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All articles in category Cults and other religions

Scientology
September 2006
Cults and other religions

Scientology

'The fastest growing religious movement on earth' - that is what Scientology claims for itself. It is a staggering claim and there is no firm evidence to substantiate it. However, the official web-site reports that Scientology has 'more than 3,200 churches, missions and groups in 154 countries'.In Great Britain they claim a membership of…

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Catholicism and the Emergent Church
June 2006
Cults and other religions

Catholicism and the Emergent Church

'Not since the Jesus Movement of the early 1970s has a Christian phenomenon been so closely entangled with the self-conscious cutting edge of US culture. Frequently urban, disproportionately young, overwhelmingly white, and very new - few have been in existence for more than five years - a growing number of churches are joining the…

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What is the ‘Emerging church’?
May 2006
Cults and other religions

What is the ‘Emerging church’?

The Emerging, or Emergent, Church movement has already become a significant part of the evangelical landscape in the USA and is starting to make its presence felt this side of the pond too. In this book Don Carson argues that we, as evangelical Christians, need to become conversant with it.Getting to gripsThis is a…

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Islam today
April 2006
Cults and other religions

Islam today

This article was first published in The Spectator (12 November 2005) under the title 'Will London burn too?' Trevor Phillips, chairman of the Commission for Racial Equality, has warned recently of 'sleepwalking our way to segregation'. Although he was not speaking principally about Muslims, they have become perhaps the most dominant minority group in…

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Putting asunder
March 2006
Cults and other religions

Putting asunder

Last month I wrote about the control that the Roman Catholic Church (RCC) seeks to exercise over marriage. One example is their claim to have the power to annul marriages - 'putting asunder' what God has joined together. Let us look at this more closely.Human nature being what it is, it is sadly necessary…

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Pietism
February 2006
Cults and other religions

Pietism

Last month we began to look at Pietism - the -seventeenth century reaction against an intellectual and abstract approach to gospel truth that arose in Europe -following the Reformation. Pietism taught a practical, active piety involving good works; daily self-examination; daily Bible study (with practical application of its moral teaching); emotionalism in prayer; a…

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Marriage and Roman Catholicism
February 2006
Cults and other religions

Marriage and Roman Catholicism

The Bible teaches that marriage is a creation ordinance, belonging to all mankind. As sovereign Lord over his creation, God ordained that male and female should, at an appropriate time, leave mother and father and be married: 'therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother and shall cleave unto his wife, and…

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Islam and Christianity
February 2006
Cults and other religions

Islam and Christianity

Ever since Islam was founded in the seventh century, there have been Christian communities living as minorities in Muslim-majority contexts. Their circumstances have varied at different times and in different places, but almost always the Christians experience some degree of discrimination or hostility. This repeated pattern is not a coincidence - it arises from…

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Indulgences today
January 2006
Cults and other religions

Indulgences today

In his Expository Thoughtson Matthew 12:38-50, J. C. Ryle highlights the danger of a partial reformation. Writing at the end of the 19th century, Ryle commented on the unclean spirit who went back to dwell in his old house taking seven worse spirits with him: 'Delivered as they were from heathen darkness by the…

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Modern Christian Mysticism
November 2005
Cults and other religions

Modern Christian Mysticism

VisualisationOur next subject is 'visualisation'. Some years ago, Karen Mains wrote a book, Lonely no more, in which she chronicled her journey into Jungian psychology, visualisation and the occult. By doing so she effectively torpedoed the ministry of 'Chapel of the Air' run by herself and her husband David.She denied any involvement with the…

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Modern Christian Mysticism
October 2005
Cults and other religions

Modern Christian Mysticism

4. LabyrinthsMost evangelical Christians probably would not recognise themselves in the previous discussion of mysticism (ET July to August), but there are subtle influences at work drawing believers in this direction even without their knowledge. While firmly denying any part in classical mysticism many are actually participating in time-honoured mystical practices.Many are doing this…

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Modern Christian Mysticism
September 2005
Cults and other religions

Modern Christian Mysticism

3.   Contemplative prayerThe heart and soul of mysticism, Christian or otherwise, is the art of meditation or contemplation. Contemplative prayer (also known as ‘centring prayer’ and ‘breath prayer’) is rapidly gaining popularity and acceptance in evangelical circles, so it is vital that we understand exactly what is being promoted and why we are concerned.First…

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