Religion VS Relationship

I’m unsure if it’s just me, but lately I’ve seen the subject of “Religion” VS a concept of the pure “Relationship with Christ” debate.

Given that this has been a source of much interest for me lately I was happy to see this post appear today from churchleaders.com.

Shortly after seeing the post I shared a link to it with Facebook friends.  To my delight there was an opposing view to my personal take on the subject which I’d like to touch on today to get your input on.

First I would highly encourage you to check out Dictionary.com’s definitions of RELIGION and RELIGIOUS.  Keep those in mind as you read on.

It’s difficult to tell if people are referring to different denominations when the subject of religion is brought about or whether it’s slander against religion as a whole. It has become too normal to bash religion when, in fact, religion is sort of like a map that guides us to believe what we believe as we progress deeper into our respective faith groups. Denominationally speaking, yes some are focused on good versus bad, karma, multiple gods, etc., but without religion as a whole there is no guidance. One can’t simply say “Well I think this is what Jesus would do” if they have no reference of what He did. That, in turn, is where religion comes in. The religion of Jesus Christ and His teachings, in the Christian Church body, is our guidance for that. If anything I would have to argue that there is a “rule book” we do religiously follow…The Bible

I’ll be the first person to tell you I had no idea what God’s view on certain things in my life were, sin wise. I had no idea that some of the things I was doing that were so casual were actually sins in His eyes. There’s no way I would have found this out without going to some sort of organized religious worship center or doing research through the scripture. I think all of us have experienced that when we’ve come upon something and said “Wait…that’s a sin?!”  Believe it or not, we’ve all got a lot of learning to do on God’s word regardless of what level we may be at, new and seasoned believers alike.  If it comes to the point that you’re no longer growing then you may want to take an inward look on why that is. 

All that being said, I feel people are taking the term “Religion“, or even “Religious” far out of context and failing to see that following Christ, or any other deity for that matter in other applicable circumstances, is a religion in itself. I would, by both referencing the aforementioned definition of “religion” and “religious”, and through personal studies and exploration, go as far as to say without religion we would have had no foundation for what was soon to be our relationship with Christ after discovering it for the first time and that those are easily interchangeable meaning that one inevitably leads to the other.

I appreciated the challenge from my friend to make me to go deeper as it was a good way today to get me even more fired up for how thankful I am that Christ gave us this ability to love Him, His Church, AND His religious teachings.
Thanks Jesus!
300px-Buddy_christ
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3 thoughts on “Religion VS Relationship

  1. Great perspective on this. It is truly sad to see that these days we even have to make these points. Instead of arguing the semantics of what this or that word actually means and getting upset when it is used wrong, we should be listening to what others intentions are and resolve our conflicts.

  2. AMEN! AMEN!
    I’ve written a post before on the comment “don’t talk about religion or politics with friends”…what utter hogwash. Both represent the center of my perspective of the world and all my relationships and the culture which we live in. What should I talk about? – the weather, sports, tv- oh yah that is where 90% of us stay in our sharing with one another. Everyone of those topics is external to me- things we largely observe. But religion – ahh there is action and the eternal.
    Now undoubtedly someone is going to react that its all about Grace; but when we love Jesus and walk out His desires for us- guess what, your religiously pursuing Him. I agree that there is absolutely no real relationship with Christ without religion.

    The flaw has been the popular gateway church approach where they want to free people from past perspectives and supposed hurts when that church represented “bad” religion. Unfortunately people have been hurt in church and in lots of other places; and that will continue in every church for there is no such thing as a perfect church when its humans running it. The gateway church says something like religion is mans way of trying to reach God, but having a relationship is God’s way of trying to reach man. Thats sounds so nice and real, but YIKES God has made it VERY plain what is required. He did all the reaching being born and at the cross. f you don’t accept Jesus as Lord and saviour your damned to hell. Doesn’t make a difference what you think your relationship is like, its whether you His call to be reborn and accept that in your heart. And that Lord thing isn’t just a name, its an action on our part that really isn’t open for interpretation – its spelled out how in His bible.

    Thanks for posting this one Scott. You hit a big nail on the head.

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