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Love Hate Point Counterpoint

Many of you may have seen the following video that went viral a couple of weeks ago. Titled “Why I Hate Religion but Love Jesus” it expresses a deeply felt faith that has resonated with millions.

But just yesterday, I was sent the following link to a response to the first from the other side of the fence. It’s titled “Why I Love Religion and Love Jesus.” The reason I’m posting both YouTube videos here is that they give us another example of the principle of wisdom that we’ve given quite a bit of time to: (Prov 18:17)

Without a question, the first video has echoes of Jesus who was harder on religious leaders than anyone else. Admittedly I was deeply moved when I watched it. There is an infinite, eternal, and personal difference between Christ (as a person) and religion (as a system).

Yet when I saw the second, I did a double-take and remembered Jesus’ servant James who wrote, “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 1:27).

Religion that represents Jesus in truth, love, and spirit can be a faithful servant. By analogy we might even say that there is an eternal, infinite, and personal difference between Jesus and the Bible, but…

My apologies if your bandwidth doesn’t enable you to watch these. I hope I’ve given enough of a description to give you a sense of the point/counterpoint.

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83 Responses to “Love Hate Point Counterpoint”

  1. poohpity says:

    The first one said that Jesus is more than religion and the second said that Jesus is less than religion.

  2. remarutho says:

    Good Evening Mart & Friends —

    I appreciate both raps — being current cultural expressions. I like poetry of all kinds! Religion is a systematic approach to what God deeply desires for each of us: re (again) ligare (connect). Many of us waltz on to our own tune — atheistically presuming that God’s will is the same as ours. But, it is not the same, unless our will bends to his Will.

    The divine plan was always to send God’s only Son to make reconnecting with God possible. I do not care for the word religion, but it truly describes a deliberate and obedient practice of seeking and doing God’s will.

    I choose both poems. The truth is somewhere between them. The Holy Spirit enables and empowers us, broken jars of clay, to contain God’s glorious life through Jesus Christ. He supplies wisdom and humility and joy in obedience. Otherwise, religion is a dry exercise.


  3. bratimus says:

    The second one had had This Jesus <3 religion.

    This symbol <3 is a side ways heart.

    The videos just show in almost everything man gets involved is made to be that 2 sides to every coin.

  4. poohpity says:

    Thanks bratimus, I did not know that lol. Learn something new everyday.

  5. SFDBWV says:

    I hate *rap*…..

    Jesus founded the *Church* on the rock Cephas (John 1: 42) (Matthew 16: 18-19). Hebrews 10: 25 urges us to assemble together.

    The Holy Spirit through His disciple Paul goes to a lot of effort in establishing an earthly church structure, explaining Jesus as the head of this church and offices to be held in it.

    He is not speaking to an individual to be his own church, but for believers to come together in order to accomplish the will of God as a group not as an individual.

    Not that the will of God can not also be accomplished through an individual, God can and will do as is His pleasure. However even a heathen understands there is strength in numbers.

    Back in the 60’s there was a movement underway to trash and discredit the church, producing absurd works of fiction such as “Rosemary’s Baby” and others. Satan has had a field day accusing the churches of Christianity of every sort of failure and hypocrisy.

    If we stop for a moment and think of churches being people, and that these people are subject to stumbling and falling and being just as weak and susceptible to sin as any one of us individually; we can maybe see the that where we can recognize our own failures we somehow think a group of us are somehow different.

    Why isn’t forgiveness afforded a group of believers as we expect forgiveness for ourselves?
    Why would we think that a group of us are going to act any differently than each of us do singularly?

    Christian religion only shows failures because of the failure of the person inside setting in the pew.

    The world judges, Satan accuses, Christ forgives; where do we as Christians fit into this?

    There is something wrong when people look for the evil and bad side of everything, because if that is what you have centered you vision on that is what you will see.

    What about the good side of *Religion* and especially our Christian religion and its churches? I see plenty good about it. I see that it provides a place of assembly a place of instruction, a place of worship, a means by which we can feed the hungry, clothe the poor, and provide creature comfort to those who has none. All done collectively not individually.

    I will not join in the chorus of voices who look for faults in church; instead I will praise her accomplishments.


  6. yooperjack says:

    *Religion* sucks, more wars, division and killing has been done in the name of religion than good. They wouldn’t post what I really feel so I’ll pass on this one.

  7. oneg2dblu says:

    Steve, to Rap is to knock also. Christ said, in modern terms, “Ask, Seek and Rap!” LOL :)
    I really felt both resonated deeply in me, because both spoke of the Lord, man’s passion for Christ, and how this free will allows for expression to come out freely and be a voice of some added value.
    Like a coin pressed on both sides, if we remove one side
    we reduce the value, and have defaced its real total worth!
    Where Life for us is the expression of man with free will, the Death on the Cross for Our Lord was the expression of total Will to Surrender to God!
    Like that coin, we are pressed on every side, and with the Faith we now possess, we can each side come together and hold on to this: 2 Corinthians 4:8-18. Gary

  8. SFDBWV says:

    Jackie, Jesus warned us of many who will come in his name and are not Him. Wars are caused by the evil in men, not by the belief system of Christians.

    I have stated and said repeatedly here for all to read that in my opinion Islam is an evil religion, but that does not mean that every person who is of the faith of Islam is evil or good. It means that that religion’s base is based from a heart of evil.

    Christianity’s faith is based on the pure heart of Jesus of Nazareth and His leading and teaching. The *religion* of Christianity leads no one to commit atrocities against others, only the evil that is in men do that, and if it is done in the name of Christ it is just as Jesus warned us of, those who come falsely using His name, wolves, if you will, in sheep’s clothing.

