Rightly Dividing The Word Of Truth
For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead,
to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of
teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear.  II Timothy 4:3

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Word Of Faith

What Is A Cult?


Statement Of Faith




So What Is A Cult?

When asking the question, "So What Is A Cult? we could start by defining the term cult. When most people think of a cult they think of groups like People's Temple founded by Jim Jones who moved to Jonestown, Guyana  and lead or forced over 900 people to commit suicide. Or the Branch Davidians in Waco, TX lead by "David Koresh." He had 80 followers who died in a fire during a stand off with the ATF. Others think of the 39 members of the Heavens Gate group lead by Marshall Applewhite (aka Do) who in 1997 committed suicide, so they could, as Applewhite taught them, could  move to the "next level above human." In defining a group as a cult, most people will not have a problem using the term when referring to these groups.

But are these extreme groups and the death of their followers the reason they are called a cult? No!

Two of the three groups mentioned above, the Branch Davidians and Peoples Temple, started out as Christian denominations, but as time pasted the leader moved from true Bible doctrine and began to teach false doctrine and thus became a cult. So from this we see that the reason these groups are called Cults is based solely on the doctrine they taught. Also the fact is they became a cult long before most people even knew the groups existed.

So to define what a cult is we see it is a group of people, which claiming to be Christian, embraces a particular doctrinal system taught by an individual leader, group of leaders, or organization. This leader or organization denies, either explicitly or implicitly, one or more of the central doctrines of the Christian faith as taught in the sixty-six books of the Bible.

But can a group that teaches doctrine that contradicts the fundamental teaching of the Bible and is defined as a cult ever abandon the false teachings of it's founders and come back to the truth of the Bible and move away from the false teachings it once embraced as true doctrine. The answer is "yes" and it is happening now with the doctrinal shift from the past of the "World Wide Church of God" founded by the late Herbert W. Armstrong, and for a time lead by his son Garner Ted Armstrong. The changes are not complete and they have not totally abandoned the heretical doctrines of their founder Herbert W. Armstrong, but this move in the right direction shows that those who were once in darkness can see the light and turn from false doctrine to the truth of the Bible.

One group we will look at is The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints also know as The Mormons. Though the group claims to be a Christian denomination they differ from historic Christianity in many points. The LDS church does not believe in the Christian doctrine of the Trinity as taught by the historic Christian church. Which is that, "Within the nature of the one true and living God there are three person. Who are co-equal, co-eternal and co-existent." What the Mormon's teach is that the Father, Son and Holy Spirit are three gods. The say that the Bible is unreliable and can be relied on only "in so far as it is translated correctly." They also say that when the Bible and the book of Mormon differ, the Bible is wrong and the Book of Mormon is correct. But when the Bible vs. The Book of Mormon are examined you find vast amounts of support for the Bible from archeology, history and fulfilled prophecy. However the Book of Mormon has little or no support from archeology and history outside the LDS church. Just one point that the Book of Mormon teaches for history is that the first people in North American were Israelites who came here and the Native American Indians are the descendents of these Israelites. But now with advancements in science we can examine the science of  DNA vs. The Book of Mormon and learn if this is really the case. Many people know very little about the doctrines and teachings of the LDS church, including many Mormon's themselves. Converts to the LDS church rarely hear anything about the older and sometimes stranger doctrines of the LDS church. Many people know only that they have the Book of Mormon and that they practiced polygamy at some point in the past. Some people even think that Mormon's still practice polygamy with all the LDS splinter groups in the news recently. But the truth is that the main body of Mormon's, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, with it headquarters in Salt lake City, UT  "officially" stopped polygamy in 1880.

But many will ask, "Do Members of the Mormon church leave and come to faith in the Jesus Christ of the Bible?" Yes they do. I and my wife were both converts to the LDS church and personally know many who have come to Christ out of the LDS church. Here is a powerful story of one very strong temple Mormon who had fought for the LDS faith at every turn and came to a saving faith in Jesus Christ and left the LDS church.

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