Burned by Religion
Withdrawing from God?
I’ve had several friends and acquaintances disheartened by Christian “religion” because of various “issues” like creation vs evolution, end times, hell, salvation, legalism, judgment, and hypocrisy to name a few. They still believe in God but have pulled away from the religion and most from seeking God.
I see this happen over and over – people pull away from God because of the religion of man – when in reality the two are often on opposite ends of the continuum. God is not religion and religion is not God. As I was praying about these friends, various thoughts came to mind that I wanted to say to them and I wanted to share with you:
Don’t make a decision about God based solely on others. Many people professing to be of God aren’t. Though they claim to be of Him, He hasn’t sent them or spoken to them. Jeremiah 23:16, 14:14 Deception about God grows worse and worse, but He promises if you seek Him in His Word, you will find Him and He will manifest Himself to you. Jeremiah 29:13
God’s Word is spirit and eternal. Its truth is revealed by the Spirit. Without the Holy Spirit there is no understanding. Many claim to have the Spirit and don’t, therefore their interpetations are wrong. Even those who may have His spirit, they are still human and can present incomplete ideas. Bottom line, don’t seek and rely on man’s instruction – seek God’s. Seek God to establish your foundation of truth, then test all you hear by what you learn from God. God gave us His spirit so that we could commune with Him one-on-one and know His truth without a middle man – this is His desire for us. 1 John 2:27
Look to God, seek Him, and the truth of who He is in His Word. Open up your mind to learn of Him, from Him. Start fresh and you will find a much different God than what you’ve been taught.
There is so much God wants to show and do for you. All He requires is for you to seek Him in His Word because that is His truth. Don’t turn your back on Him because of the lies of others. God’s desire is for you to be united to Him. Don’t let others take from you this unity, which is true abundant life for you because in His presence is peace, freedom, rest, joy, protection, provision, healing, power, strength, truth, mercy, love, grace, and comfort. Seek Him in His Word to know Him and your will find Him. Matthew 7:7
Your salvation and sanctification are in His hands. Man doesn’t save. You don’t save yourself. You are saved by God’s will alone. He has a plan for your life. When you feel His prompting on your heart, draw near to Him and to get to know Him. Surrendering your will for His wll is a process that happens as you seek and spend time with Him.
As for God’s plan for this world and for us (end times, hell, etc), it is much greater than what many preach. Their views are limited because they are fallen men and women. As a result, their ideas are often full of bondage and lies. If you seek Him, He will start to reveal His plan to you bit by bit as you need to know. Many attribute to Him what He hasn’t proclaimed or even desired. Jeremiah 32:35
As you seek, you will find that God’s wisdom is perfect and your understanding of this world will grow, not diminish (like in the creation vs evolution debate). The Word is spiritual. It is written layer upon layer and full of symbolism and parables to teach deeper truths. To deny this structure is to miss out on the truth. Those who read it literally miss out on the deeper layers that bring truth to His entire Word.
Christianity isn’t about rules, legalism, laws, it is about a true relationship with God built upon truth, trust and love. God desires us – not our works.
I pray you put your past experiences that tainted your view of God behind you. Seek to abide in a relationship with God as you were created to do because without Him life remains incomplete, lost, lacking, unfulfilled, and broken. Give God an opportunity to show Himself as He is to you, and He will blow your mind with His goodness, love, and the realness of His presence in your life.