“Before the way of faith in Christ was available to us, we were placed under guard by the law. We were kept in protective custody, so to speak, until the way of faith was revealed. Let me put it another way. The law was our guardian until Christ came; it protected us until we could be made right with God through faith. And now that the way of faith has come, we no longer need the law as our guardian. For you are all children of God through faith in Christ Jesus. And all who have been united with Christ in baptism have put on Christ, like putting on new clothes. There is no longer Jew or Gentile, slave or free, male and female. For you are all one in Christ Jesus. And now that you belong to Christ, you are the true children of Abraham. You are his heirs, and God’s promise to Abraham belongs to you.” Galatians 3:23-29 NLT
Whether we are Jew or Gentile, Methodist or Baptist, Pentecostal or Presbyterian, or any other classification, we are children of God through Jesus Christ. We cannot depend on our labels and associations. We are not children of God because of our religious affiliations and traditions. If we are not trusting in God's grace through Jesus Christ to adopt us and make us His children, then we are nothing more than wolves in sheep clothing. We can attend church, learn all the "church" lingo and rhetoric, but if we are not born again through Jesus Christ we are just as lost as any other sinner. God is not impressed with our rituals and ceremonies. What pleases God is when we submit to His Son Jesus Christ, receive His salvation, and allow Him to do for us what we cannot accomplish on our own. Once we do this, then we are poised and ready to grow as His disciples.
Are you truly a disciple of Christ or are you simply a "church goer" who finds their security in their observance of certain religious traditions? Now, I'm not saying that we shouldn't make church attendance and participation an important part of our lives. I believe we should. When we accept Jesus as our Lord we become God's children. God's children are part of a family. That family is His body, the church. We need to find our place in that body. However, we cannot depend on our church attendance to save us. We got to the family table by birth. We want to serve Him now as our Father. The reason we do anything should simply be because we are God's children through a personal relationship with His Son Jesus Christ. Anything else is simply religion.
Rev. Curtis Norris