© 1999 James A. Fowler

You are free to download this outline provided it remains intact without alteration. You are also free to transmit this outline electronically provided that you do so in its entirety with proper citation of authorship included.


I. Defining the word "cult."

    A. From the Latin word cultus meaning "adoration," or "to care."
    B. English words "cultivate" and "culture" derived from such.
    C. Older English usage defined as "worship."
    D. Newer English usage defines as "unorthodox religious group."

II. Biblical evaluation of "false teaching."

    A. Scriptures which address such
         1. Deut. 13:1-11; 18:20-22
         2. Jere. 14:14,15; 23:16-22; 29:8,9
         3. Lam. 2:14
         4. Zech. 10:2
         5. Matt. 7:15-23; 23; 24:3-5,11,24,25
         6. Mk. 13:22,23
         7. Acts 20:28-32
         8. I Cor. 5:9-23; 15:12-14
         9. II Cor. 4:2; 6:14-17; 11:3,4,13-15
        10. Gal. 1:6-9; 4:15,17
        11. Eph. 5:11
        12. Phil. 3:18-21
        13. II Thess. 2:1-9; 3:6,11,14,15
        14. I Tim. 1:6-10,19,20; 4:1-4,7; 6:3-5,9,11,20,21
        15. II Tim. 2:17-21,23-26; 3:1-9,13; 4:2-4,10,14,15
        16. Titus 1:10-16; 3:9-11
        17. Heb. 13:9
        18. II Peter 2:1-8,12-22; 3:3,4
        19. I John 2:18,19; 4:1-3,5,6
        20. II John 7-11
        21. III John 9,10
        22. Jude 3-19
    B. Personal study exercise:
         1. In two columns determine what the above passages indicate about "false teaching" and
             "false practices."
         2. Determine also from the above passages whether there is any response suggested, and
             whether it is to be passive or active.

III. Cultic theology. Denies or distorts the Biblical truths about:

    A. God, being personal, infinite, eternal, singular, immutable, supernatural, sovereign, Spirit,
         transcendent, immanent, good, triune.
    B. Jesus Christ, being deity, pre-existent, human, historical, conceived of Holy Spirit, savior of all
         mankind, resurrected, presently manifested.
    C. Holy Spirit, being deity, personal, presently operative.
    D. Man, being a creature, dependent, mortal, sinful, constituted of spirit and soul and body.
    E. Sin, as transgressing God's character, leading to death and judgment, and continuing to be
         manifested in Christian's lives.
    F. Salvation, as necessitated by sin, initiated by the grace of God, made available to all by the
          death and resurrection of Jesus, and received by faith alone.
    G. Bible, as complete, final, authoritative, inspired, providentially preserved, and properly

IV. Cultic methodology.

    A. Followers of men.
    B. Authoritarianism.
    C. Dependency.
    D. New Revelation.
    E. Overemphasize particular truths.
    F. Semantic perversion.
    G. Philosophical obfuscation.
    H. Psychological pre-occupation.
    I. Manipulate God.
    J. Faith in faith, principles, promises.
    K. Exclusivism.
    L. Pride.
    M. Isolationism.
    N. Fear.
    O. Subjectivity.
    P. Secretive.
    Q. De-emphasize physical.
    R. Socialistic.
    S. Conformity.
    T. Busyness.
    U. Divisive.
    V. Critical.
    W. Hostile.
    X. Lack assurance.
    Y. Defensive.
    Z. Syncretistic.
    AA. Self-serving.
    BB. Financial exploitation.
    CC. Sexual exploitation.
    DD. Self-authenticating.
    EE. Legalistic.
    FF. Break down family unit.
    GG. Proselytize.
    HH. Deception.
    II. Political, social attachments.
    JJ. Prophetic abuse.

V. Response to cultic teaching and practice.

    A. Allow life of Jesus to be lived out in your behavior - Gal. 2:20
         (If Christianity is the life of Jesus Christ, then any false expression or misrepresentation of
          such is "cultic.")
    B. Preach Christ -
    C. Don't go on a "witch-hunt" trying to identify "cultists"
    D. Love one another - Matt. 5:44; I Tim. 1:5-7; 2:23-25; I Peter 3:15
    E. Pray for those so involved - I Tim. 2:1
    F. Be willing to give defense of your faith - I Peter 3:15
    G. May be called upon to
         1. Contend - Jude 3
         2. Correct - II Tim. 2:24-27
         3. Refute - Titus 1:9
         4. Admonish - II Thess. 3:15



 Outlines index