I can remember quite clearly a time in my life when I believed no "one religion" could be the truth. I was an atheist and I believed that there were "pieces of the truth" in all faiths; but that there could not be one that was THE ABSOLUTE TRUTH. I must state that my logic was flawed because the very claim I was making that, "There cannot be one religion that is the ABSOLUTE TRUTH" is me claiming an ABSOLUTE TRUTH that my claim says cannot exist. My fierce opposition to the existence of God that I expressed for the first 22 odd years of my life, played a very influential part in my coming to understand the Wonderful Grace of my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. So this is what I want to explain today; the difference between "religion" and "the Gospel." Christianity today has taken on the form of a religion, despite the fact that this is the very thing Jesus came to destroy. I hope to clearly explain the only Absolute Truth that I know of in this world. Jesus Christ is Lord of All.

“I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.
John 14:6

Here are nine major differences between the Gospel and Religion

1. The mantra of religion is "I obey, therefore I am accepted." What this means is that in every major religion, there is a code of ethics or a basic foundational set of behaviors or rules that one must ascribe to if they are to "please God" or "be accepted by God." Every religion including Christianity is based upon this principle; that as long as I can do whats rights, and avoid whats wrong, then God will be pleased with me, and I will be rewarded with eternal life, 13 virgins, or whatever the case may be. Now the mantra of the Gospel is the complete opposite of religion in that it says, "I am accepted, therefore I obey." This is because at the center of the Christian faith is a blood splattered cross; a cross that MY sins have caused. Not others sins, but MY sins. The Gospel says that we are justified by the cross alone and that it is by no merit of our own. There is nothing we can "do" to be accepted; for it is only what Jesus "did" that gives us a right standing before God. That is why it is almost laughable that most evangelicals preach this works based religion that says, "If you don't go to church, or if you don't lead a bible study, or if you stumble and sin, God will turn you away." The Holy Bible from which these "wolves" in sheep's clothing preach states in Ephesians 2:8-9, "For by grace you have been saved a through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, 9 not a result of works, so that no one may boast."

2. The motivation behind religion is "fear and insecurity." The motivation behind the Gospel is "grace and mercy". Preachers in the Christian "religion" say things like, "You don't want to go to hell, so you better come to Jesus." This eternal damnation is a travesty and a lie and many of these wolves will be judged for it someday soon. The truth is, that "heaven is not a place for those who are afraid of hell, it is a place for those who love God." The motivation behind the Gospel is not "hellfire and damnation: but rather "grateful joy." In Phillipians 3:12 the apostle Paul writes, "Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own." I praise God every day, not for what I have done to somehow earn the "free gift of grace" but rather, because of what Jesus Christ already did.

3. In religion, we obey so that we can receive something from God. In the Gospel, we obey so that we can be near to God. In doing so, we find that we are transformed by His love and sheer power. God does not look at the outward action but rather the "heart" behind the action. Jeremiah 17:10 says, “I the Lord search the heart and test the mind". God does this so that if he finds it pure, and its motivation true love, He will cause our sin to lose its power over us. This process then allows us to be conformed into the image of Christ. True Christians don't go to God to get things; they go to God to get God.

4. In religion, when things go wrong, one is forced to blame God or to get angry at his or her own failure. In this religious framework, either, you have messed up so you are forced to get angry at yourself for falling short of Gods expectations, or you are forced to get angry at God because you have done everything your supposed to and God has somehow betrayed you by not giving you what you wanted or what you thought you deserved. Instead, God "allows" hard times, struggles, and painful situations to come into our lives to reveal to us our need for Him, and how He will walk through the darkness with us like a loving Father. Not based on what we have or have not done.
" Romans 5:3-4 says, "More than that, we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, 4 and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, 5 and hope does not put us to shame, because God's love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us." Without suffering we could not feel God's peace; a kind of peace that, "surpasses all understanding." Remember, any Christian who tells you he/she doesn't struggle is lying to you, themselves, and most importantly, to God..and they need our prayers desperately.

5. In religion, when you are criticized, you either become extremely angry or you enter into a state of self loathing. This criticism causes you to unravel because your self worth in your "religion" is defined by your ability to be a good person, and when someone points out that you are not a good person, your acceptability before God is destroyed and your world then begins to collapse around you. A "religion" is "works based" so if others point out that you somehow, "missed the mark" or have "fallen short" of the glory of God, your whole faith can be uprooted and blown away with the wind. The Good news is that the Gospel says in Romans 3:23-24, "for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus," . In the Gospel when your criticized, you still struggle, but your grateful that someone else cares enough to point out what they see might be an issue. And in that criticism, your actually drawn closer to the cross of Christ because it was a "criticism or failure" in some area of your life that brought you to the cross in the first place. This happened by revealing to you your need for a savior. Mark 10:18 says, "And Jesus said to him, “Why do you call me good? No one is good except God alone.

