In reading the Seattle Times today I picked up a piece about a local evangelical pastor who calls Mormons a cult. (Took a link on it's story page to the church and have included the pastor's claim below.) Hagee has called Catholics the Whore of Babylon for years. Is this in keeping with the new command of Jesus to "love one another as I have loved you?"
There are no two ministers on the Planet who can agree what a Christian is. Many of them in fact even demonize those who are. Why don't they simply stick to their own personal belief system instead of trashing other Christians. Or are they in fact so doubtful about what they themselves believe themselves that they have to strike out at others?
This Miriam Webster definition is good enough for me:
Editor's Note: Correction: Bill Donohue, president of the Catholic League, has not declared himself a supporter of any presidential candidate, nor has he pledged to work with Rev. John Hagee for or against any presidential candidate.
The Evangelical pastor, John Hagee, has spent a career preaching and writing that the Catholic Church is the "whore of Babylon" as found in the Book of Revelations. Understandably, Catholics find this rant offensive. Hagee recently clarified to Catholics that our church is the whore only some of the time. That's not an apology.
From a Seattle area mega-church evangelical.
So what do we make of all this? Simply said, by the theological definition, Mormonism is a cult.
As the presidential race heats up and the prospect of a practicing Mormon as a viable Republican candidate becomes more a reality, there will be continued effort to bring Mormonism into the center of Christian orthodoxy. Thus, it's important to understand what the cult of Mormonism teaches, to understand that it's antithetical to Christianity, and that, while it's certain there are some Christians in the Mormon church who love the Jesus of the Bible and don’t understand or agree with what their church teaches, the Mormon church could never be considered orthodox unless it made some serious and massive changes to it’s theology.
The danger facing the Christian church is always to capitulate to culture. As Mormonism becomes more culturally acceptable, the temptation will be to make Mormonism more acceptable to Christians as well. This can’t happen if the Church is to preserve it’s witness in the world to the true triune God of the Bible as worshipped by Catholic, Orthodox, and Protestant Christians alike.
Many mormons are good neighbors, friends, and fellow citizens. But, we cannot go so far as to call them brothers and sisters in a common faith. To do so is to not only confuse real Christians, but to also diminish the importance of lovingly speaking with Mormons about the errors of their belief in hopes of seeing them come to know the real God of the Bible and avoiding eternal damnation for worshipping a false god.
The problem with your premise is that there is a lot of truth to it, but there is also a lot of misleading. Sure enough, these famous pastors have said negative things about other pastors or belief systems, but upon closer observation, there might actualy be some reason for it. If the definiton of a Christian is, as you have posted: "one who professes belief in the teachings of Jesus Christ", then it really should not come as any surprise that when large groups of the so-called faithful stray from the actual teachings of Christ, someone will get up and call them out on it. The reason for that is the concern that as the organizations in error promote their versions of Christianity, people who are too new or not knowledgeable will be 'trapped' by them.
In the case of the Catholic and Mormon faiths, there is a lot more in their respective faiths that is not in the Bible alone. Both faiths use either extra-Biblical books or teachings in direct contradiction to the teachings of Jesus or the Bible. This sends many Bible teachers off to defend the Bible, because they feel it is their duty to do so.
On the other hand, it is far from true that no two ministers on the planet can agree on what Christianity is. If you see the milllions of believers around the world that gather together to worship, this becomes evident. Furthermore, there is no greater assurance for any Christian than knowing that he can go anywhere in the world where there are other Christians, and be with 'family'
There is way more that binds Christians together in huge numbers than divide them. Of course, if someone is looking to find fault, they will find it and miss the forest for the trees, This again, is no surprise to the Christian.