about religion

  • Religion: 

    the belief in and worship of a superhuman controlling power, especially a personal God or gods.
    "ideas about the relationship between science and religion"
    • a particular system of faith and worship.
      plural noun: religions
      "the world's great religions"
    • a pursuit or interest to which someone ascribes supreme importance.
      "consumerism is the new religion"
      The conception of most religions:  

      For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.

      And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat.

      There you have it, the conception of most religions is to know good from evil.  I wrote a short book about going insane and the factors that contributed to it and I tried my best to leave my personal opinions out of it because those are what muck up reality.  I called the book "A moral compass" and I wrote it under another name for the sake of those mentioned in it.  My daughter mentioned "Melissa Fittings" as a good alias but I modified that to Fenton.  The reason I called it "A" moral compass is because of this nagging truth that everyone has a moral compass, no one's moral compass really points true north.  We're all skewed in some way or another, I don't care who you are.  That's what's wrong with everyone knowing good and evil, most of us are willing to tilt the scale in order to accommodate our desires, even if that desire is born out of pride like it was for Job who was so proud of how GOOD he was.

      Let me show you something:  Ezekiel 16:

      49 Behold, this was the iniquity of thy sister Sodom, pride, fulness of bread, and abundance of idleness was in her and in her daughters, neither did she strengthen the hand of the poor and needy.

      50 And they were haughty, and committed abomination before me: therefore I took them away as I saw good.

      51 Neither hath Samaria committed half of thy sins; but thou hast multiplied thine abominations more than they, and hast justified thy sisters in all thine abominations which thou hast done.

      52 Thou also, which hast judged thy sisters, bear thine own shame for thy sins that thou hast committed more abominable than they: they are more righteous than thou: yea, be thou confounded also, and bear thy shame, in that thou hast justified thy sisters.

      Sodom and Gomorrah are commonly known for one thing, but as you see there, it wasn't all that they were judged for.  Tell me, where in the world do you see those sins happening today?  We have a word for it, it's called hedonism and that is the new religion.  It came about slowly with the entrance of the "me" generation.  They tossed out self sacrifice and called it a weakness, they said it was a liability to your character and made you less than those around you if you entertained other people's problems over your own.  We are living like the people in the days of the judges, "Everyone did what was right in their own eyes" without a law.

      In the era of hedonism, only one thing stands between the worshiper and his goal, money.  If you have enough of that you can do just about anything you want.  Our entire world is motivated by money so they can pursue happiness.  I'm not saying either one is a bad thing but I am saying that both reveal the state of a person's heart and long gone is the notion that with much freedom comes much responsibility.  If you read the entire passage in Ezekiel, you will see that this is not a new thing in society, mostly the surviving religions as we leave paganism behind are the Christian/Judaeo religions, tweaked, as you will, to suit the masses.  The knowledge of good and evil, so far as humans are concerned, is only as good as the person making the declarations between the two since most people just follow what someone else says about it without question.  We are living in a time when the conscience has been seared in many cases and people can't even have any regard for what is good, much less any shame about what is evil.

      Do you think the devil knew, when he instituted all this, that it would all go that way?

      Eastern religions say we NEED the good to balance the evil and vice/versa.  I don't think the Lord viewed it that way but it sounds deep.  Sometimes I love nature so much because it reminds me that there is a God in heaven who made everything perfect before we screwed it up.  Yeah, sometimes I need a break from people.  A longing for God is that internal drive that lets us know that what we have is not what we were supposed to have.  There was a time that man walked with God in the garden without shame or fear and his job was to tend to the garden and use his creativity in that way.

      When Alley was little we used to use blocks to build castles and then one day her brother got big enough to do what boys do, he destroyed them on sight.  She would get so upset.  We finally quit building castles.

      I've noticed a trend with small churches.  The church is usually run by the biggest tithers.  The preachers have to preach what will tickle their ears or punish their friends or some other entity in the church that they deem as being out of line.  Is that really what the preacher is supposed to do?  You can always tell what kind of internal problem a church is going through when the preacher speaks.  Do you know what the scripture says about this?  

      1 Corinthians 6:4 If then ye have judgments of things pertaining to this life, set them to judge who are least esteemed in the church.