6. In religion, prayer is always about "petition." Religions ask God "for things", and when they do not see the prayer answered, they feel as though they've done something wrong or that God simply doesn't love them. The Bible teaches that prayer is not about receiving something from God, its about God, and building a personal relationship with Him. For the religious man, prayer is about controlling his environment. In the Gospel centered life, prayer is simply filled with long stretches of adoration. For example, the man who is living for the Gospel says, "hallowed be your name" in "whatever this is"; whether the situation is good or bad. The religious man says "fix this, do this, give me this..etc." 1 Peter 3:12 says, "For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous, and his ears are open to their prayer. But the face of the Lord is against those who do evil.” God does answer prayers; but He listens intently to the person whose prayers are made with a pure heart and whose desire is for God to be glorified, not the man whose only desire is a selfish want of something that He knows only God can give to him.

7. In religion, your self view swings wildly from two extremes. Either you are doing everything your supposed to and not struggling at all; or you cant seem to stay on track and you feel defeated that you are unable to please God. The problem with both of these views is that in the first case, if you aren't struggling at all, you are completely unable to sympathize with those who are struggling, and you become increasingly self righteous in your view of God and those around you. In the second, if you are struggling and having that dark time of the soul, you feel like you are worthless to God and those around you and you lose faith in Gods goodness. Now in the Gospel, my faith and my right standing before God is not predicated upon anything that "I can do" but simply on "what Jesus already did" on the cross. Therefore I do not become self righteous when things seem to be going well; and I am not "crushed and defeated" when I am struggling through the dark night of the soul. I simply know and believe in Gods promise to His children that he makes in Romans 8:28, "And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose." True believers understand that because they were bad enough that Jesus had to die for them, but He was willing and glad to do it creates a state of being that causes one to be sympathetic towards others, compassionate, understanding, and filled with grateful joy in the Lord.

8. In religion your self worth is built entirely on what you do, how hard you work, or how good you are; in the Gospel, you understand Ephesians 2: that says, "For by grace you have been saved a through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, 9 not a result of works, e so that no one may boast. In religion, we see people who lead bible studies, and go to sunday school, or sing in the choir, so that they can simply point out to others how they should be "working harder" or "doing more." This "religion" is one where the religious man "exalts himself" by doing "Christian things" so he can look down on those who do not do the same things. The problem with this mentality is actually the Bible... John 3:30 says speaking of Jesus, "He must increase, but I must decrease.” The true "Christian" always points to Jesus, and humbles himself by "taking the lower seat" so that Christ alone is exalted. The true Christian knows that he cannot judge anyone because to do so would be to negate the very grace he himself was given. I know that,as Galatians 2:20 says, "I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.

9. In religion, if there was something wicked going on in your family or in your life, you had to ignore it, keep quiet about it, and dress yourself up so that you could pretend that everything is just fine. You would go to church, wear a suit, and pretend.. In the Gospel, none of these things are ultimate so you know that if you are struggling, it is okay for you to speak openly about it, and confess to your brothers and sisters so that God might heal you. Unfortunately, in religion, the environment is one that it is a sign of weakness to be struggling so the pressure is to not "conform into the image of the son" but rather, "conform into the image of those in the church around you" who live in the lie that they never struggle or that they themselves have no sin worthy of confessing. This is a terrible lie that Jesus addressed quite clearly to the religious leaders of his day then he said in Matthew 23:27, "“Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you are like whitewashed tombs, which outwardly appear beautiful, but within are full of dead people's bones and all uncleanness." To struggle, or to be weakened, is to allow Christ in you to be your strength. Religion says you must live up to a set of requirements that you know you can never truly make good on. The Bible teaches that through Christ and His Gospel, that "it is okay, not to be okay." For if you were made perfect Christ would not have had to die upon the cross.

In religion, nothing is based upon what you can or cannot do, but rather on simply what Jesus did on the cross. I implore you on behalf of God, be reconciled to him. He is faithful to reward those who seek him diligently and with all their hearts and minds. One must not look at the Christian alone if they are to discredit Jesus. This is what I did as an atheist. I saw the hypocrisy of Christians and came to the conclusion that Jesus could not have been God. Now, after getting into the Word and coming to know Christ personally, when I look at they hypocrisy of Christians, and feel bitterness begin to rise up in me for all those who these so called "Christians" are keeping from entering the kingdom, I find myself completely filled with love and adoration for the fact that Jesus died for them too. This makes him my Savior; their savior, and yours too if you invite him into your heart; by confessing your sins, and repenting of them. He is faithful to forgive. This is what Jesus died for; so that you and I might be able to stand before God; holy and blameless. I love you all and God bless.

(this blog is written with content from a sermon by the pastor of the Village Church in Highland Village, TX Matt Chandler. To listen to this sermon entitled 'The Great Gospel" please click on the following link;

http://hv.thevillagechurch.net/resource_files/audio/200808310900HWC...

Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us. We implore you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God. 21 For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.
2 Corinthians 5:20-21

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Comment by Jeff on December 8, 2009 at 2:18pm
Anthony, the same truth's you speak of here are found equally in all religions. All religions make identical proclamations and your chosen religion is no different than the others, even if you choose to believe it is. All religious believers believe the same things about their chosen religions. Precisely the reason that I am an equal opportunity religious non-believer. They all make the same claims none of which do I choose to believe.

