There has been a lot of confusion in the media about the word “cult,” and I realized recently that it’s because people don’t know what Christians mean by the word. When people hear the word “cult,” they think about kooks leading around the mentally-unstable. Now,there are cults like that and they deserve the name. However, the common Christian understanding of a cult may not be in the dictionary. It refers to a false faith, especially one that claims to be Christian while denying fundamental tenets of Christianity as expressed in its creeds and confessions. A cult may deny the Trinity, it may deny Christ’s deity, it may deny salvation by grace through faith in Christ. However, it is not denying “side” issues like wine vs. grape juice, or sprinkling vs. immersion, but the ones that the church has always believed were dividing lines between belief and unbelief, salvation and damnation.
Mormonism is in the ring with this election. On one hand, you have liberals tittering “ooh, it’s a CULT and it’s weird.” On the other side, Republican hacks who hastily bring out the bigotry accusations against anyone who opposes Romney’s religion. This is their attempt to silence dissenters — it could depress turnout, you know — and get everyone in marching formation before the election.
Things are dividing along tiresome party lines, as if the only thing at stake is who wins the presidency. The Republicans, due to their candidate being the Mormon, are taking the more troublesome approach. Just remember that there is something at stake that is more important than the next election: souls. A Mormon needs Jesus Christ more than you need Mitt Romney.