The Baptist Pillar ©      Brandon Bible Baptist Church     1992-Present

"...The church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth."
I Timothy 3:15

What Do They Believe?

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"Then if any man shall say unto you, Lo, here is Christ, or there; believe it not. For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall show great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect." Matt 24:23-24

"And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works." II Cor 11:14-15

The superstructure of cultism is built upon the foundation of past religious speculations. Since each cult claims to have a new and true revelation of that truth, their beliefs are borrowed from past religious systems. Modern cults also borrow bits and pieces from each other, some just trace back to classic religions, only echoing a variation of a theme developed millennia ago. The devil can only mimic God and his truth by just twisting it just enough to produce an erroneous lie about reality. Only by understanding their nature of doctrine and by observing how much they have borrowed from the ancient teachers will we ever learn to understand them and the danger of their deceptions.

To them, God is not a personal deity to whom one is morally accountable, but a potential force that lies dormant within man. Once the hope for experiencing this spiritual power and knowledge is realized, the ideas of heaven, hell, sin, judgment, and salvation are no longer of any value. Communion with God is not the result of a reasoned search for reconciliation and peace with The Creator, but to just simply deny they exist. The Western mind of today, drained of all its spiritual heritage, is now absorbed by the wisdom” of the East.

As a result, many Christians pay lip service to church, while philosophically adhering to an occultic concept of life. They reject the orthodox scriptural interpretations of historic Christianity by redefining most Biblical terms into a language that is foreign to the meaning of these terms. All cults have one thing in common - they consider the claims of Christ to be optional, or not essential, to salvation. Instead of reaching out to meet the needs of a searching generation, they leave an individual in need of governmental control or remedial deprogramming. Laws that were once designed to protect our freedoms could come back and haunt us, putting any with a stringent belief system in dire peril.

Many Christians today are afraid of cults because they use the same terms, they quote Bible, reverence Christ, voice harmony, and use the same evangelical clichés. What the Christian fails to understand is that cultists redefine orthodox terminology to fit their own belief system. Let it never be forgotten that cultists are experts at lifting texts out of their contexts, without proper concern for the laws of language, or the principles of Biblical interpretations. "Any text, without its context, is a pretext. Three of the most common words of today's spiritual outlook are, Enlightenment, Meditation, and Reincarnation.

Enlightenment: nirva, satori, God-realization, expanded consciousness, when all awareness is "stripped away", whatever remains is the goal of Enlightenment.

Man's mind is an obstacle on the pathway to a higher plain. Truth is not perceived as an absolute of reality. Its reality must be experienced by diligently seeking psychic or supernatural input. Once the shell of the flesh is left behind, time and space have no boundaries, giving demons opportunity to guide "the true self' as it searches the essence of life out of the body. This "oneness of the ego leads many to conclude that they have attained "Christ consciousness", or even that they are God. This becomes perfectly logical because Creator and creature are now one. "Self' becomes the judge of all actions and the gauge of all truth. All enlightenment and cultic systems operate on three premises:

I. Mind and body attain truth by confining sensory capacity;

II. A universal unity of spirit; and

III. Time, space and matter are all illusionary, and that sin is a figment of the mind and not a state                    of conduct.

This the real reason behind the mystic's search for illumination; it is to hide from the searchlight of God's Holy Spirit.

Reincarnation: The word takes its root, incarnation, from "incarnis"a Latin word meaning "in the flesh."

Reincarnation refers to the regeneration of the soul as it passes into a new body, from another. (Don't get this confused with II Cor.5:17; Titus 3:5). This process continues until the soul reaches perfection and merges back with its source; God. Generally, man seeks something to fill the space that is left by the denial of God. Western man has traded his unbelief for a new religious system, with reincarnation as its major foundation.

