I was thinking today that I might stop calling myself a Christian. Now before my Christian friends get all up in arms thinking I’ve lost my senses, and my non-Christian friends dance a jig thinking I’ve finally come to my senses, let me explain.
Christianity is one of the major religions of the world. According to the Random House Dictionary on Dictionary.com, the word “religion” means:
Every single word that we have spoken
One of these days we all will stand before the Lord
Give a reason for everything we’ve done
And what I’ve done is
Trust in Jesus
My great Deliverer
My strong Defender
The Son of God
I trust in Jesus
My Lord forever
The Holy One, the Holy One
What are you going to do when your time has come
And your life is done and there’s nothing you can stand on
What will you have to say at the judgment throne
I already know the only thing that I can say I
There’s nothing I can do on my own to find forgiveness
It’s by His grace alone I trust in Jesus
Trust in Jesus
Religion , defined as a moral code, can tell us how we should live, but it can’t tell us how we should die. And you know we all have to die someday, each and every one of us. When that time comes I know that if I come before God and stand upon my own merits, on my own actions in having done the right thing according to the Christian moral code, I will fail. There is no doubt in my mind or my heart that I would be judged guilty of selfishness and pride just for starters. But because I humbly accept Jesus’ atonement for my sins, my judgement will be “innocent” because He was innocent, the perfect Redeemer to pay my debt.
When asked by a rich young man what good deed would earn him eternal life in Matthew 19:16-26, Jesus illustrated that even this good, rich man who had obeyed all the commandments would not have eternal life unless he followed Jesus. His disciples were astounded and asked who could possibly then enter the Kingdom of God. “Jesus looked at them intently and said, ‘Humanly speaking, it is impossible. But with God everything is possible.’” Matthew 19:26.
I look at the world around me and I see violence, hatred, sadness, brokenness, starvation, poverty, and so much more that religion and moral codes have failed to fix. In spite of Jesus’ message of redemption and grace, people still keep trying to fix everything on their own, to figure out what good deed they must do to earn eternal life and make all things right. If we just have compassion and are accepting and tolerant of all religions we will be enlightened and the world will be a better place. I do agree that compassion and respect for others are wonderful goals of religion, but they are not enough. What we do not need are more of the religions that have failed us thus far.
What each individual needs is a Savior; what mankind needs is a Deliverer; what the world needs is a Redeemer. But there is hope. We have such a Redeemer! Jesus said:
“Do not let your hearts be troubled. You believe in God; believe also in me. My Father’s house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am. You know the way to the place where I am going.”
Thomas said to him, “Lord, we don’t know where you are going, so how can we know the way?”
Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. If you really know me, you will know my Father as well. From now on, you do know him and have seen him.” John 14:1-7.
Have you seen Him? He’s waiting for you to come and follow. Will you join me?