    Is this subject another journey into word play as to what is religion verses what are we as a gathering of Christians? Is it subject only to the worship practices of Christians or is it meant to include every *religion* in the world both past and present?

    I have heard it stated that *Humanism* is a religion also? Is that to be included in our topic? Or is this just another opportunity to accuse Christianity’s belief system and practices?


  9. oneg2dblu says:

    Here we are definig words again. Here’s my take on religion: small “r” is what we do very day, your religion is your lifestyle; it is what you practice in your life. Religion with the upper case,”R” is also a practice of what you do, but for a Christian collectively, it is done within His Church, as it must serve Him with His Guidelines, because church itself does not have a free will. It must have a well defined structure, which has its real Foundation built not with Human Hands, but built Upon the Word of God and with His Rules and Purpose being fulfilled. Then, does it become Alive! This past weekend at a Church, which for me is Calvary Chapel in Melbourne, there was a gathering of 1000 teens from many parts of our community. Gathered For a Purpose, for giving them all a “Hope in Christ!” A total of 100 of those teens committed themselves to the expression of Accepting Christ for the First Time. Praise God! Praise God we are not impressed with any numbers for even One Soul to become His, is of greater value than all our work done with human hands!
    But, it does not stop there the blessings continue as 800 teens also signed a Pledge of Abstinance before marriage, or a renewed position of Abstinace, until they are married. I see a Great Hope in this next Generation for Christ among us, Alive and happening in “His Church” today. Where all those who will commit to His Rules, His Authority, and His Salvation, will also gather together according to His Commands.Gary

  10. dayspring says:

    I believe that religion is jst a means 2 build the santuary Peter referred 2 in 1pet. 2:1-9. D bible gave us things christians oughta do in order 2 show d light in us. I feel d problem with christianity is that we r losin d christ factor in our group action. When we dnt give, what christ do we preach? Christ is a giver. How abt being judmental? Christ gently restores d weak. When christians always remember the christ factor in christianity then our religion would be as lovely as christ. GOD HELP US ALL.

  11. yooperjack says:

    Steve: There are 120 different Christian Churches in just this small sparcly populated 3 county area, talk about division. I’ll stick with my first post, even though I know where you are coming from.

  12. yooperjack says:

    dayspring: Having a form of godliness but denying its power. That power is Jesus Christ. 2 Timothy 3:1-10.

  13. poohpity says:

    I just left a church that I was a member for twenty years. There was one group of believers that had been there since the beginning, ages were 55+. They complained about music, the way the youth dressed, tattoos, piecing, how the Pastor did the services and who they voted in as elders. Over the last eight years their complaints rang out so loud, the youth left, 20-35 yo left, 35-45 yo left, no new believers have joined and now there is only the 55+ still there. The community which the church is located has not been touched at all. The church went from 4 services to one service just for that one group of people with the music they liked and answers to all their complaints. That to me is the dangers of religious practices while neglecting a pure religion as stated by James.

  14. poohpity says:

    LET the WORD of Christ DWELL in you RICHLY. Col 3:16 It seems that those who are not that familiar with that Word are the ones who want things done their way and have not allowed the Word of God to transform their lives so that it crosses all generations, cultures, socioeconomic classes, religions, mentalities and hearts to point in one direction to our Savior and Lord.

  15. oneg2dblu says:

    Pooh… we could judge those who left that church for the reasons you have stated, or we could send them on their way with our blessings, saying find your peace
    where Christ leads you, if it is away from the new music
    and you seek only hymns from the hymnal as opposed to the freedom we find in the newer Praise and Worship songs we’ve moved into, then move on. Serve some place else if it is the Lord’s leading, (which we can never really know)then just let it be…
    He’ll do His Work to completion in all those whom He has called!
    It breaks our hearts to see our churches fall apart, I get that, been there done that. But, who are we to define for them what they should or should not tolerate to find peace in their hearts from the form of Worship they desire.
    We have to let them go, becuase we can’t hold them, or save them either. So, bless their little hearts that they refused to stay where they felt out of touch with all the new things.
    Who wants people in the pews who can’t find joy in the way we Worship now anyhow, and who has changed?
    Just a thought…

  16. oneg2dblu says:

    Two sides ot every story!

  17. bratimus says:

    your welcome pooh,

    when I first seen that symbol <3 in texting or social networks i thought was something different then a side ways heart, until it was explained to me.

    These videos get my thoughts going to Revelation 2-3

    there are pros and cons to both sides of this topic and it is hard to find the path between the two

  18. poohpity says:

    Gary, I did allow all the grumbling and complaining to push me away from that church a year ago but have found a new home closer to where I live that is directing people to God’s Word and Jesus Christ rather than the religious people who sit in the pews. Just as bratimus says we have to find the path between the two which is Jesus Christ who is present in both.

  19. poohpity says:

    It is really good when watching those video’s to see the love that is displayed by the way they both present their sides. Can you see it in their faces and see the joy beaming from them?

  20. fadingman says:

    This is the same theme that’s been talked about. People have different understandings of what a word means, resulting in different opinions on whether it is good or bad.

    James defined true religion as helping the needy and being holy. Now if this were the common understanding of religion today, I think we would all be in agreement that religion is good, and that Jesus is for it. (This is more the way the Puritans defined religion.)

    But the concept of religion in most people’s minds has to do with ritual, liturgy, ceremonies and traditions, incense, stained-glass, etc. This is the kind of religion I think the first video was speaking against.

