Why is it that when the word religion is mentioned contention arises? Is there a subject that breeds more animosity and strife than religion? Well politics may be close but in the name of religion people are ready to die, and tragically they do. What is it about religion that produces so much hatred between people?
For many centuries, religion has generated wars and extreme violence. There are so many religious sects in the world deeply entrenched in their own specific beliefs. Some of these groups will defend their beliefs religiously to death. So of course, God is the person or subject behind religion. With that being true, just think about this for a moment – there are wars, violence, death, mutilations, hatred, divisions, animosities, envies, strife, resentments, and much devastation, pain, and suffering throughout the world… and all in the name of religion. This clearly shows us that all this is happening for the sake of God, meaning for His personal benefit. This is, sadly enough, the way some people think.
Now you have to ask yourself this question – does this seem right? Is God behind all of this? Is He in a position or an attitude of support of it? Or is He personally benefiting from it? How you answer this question sets the framework for how you perceive Him in your personal life. First let’s take a look at the world view of religion. When people say ” I’m religious” what do they mean? Basically, what they are saying is that ” I’m good with God, He’s on my side. The most general reason given to support this is that ” I’m not a bad person”. But this can only be in comparison to others. ” I do this and don’t do that” whatever it may be. ” I believe in God and He’s alright with me, after all I’m a pretty good person”. You may know someone like this…or if not I’m sure your aware of it. From this perspective religion is our own thoughts and ways of what it takes to have Gods approval.
Now everybody knows that the bible is God’s word, even though they may have different opinions about it. But in no uncertain terms it plainly says – ” there are none good no not one” (Romans. 3:12). So that puts all of humanity on equal ground – no good. We are a broken people living in a broken world. If we could save ourselves, why is the world no better off after all this time?
But what if God sees us all the same, that is, in need of help – His help. After all, is there anyone who has not broken God’s law? If we were to simply take a serious and honest look just at the ten commandments alone, we would quickly see that no one can measure up to His standard. We can try to run from this again by comparing ourselves to others in a futile effort to justify ourselves, but it doesn’t resolve our problem.
If we would drop the religious act and face the truth that we need to receive God’s forgiveness–then and only then can we receive it. God has given us His word (the holy bible) because He loves us (John. 3:16) and He’s not willing to let us stay separated from Himself forever. You see right from the very beginning of the creation of humanity. We have disregarded His word and chosen to go our own way (Romans. 3:19-20). Because of this, the world is in the condition it is.
There is violence, hatred, death, destruction, wars, and persecutions because we ‘re not hearing from God. He’s speaking but were refusing to listen. He has given us His word (bible) but we put it aside or on a shelf somewhere and choose to go our own way… all the while, most of us, claiming to be religious by our own self-made idea of who God is and what He desires of us.
The only hope for us is to recognize we need His help and to let Him show us His way. Pick up your bible and listen to Him (Romans. 10:17). Believe God – trust Him – have faith in Him and He will show you the way, the truth, and the life (John. 14:6). Jesus Christ, the son of God, the one and only savior the world will ever know. He died for your sin and was buried and rose from the grave (1 Corinthians. 15:1-4 / Romans. 5:10). This is the starting point of life and peace with God. From there, through the bible, we learn His thoughts and ways. As we put it to use, we can experience true peace and joy that only comes from God. Everything else is dead religion. Be blessed my beloved brothers and sisters.
You may send your comments to Chris Conchado at the following address:
Smart Communications / PADOC
Christopher Conchado HY9349
PO Box 33028
St Petersburg FL 33733