The book Cults, Counterfeits, and Clones: Examining Selected New Religious Movements in Kenyan Christianity covers several new religious movements that have been witnessed to exhibit characteristics that fail the biblical teaching of “truth” in one way or another. Several literatures are reviewed to provide basis for regarding them as cults. What is unique in this book is that it does not provide just the description of these movements, but analyzes their basic teachings and practices, in context of the character and background of the founders, to provide conclusions that are founded on valid interpretation. The book begins by giving an introduction of why the study of cults is important for a Christian, and for any scholar in religion. For the purpose of objectivity, the book provides a chapter on a criteria for determining what a cult is, and what a cult is not. What a reader will find unique in this book, is not just historical information that have been meticulously collected, but an analysis of the relationship of all the information, to form a narrative that shows, how in their diversity, these cults are similar. The book traces how these cults are founded by people that had ‘revelations’ which could not be validated, how they practiced denominational exclusivism, and how they idolized their founders, so that in effect, their founders became their gods.
This book appears at an opportune moment in this country, taking into account the proliferation of self-claimed clergy and movements in the Christian church, leading to confusion among the congregations on whether the claims of these groups are valid or not, as well as how to deal with these claims. The author provides a critical analysis grounded on the Bible and on theology. This book is relevant for the ordinary reader, as well as students and scholars of religion, philosophy and history [Dr. J. B. Okong’o, School of Arts & Social Sciences, Moi University, Kenya].
Daniel Kipkemboi Lagat, did his PhD at Moi University and is a specialist in the area of ‘Religion and Society.’ His PhD dissertation was in the area of ‘Religion and Environment.’ He holds two Masters Degrees, one in Organizational Development from United States International University, and another in Religious Studies (Moi University). His Masters theses focused on ‘Religion and Entrepreneurship’ and ‘Religion and Political Violence’ respectively. In the last 10 years, Daniel has taught religion and theology partly at Africa Theological Seminary, and partly at Moi University, Kenya. Daniel is married to Zipporah, and together, they have been blessed with three daughters.