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The Four Major Cults: Christian Science, Jehovah's Witnesses, Mormonism, Seventh-day Adventism Paperback – January 9, 1989


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 464 pages
  • Publisher: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company (January 9, 1989)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0802804454
  • ISBN-13: 978-0802804457
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 5.8 x 1.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #657,918 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Anthony A. Hoekema (1913–1988) was professor of systematic theology at Calvin Theological Seminary, Grand Rapids, Michigan. His other widely read works include The Christian Looks at Himself and The Four Major Cults.

Customer Reviews

3.1 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

54 of 67 people found the following review helpful By Michael S. Fenton on March 27, 2004
Anthony Hoekema was a brilliant theologian. I would caution other readers not to readily dismiss this book or any other simply because one reads things dissimilar to one's prior understanding. Hoekema points out that cults so often have leaders (groups or individuals) who are elevated to a level of unquestioned authority based on supposed private or exclusive revelation from God concerning salvation and other critically important concerns. Members aren't encouraged to , and are often disuaded from thinking for themselves...after all they don't operate on the same spiritual plane as their more enlightened leaders, or so they're told. God's grace becomes all but non-existent, Christ's righteousness imputed to believers is either forgotten, denied or downplayed, and legalistic obedience to LAW (commandment keeping to ensure salvation, etc.) fills the void.
God used this book to bring me out of my association with the unbiblical cult of
the Jehovah's Witnesses over twenty-five years ago. Read this book. Check out Hoekema's references and determine what is true by comparing the teachings of these groups with that of inspired Scripture. Think for yourself!
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20 of 24 people found the following review helpful By San Diego - "Miller" street (and yes that is my name). on December 18, 2011
I am now in my late 80's. This book first came out in 1963. For roughly forty years (mid 1960's to around 2005) I was part of a woman's bible study group of around 200 members. Our backgrounds were composed of the following religious pipelines. Around 50 were former Roman Catholic, about 30 who were former C. Science, around 15 who were former Muslim, roughly 40 who were former J.W.'s, 25 who were former Seventh Day Adventist and around 40 who were formerly Mormon's (and as such naturally none of us were Christians during those early portions of our lives). We all now range in age from early 60's to late 80's. We were previously just religious unbelievers. In a number of the individuals mentioned above (particularly the ones formerly in the four major cults) this book was instrumental in exposing the fallacy of those organizations and subsequently becoming Christians. If you want some advice from the older generation, this publication is one for your personal library.
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12 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Tim Johnson on January 13, 2012
Most of the negative feedback on this book comes from people who are offended at the proposition that they have been deceived. Very few people have the courage to stand back and compare the clear teachings of the Bible with the teachings of their particular "denomination".
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10 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Fish on November 1, 2010
Verified Purchase
this book give me all the answers on the questions that puzzled me for a long time.really good
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39 of 62 people found the following review helpful By Roy Payne on November 8, 2003
The author has done an excellent job, especially in identifying Seventh Day Adventists as a cult. A number of authors on this subject have left them out and at least one has deleted them from his newest editions. The S.D.A. has ALL the earmarks of a cult and I know this first hand. I was a pastor in a small town in California which had a large Adventist population. Like most other Christians, I thought the only difference I had with them was our day of worship. Boy, did I find out otherwise. While one reviewer is technically correct is saying that the S.D.A. church wasn't founded at the time of the Great Disappointment, he is wrong is saying that no "Adventists" were involved. They did take part as followers of William Miller. Ellen Harmon (later White) and her family were dismissed from their Methodist church because of their "strange beliefs", so they were not really Methodists, either. At that time were not observing the Saturday Sabbath. That would not come until Ellen White had one of her "visions" in which she came to the conclusion that the Sabbath must be kept (it never is according to Old Testament regulations and that's because it was intended ONLY for the Jews!). She had this vision so that she and her husband could get the patronage of a wealthy retired sea captain, Joseph Bates . . . and it worked. At a time when most Protestant churches were teaching that the papacy was the mark of the beast, Bates began teaching that the "mark" was Sunday-keeping. Ellen and her husband James jumped on his band-wagon, got his financial support and the Seventh Day Adventists were born.
Also, regarding this book, I was raised a Christian Scientist and my grandfather was the "reader" of a large metropolitan church.
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37 of 60 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on February 18, 1999
Well researched polemic revealing all the internal flaws of the Four Major Cults. History, doctrines and source quotations are skillfully used to show why Jehovah's Witnesses, Mormonism, Christian Science, and Seventh Day Adventism cannot claim orthodoxy. One of the best counter-cult books I have used.
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25 of 41 people found the following review helpful By Eric Claeyborn on March 15, 2006
Well, Seventh-Day Adventist have their Ellen G. White, Jehovah's Witnesses have their Charles Taze Russell, Mormons have their Joseph Smith, and Christian Scientists have their Mary Baker Eddy. And, all of those founders, of their respective religions, have spewed failed prophecies, and their members zealously follow the cult that they have created, which continues today. This book will help you understand the lies that they tell. But, a good translation of the Bible(I use NKJV) will be the book that conquers the lies of these cults. This book will lead you to the Bible verses, that will help you accomplish it. Study and never be afraid of a JWl, SDA, Mormon, or CS, again!
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