    The second video included other things as part of religion: living morally upright lives, baptism, and the Lord’s supper… things other believers don’t necessarily consider ‘religious’. I don’t think the first video was against these things. It was just speaking against the things man added to organized worship.

    I looked up religion (and things done religiously) in the Bible some time ago and found it used in a bad sense when used in terms of tradition, but in a good sense when redefined as doing practical good (Isaiah 58, Matthew 6, 23, Philippians 3:4-7, James 1:27). The problem with the traditions was not that they were traditions, but that they nullified God’s commands (Mark 7:6-14). The traditions became the priority, and this made them wrong.

    This needs to be recognized of some traditions in the church today… things we do just because we’ve always done it that way, but that might be getting in the way of doing what we’re supposed to do. We might unknowingly have a religion like what poohpity described in the first post.

    Traditions can also be a problem in that they tend to focus on the outward appearance of worship, on the experience, and on the emotions, but not necessarily on the heart. Jesus focused His teaching on the heart most of all. If the heart is right, the outward actions will follow, and religious traditions won’t be a problem. We’ll drop the bad ones and the good ones won’t define our worship.

  21. cjaway1 says:

    When I really think about it, the symbols for greater than and less than are inadequate. The equals symbol works for my definition; my Jesus=Religion and my Religion=Jesus. This can also remind me that separating the two can lead me astray.

  22. yooperjack says:

    There is an additude today that says: “I won’t let the Bible get in the way of how I believe, or in other words, in the way of my Religion.”

  23. poohpity says:

    Mart said in his recent flyer that went in with ODB, “I hope you will find with me that this is another example of how looking at words by themselves can be confusing UNTIL we discover the story behind them” which seems to fit with this topic as well as the last one.

  24. poohpity says:

    By the way Mart you have really lost a lot of weight. I guess the rabbit food is doing it’s work, lol. Praying all is well!

  25. SFDBWV says:

    Looking at Revelation 2: 6 and Revelation 2: 15 I read that there is something Jesus *Hates*, the doctrine of the Nicolaitians.

    The entire second and third chapter of Revelation is dedicated to speaking to the churches and in such a manner as to let them know what they do that is pleasing and not pleasing to Christ. In nearly every instance with the exception of the church in Philadelphia there is something Christ has *somewhat* against them; only the doctrine of the Nicolatians is hated.

    Now in times past as well and today I have searched for a clear and precise definition of this word still there is no clear understanding accepted by the scholars who produce translations and word definition for Nicolaitians, except the vague meaning of conquering the lay people.

    I have read about it meaning the wearing of pomp and flashy clothing and the seeming air of importance placed upon those who wore ornate clothing and paraded around as if *important*.

    But that may have been subjection on the part of the scholar attempting to explain a word that only seems to mean the conquering of the lay people.

    The churches spoken to in Revelation have been accepted to first represent the very actual churches that existed at the time of the writing of Revelation. Also they have been considered to speak to each believer as each church mentioned has a doctrine they follow. The third meaning of these churches can also be understood to be *church ages*, a foreword look at the church from beginning to the return of Christ in then future ages and to us past ages.

    Jesus will judge each believer for their lives, not judge them for their sins, but we will have to give an accounting of our*Christianity* 2 Corinthians 5: 10.

    It is not given for us to judge the church, but rather decide if we run away, stay and fight and make a stand for Christ.

    We can not be as a reed in the wind that is blown this way and then another by the thoughts and actions of others, but rather we must stand for Christ right where God has placed us.


  26. Bob in Cornwall England says:

    Well, I was impressed with both Videos, but my heart was with the first young man.

    Let us not confuse the Church with Religion.
    The Church was established by Christ, who is the Head, through Peter, who is the rock on which it was built.
    It was Peter who stood up on the Day of Pentecost by the Power of The Holy Spirit and The Church as we know it was born.
    Paul went all over the eastern Roman Empire “planting” Churches and caring enough to follow up each congregation with re-visits and letters.
    In my small “Barn” fellowship we meet many people who have “planted” Churches throughout the world and many many thousands have come to know Jesus through their dedication to God’s work.
    We are lucky in our church that we are free of any denomination or network of association, just relying on the Holy Spirit to lead us and to bring people, preachers and Apostles to help keep us in the Truth of the Gospel as taught in Matthew, Mark, Luke, John & Acts.
    We all need to meet together both to Worship God and to build each other up in Faith. Paul laid out a clear structure for the church and the “quality” of person who should lead it.
    The danger comes when we institutionalise the church and bind it up with man made rules and regulations.
    That is what Jesus was so angry about and why He ridiculed the Pharasees.
    As disciples of Jesus we can work alone, but together, working as a fully functioning body with Jesus as our head, we can change the world.
    One snow flake just hits the ground and melts away, but, as Steve can testify, when you get alot of snow flakes all falling together it can stop the traffic!

    I guess my conclusion is that “I Love Jesus and I Love His Church” but I “hate” Religion and will always deny being relgious in favour of the fact that Jesus chose me to be His Friend and restored my relationship with His Father by His death and resurection.


    sorry, got carried away on my soap box. lol

  27. Bob in Cornwall England says:

    Stickability, that is what snow has….
    the ability to stick together as one.

  28. poohpity says:


  29. yooperjack says:

    Did I mention when I think of the word Religion the first thing that comes to mind is: “Old men in long robes and funny hats”. LOL

  30. davids says:

    These videos weren’t made for me, or for Steve (sorry), or for any of us here. As the father of two teens, I thought they were both great. They are not about what religion MEANS, they are about what religion IS. Saying, “In my definition of religion the message is wrong” is to miss the point, in my opinion.

