THE KIND OF RELIGION MANY SEEK TO JOIN
A GROWING NUMBER of people would choose the religion most convenient to them and in harmony with their opinions and lifestyles. For instance, the traditional Sunday practice of gathering in a place of worship has been replaced by many with a television set and shouts of “Praise the Lord” in the comforts of their own home. Others would join religions that promise wealth and health to its members. And still others would do nothing but profess to have faith in and a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.
What is saddening, however, is that in people’s efforts to customize religion TO FIT THEIR NEEDS AND OPINIONS, they have opted those that are not based on the Holy Scriptures. This is not surprising because hundreds of years ago, Apostle Paul foretold of this attitude of people. He testified: “The time will come when people will not listen to sound doctrine, but will follow their own desires and will collect for themselves more and more teachers who will tell them what they are itching to hear.” (II Tim. 4:3, Today’s English Version)
Nowadays, many embrace only those religions THAT FIT INTO THEIR PERSONAL BELIEFS AND VIEWS ABOUT GOD without considering the teachings of the Holy Scriptures. Moreover, MANY PREACHERS TAILOR THEIR MESSAGE TO PERSUADE PEOPLE, even to the extent of compromising the truths written in the Bible.
The Bible also foretold of people who would use religion to disguise their true intention—that is, to make money:
“ So they come as though they are sincere and sit before you listening. But they have no intention of doing what I tell them to; they talk very sweetly about loving the Lord, but with their hearts they are loving their money.” (Ezek. 33:31, Living Bible)
Those who only use religion for their own benefit are those who refuse to submit themselves to God’s way of putting people right with Himself. These are those who have set up their own way or religion and have not returned to God through the way taught by the Almighty. Apostle Paul identified such in his epistle:
“ I can assure you that they are deeply devoted to God; but their devotion is not based on true knowledge. They have not known the way in which God puts people right with himself, and instead, they have tried to set up their own way; and so they did not submit themselves to God's way of putting people right.” (Rom. 10:2-3, TEV)
Regarding this kind of people, the Lord Jesus Christ testified:
“It is useless for you to worship me, when you teach rules made up by humans.” (Mt. 15:9, Contemporary English Version)
Hence, it is important for us to recognize the religion that is of God among those that are based on man-made teachings.
THE TRUE RELIGION
The true religion or that which is truly of Christ and of God is the religion that follows the teachings of Christ, which he received from God. Jesus Christ testifies:
“If anyone serves Me, let him follow Me; and where I am, there My servant will be also. If anyone serves Me, him My Father will honor.” (Jn. 12:26, New King James Version)
THE TRUE RELIGION FOLLOWS AND UPHOLDS CHRIST’S TEACHINGS. Fundamental among Christ’s teachings regarding the attainment of salvation is THE NECESSITY TO ENTER THROUGH HIM. This is what He says to anyone who wants to be saved:
“I am the door. If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved.
“And other sheep I have which are not of this fold; them also I must bring, and they will hear My voice; and there will be one flock and one shepherd.” (Jn. 10:9, 16, NKJV)
TO BE SAVED, ONE MUST JOIN CHRIST’S FLOCK. The flock being referred to is the CHURCH OF CHRIST:
“Take heed therefore to yourselves and to all the flock over which the Holy Spirit has appointed you overseers, to feed the church of Christ which he has purchased with his blood.” (Acts 20:28, Lamsa Translation)
Therefore, the true religion is the one redeemed by Christ with His blood—the Church of Christ. Man must enter this Church, for him to render worship that is worthy to God and attain salvation on the day of Judgment. *
Brother DEXTER T. MANGLICMOT
PASUGO GOD’S MESSAGE