Below are an article and a short video from a leading apologist Eric Barger. We recommend his resources and this video. It is the haunting words of Christ Himself that bring this critical understanding to us today. Dr. Walter Martin paved the way for many to look seriously at the dangers of cults. This most know, but what is “The Most Dangerous Cult” in America today… The truth may surprise you. How is it that at the Great White Throne of Christ-professing Christians will hear the shock of their eternal life. ” ‘And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.’ “Matthew 7:23
“For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables. (Literally unto “mythology”). 2 Timothy 4:3
What is The Most Dangerous Cult?
There is a reason. The most effective lie is the one that is closest to the truth. Just another reason we need to understand the bible for ourselves. Pay close attention to the Christ and the words of the professing believers who are condemned. They think it is their wonderful works. Now let’s look at this verse in context before we see what Eric Barger has to say. I can’t stress the critical nature of this issue that so many people who think that they are OK before God with what they have been taught by Liberal Churches and Apostate Theology. Working their way into the Kingdom without ever having that saving relationship with the one who loved us to give His life for us freely.
Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works?
And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity. Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock: And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock.
And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand: And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it. And it came to pass, when Jesus had ended these sayings, the people were astonished at his doctrine: Matthew 7:21-28
by Eric Barger
(Updated January 2003)
The Most Dangerous Cult in The World Today is Liberal Christianity
Is it Mormonism? Jehovah’s Witnesses? Christian Science or New Age thought? No! The MOST Dangerous Cult is cut from the cloth of Christianity and is right in our midst!
In February of this year, I will celebrate my twenty-second year as a Christian, with over nineteen of those years spent in service to the Cross as a radio commentator, youth pastor, evangelist, author, and teacher. In the early days of my Christian walk, my wife Melanie and I attended a local church in our neighborhood in South Seattle, Washington. Due to our coming to Christ through the diligent prayers and witness of a private marriage counselor as opposed to making our conversion in a church setting, we were somewhat oblivious about the many branches and variations of beliefs across the spectrum of Christendom.
Though in our youth both Melanie and I had attended Methodist Sunday schools, vacation bible schools, and church camps, we were “Christians” by name only having never accepted Jesus’ gift of salvation back then. So as newly converted adults, straight from the hippie lifestyle and rock n’ roll culture, we were completely ignorant as to what Christianity consisted of, its doctrines, practices and the many current denominational differences. Frankly, at the outset of my Christian journey, I didn’t know Pentecostal from Presbyterian. It hadn’t come to my attention that there indeed large portions of “tares” among the “wheat” and I certainly had no concept of what separated a good church from a counterfeit. This ignorant naiveté would quickly come to a screeching halt all due to that church in our neighborhood.
Upon my conversion, having been spectacularly delivered from a 14 year drug addiction and also what we now call “The New Age Movement,” the only thing I knew was that Jesus was indeed the God of gods and that He had radically and miraculously revolutionized my life. Being hungry for all the truth my little brain could handle, I quickly became a regular listener to Christian radio. It was on the airwaves that I found a man who would become my mentor, if only vicariously. The teaching and ministry of Dr. Walter Martin, the original, real and only “Bible Answer Man” peaked within me the biblical call to “defend the faith” (Jude 3) and introduced me to the need to “be ready to give every man an answer” (I Peter 3:15). To this day these verses are the very basis for my life and work.
“I KNOW the liberals. I know them well. I was one of them and they are the most dangerous, insidious, all pervading cult that’s loose in the United States right at this moment!”
– Dr. Walter Martin Being discipled by our doctrinally sound marriage counselor while hearing Dr. Martin expose the cults and false doctrines around us on his program each day, it wasn’t long before I began to question the tradition, practice and beliefs (or lack of them) being embraced by the aforementioned church around the corner from our house. Many of our neighbors attended there, it had a Cross in the yard and it to be a Christian church so it was, right? After all the Presbyterian Church had been a standard bearer of the faith for centuries. They had guarded and protected the faith, hadn’t they? I was bound to hear the Gospel there wasn’t I?
Just as millions of unsuspecting souls do each week out of family tradition, convenience or just plain biblical ignorance, I was trusting a denomination that once preached the unadulterated gospel of Jesus Christ to continue to do so unabated. It is a shock to the system when one comes to grips with the Scripture and realizes that though the shell of the church appears to be intact, the core has been rotting for some time. It was in those days that the Holy Spirit woke us up to the revelation that just because something claims to be “Christian”, does “Christian things”, is adorned with Christian décor, Bibles, hymn books and the like does mean that it is authentically “Christian.” In reality, when we began carefully comparing the doctrines and practice in the church with the clear teaching of the Bible there was no other conclusion to make; we were sitting there each week being indoctrinated by a part of what I now identify as The Dangerous Cult!
