How can you tell if a religion is false?


#1
  1. It’s founder benefits financially.
  2. It’s founder receives convenient “revelations” that allow him or her to do things that are immoral or forbidden for others.
  3. It’s founder claims that God let’s him or her have sex with anyone or anything.
  4. It’s founder is caught in blatent lies.
  5. It’s founder demands of others what he or she is unwilling to do ie. sacrifice or die for the cause.
  6. It’s founder exhorts his or her followers to violence against unbelievers.
  7. It’s founder has hidden or secret teachings that only the select can learn (for a price).
  8. It’s founder makes predictions or prophesies things that don’t happen or turn out to be false.
  9. It’s founder does not teach that God is love.

I am sure there are more, but this will do for starters. You can already see certain religions meet most if not all of the criteria.


#2
  1. It’s founder benefits financially.
  2. It’s founder receives convenient “revelations” that allow him or her to do things that are immoral or forbidden for others.
  3. It’s founder claims that God let’s him or her have sex with anyone or anything.
  4. It’s founder is caught in blatent lies.
  5. It’s founder demands of others what he or she is unwilling to do ie. sacrifice or die for the cause.
  6. It’s founder exhorts his or her followers to violence against unbelievers.
  7. It’s founder has hidden or secret teachings that only the select can learn (for a price).
  8. It’s founder makes predictions or prophesies things that don’t happen or turn out to be false.
  9. It’s founder does not teach that God is love.

I am sure there are more, but this will do for starters. You can already see certain religions meet most if not all of the criteria.


#3
  1. Your Minister graduated from a Bible College named after the founder.

  2. Your founder dug up gold plates in Palmyra, NY.


#4

None of these necessitate that it is false, but we don’t always need logic to clue us into truth.

  1. It’s founder benefits financially.
  2. It’s founder receives convenient “revelations” that allow him or her to do things that are immoral or forbidden for others.
  3. It’s founder claims that God let’s him or her have sex with anyone or anything.
  4. It’s founder is caught in blatent lies.
  5. It’s founder demands of others what he or she is unwilling to do ie. sacrifice or die for the cause.
  6. It’s founder exhorts his or her followers to violence against unbelievers.
  7. It’s founder has hidden or secret teachings that only the select can learn (for a price).
  8. It’s founder makes predictions or prophesies things that don’t happen or turn out to be false.
  9. It’s founder does not teach that God is love.

I think you’re right to use “founder” in all of these. Certainly, particular leaders might be corrupt and do these things (certain popes, for example) but that is not to say that the religion itself is false.

  1. Your Minister graduated from a Bible College named after the founder.
  1. Your founder dug up gold plates in Palmyra, NY.

If you’re being serious about this topic, those two do not apply, but I agree that the particular churches you had in mind are false.


#5

I guess anyone who graduates from a college named “Trinity” or “Jesus” is out, then.


#6

Or King Fahd University…


#7

I guess anyone who graduates from a college named “Trinity” or “Jesus” is out, then.

Good point, but the key is Bible Colleges - schools whose purpose are to provide a fundamentalist Christian education. When I read this, I thought of schools like Oral Roberts and Bob Jones University.


#8

Which popes did you have in mind, and what did they do that corresponds to “these things”?


#9

But from a Christian view, “Jesus” is an exception. as He isn’t considered a mere man. And “Trinity” refers to the Tri-une God, not a human being. The post you were reacting to was referring to completely fallible “human” founders, not divine.


#10

How can you tell if a religion is false?

Read the fine print.


#11

I believe he was referring to some infamous medieval and Renaissance Popes, perhaps like Benedict IX and Alexander VI, which even the authoritative Catholic Encyclopedia suggests are not leaders the Church can be proud of.


#12

Well…good! that means Buddhism is indeed a true religion :slight_smile: The only caveat would be no.9. If you changed God for gods it would be 100% accurate.

Peace…

Fa Chan


#13

When the only words your religious superiors have allowed you to say for the last eleven years is “Yes, Mister Cruise.”


#14

When your founder was a third-rate science fiction author.


#15

Buddhist is not God himself. He never asked anyone to worship him nor said that he was God.


#16

I imagine he was. However, here is the list of “these things” which he ascribed to these various sinful popes, from the OP:

““1. It’s founder benefits financially.
2. It’s founder receives convenient “revelations” that allow him or her to do things that are immoral or forbidden for others.
3. It’s founder claims that God let’s him or her have sex with anyone or anything.
4. It’s founder is caught in blatent lies.
5. It’s founder demands of others what he or she is unwilling to do ie. sacrifice or die for the cause.
6. It’s founder exhorts his or her followers to violence against unbelievers.
7. It’s founder has hidden or secret teachings that only the select can learn (for a price).
8. It’s founder makes predictions or prophesies things that don’t happen or turn out to be false.
9. It’s founder does not teach that God is love.””

While a few of the popes could be accused of two, maybe three of those things, and surely there WERE very sinful popes, by modern standards, during the Rennaisance, when the papacy was dominated by Italian power families, I sometimes feel like anti-Catholics, and even some Catholics who should know better, throw out that “look at all those sinful popes” thing as an attack against the Church, without really offering the specifics of what sinful things they may have done.

We KNOW the details of the founders of Mormonism, and other modern cults. We also KNOW many details of these sinful popes. I’m not an expert on the papacy, but I’m comfortable in the assumption that the popes look pretty good compared to the likes of Joseph Smith and Warren Jeffs. Always looking for new information, though. That’s why I asked.


#17

This one seems pretty reasonable to me in terms of evaluating whether a religion is potentially harmful to a participant in relation to other groups. Doesn’t address whether a religion is the “one true religion” as I don’t believe such exists.

neopagan.net/ABCDEF.html

The Advanced Bonewits’ Cult Danger Evaluation Frame


#18

You are exactly right. He was not a god nor did he ask people to view him as that. He did, however, believe in gods, such as Brahma and Indra from India. He taught that there is a god realm which has many gods. But, of course they are not omnipotent or omnipresent as the God of the Bible.

no. 9 stated that its founder does not teach that God is love. Shakyamuni Buddha taught that gods can show love, not that one God is love.

Peace…

Fa Chan


#19

I think you need to differentiate between “religion” and “sect” for these purposes, at least as you outline them.

If one is to include Oral Roberts and his ilk in this, you are talking about founders of “sects” of Christianity vs. Christianity itself. I doubt that you would argue that because a number of these apply to Oral Roberts that all of Christianity is a false religion. Much as some Catholics and Protestants would like to deny it, both are part of the same religion.


#20

This list only identifies false religions. It does not identify the sole true religion.


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