    The videos speak to young maybe-believers in their own language. The first says, “Hey, don’t get put off by all that stuff people say is religion. At the heart of faith is the heart of Jesus.” The second says, “When we believers get together, we can make a difference.” These are both worthy messages that challenge how young people view Jesus, the church, and faith.

  31. Bob in Cornwall England says:


    What you have just said and the way you said it hits the nail on the head.

    I always remember how I thought only Jesus mattered when I was a teenager, but now I have come to understand more of the oneness He wanted us to have both in Him and each other.
    Maybe we all can learn something from these two guys, especially in how to communicate a point without argument.


  32. Mikek says:


    I left religion sometime ago. I renounced the whole thing. The error of a separate class of believers called the clergy, the error of tithing, the “altar” where you can rededicate yourself though that passage in Romans makes it clear it is a one time act, women in the position of spiritual authority over men, Holy Spirit gifted men and women not allowed to use their gift unless somebody somewhere says they can. Men claiming the rite of ordination though the NT doesn’t mention it apart from the Apostles.

    Christianity is not a religion, the church is not brick and mortar neither. Believers are the church and Jesus is the headof the church.

    I too hate religion but love Jesus.



  33. yooperjack says:

    Wow Mike: Honesty is good for the soul. Dump the religion but not the Lord. Maybe if enough of us did that we could start this thing over again by studying the book of Acts and then act on it.

    My problem is, I’m getting too old to do battle.LOL

  34. Mikek says:

    There is a cost when it comes to clinging to Jesus and letting everything else go, with asking for sriptural support for someones traditions and beliefs. I have seen the fear and anger in their eyes and I have felt the sting of hateful words(condemned for heresy in 2001 for stating that the KJV is good but flawed).

    Make no mistake, religion condemns, Jesus saves, religion divides, Jesus unties, religion sets the bar high, Jesus removed it, religion measures our performance Jesus poured out His blood without measure, religion says do Jesus says believe.

    I can do this all night.


  35. yooperjack says:

    Mike: Your on a roll, sounds like you feel like preachen. I know the feeling.

  36. poohpity says:

    Off Topic but in need of prayer. The friend I mentioned is going to his first bible study tomorrow and thought I would be able to go but forgot about an eye appointment and I feel like I did the first day I sent my child to the first day of school, so please pray that he will have courage to go without me and for the Lord to open his eyes and heart to receive what the Lord will teach him. My sons and I have been praying for him for a long time so this is so exciting. Thank you.

  37. lovely says:

    While there is love for religion and hate on the other hand ; God is the creator of them all ,They are all equally in need of Jesus (Romans 3;22).If religion is an infection , then we’re all infected when we go to church. Yet if religion is so great then why are there are still Pharisees in church who place so many rules but failed to follow them? While the church is a hospital for broken people not museum for good people then behind these mask are broken religious people. If Jesus died on the Cross for the broken, the hungry and the poor didn’t He died for the Pharisees too? See if God call us a Body of Christ then we need each other to reached out to those inside and outside of religion, Whether it is those religious leader that are lost underneath their mask as well as the one outside the street who are lost in their sin.
    For if any of us suffer doesn’t all of us suffered the same? 1 Corinthians 12;20
    Philippians 1:18
    18 But what does it matter? The important thing is that in every way, whether from false motives or true, Christ is preached. And because of this I rejoice.

  38. lovely says:

    don’t get me wrong i applaud the two for sharing their thoughts that is where i learn so god help us all
    God bless

  39. lovely says:

    sorry i meant i applaud all of us for sharing our thoughts and love both the videos there are truths in both of them

  40. SFDBWV says:

    Davids, thank you I think you said it very well.

    I know Mart has a difficult time inventing topics for us to entertain ourselves with; I applaud his efforts. For reasons I would suppose are good for growth and understanding most of our subjects divides us or at least causes us to either defend our positions or re-examine them.

    Davids comments about this subject not being for either he or I reminded me of an RBC letter I received once concerning the little booklet we were receiving “Our Daily Journey”. The letter informed us that their target audience were people between the ages of (I believe) 25 and 40. If we did not wish to continue receiving the booklet let them know. So we did, we ask them to no longer send us the booklet as we did not match their target age group, we were too old.

    The very divisive issue of this topic divides people immediately, because it attacks a life style of people who are at peace and comfortable with their practices of worshiping God. And makes them feel as if they are in some way less a lover of Christ than someone who thumbs their noses at authority of any kind especially in the area of worship.

    If the religion of Christianity is not the public and private physical and spiritual activity of worship, then what is the definition of Christian religion?

    Assembling together is an act of religion, partaking of the Communion is a rite Jesus ask for us to do in remembrance of Him, many of us marry in a church service, many bury our dead in the setting of a church service, we erect the cross in many areas of our culture to remind us of Christ and His importance in our lives from birth to death. All of these actions can be called an act of religion.

    So what exactly is actually hated about the religion of Christ?

    Is it that misguided people misuse the name of Christ to exact their selfish motivations in order to accomplish their goals? If so then the fault is not in the religious activities of people but rather the evil that is in their hearts and has nothing to do with religion except their manipulation of other people through their use of the religion of others.

    Anarchy is a tool of Satan, not of Christ not of the followers of Christ and not in the creation. God created order in His creation and expects order in the worship of Him through His Son Jesus Christ.


