orphan and girl

"ARE YOU RELIGIOUS"

By: Harold Moreland


I often hear Christians making the statement "I hate religion", or "I'm not religious", or worse yet "God hates religion". Every time I hear any of these statements it grieves my heart. Why would any knowledgeable Believer make such statements against religion? You can't be a Christian and not be religious, it's theologically impossible. Now "false religion" is a different subject, but I am speaking here about "Christian Religion", "True Religion". Could it be that those who speak to critisize those whom they label as "religious', actually are themselves the ones with the "religious spirit", like the Pharisees, looking down on the simple and meek?  

Lets look at Websters definition of religion:
1) The belief in a god or in a group of gods
2) An organized system of beliefs, ceremonies, and rules used to worship a god or a group of gods
3) An interest, a belief, or an activity that is very important to a person or group

So, if you are a Christian you ultimately have to be true to all three of these definitions;
1) You have to believe in a god to believe in The One True God or you basically are saying that your an Athiest, not believing in a higher power.
2) You have an organized system of beliefs, their called the laws of Christ, and they are written on your heart. And hopefully you worship God.
3) And if Christianity is not a belief that is very important to you then you will not endure in the faith. In fact, it should be so important that you will leave everything to follow Christ.

So why would (or do) Christians say this? Mostly I believe because they have heard others say it and never really stopped to think about their statement or consider how contrary it is to the Gospel. In James 1:27 it reads; "Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world". Ok Beloved, this alone should be enough reason to stop denouncing the term "religion". If God accepts it are we to reject it? So why do we make these statements? Is it because we think that "religion" as defined in James is to weak, maybe not "spiritual" or "charismatic" enough? Would we rather that James had said one of the following;

"Religion that God the Father accepts as pure and faultless is;
1) Attending in or being involved in an awesome worship service".
2) Praying hours a day or praying for the sick".
3) Evangelizing to the public or on the mission field".
4) Preaching, teaching, or operating in any of the five fold gifts".

Could it be that we think that those who just take care of widows and orphans and keep themselves pure are just "religious" and not "spiritually anointed" like us? Not bold and aggressive enough in the Kingdom? And yet Beloved, theirs is the kind of religion that our Father accepts!!!! (Selah--pause and think about that)

So think hard next time you choose to label someone as "just religious", as if it were an insult, you may actually be giving them a compliment. "Father, help me be as religious as your Son was, completely giving myself to others in the most humble and simple way and esteeming others above myself. Teach me Your pure and spotless religion, how to act only out of compassion and never with an arrogant attitude". Amen

Click Here for IHOP-NOLA's Website

ny of these statements it grieves my heart. Why would any knowledgeable Believer make any statement against religion? You can't be a Christian and not be religious, it's theologically impossible. Websters definition of religion is:
1) The belief in a god or in a group of gods
2) An organized system of beliefs, ceremonies, and rules used to worship a god or a group of gods
3) An interest, a belief, or an activity that is very important to a person or group
So, if you are a Christian you ultimately have to be true to all three of these definitions;
1) You have to believe in a god to believe in The One True God or you basically are saying that your an Athiest not believing in a higher power.
2) You have an organized system of beliefs, their called the laws of Christ, and they are written on your heart. And hopefully you worship God.
3) And if Christianity is not a belief that is very important to you then you will not endure in the faith. In fact it should be so important that you will leave everything to follow Jesus.
So why would, or do, Christians say this? Mostly I believe because they have heard others say it and never really stopped to think about their statement or consider how contrary it is to the Gospel. In James 1:27 it reads; "Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world". Ok Beloved, this alone should be enough reason to stop denouncing the term "religion". If God accepts it are we to reject it? So why do we make these statements? Is it because we think that "religion" as defined in James is to weak, maybe not "spiritual" or "charismatic" enough? Would we rather that James said one of the following;
"Religion that God the Father accepts as pure and faultless is;
1) Attending in or being involved in an awesome worship service".
2) Praying hours a day or praying for the sick".
3) Evangelizing to the public or on the mission field".
4) Preaching, teaching, or operating in any of the five fold gifts".
Maybe because we think that those who just take care of widows and orphans and keep themselves pure are just "religious" and not spiritually anointed as we are? Not bold and aggressive enough in the Kingdom? And yet theirs is the kind of religion that our Father accepts!!!! (Selah)
Chewing the cud of "True Religion" today. Bro Harold