In fact, while I normally leave this personal belief at home when approaching this subject since the door has been opened here I will tell you that I do see the NWO as using religion specifically to divide us and even more importantly to control us. Believing that there will be a Jesus, an Allah, a Bhudda or a god that will save us in the end makes us likely to fail to fight the war instead relying on our confidence in the savior by something that may not even exist.

Being against the NWO is good. Having or believing in a chosen religion is perfectly fine with me. I don't care if you believe in Christianity or Catholicism, just as I don't care if you are a vegetarian or eat meat. These are choices you have a right to as a fellow human being.

Just as I prefer that you don't assault me with your decision to be a vegetarian when it comes to fighting the NWO I also prefer that no one assaults me with their chosen religious belief.

This is a social, economic and political war and the consequences of bringing your chosen religion into the fold is divisiveness or division because not everyone is a vegetarian and likewise not everyone believes in Jesus or even god for that matter. The same is true for other things that broach religious beliefs and perceptions. I would ask that the immigration issue be left at home and I would ask that the abortion issue be left at home. These issues divide us. The NWO has nothing to do with either.

The NWO is a social, economic and political force using war as the precept for resource acquisition. It forges ahead regardless of and disdainful for basic human rights, treating humans as cattle or as we've come to know and call ourselves, sheep. The NWO is an abusive and usurping regime of corporations, military and banking partnerships that seek profit at the expense of and to the detriment of the greater humanity. This is my opinion.

It benefits from any subject that divides us. There are many. It is, for me, very easy to allow these divisive subjects to remain in the background unspoken so that the cohesiveness of humanity survives. Others, for some reason, find it necessary to express their religious beliefs as they relate to the NWO and the war we're supposed to be joined in fighting. I will never understand except to say that those that feel forced to inject religion into this subject are primarily and almost always Christians which leaves me with the feeling that Christianity will work to cause a complete human failure in dealing effectively with this NWO and doom us all while dooming it's believers.

Peace
Comment by Jeff on December 8, 2009 at 12:48pm
Allah hates the NWO too. So does Bhudda.
Comment by Anthony Polenski on December 8, 2009 at 11:00am
The only reason true christians speak the truth is because it is commanded of us by the father, 2000 years before Christ was born the prophet isaiah wrote about the suffering servant saying that "he would be despised and rejected by men." This is why those who speak the truth will often be despised and rejected, because Christ himself was "despised and rejected" but He came preaching the truth out of love, so that others might be saved. Jeff, as a follower of Christ, I am against the NWO, but I will not fight, put down, or verbally assault people who try to reach out with their beliefs. Just know that God is against the NWO too, Christ will be with those who believe in him during the days that lie ahead. His grace is unreal. I once was the most argumentative atheist on the planet but after the Lord revealed His love for me in a most amazing and supernatural was, I was forever changed. Please do not give up on God Jeff because he will not give up on you. He sent Christ to die upon the cross to show us His love for us, that he was willing to give up everything for all of His people. I pray that you would not be angered by my message, but that you would read it with an open mind and open heart.
Comment by Jeff on December 3, 2009 at 1:10pm
Lastly Charles, having an intelligent and intellectual argument with you is like talking to a very small child. Innocence is often good. Combine it with a complete lack of intellect and you have an ignorant innocent.
Comment by Jeff on December 3, 2009 at 1:08pm
That's your opinion Charles, nothing more. Millions of Muslims would argue with you. Millions of Jews would disagree with you. Millions of Buddhists would find you wrong. You have stated nothing more than an opinion, the opinion of Charles. You need to accept that fact, or you can not accept that fact and continue deluding only yourself.
Comment by Charles Crosby on December 3, 2009 at 1:01pm
The Truth is not an opinion - The Truth is The Lord Jesus Christ.
Comment by Jeff on December 3, 2009 at 11:08am
All opinion with some aspersion and innuendo surrounded by allusion.
Comment by Charles Crosby on December 3, 2009 at 2:38am
In answer to Yaha120178

I accept nothing that this world and its system(s) spews out just like so much vomit or pig's swill.

BTW, is that your NWO number Yaha!!?? It'll be handy in the FEMA camps if nothing else!!

I will answer your comment with the comments of a wise heathen who, without any doubt, would put so called Christians (religionists) to shame:

"God has no religion"

“An error does not become truth by reason of multiplied propagation, nor does Truth become error because nobody sees it.”

Mahatma Gandhi

"The Truth when spoken in this world can only offend - The Lord Jesus Christ came to be an offence" - Charles Crosby

Jeff says:

"The ultimate Truth seeker does not find much of a difference between religions"

Then this seeker is spiritually blind and doesn't understand what The Truth is.
Comment by Jeff on December 2, 2009 at 6:25pm
And Yahya Carpe Diem's!
Comment by Charles Crosby on December 2, 2009 at 3:52pm
And that includes The Christian Religion!!

"Destroying the New World Order"

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