Dealing in a loving way with the cults while staying true to the principles and tenants of holy Scripture is a delicate balancing act. We don’t want to come off too strong and “preachy” so as to drive them away angry. On the other hand, believers must stand firm in our convictions while loving and praying for those we seek to share the good news with. We must convey to them that we are truly interested in them as people.
We must remember that it truly is good news we bring, and that, like Paul, we are to be unashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek, (Rom. 1:16). We are to preach the truth in love, holding that balance. Our testimony and use of Scripture could set any of these people free forever from the bondage of works righteousness, which is what a cult is about.
Jude says of this, And on some have compassion, making a distinction; but others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire, hating even the garment defiled by the flesh, (Jude 22, 23).
The following Scriptures can be helpful in contradicting cult doctrine which teaches that there is no Triune God.
Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness, (Gen.1:26). The Lord God wastes no time in showing that the Triune Godhead created man in their image, that of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.
Who is he who overcomes the world, but he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God? And it is the Spirit who bears witness, because the Spirit is truth. For there are three that bear witness in heaven: the Father, the Word [Jesus: see John 1], and the Holy Spirit; and these three are one, (1 John 5:5, 7). Such a clear reference to the Trinity; impossible to deny without revealing their willful unbelief!
For through Him [Jesus] we both have access by one Spirit to the Father, (Eph. 2:18).Speaks of the Trinity and salvation.
We believers, according to 1 Peter 1:1, are the elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, in sanctification of the Spirit, for obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ. The Trinity in action! God is dynamic, ever moving!
And Jesus came and spoke unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. 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: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen, (Matt. 28:18-20). Jesus Himself testifies of the existence of and the cooperating work of the Trinity in salvation.
When He had been baptized, Jesus came up immediately from the water, and behold the heavens were opened to Him, and He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting on Him. And suddenly a voice came from heaven, saying, “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased, (Matt. 3:16-17).
Who else throughout Scripture did the Father audibly speak of and give testimony to in this way? Abraham? Moses? David? One of the prophets? No, not one. The phrase, My beloved Son, was reserved for Jesus alone. The Son of God, only begotten of the Father, Jesus Christ, God the Son, second Person of the Trinity!
Notice that the Spirit also gives visible testimony: He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting on Him. So again we have the Trinity giving audible and visible testimony of the Son’s identity, favor with God, and of His place in the triune godhead.
But you, beloved, building yourselves up on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Spirit, keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life, (Jude 20,21). An obvious illustration of the Trinity at work in our salvation and sanctification.
But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, He saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of His mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, whom He poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that, having been justified by His grace, we might become heirs having the hope of eternal life, (Titus 3:4-7).
Titus 3:4-7 is a jackpot verse. We see here the doctrine of salvation, both what it is and is not; we see again the Trinity at work for our good in our justification, our growth in Christ, and our hope of eternal life; and finally, God our Savior and Jesus Christ our Savior are titles used in the same verse. Jesus Christ is equal to God and is the second Person of the Trinity. We are justified by His grace so that we might become heirs having the hope of eternal life.
In this 3-part series of how to deal lovingly with cults there are many Scriptures, but the list is by no means exhaustive. Unless you have an infallible memory I would suggest memorizing a few key Scriptures that deal with the deity of Christ, the Trinity, and salvation theology, one or two for each to start. Write all of these Scriptures in the leaf of your Bible and use that Bible when cult people come to the door. That way you will have plenty of Scripture truth for them to think about.
Cults often go door to door in pairs, sometimes an elder with a younger, less-experienced member. While God can work in anyone’s heart, note the expression of the younger member as you talk. That one may be open to the truth. Pray for them!
Don’t be discouraged if these folks do not convert. Through the conversation try to leave a door open by your loving concern for them so that they will be more likely to come back. Remember, they have probable received years of indoctrination in the false teaching of their church. Don’t give up. We never know when God will open a previously closed heart.
These people need salvation just as desperately as anyone else. They are lost. They don’t know what salvation is. Their cult is based on works righteousness, and the standard for salvation is impossibly high. They will tell you one can’t know if you are saved until the very end. This is typical of works-based salvation. It doesn’t work! There is no joy, no faith, hope, or love; no peace with God or peace of God. It is our duty to speak the truth in love to them. Let me know of your experiences.
God’s blessings on you and me as we seek that which was lost, and (just maybe) is now found! In Christ’s love…mike.