If your worship of God is based on rules, then you are bound by chains of religion.
Most of us are born into a certain religion and it is not our fault that we were born that way. The fact is, we can’t choose where to be born. Some of us don’t even know of any other religion other than the religion of our parents.
I was born a Roman Catholic and everybody around me was of the idea that Roman Catholic was the only true religion.
It is several years since I left the Roman Catholic church and I now fellowship with the other church groups. Does that make these other churches better than the Roman Catholic? I don’t know and I don’t think I care about that. What I care about is that I am worshiping God according to His will, in His way and in all honesty.
Humans will try to influence you to worship God in a certain way as if our personal relationship with God is a collective venture. It is not!
Romans 14:12 So then, each of us will give an account of ourselves to God
What is God’s idea about religion? Does God say anything about Religion? Yes, Jesus said a lot about religion in the following scriptures.
Matthew 5:17 “Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them.”
Jesus died on the cross to fulfill the requirement of the law so that we don’t have to die from it as a result of our trespasses. We don’t have to follow religion again but believe in Jesus alone for the forgiveness of our sins. Once we sincerely repent our sins, we are set free to love and be faithful. We are set above a set of rules of do that or don’t do that.
The devil took away our freedom to love and live in spiritual victory against sin. He wraps us with a blanket of condemnation to destroy our potential.
John 10:10 The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.
This thief may have come through your religion and made you a controlled member of a religious group. You could now be staring at hell’s gate with your religion’s membership card in your hand!
John 11:25 Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me will live, even though he dies”
Jesus came to bring life. Religion may chain you and destroy you because it can be manipulated by both man and the devil.
Most religious practices are man-made and completely meaningless when it comes to worshiping God.
All religions follow the law and the law brings death. The law is not loving or forgiving. If you make a mistake, the law jails you, puts you to death or even harms your body. When you make a mistake and repent, God is very loving and ready to forgive you.
The following conversation between Jesus and a Samaritan woman is very interesting and gives us a big hint on what God thinks about religion!
John 4 :19-26 “Sir,” the woman said, “I can see that you are a prophet. Our ancestors worshipped on this mountain, but you Jews claim that the place where we must worship is in Jerusalem.” “Woman,” Jesus replied, “believe me, a time is coming when you will worship the Father neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem. You Samaritans worship what you do not know; we worship what we do know, for salvation is from the Jews. Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshippers will worship the Father in the Spirit and in truth, for they are the kind of worshippers the Father seeks. God is spirit, and his worshippers must worship in the Spirit and in truth.” The woman said, “I know that Messiah” (called Christ) “is coming. When he comes, he will explain everything to us.” Then Jesus declared, “I, the one speaking to you—I am he.” – Quote from New International Version – UK (NIVUK) Bible
The relationship between the Samaritans and the Jews during Jesus’s time was like the differences we have between religions that worship the creator in our world today.
The Samaritan woman was talking about her religion that worshiped on the mountains and compared it to the Jewish religion that worshiped in Jerusalem.
Jesus said “…..a time is coming when you will worship the Father neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem…”
Jesus told the Samaritan woman that the matter is not what or where the Jews or the Samaritans religions worshiped but what our creator is looking for from a true worshiper.
“Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in the Spirit and in truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in the Spirit and in truth.”
Jesus pointed out that true worshipers, worship God in the The Holy Spirit and in truth.
Jesus brushed off anything about which religious practices were right. The Samaritan woman thought that hers was right but Jesus said that although the salvation came through the Jews, theirs was still not right, but stressed that the true worship is when we worship God in Spirit and in truth. No falsehoods. So you don’t have to be in a certain religion or location to worship God.
He is also not interested in rituals, sacrifices or meaningless social activities as acts of worship things that replace the Holy Spirit in a religion, but the truthfulness in us and being in sync with the Spirit of God when you are worshiping Him.
The bible also states in John 14:6 Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”
The following is a summary of what God expects us to do about our religions.
- We should not be chained down by religion or location of worship. They are all irrelevant and can be manipulated by man or the devil through the law. The law brings death.
- The most important thing is that we should worship God through the Holy Spirit and without any falsehood in us. Religions don’t necessary acknowledge God the Holy Spirit and many are based on deception so there is no truthfulness in them
- Jesus’ way of worship is not the Samaritan or the Jewish way but the Holy Spirit way. This throws the door wide open to all of us from other races to worship God the Jesus way without copying anybody else’s tradition. The bible says in 2 Corinthians 3:17 Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. Imagine the freedom we get when we worship in the Spirit and not chained by our religious practices!
- Jesus is the only way to God the Father and that means the only way to heaven. If in doubt ask Jesus himself. Just talk to Him and ask Him to reveal Himself to you. Jesus brings life.