Marks of a Cult

What is a cult? The Bible tells us, "beware of another gospel." (Galatians 1:6-9; 2 Corinthians 11:3-15; 2 Timothy 3:1-16 and 4:3-4; Colossians 2:8-23; Proverbs 14:12)

The following marks of a cult:

I. Deify Man
Man may become a god. Man only needs to "progress" (as defined by the cult and only with the cult's help) to become like God. (Genesis 3:1-13; Isaiah 14:9-19 [the same sin Satan was guilty of]; 2 Thessalonians 2:3-4)

II. Humanize God
Deny that God is ONE eternally. Deny the Trinity. There are "many" gods, and redefine God to man's image. (Romans 1:21-25; Isaiah 43:10- 11 and 44:6-8; Psalm 90:2)

III. Minimize Sin
Instead of man's very nature being separated from God, sin is only specific acts that through good works can be perfected. Hell is redefined into bland or nonexistent punishment. (Romans 3:23; 1 John 1:8-10; Gal 3:10; Revelation 20:14-15)

IV. Ostracize the Scriptures
They will add additional scripture and claim that there is error in God's Word. Continual change of meaning in scripture. (Luke 21:33; Revelation 22:18-19; Isaiah 40:8; Acts 17:11)

V. A Different Jesus
Jesus is not the Son of God, but rather a son of A god - or He was just a prophet -- or a created god - or our elder brother -- or just a good man or a teacher. (Isaiah 9:6-7; John 1:1-14; Colossians 1:15-20; Hebrews 1:1-12)

VI. A Different Salvation
Deny Salvation by Grace, by the shed blood of Jesus on the Cross at Calvary and by true repentance of sin by a sinner. Usually will not see a cross on the cult's structures. Salvation must be by works, and quite often by a system dictated by the cult. (Ephesians 2:8-10; Galatians 3:1-26; 1 Peter 2:24)

VII. A Different Spirit
The Holy Spirit is changed into a "good force" or impersonal entity. Deny God the Spirit. Spiritism is, generally, rampant by having visits from spirits, counterfeit miracles, etc. (1 Timothy 4:1; Deuteronomy 18:9-14; John 14:17)

VIII. Modern-day Prophet(ess)
Founded by man, followed by others, who claim to be God's one true spokesman on Earth. Accountable to no one but God. Gives revelation and scripture. (Jeremiah 23; Matthew 24:24; Hebrews 1:1-2; Deuteronomy 13:1-10 and 18:20-22)

IX. The Only True Church
Their group is the only true way to perfection. The word "truth" used over and over. Unless you are an active part of their organization, you are lost. Deny the spiritual union of believers. (Colossians 1:18; Ephesians 1:22-23; Romans 12:1-8)

X. Secrets (Closed to the Outside World)
Secret rituals, temples and doctrines. Finances not public. No communion with Christian body. All others are outsiders. No one knows the truth as they (and their prophet) do. Persecution complex.

XI. Cannot Leave
Always testing loyalty of followers. Obedience (blind) is primary.   Leaders have all power -- are followers intermediary with God -- not Jesus. Only way to leave is by excommunication, threats. Spiritual bondage, fear and guilt most common. If you leave, you are cut off from all in cult.

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