Monday, March 10, 2008

Matters Current

I heard it asked this week - "Is Obama the anti-christ?" Follow the link above for Nick Kristof's article on religious bigots.

Has there ever been any institutionalized racism in the church?

Has anyone ever seen vestiges of discrimination in the church?

Has anyone ever witnessed a church abandon its mission of lifting up Christ to adopt a political agenda?

I have to tell you that I can understand why some people are suspicious of the church.

Christians are guilty of all these things.

We do harm in the name of doing good.

Can I offer a distinction?

For many people, religion is that set of humanly controlled institutions, which have hurt people in the name of God.

On the other hand, spirituality might be defined as personal openness to the working of God’s power in one’s life.

This is the kind of distinction that groups like Alcoholics Anonymous make between the two words to separate their negative feelings toward religion from their spiritual yearning for God.

I think this distinction can help all of us keep our focus on seeking God.

So where does religion fit in? It doesn't.

There is no role for religion because the Gospel leaves none.

Christianity is not about religion; it is the end of religion.

Religion consists of all the things that humans have tried to do to get right with God.

None of those things has ever worked. Everything religion has failed to do - has been done, once and for all, by Jesus.

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