Religion or Relationship?

I admit to checking facebook more than I should. Every now and then, a post will just grab me and the only thing I can do is to comment on it from a Biblical perspective. This morning, I read a statement from someone I do not know. Here is a paraphrase of what he said: “I’m going to attend church today, maybe a little religion is what I need these days.”

The man who posted this, named the “church” he would be attending, and I can almost guarantee what he would find in that setting is “religion” that is totally dependent on man made ritual and tradition.

Religion has been described as “man’s effort to reach God.” In the context of this idea, I have to return to the statement made by Jesus. “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me” (John 14:6). In reality, the person needs Jesus, not religion. There are many “churches” that offer religion. What really matters is not religion, but a relationship with God, and that is only available by placing one’s faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.

The apostle Paul warned of religion based on man-made tradition. These are his words in Colossians 2:8; “See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the basic principles of this world rather than on Christ.” Proverbs 16:25 tells us, “There is a way that seems right to a man, but in the end it leads to death.”

Man’s efforts to save himself are futile. Salvation is not found in man-made religion, but in a personal relationship with the Son of God. “There is no other name given to men by which we must be saved” (Acts 4:12).
Religion or relationship? Which do you claim today? I pray you have made the correct choice.

In His amazing love,

Pastor Jerry

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