  41. oneg2dblu says:

    Good morning sinners, dearly beloved we are gathered here together for a purpose, just as God calls believers to not forsake the gathering of ourselves, were accountablitiy can have its merit. When two our more are gathered in His Name, is He not in the midst of us? Are we not also in some form, doing church, as we all express our love for our Lord corporately, or do we need to have a physical, touchable experience? If so, then when we pray together here as in praying for pooh’s friend, do we fail the meet some religious context, some church definition, lack an empowered possibility, just because we are not under a common roof, not holding hands as we pray?
    Religious practice to me is any expression of man for that which he puts his faith into, and on a regular basis.
    We all worship something because God has designed us that way. Don’t we all Worship Christ now, because God has called us to Himself, for His own pleasure and for a purpose? Is he only pleased if we do church according to the biblical structure, like the building of the Temple and the objects set-aside for formal worship, or is it more about the specific words of Paul to his budding student and his fledgling churches that he started?
    Does God consider corporate worship more worthy than individual worship or one Denomination over another?
    How does He define His religion, or does He not have one? Christianity is really the following of Christ as our religious practice, and in following Christ do we all pray to the very same Father! Gary

  42. oneg2dblu says:

    Steve we were posting at the same time, and with the same mind… glad we met this way this morning. Gary :)

  43. oneg2dblu says:

    I just realized what we all probably wish religion and church would look like. “One nation under God with liberty and justice for all!”
    Seems that vision falls apart anywhere we get too many men together, and too many expressions come out and divide instead of focussing all of us on one common goal, which should be remaining “Under God!”
    Thanks to Mart and his friends, for what we all do and how we all direct each other! Gary

  44. yooperjack says:

    Pooh: Just think how impressed that friend would be if you where to change your eye doctors appoinment so you could take him to Bible study. God gave you an assignment it would be a good thing to keep it. Don’t open the door for Satan to come into that mans mind.

  45. SFDBWV says:

    Gary thank you for your participation in this topic discussion. One Nation Under God indeed, I hope you voted yesterday and it doesn’t matter to me for whom.

    A short time ago some of you were expressing your admiration for a Catholic Nun, Mother Teresa. She comes from a denomination rich with religious tradition. Some of which I do not practice nor need to, but I respect her and all those who do as it being their free choice to do so.

    I do not know how old any of you who read this are, nor do I know how much time you have to spend on the subject of hating religion. However I would ask any who would like to take an honest look at the subject rather that shoot from the hip your hot tempered feelings, to look at the writings and structures and official tenets of the Catholic church and or the Eastern Orthodox church or any of the religious orders you would like to examine and then decide if there is any things written there worthy of *hate*.

    Then perhaps discuss that here in the free air of open discussion.


  46. yooperjack says:

    Steve: You’ve got to be kidding; I said in the begining they would not post my opinion if I posted the truth about *Religion*. This blog would be getting hate mail. Watch the news and learn what is going on in the name of religion.

  47. foreverblessed says:

    Both videos have a point to make. If someone finally gets the idea that it is all about Christ, and our faith in Him, Christ in us, then it is explainable that he is done with religion for a while, all these rituals and practices do not get us any closer to Christ. But on the other hand, when you have met Christ, and are close with Him, these rituals, traditions are not a hinder but an extra thing.
    One ritual is essential: The Lord’s table, the breaking of bread, and the drinking of wine, is a ritual which Christ commanded, it is spiritual food for us, but not to anybody who does not believe in Christ.
    It is essential that we point everyone to Jesus Himself, not to our own traditions, rule and regulations. Everyone has the doorway open to Jesus Himself. That is a good thermometer for any church, if their own leader has more authority then Jesus through the Holy Spirit, then maybe the tradition is smoldering the Spirit, and it is not free to flow within a christian organisation.

    The wind is very cold now, freezing, it is winter, finally, but not the nice cosy weather. People in our country are now getting the skating fever. But not for me in that freezing cold eastern wind. We have to make it cosy inside the house, nice and warm, thank God we have heat, and food, and spiritual food.

  48. poohpity says:

    Jack, Jesus does not need my help. If my friend goes, it is because he wants to. The Lord has already used my family over the years as a witness which this friend has been watching but it is the Lord who draws people to Himself and puts the desire in their hearts to learn more about Him, for those who listen. Thank you for your prayers.

    I think there were very few who mentioned “hate” of anything. It seems some just mention how the religion of man has caused folks to be disappointed and confused regarding their relationship with the Lord. No religion or man’s attempts of putting traditions will cause those who are truly seeking the Lord or that the Lord has called to walk away from Him.

    As far as the topics that Mart writes, I think they apply to anyone who is open to learning but silly to those who think they already know everything. Shoot half the time not many even understand what he is writing about. After all this is his blog and we were invited here to talk about his topics. If I were unhappy with the content I would not read them anymore rather than complaining and grumbling all the time. Phil 2:14

  49. oneg2dblu says:

    Steve, you raise a good point about those well structured Religions and why we would hate them. If they are God honoring,Christ centered, Bible believing churches, then any bad points we would hate about them, would have to come from the failure to embrace Christ first, people second and church last, religiously speaking. Gary

  50. SFDBWV says:

    Jackie, thank you for also reading and understanding my comments, no I am not kidding, if we are to participate in a conversation about the subject which is “Love Hate Point counterpoint”, then we discuss the subject. That is if we actually understand the subject.

    In suffering through both “raps” I see they both are talking about the religion of Christianity. Not of religion in general as meaning all the religions of the world.

    Am I wrong or is the subject of hating religion open to hating all the other religions including Christianity?

    Jackie you have developed an opinion which you consider to be too acidic to be allowed for the rest of us to read; given that you consider that religion “sucks”, I have given you the leeway for that to mean religion in general not the religion of Christ, but again I am making an assumption and can be wrong.

