I grew up in an evangelical church and it was very important to me. It in part gave me an introduction to God and His word in the Bible.
At this point in my adult life I am more concerned about relationships, with Jesus and others, than I am with attending a physical church.
But I wonder, am I wrong to think this way, or is it just bc I haven’t found a church to call home?
In the book of Nehemiah, it was important to the returned exiled Jews to restore the temple as it was to rebuild the wall to protect their city.
David longed to build God a temple, and Solomon put a lot of ornate work into it. And the tabernacle in the desert was where God dwelled with His people.
But things just look different now. There are more types of churches than you can shake a stick at and there is a vast amount of corruption in certain churches, including at least nominally believing church leaders.
David said in the Psalms he was glad when they said to him, “ let us go to the house of the Lord”. Hebrews admonishes us not to give up meeting together “all the more as the day approaches”.
But there are also those deeply wounded by a church. They feel bitter. That’s not me. I just haven’t found a place that seems to give God the glory He’s due.
But I do visit for fellowship.
So Jesus was rooted in the Hebrew background in the Old Testament, so you can imagine he had a lot of beef with the religious establishment of his day and what it had become.
He was a visionary, training pupils to establish a better church, a new and LIVING way. The early church even called themselves “the way”.
Scripture speaks of Jesus as the cornerstone…that the builders rejected (Pharisees). So his model appeared to be humility, serving and sacrificing for each other that would define the true church.
So was He anti-religion? Guess it depends on how you define it. Those who worship in “spirit and truth” were closer to true religion than the legalism of his day.
“True religion is this, to look after the orphan and the widow and to keep oneself unstained by the world.” – James