A cult may be defined as a group of people who have some religious beliefs or religious practices which other people around them refer to as strange or sinister when compared to their own beliefs. However, being different does not necessarily make one or a group of persons members of a particular cult. They are just different and most differences are normally differences from one denomination to another. There is a huge difference between a cult and a denomination.
From the Christian perspective, a cult is group of religious persons who deny or alter in one way or another the fundamental truths of the Bible. They actually claim to be part of a religion but at the same time deny the important truths of the particular religion. The following are some of the tell tales to prove that one has involved him or herself in a cult:
- The members or leadership are persistent and aggressive in recruiting new members. The new members are given the duty of recruiting new individuals to the cult.
- The members take loyalty oaths or sign to membership applications.
- The leadership style therein is authoritative whereby one person is viewed as the leader and whatever he or she says or instructs is viewed as the way to go.
- Cults operate in the culture of secrecy whereby secret groups and gatherings share information that outsiders are not allowed to be aware of. Outsiders (even family and friends) are avoided and little or no information is provided to them.
- Members of cult view everything as a threat to their religion. Former members of the cult as well as contact persons are viewed as suspects because the cult members feel their secrets will be known to all and sundry.
- Everyone is so friendly and positive while other emotions are disallowed.
- There is minimum resource and labor used to run the cult.