    If you are afraid that RBC will get hate mail, then you have not followed my acidic views about Islam, and yes at first Mart would not post some of what I had to say concerning Islam, but I did not let that stop my continued participation.

    I for one would like to read of your views or experiences as to why you feel the way you do, I won’t hate you or judge you for your thoughts, after all the subject is in part “Point Counterpoint”.

    Foreverblessed, I have seen in the news that the winter we in the lower 48 states of the USA are not experiencing is now locked in over Europe that even some have dies as a result. I am pleased to read you are safe and cozy. Also I enjoyed your comments very much and agree.


  51. yooperjack says:

    Pooh: You say quite often “The Lord dosn’t need our help”. That is in my opinion a “COP OUT”. We are to do a greater work than Jesus did. Does that sound like He does’nt need my help. God gave you a baby to take care of so do it and you will be blessed. Satan really gets in the face of a new born believer.

    So many Christians have that additude: “Let God do it or let the pastor do it” don’t bother me I have an appointment. Those baby Christians are just numbers to some but they are starving to death because their not getting the milk of the word.

  52. yooperjack says:

    Steve: Trust me brother they will not post my opinion, it’s not just other religions. Study the little horn in Revelation. Take a look at whom the far religious right is backing in our election. What a bunch of hypocrites.

  53. narrowpathseeker says:

    Having studied with and/or attended a long range of diverse religious organizations professing Christianity, I believe I have found that ALL have their share of right and wrong. I also believe that each have their share of lost seeking to be found as well as those seeking but a country club atmosphere and secular respectability. I also believe that much of what I learned that was wrong with some by the Lord’s leading was for me to recognize that same wrong in myself and that is a progressive Work. However, sometimes He showed me truly false teaching and I believe He led me to flee these groups. An example was one group where I was told by members that not eating meat was a choice and not a requisite of belonging to the church. They were a very loving, actively caring and a seemingly Christlike lot and I was but a tad concerned that their focus was mainly on the OT. One day on my way to church, I inadvertantly missed the exit and had to drive several miles out of my way and almost missed it on the other side as well and I was very late. During the week I attended an event that featured a video of their universal leader. There was nothing that he said at that time that I could put my finger on that caused me to get a very uneasy feeling about him, but I left very unsettled. I took one of his pamphlets home and the following week I was reading it before going to church and I don’t even know why I picked it up at that time. I was ready to go and the car was warming, but I believe I was Directed to read what this leader wrote, that it was his responsibility to warn us that to eat meat defiled the body……… this was just the opposite of what Christ said. I froze and couldn’t move. It was a long time before I even remembered that my car was running. I never returned to that church.

    The point I am trying to make is that I believe that God can lead us into diverse situations to teach us and lead us out when He has accomplised what He wanted us to learn. At this time I am on break from organized religion because the debating and bickering robs me. I worship often, alone by a quiet river in the midst of His beautiful wondrous Creation.

    I like what Gary said about gathering here or other places with other Christians. I believe God may move me again to yet another organized religion facility, but I will wait for His leading. Meantime, I spend time gathering with Christians I have met along the way from diverse facets of organized religion and tithe where ever He Directs me to tithe. In conclusion, I have learned from many diverse teachers but what is most important to me is what I learn from watching and listening for what God has to teach me directly. I do not wish to debate or offend those that are traveling a different path as I know God can lead each of us to the right path in His time in His way.

  54. poohpity says:

    Jack, first I would like to say how honorable you are to RBC miniseries and the comment guidelines to not voice your opinion when you know it may damage someone, that also shows one thing about this topic that your religion is not empty words, in my opinion. It seems you are also allowing the Holy Spirit to produce the fruit of self control in your life.

    I would like to give you another way of thinking about my friend going to the bible study alone. I do not want him to go just to please me but rather as a desire in his heart to know the Lord. There are times when it is advantageous to step away and allow the Lord to work in a persons life because He alone does such a good job.

  55. poohpity says:

    narrow, I posted at the same time as you but fully enjoyed all that you had to say and I also understand more than you will ever know.

  56. cjaway1 says:

    One of the examples of religion that our Lord gives us is the familiar verse in James:
    This is pure and undefiled religion in the sight of our God and Father, to visit orphans and widows in their distress, and to keep oneself unstained by the world. James 1:27 NASB

  57. bratimus says:

    The truth is how we feel about religion isn’t the point.

    We should be more concerned about how God feels about our religions. And if they reflect the ways of God.

  58. SFDBWV says:

    Ok Jackie, I honor your decision to say no more of the matter, just as in any free and open discussion we are not muzzled nor forced.

    Narrowpathseeker, we are very close on all you say. One of the Christian commentaries I have listened to suggests that the fellowship of only two or four as a Bible study and worship assembly is sufficient and is how it was in the very beginning with only 12 and the Lord.

    Cjaway1 very nicely put an addendum to your comments are also found in Isaiah 58: 1-14.

    I still have not found anything to hate in the traditional practices of Christian worship, things I disagree with yes, things I do not see as scripturally correct yes, some things that may even sound goofy, but nothing to cause me to *hate* it.

    What I can see that is hate worthy is the evil in people who insist that to be Christian you must believe their unscriptural doctrine or you are not saved, not accepted into Christianity and judged unworthy. Such church leaders may be in jeopardy of being seen as of the doctrine of the Nicolaitians. As they coerce the laity into submission and therefore “conquer the lay people” through fear and ignorance.

    Still the sin is found in the heart of the offender not in the worship or even in the quirky worship some do out of fear and ignorance.

