Book Reviews

THE KINGDOM OF THE CULTS, Walter R. Martin, M.A., Zondervan Publishing Co., Grand Rapids, Mich.; 443 pages; $5.95. 

The author is an ordained Baptist minister, teacher in the famous New York Bible Class in the downtown Baptist Church. He lectures extensively and has written volumes on the subject of Cultism. As to his orthodoxy, we let him speak for himself: “I stand on the ramparts of Biblical Christianity as taught by the Apostles, defended by the church fathers, rediscovered by the reformers, and embodied in what is sometimes called “Reformed Theology” He reveals his extensive knowledge of the Holy Scriptures which he uses to refute the false religions of the Cults. 

His approach to the subject is the theological evaluation of their teachings, and the contrast between them and Biblical theology, with the emphasis upon exegesis and doctrine. He stresses throughout his work the authority of Scripture as a criterion for measuring, either the truth or the falsity of the cultist’s claims. It becomes evident, when reading his book, that uppermost in his mind is the search for the answer to the basic question once asked by our Lord Himself, “What think ye of the Christ, Whose Son is He?” His entire 17th chapter is devoted to ask this question from each of the major cults under his scrutiny. We would recommend the same approach to the serious reader who would “try the spirits whether they be of God.” This book will add to your enjoyment of the rubric written by Rev. R.C. Harbach in our Standard Bearer. 

The book is written in a very readable style, the average reader will find no difficulty with the language, will not find himself wading in murky depths of reasoning; the author’s meaning is always quite clear. His analogies are to the point, for instance: he notes that bankers are taught to recognize counterfeit money by learning what the genuine looks and feels like; he then concludes that if the average Christian would again become familiar with the great foundations of his faith he would be able to detect those counterfeit elements so apparent in the Cult Systems which set them apart from Biblical Christianity. For the non-conformist, who likes to read magazines from back to front, this book is ideal, for having read the first three chapters he can read the other twelve in any order he pleases. We read, “Father Divine,” followed by, “Black Muslims” and “Baha’ism,” and so on, according to the attraction they had for us. 

With some minor reservations we recommend this book to our readers. We feel that having put the book down you will agree with the author, “that a careful consideration of the Biblical evidence will allow no other conclusion than that Satan is the prime mover and architect of the major cult systems.”

—J.M. Faber