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The Christian’s Continual Boxing Match – Round 6 of 10

June 16, 2010

Gospel vs. Religion

I’m a good Christian. I hear that a lot. What they’re really saying is, I follow the rules. I worship the rules. Too many Christians have turned religion into an idol. The reason that idolatry is so alluring is that idols promise to make life worth living, bring us happiness, and provide for us and sense of being good. All of these desires are fine, but they become evil when they become our focus, rather than Jesus, who alone makes life worth living[1]. For many, it seems that control, comfort, and quiet are the idols many people are devoted to worshipping. We have elevated many things to a god-like status that aren’t really God-like at all. Over the next 10 weeks, I’d like to make aware the 10 differences between God’s truth (gospel) and the Christian’s idol (religion).

Round 6 of 10

Religion says, It’s all about me.

If you know a selfish person, they are very difficult to live with. They think that God, their spouse, their children, their friends, co-workers, and the rest of humanity should obey and serve them as a mini-god. This is why they become angry over little things – friends stopping by unannounced, children coming to dinner late, a wife’s friend coming over for emotional support. They only think of things that happen around them inwardly, with the thought, How can this benefit me?

Gospel says, It’s not about me at all.

If religion rules over you, then your life is very selfish, and a selfish life is in contrast to the gospel. Philippians 2:1-11 says that Jesus is the most unselfish Person who has or will ever live. He exemplified this by a constant willingness to live for God’s glory, and to give me my salvation by suffering on the cross.

Jesus spoke of Himself as our example of dying to self and living for others in Mark 10:45: For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.

When Religion says, It’s all about me, my rules, my interests, my life, it believes and behaves very worldly. And because of that, Gospel wins Round 6. We are not to be worldly, we are to be holy.

Zach


[1] Driscoll, Mark, Death by Love, pg. 97

June 16, 2010 Posted by | Zach | | Leave a comment