Top Ten Cults in America

“For false messiahs and false prophets will appear and perform signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect. So be on your guard; I have told you everything ahead of time. Mark 13:22-23 (NIV)

True followers of Jesus Christ stand on the foundation of the living Word of God. It’s trustworthy and true.

Following are the top ten cults in America:

(1) The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. (Mormonism) A very subtle, spiritual deception started in 1830 by Joseph Smith. This aggressively evangelistic group contends that it is the only true Church and that all Christians outside Mormonism are following a deficient Gospel and a false Christ.

(2) The Watchtower Bible and Tract Society (Jehovah’s Witnesses) Militantly anti-historic Christian tenets. This group began in the 1870s with Charles Taze Russell. They not only deny the essentials of the Christian faith, but the control exercised over the membership is highly destructive.

(3) The Church of Scientology A do-it-yourself salvation, science fiction group that masquerades as the true Church, lightly sprayed with a thin veneer of Christianity. Seeks to destroy through litigation and character assassination those who speak out against the group.

(4) The Twelve Tribes This group began in the early 1970s with Elbert Eugene Spriggs. They claim that salvation can only be found by giving all possessions to them and living in their community. All personal decision-making power is given over to leadership.

(5) The Holy Spirit Association for the Unification of World Christianity (Unification Church) Founded in 1954 by Sun Myung Moon, this highly authoritarian and destructive group teaches that Jesus failed on the cross. Moon is now the mediator between God and man.

(6) The International Churches of Christ (Boston Movement) This highly evangelistic group which began in 1978 with Kip McKean embraces most of the main tenets of the historic Church. Teaches that it is the only true Church and is highly authoritarian, with immense control over members’ lives.

(7) The Family (Children of God) This communal group was founded by David “Moses” Berg. A strange mixture of basic Christian tenets and almost total sexual license. Very controlling and manipulative.

(8) Christian Identity Movement (Aryan Nations, Christian Identity Church, Klu Klux Klan, etc.) A loose-knit confederation of various small groups that are militantly antigovernmental and conspiracy-driven. Each group holds differing, deviant Christian tenets. All hold to Caucasians being the descendants of the ten “lost” Tribes of Israel, God’s true people.

(9) The Nation of Islam (Black Muslims) Began in the 1930s by W. D. Fard. Group teaches that the black man is good, the white man is the devil, and that Jesus was merely a prophet. Highly controlling group.

(10) United Pentecostal Church (UPC) A highly controlling, legalistic group that was formed in 1945. This group denies the Trinity and teaches that to be saved one must be baptized in the name of Jesus only.

With so many denominations and religions, how can I decide which are true and which are false?


First, there is theological consideration. How consistent are the group’s beliefs with the basic tenets of the historic Christian faith? This evaluates the eternal significance of such beliefs.

Second, there is the social-psychological consideration. How are power, authority, and control exercised in the group? This evaluates techniques of manipulation and mind control.

Source: Top Ten Cults in America By Bob Pardon, Director of the New England Institute of Religious Research.

“Beware of false prophets which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.” Matthew 7:15 (KJV)

Please pray for all those who are entangled in the Occult. They have difficulties or complicated circumstances from which it is difficult to escape.

In ✝️ His Service, Susan Osten

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