Now don’t get me wrong. They were not exalting Satan, endorsing orgies or sacrificing chickens in the aisle! Melanie and I loved the people there and knew that a were indeed saved, but sadly it wasn’t the church’s fault that they were. The pastor was a very sweet guy and we appreciated some parts of the fellowship there, but quickly I was deemed a troublemaker for I went from being “new convert” to “evangelist on a mission.” It was obvious that the majority of the congregation had never had a life-changing experience with Jesus, were not saved (no fruit) and hadn’t a clue that they needed to be! My newly found ministry didn’t go over very well at all.
“That Barger guy…who does he think he is? He comes in here, barely off drugs and now he’s asking critical questions. Why we’re good people; been in church all our lives and now this whippersnapper is questioning our religion?”
I may not have understood all doctrine back then and I surely wasn’t as tactful as I could have been but I knew that the eternity of many was in jeopardy because church membership had replaced a personal relationship with Christ and good works had become the way to attain salvation instead of the finished work of the Cross. Though I didn’t know what to call it, I knew the crux of the church didn’t line up with Scripture and before long (and to the relief of some of the parishioners there) Melanie and I found the door and never returned.
There are some of those reading this article who would never have caused a stir through questions such as we asked (let alone have left the church) and herein lies the problem. Though I am 100% in favor of being submitted to pastoral leadership, we must trust to be the keeper of our truth for us. Entire denominations – that once preached the unadulterated Gospel of Jesus Christ – have slowly become social centers, spouting the fellowship of man instead of the truth that will set souls free. While many congregants sat by in silence, the so-called “German Enlightenment” of Wellhausen, Graf, Bultman, and Tillich slowly seduced many once sound bible schools and hence made its way into the bedrock of mainline pulpits worldwide. If we are going to avoid doctrinal shipwreck we must remember that it is not hyper-critical to critique doctrine and practice.
In fact, we ministers must encourage those in our congregations to study to show themselves approved of God (1 Tim 4:3)! In the Book of Acts the Bereans are praised for doing so but in today’s liberal churches and seminaries you are chastised for being “radical” or criticized as a “fundamentalist” should you question the activities and teaching, in particular when you question the of sound theology with its modern replacement – social insight.
HOW FAR THEY HAVE FALLEN
For anyone who doubts just how far we have slipped, I suggest you study the following poll results concerning one of the essential or major doctrines that has held the Christian faith together for the past 2000 years.
In March 1999 Current Thoughts & Trends polled 7,441 Protestant Ministers were asked if the Resurrection of Christ actually happened.
Here are the poll results of the clergy along with their correlating denominations. The percentages reflect those who do NOT believe in the Resurrection as a historical event.
American Lutherans: 13%
Presbyterians (PCUSA): 30%
American Baptist: 33%
(Source: Current Thoughts & Trends, March, 1999, Page 19)
Beloved, the resurrection of Jesus is perhaps the keystone of our faith and certainly the centerpiece of our hope! What business do these people have attempting to portray themselves as messengers of the Gospel if they don’t even believe Jesus rose from the dead? Being raised a Methodist it is beyond my comprehension that over half the Methodist ministers have abandoned orthodox views of a doctrine so paramount to the faith as the resurrection. Is it any wonder that the Holy Spirit seems to have written “icabod” (“the glory has departed”) across so many church doors today? May I suggest that those who do not accept historic and orthodox doctrine should resign the ministry immediately and explore careers in social work instead!
The Problem with Modern Liberalism in The Church
While we all do have our own distinctive beliefs on peripheral doctrines (which identify some as Baptists, some as Presbyterians, some as Pentecostals, etc.), what truly signifies that we are indeed following the historic faith is our agreement on the essential doctrines. These doctrines would include the virgin birth, salvation by grace, the resurrection, the deity of Christ and others that have been the pillars of Christianity since the beginning.
Modern liberalism began when some elite intellectuals (led by demons from hell) first attacked the inerrancy of the Scriptures, concentrating their assault on the miracles of both the Old and New Testaments. Just as Lucifer did in the garden (Genesis 3), they cast doubt on the authenticity of God’s word and then slowly but surely began introducing social doctrines mixed with good works and Christian symbolism. This widely held deception is without question a “different gospel” now being preached from literally thousands of pulpits each week and it is undoubtedly resulting in more people perishing in hell for all eternity than the work of all the cults combined! Woe to the false teachers leading their flocks – who thought they were hearing the truth each week – into Satan’s arms!
In those early days I collected a good number of Dr. Martin’s teaching tapes. I listened. I prayed. And I tested everything that came my way in the name of Jesus (I Thessalonians 5:21-22). I became acutely aware that once strong fountains of truth had become dried up rivers of death. The water of life that flowed from the Methodist, Presbyterian, Lutheran and other churches hadn’t just cease to flow. In far too many pulpits the truth had been perverted into deceptive stream of poison, controlled by Satan for the express purpose of destroying souls! It was exactly what the Apostle had warned about:
“This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,
3Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, 4Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God…” (2 Tim. 3:1-4)
Dealing with Traitors in The Church
While many have erroneously quoted this passage when referencing the slippery slope the culture is on, it is the world Paul is speaking of here. He makes this clear in verse five.
Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.” This could read: “Having a form of the religion of Christ…”
This is speaking of leadership from within what claims to be the Church and Paul implores us to recognize them as heretics, warn others, and then run from what they teach as if it were the plague!
In 2 Timothy 4:3 Paul continues his warning and predicts a time when those involved with the Church will be so spiritually blinded that they will not even be able or willing to recognize the deception and darkness being presented as “the truth.” Claiming to be God’s spokesmen heretics piously step into pulpits each week around the world who are totally devoid of the anointing, leading and salvation of the Lord Jesus Christ.
“For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables. (Literally unto “mythology”).
Let me be quick to point out that it is thankfully not Methodist, Presbyterian or Lutheran church that has abandoned the historic faith and begun to practice and advocate anti-biblical activities and teaching. Praise God that there are movements afoot to fight for and restore the truth which has been abandoned by many denominations and individual churches. However, we must remain aware that liberalism – claiming to be Christianity – is the MOST destructive religious cult operating in our society today and the majority of those who are in its clutches have little or no idea that anything is awry!
In closing and at the cost of angering some, I must challenge the reader here concerning his or her own faith. Have you sought out the Scripture for yourself? Do you know that you are a real Believer? Are you trusting the blood of Christ to save you or have you accepted the damning doctrine of “good works” relying on your church membership, community service, water baptism or charity to win approval for you in God’s eyes and allow you entry into Heaven? Please let me suggest that we have produced an in-depth resource for you on this subject. If you or someone you know is caught in The Dangerous Cult I cannot encourage you strongly enough to stop right now and order the new 60+ minute video, “The Dangerous Cult.” Complete with many slides, quotes, documentation, and Scripture, it is packed with information and my personal story that is intended to challenge and inspire the viewer. This video leaves no room for question about the hellish eternity in store should one follow this MOST insidious cult.
Just as it was for me many years ago, understanding and identifying The MOST Dangerous Cult may be the single MOST important thing you can do for yourself or someone else – eternally.
Excerpt from Apprising Ministries quote Dr. Martin below.
Read these words and loudly weep because Martin’s warning would go unheeded:
There’s no such thing as a little bit pregnant. Got the message? No such thing as a little bit pregnant—you are, or you’re not. Well, there’s no such thing as a mild form of cancer; it’s cancer. You don’t get rid of it, you don’t deal with it, it gets you. And we have to deal with these things today; if we don’t, they’ll end up getting what’s left of the Church…
The form of godliness, but without the power; without the sound doctrine of Scripture. And what do we have today as the reigning school of [biblical] interpretation in Protestantism in our theological seminaries worldwide? I’ll tell you what it is: Bultmannian exegesis; named after Rudolph Bultmann, “the demythologizing of the Bible.”
And what did Dr. Bultmann teach, for forty-some years? He taught that you couldn’t rely upon any single thing—virtually—in the entire New Testament record; about Jesus Christ. It all had to be “demythologized,” and then the pieces put back together again. What does Paul say; “they will gather to themselves teachers who will tickle their ears, and the Truth of God will be turned into mythology.”
It’s here. The reigning school of American theologians has progressed from bad to worse. We only have to deal with Harry Emerson Fosdick in the 1920s; but then, it accelerated to Edwin Lewis, Nels F.S. Ferre, Reinhold Niebuhr, and on from Niebuhr to Paul Tillich, and crowned in Rudolph Bultmann. Not one single one of those men believed the historic doctrines of the Christian faith; but they were all the leading theologians of America.
[Episcopal] Bishop [John] A.T. Robinson cannot be unfrocked by the Anglican Church despite the fact that he is a living devil when it comes to Christian theology—denying everything and turning the faith of people into darkness. Do you know why they can’t unfrock A.T. Robinson; because [Episcopal leadership] is heretical as he is. Therefore they can’t touch him…
British theology was corrupted by German theology; by Friedrich Schleiermacher, Albrecht Ritschl, David Strauss. Finally [it moved] to the United States in Walter Rauschenbusch; and from there to Harry Emerson Fosdick, Nels Ferre, Reinhold Niebuhr, Paul Tillich, Rudolph Bultmann—and the school that’s emerging from them today. Where do you think we got the “God is dead theology” from? From historic Christianity; from Christian seminaries?
You did not. You got it from a good, solid Baptist theological seminary known as Colgate-Rochester in New York, which was absolutely orthodox and which sold out to liberalism. And when it did, they embraced the theology of Paul Tillich and ended up with—God is dead. It was called at the time, “the gospel of Christian atheism.” Did you ever heard such linguistic nonsense in your life? The gospel of Christian atheism, T.J. Altizer, Emory University.