In the previous lesson om the Cults, we looked at the religion and followers of Buddhism. We discovered that it is the fourth largest religion in the world, and it focuses on meditation, living a pure life, and reincarnation. Similarly, this lesson’s study involves a religion that incorporates meditation and reincarnation—Hinduism—which also happens to be the third largest religion in the world.
So get your research tools handy—you might find the Internet extremely helpful this week as has it been in the past, as well as Dr. Martin’s book, "The Kingdom of the Cults"—and answer the following questions:
- How many followers of Hinduism are there today?
- Where was it founded and when?
- What is a henotheistic religion and how does it differ from a polytheistic religion?
- What is the core fundamental belief of Hinduism?
- What is their position on the Bible, God and Theology?
- What does the word "Hindu" mean?
- What are the Vedas?
- What are the Upanishads?
- What do they believe about reincarnation that is different from Buddhism?
- What are the three goals of the Pravritti?
- Why is liberation from the samsara the supreme goal of mankind?
- What is the significance of the Red Dot worn on the forehead?
- What are the four levels of the Caste System?
- Who are the Hare Krishna’s and Sikhs?
Again, in this lesson we examined a religion that offers its followers freedom from this life and a hope that a lasting peace and freedom can be found through following the teachings and practices of works (along with the worship of many gods) in a desire to find "the truth." Again we also see a focus on mankind’s actions in its attempts to achieve inner peace, calmness through meditation, a focus on right living and clear thinking, and a striving to find happiness.
While it is difficult to believe that such goals would be wrong, and that following such a religion would lead to eternal separation from God, but this religion is mereky another form of man developing his own plan of salvation based on his world, his views, and his thoughts—not on God the Creator of all things.
God clearly tells us that His thoughts are not our thoughts, and that His ways are not our ways. He tells us that wide is path that leads to destruction and many there be that follow it. We know that He is our only salvation and He will be our only Judge. We also know that Jesus the Christ is the only truth and the only path to follow, not man’s.
I encourage you to remain faithful in this study and to commit to loving, seeking and witnessing to our lost brothers, sisters, neighbors, friends and co-workers, who have followed after such false teaching, believing these lies for the truth.
May God fill us with a discerning spirit as we continue our study. In the next lesson, we will dissect another of the world religions claiming to have the answer and attracting millions of followers; as we take a quick look at Muslims, the followers of Islam.