Sunday, 3 April 2016

The Religious Spirit

I visited one of my clients last week at 8:20am. As I walked into his office he said "Just in time." I had stumbled upon their Tuesday prayer meeting. A guest preacher comes week after week to share "truth" and to pray with them. The guest preacher gave me a 'Salvation Pack' (I reckon he assumed I wasn't a believer). He preached for 40 minutes. We prayed for 1 minute. And that was that. Not sure why it's called a prayer meeting :-)

When I got home I decided to read through the pack he gave me and I was astonished at the material I was reading. Much of it was cut and paste stuff from previous gospel tracts I had read in the past. Then some of it was his own stuff. His major emphasis was about the FRUIT believers needed to show once they are Christians. And this fruit manifested in four Christian disciplines. By doing these four things a Christian is built up and becomes strong. If one fails too, then they become malnourished and they will die. The 4 things are...1) Attendance of a Weekly prayer meeting at ones church 2) Weekly Bible study at ones church 3) Weekly communion with fellow believers 4) Weekly Sunday service attendance. If one does these, then they will grow up into a strong Christian. If not, then the following things will happen: a) You will lose your holiness b) You will not be an effective minister of the Lord c) You will lose your salvation and burn in hell. And I'm quoting here...word for word. I was gobsmacked. I wrote to the guy. A really nice email I must say. I just asked some questions regarding this teaching and posed some questioned: How does one exactly become Un-born-again? Does God write a name in the Lambs Book of Life in pencil and then rub it out when a church meeting is missed? Is God's ability to keep someone saved dependent upon that person's church attendance? 

No matter which religion or cult you study, the religious spirit will rear his head with the following proposal: Are you doing enough? Your destiny in the after life is dependent upon your actions here on earth. If you do good, you get in. If you do bad, you don't get in. That is religion. And it's everywhere! 

And that is what makes the Gospel of Jesus Christ totally different from any other religious mantra. The destiny of our after life is not dependent upon what I do. It's dependent upon what JESUS has done. Jesus plus nothing. I contribute zero to my salvation. I do nothing to get it and I can do nothing to lose it. It's a gift. It's bought and paid for by Jesus' effort and performance, not my own. A religion will require you to die to self to be rescued by God. Christianity is all about God dying for us so we can be rescued. It's what makes Christianity different. You made no effort to get it and there is no effort required to keep it. CHRIST rescues us and He keeps us. It's a scandal to religion. It is the gospel.

My hope is that many well intentioned preachers receive the revelation of the gospel as I did. I can never forget that I was once in bondage to religion too. I was well intentioned in my preaching and sharing. But I was wrong. It brings fear, guilt and condemnation. And none of which is the inheritance of the believer. We were set free to live free. 

Peace folks!


  1. If only this message was as readily and easily received by all people everywhere as the message of conditional grace.

  2. If only this message was as readily and easily received by all people everywhere as the message of conditional grace.