On April 3, 2009, the Worldwide Church of God officially changed its name to Grace Communion International. Throughout most of its history, the Worldwide Church of God - founded and led by Herbert W. Armstrong - was, theologically, a cult of Christianity. However, starting in the mid 1980’s under Joseph Tkach Sr, and later his son, Joseph Tkach Jr. – the church’s current leader – the Worldwide Church of God underwent major changes in doctrine to the extend that is …
Cults come in a variety of shapes and sizes. Not every person’s experience will fit neatly into these following categories, but this list should provide some idea of the range of cults and their reach into every walk of life.
Pastored by 'apostle' Bill Johnson, Bethel Church in Redding, California is an influential church in the so-called New Apostolic Reformation (NAR). The NAR is a heterodox movement in Protestant Christianity in which people follow present-day apostles and prophets who claim to govern the church and give new divine revelation that is needed to set up God’s kingdom on earth. Bethel's teachings and practices also identify the church as part of the equally problematic Word-Faith Movement.
The term ‘cult of Christianity‘ is used of a group, church or organization whose central teachings and/or practices are claimed to be biblical or representative of biblical Christianity, but which are in fact unbiblical and not Christian in nature. What are the things you should look for in determining whether or not a particular group is truly Christian in nature?
Fancy performing weddings, funerals, baptisms and other functions of the clergy? Well, you can: The Universal Life Church in Modesto, California, will ordain anyone as a minister — online, and for free.
Research resources on the 'Twelve Tribes,' an international 'community of religious communes.' Considered to be theologically a cult of Christianity, sociologically Twelve Tribes has cult-like elements as well.
Narconon is a residential rehab program aimed at treating substance abusers. The problem? Its approach is based on the medical views of Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard, considered by most to amount to nothing but quackery. TIME magazine has referred to Narconon as "a classic vehicle for drawing addicts into the cult." Updated: added the Narconon Lawsuits website, operated by a lawyer who is currently being threatened by a Narconon attorney for doing so. Read stories by people who allege …
"Where totalism exists, a religion, a political movement, or even a scientific organization becomes little more than an exclusive cult," Dr. Robert Jay Lifton writes. A discussion of what is most central in the thought reform environment can thus lead us to a more general consideration of the psychology of human zealotry. For in identifying, on the basis of this study of thought reform, features common to all expressions of ideological totalism, I wish to suggest a set of criteria …
Concerted efforts at influence and control lie at the core of cultic groups, programs, and relationships. Many members, former members, and supporters of cults are not fully aware of the extent to which members may be manipulated, exploited, or even abused. This list of social-structural, social-psychological, and interpersonal behavioral patterns commonly found in cultic environments may help you assess a particular group or relationship.
'Islamic terrorism' refers to terrorist acts committed by Muslim groups or individuals who are motivated by Islamic or Islamist views. Condemned by most Muslims, Islamic terrorism is inspired by the concept of 'lesser Jihad' -- 'holy warfare' against the enemies of Allah and Islam.