When the Apostle Paul went to Athens, he preached before a group of people who seemed to have an idol god for every occasion. What was really noble about these folks is that they didn’t want to offend any god. Cute.
In Acts 17:22 Paul says: “…Ye men of Athens, I perceive that in all things ye are too superstitious.” (which is to say very religious). Paul could say the same thing about America.
With all of our wonderful freedoms, religion fits right up in there as being the most important. You see, we don’t want government telling us who, how and when to worship. We as Americans don’t really like to be told anything.
With that said, isn’t it ironic that we even believe in God? I say this because we can’t even be pleasing to God if we don’t believe (Heb. 11:6) and with our belief, the creator of the universe is expecting humble submission from us.
That means the only choice we really have is to serve God or not. If we choose to serve Him, then the life that we life in the flesh is lived by faith in the Son of God who loved us and gave Himself for us (Gal. 2:20).
So then He is in control and all of our decisions would be done in a way as to make Him proud. We would live lives with the purpose of leading others to Him and allowing them to experience the liberties we have in Christ.
This sounds great on paper, but in practice, it’s not so good.
Many who profess a belief in God do not live for God. Less than many don’t read their Bibles and most of those who do, are reading without understanding. Most of us who have children live contradicting lives before them and many who grew up in the church, do not darken the doors as adults.
Within just the Catholic Church, there are more than 61 million Americans who have associated themselves as Catholic. How many do you think attend regularly?
My point here is not a call for us to return to church. It is also not a plea for us to live righteously. My emphasis is for us to be more spiritual than religious. My plea is for us to build a personal relationship with God on our own (meaning without a middle man) and allow God to connect with us without religion.
Religion is simply man’s tradition. It is the enemy. It divides us! Religion makes one person say to another: “You are wrong and I am right. It produces religious nuts that go about trying to make others do things their way. Our traditions need to be nailed to the cross. God left us His words to live by. We have Jesus’ life recorded for the purpose of knowing how to live a life honoring our Father in heaven. Jesus taught about family and excluded no one. Religion today is pretty good about excluding drug users, felons, gays and lesbians, and the poor.
Jesus would have never done such a thing!
The Bible teaches us that God is spirit and those who worship Him must do so (with our spirits) in spirit and (according to His revelation) in truth (John 4:24).
My friends, going to a place of worship on Sunday with people that you love is great and hopefully that fellowship extends beyond one day per week. But if you do not have a personal relationship with God where an exchange of information is taking place, conversing daily with an inner joy of the Holy Spirit, then you are lacking much.
I would encourage you to read Psalms 1. It only has a few scriptures, but they echo this message. Start with Psalms chapter 1 and just keep: Reading Until Something Happens (RUSH).