Spiritually Religious vs Religious Dead

I was going about working on important things the other day praying inside my head about the about the state of the church. I remember praying “Where do I start? There is so much that is wrong with it”. My thoughts were focused on something specific like that so I could just pray against the problems. I know without question God put the thought into my head “It’s the spiritually religious that are the danger”.

It never really occurred to me that the words ‘religion’ (rules, works and status) and ‘spiritual’ could walk hand in hand, even though I kind of knew this since I’ve been on the cases of these things for the past few years.

His words have been on my mind since.

Would everyone agree that being “spiritually religious” is worse then the “religious dead”? Or the other way around?

Or even being “spiritually religious” is to be “religious dead”?

I’ve often in the past been pretty quiet about sharing my God encounters on a place like Signposts02 so that the site doesn’t attract the spiritually loopy. Does that make me “religious dead” because I am not encouraging/furthering/edifying people to share their spiritual experiences or gifts to edify the body of Christ?

Because I posted up “God said to me”, does that come across as to being too  “spiritually religious”? We could say, “It’s all in the motive”, but surely there is a balance. But where is the line, online or offline ?


6 thoughts on “Spiritually Religious vs Religious Dead

  1. In fact, you invited, what you later termed ‘spiritually loopy’ ministries to comment, then called them off the wall and got really in their faces, even though they were gentle and respectful to you! I’m talking about Matt & Frank & co, of course!

    It would do you a power of good to start seeing the amazingly wonderful things God is doing through His Church, instead of being so constantly critical, and always looking for the negative.

  2. A pity they have not been gentle and respectful to the people they are fleecing.

    We are not constantly looking for the negative. The negative is thrust into our faces! Meanwhile the so called good involves taking money from the spiritually vulnerable.

    Ford should stop trying to be Australia’s answer to Todd Bentley. Here’s a challenge for Matt Ford … go to Saudi Arabia and try and preach Jesus in the streets. Or even try doing that in Malaysia.

    If he’s so anointed and victorious, that should pose no problem for him.

  3. Ignore the fly.

    S&P, I’m not sure what spiritually religious means. Perhaps if we are religious about never saying ‘God told me’, then we will miss the times He speaks to us. Likewise if we are religious about always needing to say ‘God told me’, then most likely we will claim that God told us things that he didn’t. The latter is a real worry when you hear a preacher saying that constantly to the congregation, to give himself greater authority.

    We are told to pray; we are told to seek wisdom; it is expected that we will know God as we walk with Him, and we usually define our faith as a relationship with our heavenly Father. A relationship involves two way communication – therefore, I don’t think we can say that none of us should ever not say ‘God told me’.

    Perhaps if people are too religious about those kinds of things, they might miss out on a dimension of their relationship with God. Personally, I would say that God speaks to me, in various ways – some of them over time, sometimes as a sense when I pray (or find I can’t pray in a certain direction), and sometimes – for me most rarely – as an almost audible voice. However, I know that if I share these things, a lot of people would probably doubt my experience. Some of these things do require trust and knowledge of a person to share them, and even then, not everyone will believe you. That’s OK. I feel that God shows us what He needs to show us; we don’t need to rely upon other people’s experiences, although we may be encouraged by them.

    There may be other ways of being ‘spiritually religious’, where acts that are supposed to be spiritual become religious works. Bigger and more amazing prayer meetings; simple prayer being replaced by prayer that is always hard work, time in prayer being the measure of its effectiveness – having to earn the answer by praying hard enough, long enough or in some particular manner. That kind of thing could result in a lot of spiritual activity, but those who do it would hardly think of themselves as ‘dead’ – they are doing so much!

    Basically, any activity, whether physical or spiritual, which relies upon our effort being enough to earn something which is really the gift of a relationship with God, will result in death and not life.

    There will be times when we are led to put a lot of effort in though. I think the difference is whether we are led or not – are we doing these things in relationship with Father, knowing Him, or are we doing things because we think we should, out of guilt, fear or some sense of needing to earn an answer.

    Sometimes people may waste many years of their lives trying to earn things, and are very spiritually active doing so. It’s tragic, because they do not have peace or rest in Christ, missing out on that life which we can have daily by being in Him.

    I hope this makes sense to someone other than just myself!

  4. Another thought is that perhaps we can all become ‘spiritually religious’ if we are not careful. Perhaps if we begin to elevate our own spiritual experience as the one that everyone else should norm to. Any of us can do this. With some groups insisting that people must have a particular spiritual experience to really be a part of what God is doing, or worse, to be saved, its easy to spot. Other times, it could be people being religious about others not having particular types of experience.

    Given that we are all unique, and God is infinite, and the vast variety of spiritual experiences and encounters we see illustrated in scripture, one would not want to get too ‘religious’ about these things. At the same time, we can still apply the knowledge of God that we get from scripture so that we don’t fall off the rails into spiritual la la land.

  5. It would do you a power of good to start seeing the amazingly wonderful things God is doing through His Church, instead of being so constantly critical, and always looking for the negative.”

    I see and often hear great things happening through His church. Prison ministries, street missionary work, soup kitchens, healing’s, salvation’s, prophecies, deliverance’s and other fairly odd spiritual things at work through out the body of Christ. I don’t talk about more personal things for more obvious reasons unless I think I wont be identified. The church world is a small world. It’s amazing who and what people know.

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