“Therefore, since we also have such a large cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us lay aside every weight and the sin that so easily ensnares us.” – Hebrews 12:1 (HCSB)
We all have weights we drag around. Some are the common ones like lust and lying. Others are quite different.
For many, the greatest weight dragging us down is religion. I’ll wait for the riot to quiet down. Okay then. No, this is not some new age blathering. It is a damning of that which Christianity has been turned into.
Centuries of tradition have moved our faith further and further from the Christ-centered life we ought to live to a faith following the whims and beliefs of humans. These centuries “prove” that they are the correct ways. I probably shouldn’t mention that most denominations that have existed for these hundreds — a few would claim thousands — of years have done so by killing off other Christians, and certainly non-Christians, who dared to disagree. That, I believe, is more than enough to disprove them that they would resort to the very murder and hate that beset Jesus.
If our faith is nothing more than blind acceptance of what others tells us, it will drag us down. It is not the same as the faith that eschews sight. Such acceptance of religion and tradition is myopic idiocy.
I will not single any particular denominations out, and some are indeed worse than others, because none can ever meet the needs of faith, the calls of Christ. Instead, they heap upon our necks the yokes Jesus sought to end. Worse, they enable spiritual laziness. Why read the Bible to learn how to pray when we can recite the same one every day? Maybe because it means nothing?
Religion does not bring us closer to God. Tradition does not bring us closer to God. God and His word bring us closer to God.
Whatever small measure of faith denominations impart, they also withhold. Insomuch as they need members, patrons, they must make Christians reliant upon them for their brand of truth. It is here that the weights of religion are crafted and attached. And then the weights must be given “spiritual” reasons to be. And so a faith not like pure faith in Christ is made.
Loose the tethers that bind you whatever they may be. But open your eyes and see that the most dangerous and heavy are those that are disguised as boons. Examine everything openly and honestly. We must chase Jesus at all costs.