The scripture for today, August 1, is Romans 8:1 as found in the New Testament of the Bible:
There are a lot of religious groups out there in the world who control their people with fear. If you don’t do such and such, it proves you aren’t spiritual enough. If you do such and such one second before you die, you’re going to hell.
They put burdens on you that just are not in the New Testament. By making you feel guilty, they make you depend on them for your salvation and that boosts their ego. The Apostle Paul wrote to the congregations in Galatia (today’s Turkey) and warned them with tears:
“I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting the one who called you by the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel ~ which is really no gospel at all. Evidently some people are throwing you into confusion and are trying to pervert the gospel of Christ. But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach a gospel other than the one we preached [past tense] to you, let him be eternally condemned! As we have already said, so now I say again:
If anybody is preaching to you a gospel other than what you accepted, let him be eternally condemned! Am I now trying to win the approval of men or of God? Or am I trying to please men? ” (Galatians 1:6-10).
Are you sure you are IN Christ Jesus? Do your church leaders dance around scriptures they wish weren’t in the Bible and tell you they don’t really mean what they say? Or add things that the scriptures say nothing about? Are you sure they aren’t people pleasers instead of God pleasers? What do they do with Romans 6:3-4? Look it up and compare.
Oh to be sure we are indeed IN Christ Jesus. This is our longing. Our hope. Our reason for being.