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originally posted by: Revolution9
Goodbye Jesus. Good bye religion. Religion is more evil than anything it purports to fight against as a good force.
You might wonder "How on earth God could hate religion? Ridiculous! God loves religion. GOD IS RELIGION! Or at least He's completely in favour of it... surely? Saying that 'God hates religion' seems like talk of 'Peace keeping Missiles' or 'Cold heat'. Impressive contradictions designed to catch our attention.
But its true, God does hate religion. And the reason is that religion is not relationship. Religion is all about us trying to impress God with large buildings, sacrifices, good works and inspirational cultural achievements. But, and this may be hard to hear, God's just not interested in us impressing him.
You see, Religion is like washing your hands to clean your heart - hopeless window dressing. You may as well put a band aid on cancer! And God hates that we do it. He hates that we pretend that religion is the answer. In the Bible God says, "They worship me in vain; their teachings are but rules taught by men."
What God wants is relationship. Not on our terms with our rules and rituals. He doesn't want us to do something to establish relationship with him. No, He's done what needs to be done. You could say, God's already done the religious thing. He sent his son Jesus to die on the cross to pay for our sin so that we can have friendship with him. Jesus' death is the only offering that pleases God. It is the only religious sacrifice that God accepts. One way of thinking about this is that Religion is what we try to do to please God whereas Jesus' death and resurrection is what God has already done that saves us.
It's true, God hates religion!
Almost everything man has put his hand to he has ruined the sea, the land, and the very air we breathe. We just must be in control. Even the Almighty has not been safe from smudged human fingerprints. Religion became the container we put God into. We took something pure and simple and complicated it; then we made up rules and regulations and called them holy. Every Sunday we visit a building we call church and follow a rite we call religion. Everyone thinks that God and religion are synonymous, but they are actually opposites.
God has a much better plan for us. He never wanted to be perceived as distant, judging, or overshadowing. He wanted to be part of us and every moment of our lives. But man decided that wasn't right for the Creator of the universe, so they made him big, unreachable and surrounded him with traditions, laws and rituals.
...all he ever wanted was to love us and to be our Father, to throw off the heavy armor of religion and don the velvet cloak of relationship. Most importantly she directs us to where we can embrace who we were always meant to be by getting to know God, who he is and what he likes and dislikes. And one thing is for sure God Hates Religion!
God Hates Religion!
"What if I told you Jesus came to abolish religion... just because you call some people blind doesn’t automatically give you vision..."
"I hate to advocate drugs, alcohol, violence, or insanity to anyone, but they've always worked for me." - Hunter S. Thompson
I only wish it was in my imagination.
Unfortunately it is very real.
You live what you think
I am just in pieces. I am really not bothered too much about discussing it. Sometimes, just writing it and communicating it publically is enough. It is my own baggage and # I know. I don't even want sympathy. I am a very emotionally tough person, had to be.
I just wish I could tell you how hard I tried with Christianity. I feel truly tortured. It is actually killing me to carry on like that. I am wasting away socially and physically. It is just not in my health interests to carry on like that any longer. I was nowhere near perfect with it all, but I did try earnestly.
I tell you I would sell my soul just for a year of the things others take for granted.
. I tried to be totally honest and sincere and not lie to myself or others about my experience of Christianity.
originally posted by: Revolution9
originally posted by: ketsuko
What did you expect God to do?
It seems arrogant to assume that He would pay special attention to you for some reason. Perhaps you ought to revisit Job.
I know the lesson of Job. I have humbled myself total. I know I am just a silly mortal little creature. I am actually too weak to do anything any more. My nerves are in tatters.
I don't expect God to do anything for me as a special case. My life just isn't happening. I have to do something about it or I will end up in a very bad position. I have to be very careful as I am bi polar. I was treated very badly in Paris a couple of years back, quite mentally and physically abused. They do not realise just how much they messed me up there. The stories I could tell you about the way I have been treated. If I told you would not believe me that my family and so called friends could be so nasty and abusive. I have often got paranoid and though it was all deliberate and planned, but people are really just the unconscious agents. To them it is one thing to me it is another.
Oh well, rant over any way.
Just another crazy ATS guy boiling over.
So here we have the earliest Christians, those who sat at the feet of the apostles being criticized for losing their first love. This should come as no surprise because it happens to every Christian at one time or another. Colossians 2:6 says, “As you have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in him.”