    Do you hate to see people cross themselves? Do you think Christ would have us hate it when people use a rosary?

    Ever wonder why the Eastern Orthodox churches have the architectural design they have? It is part of their *religion* do you see beauty in the design or do you hate it?

    I will hopefully try to look always for the beauty and goodness in people and things, I sometimes fail but this is my life and my journey and my lessons God wants me to learn. I want to offend none but encourage all, toward being comfortable in Christ alone and not let any distract from that.

    I pray all of you are smiling and happy, and know that many of you are in pain and are heart broken. If I could say one thing that I have learned it is that the pain we all feel, God too experiences and experiences it all the time, we may suffer but not alone.


  59. yooperjack says:

    Pooh: At this point in his life you may be all the Lord and Bible he knows. Like a baby he needs much tender loveing care.

  60. oneg2dblu says:

    pooh… I must admit I thought yooper was being rather insensitive to even suggest you cancel an already made appointment with the eye doctor, not knowing your need, or the amount of time you may have already waited, or how much it might incvonvenience others. So, forgive me for being overly protective of your private life. I felt your answer in asking us to pray for your friend was great! What greater need could we give to others than to ask us to pray for them? It shows your heart is in the right place and your eyes are focused in the right direction, my Sister in Christ! But, that is what I first thought, and now see that if we don’t run off at the mouth, and count to ten, we sometimes are better off. So, I did not jump all over him.
    Maybe I’m learning something here about patience, and may become a Doctor my self when I get some. :)

  61. Bob in Cornwall England says:


    I liked your point…
    “As far as the topics that Mart writes, I think they apply to anyone who is open to learning but silly to those who think they already know everything. Shoot, half the time not many even understand what he is writing about.”

    That is so true! No disrespect intended Mart, but often I have had to struggle with a subtle intilectual point between two arguments and wait for the discussion to open out before I cotton on.

    Nevertheless, this is a very important subject, Jesus verses religion.
    I had no real religious upbringing and met Jesus completely fresh, as it were. Many have deep religious teaching and know all the “rules” from an early age.

    I was watching th TV news yesterday about Syrian Christians, some of which are refugees from Iraq. I was struck by the rituals and how the youngsters were dressed in formal head dress. There seemed to be no distinction between these people and the way the Muslems act and dress.
    Very formal religion!
    We all know that you have to be “Born Again” into Jesus Family, which involves a personal experience of Jesus and knowing Him as a Friend as well as Saviour. Not to mention the indwelling of the Holy Spirit and getting to know our Father. All Individually One God, just as we are One in Him.

    My point is… No matter how long or how much religion you experience, it is knowing Jesus, and Him alone that counts. So in reality, Jesus is > religion and not Jesus < religion.

    Foreverblessed… Not used to this cold after such a warm winter, below 0C today even in the warm west.
    Enjoy your skating. xxx


  62. oneg2dblu says:

    yooperjack… now I see your heart was also in the right place, I just had to wait a while for things to get sorted out. I trust you can see mine is as well. Gary

  63. poohpity says:

    Gary, exactly it seems when we ask one to pray we may not be necessarily soliciting any input because we do not tell all the facts around the situation and to hold off on making snap judgments is a benefit for all the listeners. Just to let you know he went by himself and met a few other fellows in his group and was very thankful that he went alone. This group is called “40 days in the Word” is about how the Word of God can transform peoples lives. Jesus is still alive and working. :-)

  64. yooperjack says:

    Gary: My heart belongs to Jesus so it’s always in the right place. My way with people is: To be striaght with and in your face, no sugaring things down to the point they don’t learn and in turn keep on making the same old stupid mistakes over and over again.

    I have to eat crow know and then but that’s life. I’ve been very patience on this blog because of the rules and we can’t know peoples whole story, just bits and pieces.

    And there is the thing call mutual respect that has to be honored also. I mostly read to learn and write to teach.

  65. yooperjack says:

    Pooh: Thank God it worked out for you and your friend. You just made my point to Gary.

    Now, was it the prayer or your planting and watering that lead him to go on his own? The end results is the same, we need to do both. You had enough faith for God to take over when you turned it over to Him, as you where not able to be there this time. Very good, praise God.

    I stand by what I said about baby Christians. I can give you a story where Satan all but killed a fellow worker. He was saved on Sunday, praised the Lord on Monday and by Friday lost his house, wife, car and almost his life. In a week he renonced his salvation and was trembling in fear.

    That will make a believer out of you, we are in a battle. This is no religious game we’re playing.

  66. davids says:

    Blessings, Pooh.

  67. bill34sl says:

    A religious rant if you will. I just hope the young man understood that the freedom Christ gave us is not a license to sinful behavior. Sure Jesus did not give us a long list of do’s and don’ts, not a list at all, but He didn’t want us to do nothing either. When He healed the paralytic man in the pool of Bethesda and saved the adulterous woman from her accusers, He told each one of them to “go and sin no more”. But even so, everyone of us is still very vulnerable to sin at any time. To counter it without being legalistic, Jesus told us to obey the Two Great Commandments: “Love the Lord your God with all your heat and with all your soul and with all your mind, and love your neighbor as yourself”. As straightforward as that. Not a lot of don’ts, not a lot of things to avoid.

    As for the older guy, he too presented his case excellently. I just wish he didn’t put up a front to the many “extra biblical” obligations his leaders have burdened their constituents. My apology but I’m just speaking thru experience. I’ve been in that church and two others.

