In October 1991 a checklist of cultic tendencies by Charles Lesser was published in the Spiritual Counterfeits Project newsletter. I believe they are still very relevant 17 years later. The full list of 37 points can be seen at this website :-
Here is a list of most of them :-
-- Is your pastor fully accountable to a board of elders, presbyters, etc.?
-- Does your pastor encourage questions and suggestions? Is he approachable?
-- Does your pastor give equal attention to all kinds of people in his congregation?
-- Does your pastor readily admit his errors? [Ask the COG-PKG members !!]
-- Does your pastor avoid boasting or hinting at a "special anointing"?
-- Does your pastor include himself in any calls for repentance and forgiveness?
-- Are pleas for money rare and unemotional?
-- Do the pastor and congregation avoid 'attacking' and using as object lessons, former members or those who disagree?
-- Does your church interact with other churches?
-- Does your church staff avoid secrecy?
-- Is power shared in your church (rather than pre-empted by a hierarchy)?
-- Does your church see itself as just one organ of the Body of Christ, and not the main one?
-- Is your church truly friendly?
-- Are especially needy people cared for lovingly in your church?
-- Are church members encouraged and loved even when they leave?
-- Is there a diversity of classes, races, dress styles, ages, and occupations in your church?
-- Is loyalty to Jesus and to one's own calling placed before loyalty to pastor and church?
You and Your Family
-- Are you encouraged in your own calling?
-- Are you free from fear in your church?
-- Are your children happy to attend church? [-most of the time!]
-- Are families encouraged to stay together and spend time together?
-- Do you think more about God and Jesus than you do about your pastor and church?
-- Are you clear that the pastors and elders never exaggerate or lie to make themselves look good?
-- Is your group encouraging of each other and free from gossip and rumoring?
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