Archive for the ‘Scientology’ Category

from Got Questions:

The existence of so many religions and the claim that all religions lead to God without question confuses many who are earnestly seeking the truth about God, with the end result sometimes being that some despair of ever reaching the absolute truth on the subject. Or they end up embracing the universalist claim that all religions lead to God. Of course, skeptics also point to the existence of so many religions as proof that either you cannot know God or that God simply does not exist.

Romans 1:19-21 contains the biblical explanation for why there are so many religions. The truth of God is seen and known by every human being because God has made it so. Instead of accepting the truth about God and submitting to it, most human beings reject it and seek their own way to understand God. But this leads not to enlightenment regarding God, but to futility of thinking. Here is where we find the basis of the “many religions.”

Many people do not want to believe in a God who demands righteousness and morality, so they invent a God who makes no such requirements. Many people do not want to believe in a God who declares it impossible for people to earn their own way to heaven. So they invent a God who accepts people into heaven if they have completed certain steps, followed certain rules, and/or obeyed certain laws, at least to the best of their ability. Many people do not want a relationship with a God who is sovereign and omnipotent. So they imagine God as being more of a mystical force than a personal and sovereign ruler.

The existence of so many religions is not an argument against God’s existence or an argument that truth about God is not clear. Rather, the existence of so many religions is demonstration of humanity’s rejection of the one true God. Mankind has replaced Him with gods that are more to their liking. This is a dangerous enterprise. The desire to recreate God in our own image comes from the sin nature within us—a nature that will eventually “reap destruction” (Galatians 6:7-8).

Do all religions lead to God? No. All people—religious or otherwise—will stand before God some day (Hebrews 9:27), but religious affiliation is not what determines your eternal destiny. Only faith in Jesus Christ will save. “Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have the Son of God does not have life” (1 John 5:12). It’s as simple as that. Only Christianity—faith in the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ—leads to God’s forgiveness and eternal life. No one comes to the Father except through the Son (John 14:6). It does make a difference what you believe. The decision to embrace the truth about Jesus Christ is important. Eternity is an awfully long time to be wrong.

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from NYDailyNews:

The FBI is probing allegations of human trafficking and enslavement in the celeb-magnet Church of Scientology, according to a blockbuster New Yorker article.

The charges are based on complaints of mistreatment of church members who try to quit, and allegations that dozens of apostates were confined in “reeducation camps” doing manual labor – sometimes for years.

Since at least 2009, the FBI has interviewed numerous former Scientologists with harrowing tales of coercion and psychological abuse, according to the 26-page New Yorker article.

The accusations include allegations of physical violence by Scientology head David Miscavige, Tom Cruise’s best man.
Former church spokesman Mike Rinder previously told the St. Petersburg Times for an extensive Scientology expose two years ago that Miscavage beat him some 50 times and encouraged violence to keep employees in line.

The church brushed off word of an FBI probe, saying in a statement that it “has never been advised of any government investigation.”

The Scientology church called the article “little more than a regurgitation of old allegations that have long been disproved” and said it was unworthy of a respected magazine.

“It is unfortunate that The New Yorker chose to introduce its readers to Scientology through the eyes of an apostate, someone religious scholars unanimously denounce as unreliable,” the statement said.

The New Yorker expose grew out of a profile of Hollywood screenwriter Paul Haggis, who left Scientology in 2009 after the St. Petersburg Times expose and is the most high-profile defector from the controversial organization.

“I was in a cult for 34 years,” Haggis told the New Yorker. “Everyone else could see it. I don’t know why I couldn’t.”

He said he feared retaliation from an organization with a fearsome history of going after critics.

“My bet is that, within two years, you’re going to read something about me in a scandal that looks like it has nothing to do with the church,” Haggis told the magazine.

Among the allegations:

*Gary Morehead, a defector who had been head of security at “Gold Base” – the organization’s compound in the California desert – told the FBI about rounding up members who left the compound. “We got wickedly good at it,” he told the New Yorker.

When emotional, spiritual, or psychological pressure failed to work, he said, physical force was sometimes used to bring escapees back.

 *Defector Bruce Hines said he was confined to “Rehabilitation Project Force” locations for six years. He said the properties were heavily guarded and that those who fled were tracked down and subjected to further punishment.

 *Lucy James, a former Scientologist who had access to church personnel records, said she saw dozens of cases in which members were pressed to have abortions.

 *Former Scientologist Claire Headley said Miscavige lived it up on church money, with five stewards and two chefs at his disposal, many fancy cars and six motorcycles. Church workers typically receive $50 a week, the New Yorker said.

 *Haggis, who wrote “Crash,” “Casino Royale” and “Million Dollar Baby,” said children are drafted into the church by their parents and their plight reminded him of child slaves he’d seen in Haiti. “They were ten years old, twelve years old, signing billion-year contracts – and their parents go along with this? Scrubbing pots, manual labor – that so deeply touched me. My God, it horrified me!”

Scientology claims millions of members in 9,000 churches and missions in 165 countries. A 2008 CUNY study estimated that 25,000 Americans identify themselves as Scientologists.

The church preaches that 75 million years ago, the evil space lord Xenu brought billions of people to Earth, stacked them around volcanoes and dropped H-bombs into the volcanoes. Like souls, the resulting “thetans” stick to the bodies of the living, causing psychological problems, and must be eradicated by extensive Scientology counseling.

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