By Not Known
Many years back there was a popular book called: How to be a Christian Without Being Religious. When I first read it, I was religious, with a Christian flavour, but not a Christian. The book's title intregued me. Its contents annoyed me and then changed me.
The Apostle Paul describes a similar process in an autobiographical writing:
If anyone else thinks he has reasons to put confidence in the flesh, I have more: circumcised on the eighth day, of the people of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew of Hebrews; in regard to the law, a Pharisee; as for zeal, persecuting the church; as for legalistic righteousness, faultless.(Phil. 3: 4- 6)
In our terms, Paul came from the right kind of family, practised the right religious rituals and belonged to the strictest religious sect. He was a very religious and was once very proud of it. And there's the problem. Religion is a matter of what we do and our attitude to it.
Paul then met Jesus. Listen to what he then wrote:
But whatever was to my profit I now consider loss for the sake of Christ. What is more, I consider everything a loss compared to the surpassing greatness of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them rubbish, that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ–the righteousness that comes from God and is by faith. I want to know Christ…(Phil. 3: 7- 10a)
Paul left religion and came to Jesus, trusting him alone for his peace with God. And there's the difference between religion and Christianity. Christianity is first of matter of what God has done for us in Jesus and our trust in him.
What kind of fool are you? It is folly to turst ourself and our religious deeds once we hear about Jesus? It is wisdom to trust Jesus, for he is the one through whom God offers salvation to all who believe. It is my prayer that we will all move from the folly of self-boasting religion to the wisdom of trusting Jesus.