  68. poohpity says:

    Forgive me because my simple prayer request has taken the topic off course and that was not my intent at all. At one time it was easy to share our prayer request with others and still remain on the subject at hand. Again forgive me. I will refrain from doing it again. :-(

  69. poohpity says:

    Hey dust, it has been a while welcome back.

  70. Mikek says:

    I guess if you think that Christianity is a religion and not a relationship, you wouldn’t understand the enormity of the problem.

    Most of what passes for Christianity today is complete hocum because those who support it want it to be a religion.

    Does the word hate make some uncomfortable? It is appropriate when I view the landscape of churches today. Traditions, rites, ceremonies, etc…

    The problem is bigger than can be described here.

    I do not have any illusions that a post here and there will cause anyone to make certain they are not in a religion and I do not want to upset the rather safe and unremarkable posts that occur here regularly.

    I would hope that those who name the name of Christ do so without reservation even it meant abandoning their current situation. Jesus appears to be a part of some of your lives, not the center hub on which your lives turn, the difference is everything.

    I drive past enormous church buildings everyday, built with thousands, even millions of dollars in donations. Why? Most of these churches also claim to believe in the imminent return of Christ too…see the problem?

    What the was turning point for me, having been a believer for 26 years? An ordained pastor, teacher, a BA, MA, ThM, ThD and a PhD…it all means nothing. It created a sense of hopelessness. I could no longer be religious. religion became a mere formailty, a grave yard adn I was the care-taker.

    Anarchy is of Satan? Really?I have read your posts so I will let that go. I will tell you that since I renounced religion and witness about Jesusexclusively, accept people as they are, point people to Jesus and tell them they are the church, it isn’t a building I have been called a radical among other things. However, when someone says that they haven’t seen a preacher who loved Jesus as much as me nor have they experienced someone who told them about Jesus and wanted nothing from them…you can call me an anarchist all day long.

    Religion bites.


  71. saled says:

    Both poets are passionate, both videos engaging. Their disagreement was created when God confused our languages at the Tower of Babel. I’ve wondered a lot about this confusion and the reason for it. But the antidote is found in John 1:1. When the noise and confusion overwhelm me, I remember that Jesus is the Word.

  72. yooperjack says:

    Poohpity: You do not have to apoligize I was the one that made the fuss because I was really concerned for your friend. I’ve seen too many new borns slip back into their old life style because no one followed up on them. Nothing is simple on this blog.LOL

    Bill: I didn’t understand your last pargraph.

  73. Gena says:

    I never win at these debates! :) Everyone I talk to tries to out do me with the religion versus christianity discussions. Most people I talk to say religion is the cause of wars and such. No one wants to discuss what it means to be a believer, because they think they have the answers already. How does anyone lead others to Christ in this day and age is a wonder to me!

  74. yooperjack says:

    Mike: “Really” The flesh and Satan are the ones. LOL

  75. narrowpathseeker says:

    Steve, thank you for the bit on Jesus and the 12 being the way it was in the very beginning. That thought will add to the indescribable experiences of His presence that I have encountered at the river.

    Pooh, thank you for understanding my position.

    Gary thank you for reminding me of the “where two or more are gathered” I took a granddaughter to the river with me this afternoon.

    It was so warm and sunny here in CT yesterday and today that I was outside without a jacket. I don’t remember ever having such warm weather in Jan and Feb.

  76. poohpity says:

    What stopped you from following up with those you mentioned Jack if you were concerned?

  77. yooperjack says:

    Poohpity: I did with the ones I was able to, you must have encontered the same thing being you where all over the world teaching and preaching. Some times you can’t get them back. I never give up on them because I remember how it was with me many years ago. God never gives up on them so why should I?

  78. yooperjack says:

    Poohpity: That devil in a bottle killed more of my freinds before their time, than anything else. If you know what I mean?

  79. poohpity says:

    Wow Mike that seems to be a pretty large judgment call when you said, “Jesus appears to be a part of some of your lives, not the center hub on which your lives turn, the difference is everything.” I have never felt that was anything I could even try to call someone on because I am unable to see their hearts and sometimes words do not tell the whole story. I do know that we are all on different levels spiritually but that is to be expected. I do know that the answer to any religion is Jesus Christ and I also know that once you are His, He will continue the process of changing us to be like Him until we go home to be with Him into eternity as stated in Phil 1:6.

  80. poohpity says:

    Jack, I trust Christ to keep those who are His. That reminds me of the parable of the different types of soil that receive the seeds of the gospel found in Matthew 13:3-9

  81. yooperjack says:

    Poohpity: You do understand, my sister in Christ.

  82. oneg2dblu says:

    narrowpathseeker… whenever two or more are gathered together? To me that statement has a very special meaning to those who are in Christ, for they never walk alone. Two are always gathered when we are truly abide in Him. Yes, I’m sure bringing that granddaughter and making it a threesome was a grand event. I can feel the no jacket required warmth of it all, all the way down here in Fla. It reminds me of the picture of footprints in the sand, as one was walking and praying on the beach, and when looking back and seeing only one set of foot prints in the sand thought, Where are yours Lord? The Lord answers, “Those prints you see are mine, for I am carrying you!” No religious tradition, doctrine, or buildings were required there on that beach, but, I don’t hate them either, for they all had made their moment of contribution in me as well! Gary

  83. oneg2dblu says:

    I think the total sum of all we see in Christ now, should not exclude all the little points that other things have added to it. The World Wide Church we see today is still doing what it was designed to do, becuase, He who is in control of all things, also controls all things. Just another thought for all you church haters out there! I wonder… who really controls all that hatred against His Church, or even your neighbor and all his religions? Gary

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