      Why the least esteemed rather than the highest esteemed?

      Have you ever had someone suck up to you for weeks and then went to lunch with them and seen that they treated the server like crap?  I worked in a convenience store in my younger days and this wealthy man used to come in and get gas on his account that he payed every month.  He'd have me sign his name and then when he left he would grab some penny candy and toss the wrapper on the floor on his way out.  He had no regard for my function in life and thought his penny candy should be a perk to his gas account.  He didn't hide his true nature from me because I was the least esteemed person in this transaction.

      There is religion, which isn't all bad, but it's not to be confused with relationship.  Consider this person:  

      24 Then he which had received the one talent came and said, Lord, I knew thee that thou art an hard man, reaping where thou hast not sown, and gathering where thou hast not strawed:

      25 And I was afraid, and went and hid thy talent in the earth: lo, there thou hast that is thine.

      26 His lord answered and said unto him, Thou wicked and slothful servant, thou knewest that I reap where I sowed not, and gather where I have not strawed:

      27 Thou oughtest therefore to have put my money to the exchangers, and then at my coming I should have received mine own with usury.

      His opinion of the master was that he was a hard man and his thinking was that the master had no personal stake involved in the business.  The master agreed that he did not do all the work but he admonished the servant for hiding the talent so that there wasn't even any interest involved in it's recovery.  This particular servant had a very different opinion about the master than the others did.  If I were to interpret the difference I'd say that the talent was grace and mercy that the master sowed to the man who then expected to redeem his own but refused to show the same to others.  Often a person's first encounter with the Lord shows up in the grace and mercy of one of his servants, that's where the interest comes in.  The "what makes you different" question, a question the previous servants were able to answer whereas this last guy?  Well, he was just like everyone else.

      One of the main things I've encountered when discussing God with unbelievers who know anything about the Bible is that God is harsh.  They want to point out his orders to destroy whole nations in the old testament.  Then they personalize their encounters with specific Christians.  If you re-read the Ezekiel passage, the whole chapter, you find the answer to God's desire to rid the world of some of those cultures.

      I asked the epic question when I was little about why it was fair for God to destroy all the people on the earth with the flood when Noah was the only one who really knew him so how could they be blamed for their ignorance.  My mother was pretending to have special knowledge about things back then and said such things were not for us question and there was no answer.  Years later, this is what I found: 

      17 For it is better, if the will of God be so, that ye suffer for well doing, than for evil doing.

      18 For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit:

      19 By which also he went and preached unto the spirits in prison;

      20 Which sometime were disobedient, when once the longsuffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was a preparing, wherein few, that is, eight souls were saved by water.

      21 The like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save us (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God,) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ:

      22 Who is gone into heaven, and is on the right hand of God; angels and authorities and powers being made subject unto him.

      Forasmuch then as Christ hath suffered for us in the flesh, arm yourselves likewise with the same mind: for he that hath suffered in the flesh hath ceased from sin;

      That he no longer should live the rest of his time in the flesh to the lusts of men, but to the will of God.

      For the time past of our life may suffice us to have wrought the will of the Gentiles, when we walked in lasciviousness, lusts, excess of wine, revellings, banquetings, and abominable idolatries:

      Wherein they think it strange that ye run not with them to the same excess of riot, speaking evil of you:

      Who shall give account to him that is ready to judge the quick and the dead.

      For for this cause was the gospel preached also to them that are dead, that they might be judged according to men in the flesh, but live according to God in the spirit.

      1 Peter 3-4

      The Lord had anticipated my question, or so I believed.  Many years later I read this passage to my mother and she became indignant, saying "Are you saying a person can be saved after they die?!"  I told her, "I'M not saying anything, I'm just reading the scripture, you can interpret it however you want.  For all I know they didn't even know they were dead."

      I think the point is that God sets the rules and he does as he pleases.  Jesus is proof that death for us in NOT what he wanted and that his sense of fairness far surpasses our own.  When I think about how God is not fair I thank him that he's not fair because I know what my sins are in this life and if he were fair, I'd never make it to heaven.  I'm so grateful for his grace and mercy, thank you Lord that you aren't always fair.