTD
     
  13. bapmom

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    I would agree with thjlgp in what he has said. There are some in IFB who could be described as "cultic" in the sense that they follow a man very zealously. However, in our circles, the term "cult" is most often (if not exclusively) used to describe those who reject the true Jesus Christ. Thus I believe it is too inflammatory to describe them as cultics (in most cases).

    If you want to talk about those who follow a man so zealously that they won't even correct his grammar.........then I can talk to you there. For the most part I think these are just Christians who need a little more maturity. They do grow beyond that point eventually, IF we don't use the tactic of attacking the man they are following. The "attack" is often seen as a proof that the man really is of God.

    These are folks who believe in the Bible, and if they realize that they are elevating their preacher to a point beyond where he should be, than they will change. But it has to be done with the Holy Spirit's conviction, and without cutting down the man they admire.
     
  14. Keith M

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    Never been to an IFB church, but any church which puts any single Bible version on a pedestal and calls that Bible version the only true English Bible has a cultic element in it. This cultic manifestation is often called the King James Version Only (KJVO) movement, and it has been thoroughly discussed and re-discussed in the Bible Versions & Translations forum.
     
  15. Not_hard_to_find

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  16. Mexdeaf

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    Yup, yup. Maybe 'carnal' is a better definition that 'cult' for those folks. :thumbsup:

    I ain't gonna waste all day on this, you say to-MA-to, I say To-MAH-to. I say'cult' you say 'clique'. Let's just call the whole thing off.:smilewinkgrin:
     
  17. Ulsterman

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    WinDork, David Cloud was indeed referring to Peter Ruckman, but I didn't want to make this a thread about Ruckman specifically.

    It seems to me that we are employing a double standard here. If a man is a New Evangelical, in all liklihood his view of salvation, Christ, the Scriptures etc is orthodox, we take issue with him on the bounds (or lack of them in his fellowship), we separate from him. Yet within the ranks of Independent Baptist Fundamentalism a man may hold to all kinds of heresy and few it seems are willing to stick their head over the parapet and call for separation from him and his "clique" or cultic element. In this case the man calls for belief in UFO's as a characteristic of one's salvation. Yet the Scriptures teach "A man that is an heretick after the first and second admonition reject; Knowing that he that is such is subverted, and sinneth, being condemned of himself." (Titus 3:10-11).

    Surely those who are schismatic should be labelled as such. Our congregations should be warned about them and encouraged to separate from them and their adherents, every bit as much as ecumenical evangelicals, and the 'mainstream' of fundamental Baptists should speak as one voice in condemning such men and dissociating from them.
     
  18. TheWinDork

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    I understand. :)

    I know. and it's sad too. :( and most Pastor's I know, reject ruckman and his nutty beliefs. I don't know any Churches around here, (that I know of...anyways...) that are blantantly Ruckmanite. there's one that allows one of his students, Sam Gipp, in to preach, and yes, he does preach the Hyper-Dispansationalism and Ruckman's position on the KJV. I just happened to be there, when he came in to preach. I wasn't impressed with his story telling style and his over-use humor either. and I agree, people need to take a stand against Ruckman and seperate the wheat from the chaff... But as long as people are too scared to speak out. things won't ever change.

    Again, I agee 100%, as well, they should warn about Jack Hyles's brand of shallow Soulwinning and Preaching Salvation without repentance as well. there's an element of that as well, in the IFB Circle. and it's sad. There's so much more to salvation than just saying a Prayer. there has to be a HEART CHANGE, The Hyles people's retort is..."it's easy to be saved"... Sure it is, but true conversion comes from the HOLY SPIRIT... Not from saying some pre programmed prayer. Why do they think Romans 10:9-10 was written?

    Let me be clear... I am simply saying that REPENTANCE must be preached and explained to people. and alot of people do not do this... Repentance was Preached by people in the Bible, Jesus Christ, The Disciples....and yes today, it is largly ignored.

    let's see what preachers of old have said:

    So, you see.... Salvation without TRUE repentance.... is just saying a idle prayer.

    For more on this.... Please look at this link: http://www.wayoflife.org/fbns/repent.htm

    Anyways... enough of my preaching... :D

    -WTD
     
    #18 TheWinDork, Sep 4, 2006
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 4, 2006
  19. thjplgvp

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    Perhaps I am misreading the original OP, “In your opinion is there a cultic element in the independent Baptist movement, and if so, what should be done about it?”

    The responses have quite honestly amused me. Schisms are not cults there are schisms or potential schisms in nearly every local New Testament church and in each reference we are told what to do about it in scripture. 1 Corinthians 3:4 is not a passage on cults the people involved were not mislead but of their own volition assigned importance based on who led them or pointed them to Christ and in so doing left out the center of their salvation which is Jesus Christ.

    The response based on Titus 3:10-11 fails to take into consideration the meaning of heretic which is used only once in the N.T. and if I am not mistaken means ‘one who causes division’ when this person has been warned over and over (first and second admonition) and he fails to comply (to the requests of church leadership) reject him or exercise church discipline and remove him. This is consistent with scripture and would entail dealing with it privately and not publicly until there is no recourse but to do so. And once again it is a matter of the local New Testament Church.

    As far as fellowshipping with men who are evangelical I see no problem with it but as far as having an intimate fellowship that is produced by common beliefs and practices beginning with and centered in our theology its not going to happen but my separation is not total it has boundaries that have been established by myself. But I would not suggest that that man or his congregation is a cult.

    By the way heresy is a Catholic term that insinuates a position of belief that is not in accordance with the orthodox tenants, beliefs or views of the church. We being Baptists have adopted the term and reinterpreted it to mean a view that is held that is at odds with the general accepted beliefs of Baptist doctrine. So is a pastor who practices affusion rather than emersion a heretic?

    “What should be done about it?”

    Once again it boils down to a local church problem you and I can only limit or break off fellowship with another pastor whom we believe is way off base. We have no authority in the matter and there is no universal authority to appeal to other than Christ. There are no cults in the IFB but there are local congregations who need to learn to practice church discipline.

    Thjplgvp
     
  20. Ulsterman

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    Thjplgvp, I think you have misunderstood me. I am not saying there are cults within the IFB movement, but cult-like elements. Many cults grew out of orthodox congregations, perhaps if those individuals or groups concerned had been tackled early on when they were but a "cultic element" then they would never have become "cults".

    As to the affusion/immersion thing - I think we best reserve that for another thread.
     

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