In every religion, there are multiple terminologies used to identify followers who practice that certain religion a little differently than what is specified in the religion’s teachings. This difference in the practices is in contrast with the practices, which, a higher amount of followers do from the usual way as required or in the orthodox way.
Sects and cults are also religious groups that exist as minorities. These groups practice their beliefs of a religion, here Christianity, somewhat differently than what is accepted by the authorities. Their views differ than the major teachings of a religion in a way that they may derive different meanings of a religion’s scriptures or practice it in a different way than most.
The two main differences between sects and cults are that in sects, all the followers have a freedom to leave their sect and may join or convert to a different sect or religion if they want. While in cults, it is strictly prohibited for the followers to leave their cult. They are not given the freedom to choose any other group and must stay with the community.
Even though sects and cults, both, are perceived as negative in religious majorities, cults hold a far more evil image. It is because cults are believed to be manipulative of the minds of their believers or members (Christian Research Institute, 2009).
The second main difference between the two is that, sects only differ in their practices or beliefs of the Bible. They may believe in other Holy Books, may not believe in the Trinity or other teachings as compared to the ones that are majorly followed (Ewtn.com, 1994), while cults are famous for twisting the meanings of a scripture for their own selfish purposes, especially to manipulate the member within the cult.
Christian Research Institute,. (2009). What Is a Religious Cult? - Christian Research Institute. Retrieved 15 June 2014, from http://www.equip.org/perspectives/what-is-a-religious-cult/
Ewtn.com,. (1994). The Catholic Resource Network - Trinity Communications. Retrieved 15 June 2014, from http://www.ewtn.com/library/NEWAGE/VATREPRT.TXT