What To Say When Cults Boast of Their Unity
United in Christ?
"Now I exhort you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you all agree and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be made complete in the same mind and in the same judgment." - 1 Cor.1:10 (NASV)
Daniel Taylor comments:
"Legalistic authoritarianism shows itself in the confusion of the Christian principle of unity with the human insistence on unanimity. Unity is a profound, even mystical quality. It takes great effort to achieve, yet mere effort will never produce it; it is a source of great security, yet demands great risk.
"Unanimity, on the other hand is very tidy. It can be measured, monitored, and enforced. It is largely external, whereas unity is essentially internal. Its primarily goal is correct behavior, while unity's is a right spirit. Unanimity insists on many orthodoxies in addition to those of belief and behavior, including orthodoxy of experience and vocabulary. That is, believers are expected to come to God in similar ways, to have similar experiences with God and to use accepted phrases in describing those experiences....
"Ultimately, unanimity is impossible. It is brittle where unity is flexible and therefore strong. A single dissenter destroys it (so the dissenter may have to be dealt with harshly for the good of the group). For this reason, real questions are generally discouraged. Phony questions, however, where the answer is known by all, are part of pleasurable ritual. They are asked and answered in a wonderful nonthreatening confirmation of 'group think.'"
-Daniel Taylor's The Myth of Certainty
back to Psychological Issues
back to Home Page