Almost all Eastern cults base their quest for higher consciousness on the myth of reincarnation, promising freedom from the confines of moral guilt, and white-washing over the reasons for suffering and injustice. Our Lord has spoken specifically though. "Then shall the dust return to the earth as it was: and the spirit shall return unto God who gave it"…"And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment:"…"There is no man that hath power over the spirit to retain the spirit; neither hath he power in the day of death: and there is no discharge in that war; neither shall wickedness deliver those that are given to it. (Eccl. 12:7; Heb. 9 27; Eccl. 8:8)

Meditation: "the mind is an enemy of the spirit; therefore it must be set aside by techniques that cause it to cease functioning." Mystical meditation involves a process of shutting down the mind.

Meditation is as old as the Hindu Vedic (Hindu Bible). The "Mantra" is chanting a word, or syllable, over and over, causing the neurosensory faculties of the mind to become tired, and therefore, shut down. Mystical meditation seeks to reach into "self', the divine inner God.

Biblical meditation reaches out for fellowship with God, through the shed blood of his Son. The Bible tells us to meditate (to contemplate and consider) on His Word. "This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success"…"Meditate upon these things; give thyself wholly to them; that thy profiting may appear to all." (Josh 1:8; I Tim. 4:5) There are two reasons why we are to meditate on them: "Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me"…"Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.” (John 5:39; II Tim. 2:15)

Hinduism: Banaras is India's "holy city", with the river Ganges as their most sacred place. This river supplies thousands with their daily water. Its murky green colour is the result of dumping raw sewage, human waste from the 800,000 souls, dead cattle, ashes, and dead bodies into its waters. The people strip to bathe and drink in its waters to gain the favour of the mother goddess of the Ganges, always being within view of a three foot lingam (a phallic symbol of fertility).

Just down river from Banaras is Sarnath, the birth place of "the enlightenment of Buddha", the very essence of Hinduism, and perhaps the oldest organized religion. It is also said to be religious anarchy in action, with its tentacles reaching 680 million and more. Hinduism’s deities – an infinite array of them - are worshiped in the fashion resembling witchcraft. The divisions are more devotional than theological. One's favourite deity tends to classify the school and ritual which one ascribes to. "Brahma - creator", "Vishnu - preserver", and "Shiva -destroyer" comprise the Hindu Trinity.

The precepts of Hinduism go back at least 4000 years. Their symbol is called "svastika-swastika", denoting "the duality of the universe and implied good luck". Its doctrines of Karma and Reincarnation insure the most evil person a second chance. The polytheistic and idolatrous practices are pagan forms of worship that constitute holding hands with demonic forces. Sadus may lie on a bed of nails and not speak for years, or stand on one leg for months, holding out an arm until it's atrophied. Cows are believed to be the mother-goddess of life, a swami once testifying: "Since the cow is a god, the cow is holy; therefore, whatever comes out of the cow is holy." With this in mind, its urine is drank to purify the soul, aged cows are provided rest homes, and two women can be found fighting over fresh dung.

Buddhism: Buddha was born in 563 BC in Lumbibi, India, near Nepal's border. Maya, the wife of a ruler, dreamt one night that a white elephant had sex with her, conceiving Buddha, the "Enlightened One". He was known by his father's family name, Shakyamuni, but some devotees called him Tathagata- "Truth winner" or Bhagara- "Lord". Buddha believed that grief can only be ended when man ends all his cravings; therefore three premises were conceived:

I. Existing is suffering;

II. Desire causes suffering;

III. Ridding all desire ends suffering.

Desire can be killed by his "Eightfold Plan - Four Noble Truths": 1. Right Belief, 2. Right Resolve, 3. Right Speech, 4. Right Conduct, 5. Right Livelihood, 6. Right Effort, 7. Right Thought, 8. Right Concentration.

Self-control, not the remission of sin, is its central doctrine. "Seek the Impersonal for the eternal man, and having sought him out, look inward - thou art Buddha."

Buddhism seems simple, but it's one of the more complex of the Oriental faiths. There are two main schools of thought: the liberal Theravada - "The Way of the Elder-, also known as Hinayana - "The Lesser Vehicle, and the conservative Mahayana - "The Greater Vehicle, who use more extreme rites.

