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THEO 301 (Fa '15) T03 - Understanding Cultic Growth

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by

Hartmut Scherer

on 2 September 2015

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Transcript of THEO 301 (Fa '15) T03 - Understanding Cultic Growth

Understanding Cultic Growth
Why would someone join?
Who is vulnerable to joining a cult
Financial security
Intellectual
Emotional
Psychological
General profile of potential cult member
Recruitment techniques
Everyone
old
educated
rich
young
previously religious
poor
those in need
atheists
Disenchanted with conventional religious establishments
Sometimes disenchanted with society as a whole
Has a need for encouragement and support
Emotionally needful
.
.
.
.
Lacks a sense of purpose
Financially needful
.
.
Focusing on needs
(by asking questions)
Scripture twisting
Practical help
"Love Bombing"
(constant positive affection)
Evangelism
it attracts people who may have a weak personality, or are easily led
cults give people approval, acceptance, purpose, and a sense of belonging
answering questions that a person has
cults may share resources among members and increase the sense of dependence and indebtedness to the group
Spiritual
it could be appealing for reasons of moral rigidity and purity, promises of exaltation, redemption, a higher consciousness, or a host of other rewards
How should we deal with cultists?
DO NOT
attend any prepared Bible studies, seminars, or lesson series with cultists
DO NOT
get sidetracked by irrelevant issues
DO NOT
talk
down to him/her
or have a “holier than thou” attitude
DO NOT
enter long discussions without agreeing on a common ground
DO NOT
stop praying!
DO
offer them literature; know your limitations and your local resources.
DO NOT
argue
DO NOT
push your church or denomination
DO
present Christ not an organization
DO
"And the Lord’s servant . . . must
be kind to everyone
, able to teach, not resentful."
2 Tim 2:24 (NIV)
DO
concentrate only on fundamental issues—Christ, sin, and salvation
DO
offer positive, personal testimony of the truth
DO
face the question of authority. The issue is that their source of authority is opposed to the teaching of Holy Scripture.
DO
follow up! Cultists are seldom won on the first conversation
Sources and Image Credit
Adopted chapter 67, "NRM Introduction" in
Handbook of Religion
, loc 9548 and Matt Slick,
Right Answers to Wrong Beliefs
, p. 67ff and adapted "Seven Do's and Don'ts" of "Cults: What to Say When the Tacks Are Brass" at http://www.fehq.org/cults.htm
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Full transcript