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Cults 101


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Cults 101

  1. 1. CULTS 101<br />
  2. 2. What is a Cult?<br />The word cult comes from the Latin word cultus, which is a form of the verb colere, meaning "to worship or give reverence to a deity." <br />Cultus was a general word for worship, regardless of a particular god in question. <br />The Vulgate, a Latin translation of the Bible, uses the word in the general sense of worship, regardless of the deity in view (e.g., Acts 17:23,25) The Word is also used in Christian Latin texts that speaks of the worship of the one true God. It is understandable, then that the word cult would naturally be applied to a religious group of people. <br />
  3. 3. What is a Cult of Christianity?<br />“A cult of Christianity is a group of people, which claiming to be a Christian, embraces a particular doctrinal system taught by an individual leader, group of leaders, or organization, which (system) denies (either explicitly [definite] or implicitly [absolute]) one or more of the central doctrines of the Christian faith as taught in the sixty-six books of the Bible.” <br />
  4. 4. A very important note:<br />There are many classes of cults, some of them esoteric (like those in the occult), some of them can cause social and emotional harm through some form of mind-control, some of them extremely dangerous (like the DRGs,) but what we're dealing most in this subject are what others may call PSEUDO Christians or those groups that claim to be Christian groups but reject what the historic and biblical Christianity is all about including many of those "bible-based" groups that are manipulative by nature which we may call "bible-based" cult groups. <br />
  5. 5. How to Identify a Cult of Christianity<br />They reject the Triunity/Trinity of the Godhead <br />They do not believe in salvation by grace through faith in Jesus Christ <br />They do not believe in the finished work of Christ  <br />They do not believe in Jesus' bodily resurrection  <br />They have extra-biblical revelation <br />They believe that they alone are saved or will be saved <br />They do not believe in eternal punishment (hell fire) <br />They major on minor Doctrines  <br />They believe that their founder is the messenger of God   <br />They give more emphasis on experience than Doctrine  <br />They give more emphasis on direct revelations and visions from God  <br />They fix the dates of the end times and/or the return of Christ <br />They oppose proper Bible interpretation (hermeneutics)  <br />They occasionally get entangled in spiritism or occultism <br />They mix Christianity with other unbiblical Beliefs<br />
  6. 6. What is the Occult?<br />The word "occult" comes from the word occultusand it carries the idea of things hidden, secret and mysterious. Hoover list three distinct characteristics of the occult:  <br />The occult deals with things secret or hidden.<br />The occult deals with operations or events which seem to depend on human powers that go beyond the five senses. <br />The occult deals with the supernatural, the presence of angelic or demonic forces.  <br />
  7. 7. What is Heresy?<br />Coming from the Greek hairesis, it means “choice” or “thing chosen.” <br />In the Greek New Testament, however, heresy usually means “faction” or “division” but in later church usage, heresy referred to a denial of a defined doctrine of the Christian faith.<br /> “Heretical” is the adjectival form of the word heresy (e.g., a heretical teaching), while a “heretic” is one who espouses heresy. <br />
  8. 8. What is a Sect?<br />Originally from the Latin word sectawhich means “a faction,”  “school of thought” or “political party.” <br />American Heritage Dictionary defines a sect as “religious body, especially, one that has separated from a larger denomination.” “Within the Christian tradition, the sect constitutes a distinctive, persisting and separately organized group of believers who reject the established authorities, but who claim to adhere to the authentic elements of the faith.” <br />Thus, the term “sect” can refer to genuinely Christian groups that “have distanced” themselves from churches, and to some degree the predominant culture they represent, in order to emphasize one or more beliefs or practices they fell have been lost. <br />
  9. 9. What is a religion?<br />What is the meaning of “religion”? The word can be traced from Latin, religarewhich literally means, “to tie fast.” A person who belongs to a certain religion is perhaps “tied fast” to a set of beliefs, values and practices of a spiritual leader. <br />They have common beliefs and reverence for a supernatural power or powers which they regard as a creator (creators) or and governor (or governors) of the universe which through out the years have become an institutionalized system. <br />We can also define religion as any institutionalized system of belief of people trying to reach, to know and to understand a deity or deities.<br />
  10. 10. What is a false belief system?<br /> This is any system of belief that opposes the central teachings of the Christian faith. While all cults of Christianity are also false religion, not all false religion are cults of Christianity because not all religion claims to be Christian. <br />
  11. 11. What is a Dangerous Religious Group (DRG)?<br />These are any group which adheres to any religious beliefs but they tend to resort to violence, control, and exclusivism to achieve their spiritual goals thus inflicting physical and emotional harm which extends from within and without their own group. <br />
  12. 12. Iglesia Ni Cristo (1914)<br />Cult Organization<br />Iglesia Ni Cristo (1914) <br />Founder<br />Mr. Felix ManaloYsagun a.k.a. "Felix YsagunManalo" or "Ka Felix" (May 10, 1886-April 12, 1963 <br />President Executive Minister<br />Eraño G. Manalo (1925-present) <br />Main Headquarter<br />Quezon City, Philippines <br />Philippine Membership<br />Baptized Converts - 6,224 (1997); 7,933 (1998); 13,247 (1999) <br />
  13. 13. INC Population in the Philippines:<br />[Not an exact figure. Source:]1974-79: 500,000 - 1,400,0001984: 1,000,0001996: 1,680,0001998: 858,0001999: 3,000,000<br />
  14. 14. Source of Authority<br />Teachings and prophetic interpretations of Felix Y. Manalo.<br />The Holy Bible (any text version except those that doesn't support their theology)<br />Pasugo (first published 1939) or God's Message Magazine - contains doctrines and commentaries written by the INC ministers. <br />INC executive minister, authorities and local ministers.<br />
  15. 15. Countries Penetrated (66)<br />Africa - 8 <br />Central America - 4 <br />North America - (a) Canada - 6 (b) U.S.A. - 39 <br />South America - 2 <br />Caribbean - 1 <br />Asia - 23 <br />Australia & Oceania - 11 <br />Europe - 15 <br />
  16. 16. Unbiblical Beliefs<br />Vehemently oppose the Biblical revelation of the Triune God. <br />Believes in the absolute oneness of God the Creator in the Person of the Father. <br />Believes the Son as the literal Word (which has no pre-existence) who became man. He was given power by the Father to do supernatural miracles. He is not God. <br />Believes in an impersonal Holy Spirit, a power sent by the Father in the name of Jesus Christ. The Holy Spirit is not God but one of the spirits sent by God. <br />Believes the Father (Creator) and Son (creature) must be worshipped. The Son must be worshipped because the Father says so. <br />
  17. 17. Believes a person must hear the "gospel" from authorized INC messengers and INC ministers. They are the only ones who have God's Holy Spirit in order for them to understand the Bible.  <br />Believes the official name of the church is "Iglesiani Cristo" while other names are not. <br />Believes a person must be a member of the Iglesiani Cristo (INC), be water baptized, follow the church rules (must avoid the eating of "dinuguan," avoid joining labor unions, avoid court sessions, do block voting, be under compulsory church attendance, practice giving to the church) and perform his good deeds as an INC member in order for him to be saved. <br />Believes Felix Y. Manalo is the fulfillment of Isaiah 43:5-7; 46:11, and Rev. 7:2-3 prophecies. <br />They also believe in "soul sleep," a belief that at death, the souls dies. There is no consciousness. (A belief of the Seventh-Day Adventist Church - Ellen G. White). <br />