[565 words]

A famous country singer told how she got religion. When she was a child, her mother said the Holy Spirit told her that her daughter had a special gift. When she grew up and started singing, she said the gift had to come from God because she didn’t get it from her mother or father. It was then that she felt she had a relationship with God. She said this was when she began to discover “my spirituality.”

“My spirituality.” A spirituality based on a gifted singing voice. How ridiculous! But her claim to religion is typical. People talk about about my church, my beliefs, and my denomination. They talk about my values, my standards, and my priorities. They speak of my interpretation, my definition, and my opinion. This terminology is not in itself wrong. Paul spoke of “my gospel” (Rom. 2:16), but this was the exception, not the rule. People today talk about “my religion” and leave God and the Bible out of it. They are like the rich fool who said, “I will pull down my barns and build greater; and there will I bestow all my fruits and my goods” (Luke 12:18). He thought all of this was his—and it never was!

These people talk about “their church” like they talk about their car or their house. When this church doesn’t suit them, they change it or they get another one. Religion to them is all about what they want, not what God says. That is why they don’t even bother to give you Bible approval for what they believe and do. Why should they? “My spirituality” is based on feelings anyway. This is also why they are so accepting and tolerant of other beliefs. After all, “my religion” is not “his religion,” but “I can’t say that what is right for me is right for him.”

Such people are often the most vocal about their beliefs. They testify about the good things that have happened to them as proof that “my spirituality” is right. They don’t read verses like Ecclesiastes 9:11 which says time and chance happen to us all. They don’t pay attention to Matthew 5:45 where Jesus said that God makes His sun to rise on the evil and on the good and sends rain on the just and on the unjust. If “my spirituality” is right because good things come to me at some point in my life, then everybody’s spirituality is right because everybody receives good things at times.

A lot of people will wish on judgment they had listened to God’s Words instead of their desires. They can talk about how religious they are, but their talk is cheap if they don’t follow the Bible. Jesus said, “Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is heaven. Many will say to me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? And in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity” (Matt. 7:21-23).

“My spirituality” is not the standard. Only God’s Word is. Until people humble themselves before it, they will not be saved.

Kerry Duke
West End church of Christ
Livingston, TN

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