GraceLife Blog 29-Religious Beliefs: Contradictory My Dear Watson

It isn’t often that Paul mentions religion in his teachings about Jesus.  He usually refers to the relationship between God and people as just that, a relationship, but he does mention religion every so often.  In one instance, he says “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 (James 3:2).

In both of those examples, religion is the action of the doctrine, not the teachings itself.  It isn’t words that are written on paper; it is the physical act of achieving a goal.

Anyone can have a religion, and anyone can believe in God.  Paul said that even the demons believe in God, and they shudder (James 2:19).  They know who God is, but they don’t choose to be on his side.  They are the opposite of Christ.  If Christ says care for the orphans and widows, then demons try to hurt them.

If we choose Christ, then we choose his religion, barring any denominational names.  When we choose Christ’s religion, we choose his actions; we choose what he did on this earth to do ourselves.  That’s why he says we must take up our cross and follow him, metaphorically speaking (Mark 8:34).

Simply believing in Christ’s works is only the first step to living a Christ led life.  Keeping a strong relationship with Christ is the next step, but it isn’t the last.  Doing as Christ did is the final step toward living a religion that God ordains.

Faith is the belief in God and his teachings.  Without faith, we would have nothing; we would not believe in God, but without religion; without taking action, we would not have faith.  Without doing what Christ wants us to do we would no longer believe God exists; we would not believe in Christ, because faith is dead without works (James 2:14-26).

Doing what Christ did is simple.  God gives people the heart for helping others.  Christ wants you to help those who are weaker than you.  It is that simple.  You can’t help everybody because you are not strong in all areas, but listen to Christ.  He will put it in your heart when you are suppose to lend your strength to someone he loves.

About Kevin Riner

Associate Pastor of GraceLife Church Clarksville, father, husband, Author of Faith Debugged-Spiritual Insights from an Exterminator Follow me: Twitter - KevinRiner Blog -

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