CHRISTIANITY IS A RELATIONSHIP WITH GOD
CHRISTIANITY IS NOT A RELIGION; IT IS A RELATIONSHIP WITH GODOne of the most important questions that people ask themselves is whether Christianity is a religion or a relationship with God. There are several aspects that show that Christianity is not a religion, it is a relationship with God.
What is Religion?Religion is the belief in and devotion to a superhuman controlling authority, mainly a personal God or gods. Christianity fits in that definition. However, Christianity is different from other belief-based religions, and the difference lies on the relationship.
Religion is qualified by observing a given set of beliefs and practices. This means everyone is religious in one way or another. However, the bible defines undefiled religion as one that involves sharing with others and keeping ourselves unaltered by the world (James 1:27).
The bible says religion is obedience to God’s words demonstrated through honesty to ourselves, generosity towards the less fortunate, and strong moral and spiritual stand against earthly desires.
Christianity is Not Man-CenteredIn other religions, the relationship between god and man depends on man’s work. These religions believe on the role of a man’s effort in reaching a higher state or power. Man is the aggressor, and his efforts, sacrifices, or good actions benefit god. Adherence to the teachings is honored with paradise, nirvana, or a higher state of being.
In Christianity, God is the aggressor, and we as Christians are the beneficiaries (Romans 3:3). Man is imperfect hence there is nothing he can do to get a higher state of being or be right with God (Romans 3:23). Sin separates man from God (Romans 6:23). A man should use his faith to accept God’s salvation (2Corinthians 5:21).
Our Relationship With Jesus ChristOur relationship with Jesus is based on love. Paul says we must have love in whatever we do (1 Corinthians 13:2). Our knowledge of the purpose and will of God must be practiced. As Christians, the right believe should be combined with the right action.
We obey the will of God by having faith in Jesus. Christians are partners of Jesus (2 Corinthians 11:2). Jesus is our Lord and Master, and we are his servant. Jesus is a friend to every Christian. He showed us that God is our father and therefore He shows us love and companionship.
The Grace of GodIn other religions, one must justify and sanctify himself to be rewarded by deities, by practicing and observing religious laws. During the Jesus’ times, God’s Law had been turned by the leaders of the Jewish religion into a works-based religion that kept them away from God (Luke 11:42). As a result, the Pharisees could not recognize God in their presence (John 8:19).
Christianity is founded on the grace-based relationship between human beings and God. Jesus said the greatest commandment is love (Mathew 22:37). The grace of God is what makes us His children. Love is about our relationship and is critical in obeying God’s teachings and commands.
Christianity is not about enrolling to religion; it is about getting into the family of God (John 3:3). Our efforts cannot guarantee us a place in the household of God. We are only supposed to develop a relationship with God by believing in the death and resurrection of Jesus to get a place in God’s family. Therefore, Christianity is not a religion, it is a relationship with God.