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Douglas E. Cowan's Bearing False Witness?: An Introduction to the Christian PDF

By Douglas E. Cowan

ISBN-10: 0275974596

ISBN-13: 9780275974596

From Hare Krishna to the Latter-Day Saints, and from Jehovah's Witnesses to the hot Age, spiritual pluralism in North American offers evangelical Protestantism with major demanding situations. stating more recent non secular teams cults, aberrant sects, and heretical religions, the Christian countercult circulation has warned that those teams signify a chance to society. In ^IBearing fake Witness?^R Cowan considers the Christian countercult as a complete, finding it in sociological standpoint as an entity specific from the secular anti-cult. via his research, the writer argues that the first goal of the countercult stream is to enhance and service the Christian worldview while apparently threatened via the appearance of other non secular traditions. This specified research of the Christian countercult is helping clarify why conservative Christian responses to competing non secular events have taken the shape that they have got as well as how these responses are carried out.Unlike the anti-cult circulate, that's excited about elimination members from cults and returning them to their households, the Christian countercult move, in keeping with the writer, makes an attempt not just to take away cultists from the adverse impacts of the cults to which they belong, but additionally to insure that they're going to sign up for the actual model of Christianity adhered to by means of the countercultists themselves. starting with the countercult's early historical past, the writer presents an ancient account of the flow and its current actions. because the upward push of latest non secular events, the growing to be curiosity in religions imported from open air North the United States, and the broadening of the spiritual industry maintains to develop, realizing the Christian countercult and its presence as a countervailing strain to those more and more socioreligious dynamics turns into ever extra very important.

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Extra info for Bearing False Witness?: An Introduction to the Christian Countercult

Sample text

Explanation of Cultic Behavior Deriving tautologically from its definition of a cult, the anticult also explains cultic behavior in terms of brainwashing and/or thought control models. Men and women join and remain within new and controversial religious movements because their normal cognitive faculties have been interrupted by the thought control processes deployed by the new religious movement. Chanting and indoctrinational lectures, a low-protein diet, excessive service in the face of inadequate periods of rest together constitute a program by which the ability of individuals to make rational choices is impaired (see Bromley and Richardson 1983; Conway and Siegelman 1979; Freed 1980; Hassan 1990, 2000; Melton 1999; Singer and Lalich 1995; Tobias and Lalich 1994; for a contrary view, however, see Bainbridge 1978; Barker 1984).

For some Christians, only the most tenuous belief in any of these is sufficient to be included in the Christian church; for others, such as the countercult apologists, the cognitive boundaries of acceptable belief are much more firmly established, much less accepting of alternative interpretations, and much more tenaciously maintained in the face of such alternatives. Explicit in the inerrancy, infallibility, and insuperability of Scripture is its ontological uniqueness among the holy texts of humankind (see, for example, Ankerberg and Weldon 1999; Bowman 1991b; Groothuis 1990; Hunt 1996; Marrs 1990; Morey 1980, 1992).

Both follow a similar format. Each booklet provides the Christian with a brief historical and theological overview of the particular group, and then key doctrines or beliefs are contrasted with those of conservative Christianity. These are followed (1) by “typical” arguments Christians can expect from the group, and (2) by counterarguments (often in Socratic format, with appropriate biblical references) and group-specific advice that may be used to effect evangelism and conversion. Modi Operandi By virtue of the kind of explanations to which it appeals, the anticult consists largely of psychologists, lawyers, and deprogrammers/exit counselors, as well as the family and friends of cult members.

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Bearing False Witness?: An Introduction to the Christian Countercult by Douglas E. Cowan


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