By: Danny Wallace
This article addresses confusion. I will set forth fundamental guidelines to my thinking before writing the article to avoid adding to the confusion.
First, it is my basic belief that the spirit governing religion is the spirit of anti-Christ. When Jesus faced the death threats of religion He said, “The spirit of anti-Christ is already here.”
Religion proved this point in a scheming plot to crucify Christ. Religion and Christ are, and have always been on two very different pages. Jesus stepped from the throne of God to satisfy the Law and to release mankind from all religious confusion. Lucifer stood up from the throne of religion and went straightway out to meet Him. Everything you read in this article is from “that” very basic belief.
A very complex and confusing language governs the world of religion. It is a language that is ever changing, being made up along the way as its followers are thrown from cage to cage – bondage to bondage. I often refer to it as, “religious Pig-Latin.”
Just as there are similarities between English and Spanish, there are also similarities between the language of Christianity, and the language of religion. However, similar as they may be, there is a foundational difference.
Contrary to popular belief, Christianity is not a religion. Although the religion of Christianity does exist, and was in place by the time Paul reached the Galatians – to be a Christian simply means, “to be a follower of Christ – to preach Christ only, and Him crucified.”
So before I define the fundamental differences between being involved in religion and being a follower of Christ, while defining the contrasting language each uses I will first take a moment to define the term, “Pig-Latin.”
Pig-Latin is a constructed language game in which words in English are altered according to a simple set of rules. Pig Latin takes the first consonant (or consonant cluster) of an English word, moves it to the end of the word and suffixes an “ay.”
Needless to say, Pig-Latin is childish, and confusing. It is actually a twist on language, and even though the rules outlined above are very specific, everyone’s version of Pig-Latin sounds somewhat different. The same is true of religion, its language, and it’s conflicting, and therefore, “confusing” interpretations of Law.
In stark contrast, the language of Christ is simple, universal, and easy to understand. It is the language of love and sacrifice. Unconditional love is the same in every language, while each person hears the conditional love of religion quite differently. Just as these varying versions of religious Pig-Latin bring confusion and greater burden to every race and every tongue, religion also comes with a language designed to create and maintain that great cloud of confusion.
In the world of religion, God is called often upon as its key witness to support the confusion. The reason for this is simple. God cannot be cross-examined. If someone tells you that they have decided to do a certain thing, their decision can be challenged, cross-examined, and called into question. However, if they offer barely unintelligible, diatribe and attribute it to the commanding voice of God – who shall cross-examine Jehovah, Himself?
We see this ploy all the time in religious circles. Men build great religious kingdoms on this single and mostly, “unchallenged” principle. For example, when it’s time for the leaders of religion to do a thing they often say that God has told them to do it. When the authorities of religion later do something completely contrary to their previous action they attribute that to the voice of God, as well. In other words, “Don’t blame us – we follow the voice of God. If you have a problem, call God to the witness stand”
This sets in motion an avalanche of confusing thoughts for broken lives that are genuinely seeking true freedom. First of all, if what religion says is true, God is one confused dude. One minute He says one thing, and the next minute He says something to the contrary. Likewise, depending on which sect, clique, or religious group a person finds himself or herself subject to, the contradictions only multiply, and diversify. To the person who simply wants to please God, but has been taught they can’t please God and fail to “follow the leader” of religion, confusion is established at the foundation of that person’s spiritual life, and future decisions.
You might wonder how religion accomplishes this while remaining basically unchallenged, for the most part. That’s easy. First, altering or adding to the basic, unchanged, never-failing, and unconditional “love language” of Jesus Christ sets a person up to receive every foundational, spiritual lie.
The first common denominator in all religious manipulation is in establishing the myth that “it is a sin to challenge spiritual authority.” This is fundamental with every aspect of religion. If a follower believes, does, or says anything that is contrary to the personal vision, or agenda of religious authority, that person will receive the one judgment upon which all of religion rests. That person will be immediately labeled as, “non-submissive, or rebellious to religious authority.”
Unteachable mavericks, and church-hoppers, are a few more common phrases within religion’s basic, contractual language.From the moment that Jesus Christ, God’s only Son, set foot on this earth to embrace man, love man, and give His life to set man absolutely free, religion has rushed forward with this very same foundational judgment. Religion immediately declared Jesus to be unschooled, non-submissive, rebellious to religious authority, unteachable, and deserving of death for His flagrant infractions. If this is religion’s judgment over God Himself, that same judgment is automatic for His followers. It is language used by the authorities of religion to cage, shame, and “control” its followers.
The language of Christ, and therefore, “true Christianity,” has no such phrases, or addendums to the language of unconditional love and Grace. Jesus never held Himself up to be anyone’s spiritual authority, even though it became immediately clear to all that loved and followed Him that He indeed was just that, and so much more. Jesus did not demand to be respected, or admired. He had no publicist, or entourage of minions that scurried around at His every whim, for fear of being labeled rebellious, or unteachable if they failed to do so. Jesus had disciples that loved Him simply because HE first loved them.
Jesus came to sacrifice everything for us. He came to love us – no strings attached. There is nothing confusing about unconditional love. It is love with nothing added. Adding a single condition to His love is the only thing that religion can use to control, and confuse. A condition to love is religion’s crayon of assistance to God's Rembrandt of Grace.
The language of Grace is love for the pleasure of loving. This is a far cry from what we hear today in the name of Jesus, who sacrificed so much to set us free. What is being given to you today in His name? What is being required, demanded, or expected of you in His glorious name? Far more importantly, what are you and I giving to the world in the name of Jesus, who gave His all for us?
The moment we pour out the words of Jesus, and reject the language of religion – all confusion will disappear.