Re: Vision Life Ministry - a cult?
Date: July 29, 2014 06:11AM
Icould not have said it any better than this.....
Countless thousands of Americans have submitted their lives to the control of unscrupulous leaders who claim to be ordained by God. The leaders of these destructive Bible-based groups entice the unwary with their vain promises. In turn, individual lives are disrupted and families are divided. While many people have simply walked away from harmful groups, others have resorted to the aid of exit-counselors - sometimes called deprogrammers. Rick Ross is among the most successful of these counselors.
In dealing with oppressive religious groups, the term "destructive Bible-based religious group" is sometimes used. Please explain.
A destructive Bible-based religious group is typically highly authoritarian. The leader or leaders assume total control over the followers, who abdicate their individual autonomy - their ability to critically think and evaluate circumstances for themselves.
There may be a system of discipleship, or so-called headship, by which the leadership of the group assumes authority/control over their followers. That may be part of a pyramid scheme, or it may be manifested more in a shepherding type of situation, where the pastor of the particular group, or the elders, belive that God has delegated all of his authority to them to shepherd their flock or sheep. Then they govern every aspect of individual members' lives. This may include their finances, their dating, their personal sex life, their interaction with their extended family, and their interaction with society at large.
And, typically, the members of a destructive Bible-based group see the world in very black and and white terms, and a kind of a we-they mentality. Those within the group are the spiritually elite, or elect, and everyone and everything outside is wordly, evil, carnal, or even satanic. The group may have a very legalistic approach to governing individual members' lives, by excluding such things as television, the media, radio, the cinema. They may even have a blacklist of books that may not be read and periodicals that may not be subscribed to.