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Cults - Branch Davidians

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Mackenzie Milligan

Refection – Cults

        The cult I am going to be discussing is the Branch Davidians, which was founded and formed by David Koresh. He was actually originally a member of the Seventh Day Adventists, but the church essentially expelled him because his religious views were so radical. One of the views he had that was so radical is the fact that he believed he was the Messiah and all women in the world were his spiritual wives. Going off these beliefs and following the expulsion from his church, he formed the Branch Davidians. Among their beliefs was the belief that the end of the world was very near. Koresh acted as the Messiah that he believed he was, and continually spoke the word of God to his followers. The group was located in Waco, Texas, where they began the construction of their mass armory of weapons. As you could imagine, this was of great concern to the civilians of Waco, as they were concerned for their family’s safety. Not only this, but Koresh was committing dishonorable deeds of which involved with sleeping with several wives of the church men as well as marrying young and underage girls. This brought the Branch Davidians a lot of unwanted attention, and eventually led to the siege of the compound. They first raided the compound which resulted in 6 members’ lives ending and a wounded leader. After this raid, the siege of the compound began and continued for 51 days as it was monitored 24/7 by many news agencies including CNN.

        The siege of the compound was costing the government an absolute fortune and was beginning to become a long, drawn out process. Finally, after many expensive attempts, they opted to inject tear gas into the building, and soon after flame began to erupt throughout the building. The end result was 77 members killed, 20 of which were children. (TopTenTopia).

        Their beliefs with Christianity were somewhat parallel, however, their views of Christ were much different. They believed that his crucifixion was a result of failure. Jesus was seen as someone who came to teach the seven seals, of which mankind rejected. It was also thought that Jesus was completely immortal and could even survive without food and water. This belief came from the 40 days of fasting, which resulted in union of him and the Eternal Mind of God. (Watchman).

        This cult does not seem quite as ridiculous and absurd as some we have viewed in class. At least it is somewhat related to Christianity, but the thought of the world ending and the mass weaponry is slightly concerning. Not exactly sure what they were going to do with the weaponry, but the fact they were making it is subject of concern.

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