Wondering if ________ is a cult? Here's the test! It's taken right from 1 Corinthians 15. The test of a cult is the Gospel. If the religion passes all 3 points, it's Christian. If not, it's a cult.
About the test
Whether someone is Christian depends on whether they believe the Gospel. Whether an organization is Christian depends on whether they teach the Gospel. There are plenty of other doctrinal issues that can be discussed--creation, Mariolatry, eschatology, modes of baptism, the role of women, etc. But these are all secondary issues that, if you're wrong on any of them, won't keep you out of heaven. Being wrong on the Gospel, however, bars you from entering heaven as a child of God.
- Christ is the only God
- God exists as the eternal, unchanging Trinity
- Christ is fully God and fully man
- Christ lived without sin; our lamb without blemish
- Christ died on the cross according to the scriptures
- Christ's atonement covers all sins
- Due to the nature of the atonement, nothing else must or can possibly be done to add to our righteousness before God
- Christ was raised bodily on the third day according to the scriptures
Salvation comes by grace through faith to all who believe in the Gospel of Christ. For more on the pure, unadulterated Gospel.