How does a Christian begin their relationship with the Lord Jesus? They repent and confess their need of Him and ask Him to change them and be their life. In other words, the way we began that relationship, we have to do the same thing every day in order to continue in it. I John 1 puts it in terms of walking in the light as He is in the light. Then we have fellowship with Him and with one another. That is the secret to the Christian life. Be open; let the light shine in and fellowship with Him. This is something we have to do every day or we just become pretenders, actors, hypocrites, empty shells.
Loosing our first love
You will be deceived if you lose your first love! The church in Ephesus lost her first love. Isn’t this so typical of every Christian? Like the early Christians, we were electrified by our first touch with Jesus and wanted to share the experience with everyone. But soon we got caught up in life, in church and in “acting” like a Christian (instead of being transformed by that new life within). We got caught up in a “church culture” that taught us how to act and think. We mimic others in church but lose that fresh touch – that relationship that so excited us in the beginning. This can and does happen to us all and, if we persist in this state, we lose our lampstand; lose God’s presence.
If we lose our first love, we go through the motions of being a “Christian” but without life or love. We will be deceived if we don’t have that fresh relationship. There is nothing harder for the “Christian” because our tendency is to become “religious” – acting like our concept or how we are taught a Christian should be but void of love and life. I’m not talking theory but experience – my experience of over 50 years! And I don’t know a single “born again” Christian that hasn’t had the same experience.
Recognizing Deception - Losing Our First Love
Then all of the sudden something happens. We lose our first love. We lose the joy of our salvation. We started out with a bang, telling all our friends and relatives about what we found but soon we find our only friends are other Christians. We go to church and are excited to learn. Learning seems to be the key so the new Christian reads, attends Bible studies and soaks up sermons. It all seems so fresh and new. We start to learn the weird churchy vocabulary. We learn how Christians ought to act but we feel like something is shriveling up inside. What is happening?
I tell you the truth. This happened to me and it happens to most Christians. Knowledge is equated with growth and the more you learn, the more distant God becomes. That thrilling relationship you once had with Jesus becomes a distant memory but it is replaced with programs, teachings and activity.
We are like blind people thrashing around in the dark. Every now and then we accidentally hit upon the switch and the lights go on. “Lord where have you been? Where did you go? I’ve missed you.” The answer is not that mysterious. I John lays it out very well. I would encourage you to read the whole book several times. It is all there. Here is the most basic problem (I John 1:5): “God is light and in Him there is no darkness at all”. What separated us from a relationship with God to begin with? Sin, very simply. What comes between us after we become Christians? Sin.
“Still Born” Christians
The church is in the state it is in today because Christians don’t have a clue how to get into the presence of God. They are going through the motions. No wonder the rest of the world mocks Christians. Why does the church seem dead and ineffectual? Because no one knows where the switch is. Few realize they even have a human spirit and even fewer know how to use it. If they did, the world would be on fire with the presence of God.
I was a Christian for nearly 10 years until someone shared this with me. And I’m not perfect. I’ve gone for days, weeks, and months either going through the motions or in rebellion – acting like a Christian out to act but dead inside – living in the flesh. But, praise God, I also know what it is like to flip the switch, to have that fellowship, to deal with what the Lord shows me, to fellowship with Him and let Him work in me.
“Still Born” Christians
The difference between death and life is the difference between “head knowledge” and “heart knowledge and relationship”. We study, read books, go to Bible Schools and Seminaries, retreats and revivals. We learn and equate that head knowledge as living reality but it hasn’t been worked into our life. We study about the cross but don’t experience it. We study about dying to self, but it doesn’t happen. We study about sanctification and think we are, but we aren’t. We sit Sunday after Sunday and listen to sermon after sermon and our minds are filled but our spirit is as good as dead.
We’ve lost the joy of our salvation. The world intrudes on our lives and defiles us as we get caught up in day to day humdrum survival. Going to church is just one of the motions we go through. We have a name, a reputation that we are alive, but we are dead inside. I realized that just sitting in a pew would never get me anywhere, nor would Bible School or Seminary. I need to experience Jesus myself, “body life” and a loving community. I needed to find the church in Philadelphia and I did.
Does the Last Days Church Suffer?
originally posted by: Bone75
a reply to: BELIEVERpriest
I know that sounded snarky but I'm genuinely curious. Why else would someone denounce their religion on ATS?