Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Is Christianity a Religion?

Buddha never claimed to be God! Moses never claimed to be Jehovah! Mohammed never claimed to be Allah! Yet Jesus Christ claimed to be the true and living God. Buddha simply said, "I am a teacher in search of the truth..." Jesus said, "I am the Truth." Confucius said, "I never claimed to be holy..." Jesus said, "Who convicts Me of sin?" Mohammed said, "Unless God throws his cloak of mercy over me, I have no hope." But lastly Jesus said, "Unless you believe in Me, you will die in your sins." - Unknown Author

True christianity is not a religion, rather, it is having a right relationship with God by receiving Jesus Christ as the Savior, through faith. God created man in his own image & he loves everyone in this world. Man lost his relationship with God & lost due to sin. Religious rituals or man's effort could not save anyone from sin, curse & death.

True gospel is the “power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes” by which he means that salvation is not achieved by man’s efforts, but by the grace of God through the gift of faith.(Ephesians 2:8-9) Jesus death on the cross paid for the sins of mankind, giving us access to heaven and an eternal relationship with God.

Religion teaches external sanctification of a human body. Bible teaches us, every evil is coming from inside a person to become a sinner. Every sinner need a savior to come out from the guilty of sin. No one gets into heaven except by faith in the saving work of the Lord Jesus Christ on his or her behalf.

For it is from within, out of a person’s heart, that evil thoughts come - sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, greed, malice, deceit, lewdness, envy, slander, arrogance and folly. All these evils come from inside and defile a person. (Mark 7:20)

But Jesus came to teach sanctification of body, soul & spirit through the power of Holy spirit. Holy spirit is the free gift of God to everyone who believes Jesus christ is their lord & savior. God wants to make us more holy like Himself. He wants to transform us into the express image of His Son Jesus Christ. Sanctification results in holiness, or purification from the guilt and power of sin.

Jesus said; And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate [Holy spirit] to help you and be with you forever-the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you. I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you. (John 14:16-18)

Jesus said; It is to your advantage that I go away; for if I do not go away, the Helper [Holy spirit] will not come to you; but if I depart, I will send Him to you. And when He has come, He will convict the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: of sin, because they do not believe in Me; of righteousness, because I go to My Father and you see Me no more; of judgment, because the ruler of this world is judged.(John 16:7-11)

The receiving/indwelling of the Holy Spirit occurs at the moment of salvation. Holy Spirit is the holy presence of God that guides us, teaches us, comforts us, rebukes us, reminds us of Scriptures, convicts us, loves us, intercedes in prayer for us, empowers us, heals us, enlightens us etc. Holy spirit help us to bring holiness & enable us to stand before God.

So letting your sinful nature control your mind leads to death. But letting the Spirit control your mind leads to life and peace. (Romans 8:6)

"If anyone among you thinks he is religious, and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his own heart, this one’s religion is useless. Pure and undefiled religion before God and the Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their trouble, and to keep oneself unspotted from the world". (James 1:26-27)

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