Tibetan Buddhism: Padina Sambhava, a pagan exorcist, brought Buddhism to Tibet in 747 AD. Many followed his beliefs, mixing in spells and secret rites, with some devotees practicing acts of sex, designing prayer wheels, chanting Mantras, and creating mystical diagrams. They believed that one look of a Mandala (a star) could lead you to Nirvana (a heavenly state). A major Tibetan Buddhist text is the Tibetan Book of the Dead, and the Dalai Lama's view on life is: "If the situation can be fixed, there is nothing to worry about; if it can't be fixed, there is nothing to worry about; After all, things are due to past karma."

Zen Buddhism: "logic and reason are taboo.”..."Be nothing, think nothing." Zen may be defined as concentration with an empty mind. There are two schools: Rinzia (started in 1101 AD.)-"it could come in a flash" and Soto (started in 1227 AD)-"it must be gradually attained." The goal is maximum well-being with minimum effort. The original ideas of Buddhism have degenerated into having Buddha as god and nirvana as a post-mortem heaven (purgatory).

Taoism: Taoism is not a major world religion, but its teachings influence many other cults. Lao-Tse was born in 604 BC in China; Lao-Tse - "wise old child" Its teachings were progressive in its inception, culminating in The Taoism Bible, called Tao Te Ching- "The Way of Virtue", with its basic doctrines being three-fold: compassion, moderation, humility. Goodness, simplicity, gentleness and purity are also virtues (Not very original: "But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law." Gal. 5:22-23). The most important aspect of Taoism is its philosophy of "dualism of the universe" called Yin (evil and feminine) and Yang (good and masculine). Modern Taoism can be classed as pantheistic (God is everywhere and in everything), involving idols and familiar spirits.

Islam: "There is no god but God, and Muhammad is the messenger of God." These 10 words comprise the Muslim (Moslem) -"one who submits" Shahada - "confession of faith"; Islam - "submission". Inshallah - if God wills."

Muslim's see every event as Allah's divine will. Muslim's also view the world in black and white. There are two classes of people, Darul-Islam - "those who have submitted" and Darul-harb- "those who resist.

Islam started with the visions of a camel driver born in Mecca, 570 A.D., named Ubu'l-Kassim-Muhammad. His travels through the Arabian deserts exposed him to other tribes and their worship of pantheon gods, and to Jews and Christians with one supreme god. It was during this time that He was struck by some strange disorder, causing trances and unconsciousness. He questioned these seizures whether divine or evil, but his wife encouraged him to ignore them. With the subsiding of these occurrences, Muhammad came forth proclaiming that the angel Gabriel choked him into submission, to proclaim that the Lord God created man from a clot of blood. (Similar isn't it?) What his visions entailed is summarized in Islam's sacred book, The Koran-"the recitation."

Its message of wealth and gain depicts their true god. Muhammad- "the praised one", sanctioned plundering and raiding caravans to support his spiritual quests, and it is he who forged the Islamic concept of the Jihad, an exertion by a holy war, advocating military ventures in God's name with the promise of translation into paradise. What is the key to Islam's past and present successes? The simplicity and directness of the Koran.

Islam does accept the virgin birth of Christ and the scriptural accounts of his miracles, but their interpretations are wrong. The Bible is seen as a corrupt rule of faith. The Koran says it was Ishmael, not Isaac, who Abraham laid on the altar (Gen. 22:1-13 proves them wrong).

Some practices are: mass services for the dead; permitting polygamy; using rosary beads; and teaching that Christ, when he returns, will convert the world to Islam and enforce "The Law of Apostasy". Its code of ethics, called "Sharia", enforces the morals and doctrines of the Koran. One who leaves Allah for Christ, walks from life with Islam, to the death of being an outcast. Islam's rigidly defined worship clearly explains the destination of the soul. All other religions are satanic and Allah alone is to be worshiped. All Muslims have a sacred mission: to bring, (by force if necessary), all under the submission of Allah.

Sufism: This most exotic sect of Islam proposes to reach God by entering a trance-like-state induced by dancing. These "whirling dervishes" emphasize union with God through meditation and ritual, rather than "Koranic" obedience. They combine Islam and Christianity, with Gnostic beliefs and doctrines. Sufism has attracted more than 6000 adherents. Its goal of achieving a higher state of mind through chants and meditation by dancing blends well with the religious cults of today; the Charismatic Movement being no exception. The greatest principle of Sufism is "lshq allah ma'bud lillah "-“God is love, lover, beloved." It virtually ignores the question of sin and redemption, lacking fixed doctrinal structure, so that belief resides in a subjective interpretation of truth. The Whirling Dervish trance state resembles that of Biblically defined demonic possession.

Black Muslims: In 1913 a North Carolina black man named Timothy Drew, (who later became Noble Drew Ali) founded The Moorish-American Science Temples in Newark, New Jersey, stating that Negroes were of Moroccan (Moorish) origin and that Jesus was a black man killed by white Romans. Many of his teachings were taken from the cult book, The Aquarian Gospel, written by Levi Dowling.

A door-to-door salesman named Wallace Fard claimed he was the reincarnation of the deceased Drew Ali, and was sent from Mecca to America, to redeem the black man from the devil. In 1935, Fard mysteriously disappeared and Elijah Muhammad, the messenger of Allah, recruited black prisoners during the war, declaring that Fard was God - the Messiah of the Christians and the Mahdi of the Muslims. The white beast (created by a mad black scientist), has been allowed to reign for 6000 years, and 1914 was the time that this was to end. The time for Islam and the divine black man, guided by Allah, to rise and claim the world, had come. Malcolm X was Muhammad's spokesman until his murder in 1965. The Koran is the primary source with the Bible also as a source of truth, without white man's interpretation. Ghetto youth who feel used by the white man are promised the vision of a back ruled nation.

Astrology: In America there are over 32 million people involved with this ritualism, with three times as many Astrologers than Catholic clergy. Theopathy, witchcraft, numerology, and other forms of the occult have always appealed to the dark side of mankind, but has been made "more acceptable" because of followers such as Carl Jung, one of the Fathers of Modern Psychology.

Fifty centuries ago the Chaldeans of the Babylonian Empire, watched the stars and concluded that the planets were gods. Other methods of fortune-telling often proved unpredictable, but the stars were always fixed, with the earth considered as the center of the universe. There are actually 14 constellations in the Zodiac and not just 12. The predictions of the horoscopes are not only unreliable, but also prone to a high degree of error. The Chaldeans were not a stupid people, but highly advanced. The tower of Babel (Gen. 11:1-4) was not to reach God in heaven but to gaze AT the heavens. Archaeologists have found fragmented zodiac signs on what is believed to be top sections of the Tower itself, seeming to confirm this. Consulting one's horoscope casually is an act defying the most solemn warnings of Scripture. (Lev. 20:3-4) Astrology is a tool of the Devil, used to entice man to replace trust in God, with a dependence on the uncertainties of the horoscope.

Spiritualism-Spiritism: This maybe mankind's oldest and deadliest form of religion. From the shamans of old and the seers of paganism, to today's psychics of TV and doctors of hypnotism and magnetic healings, spiritualism has an unbroken history in every culture. The National Spiritualistic Association boasts of more than 160 churches in America today. The essence of Spiritism lies in communicating with the dead. Spiritualists believe Pentecost was the "greatest seance in history" and that Jesus was the master medium of all time. Spiritualism today capitalizes on the emotions of those who have lost a loved one and desire to speak with them.

Religion of any form, whether it be Spiritism or Evangelical Christianity, that is contrary to the whole of the Word of God, is the masquerade of demonic forces, with its motivating force being Satan. "He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.” John 8:44

How many souls are yet out there seeking God's enlightenment, and we are doing so very little to do the only thing we were left on the earth to do? "Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe ALL THINGS whatsoever I have commanded you." Matt 28 19-20

Sources: The Kingdom of the Cults by Walter Martin, and Larson’s New Book of Cults by Bob Larson