I saw this meme recently and I had to shake my head in agreement.
Have you had a bad experience with a religious person? Someone who knows the Bible better than you and reminds you though words or actions you are not living up go God’s expectations. Or been witness to the hypocritical nature of a “religious” person. What about the Christian who is in your face to “come to Christ”?
I know I have. And I have probably been the bad religious experience in someone’s life. I just never thought about Jesus’s bad experience with religious people. I knew the Jews didn’t believe He was the Son of God. They were part of the reason He was crucified. Yet, I never made the connection of Jesus having a bad religious experience.
It’s hard for me to think of Jesus as a man who had bad experiences. He’s God in human form. He was above all bad experiences, right? It’s like I am a toddler looking at my dad who is better than Superman. But Jesus did have bad experiences. He had human feelings, both physical and emotional. And, there were a lot of religious people were spiteful to Him.
It is easy to write on religious corruptness. Especially as we recognize it today; and personally because this has been part of my stumbling stone. Putting people before God, especially when it comes to trust. But God doesn’t want us to stumble over religious interference. He doesn’t want us to put man before Himself. He wants us to seek Him and know His Word so we don’t stumble.
Think of God’s Word like this. If you know what triggers in your life cause anger, anxiety, even depression, you are able to gain control of your emotions. By knowing the trigger, or reason behind your strong emotions, you can step back and process the moment, acknowledge the trigger, and calm the emotion. God’s Word is like knowing your trigger. By storing God’s Word in your heart, that is reading the Bible, you have the knowledge to distinguish between God’s plan for you and the bad religious experience you are facing.
Jesus had a bad experience with religious people throughout His life. Yet, He knew God’s Word. He knew His purpose. He knew the prophecies He was to fulfill. Ultimately, Jesus died for our sins. There is no more shedding of blood for our sins because Jesus shed His blood, once and for all, for us. If Jesus allowed the bad religious experiences to interfere, He would not have fulfilled His purpose. He cried out to God because He didn’t want to die on the cross. He was human, and knew he was about to suffer. But, His trust in God, in His Word, was greater than the immediate feeling of acceptance.
Like Jesus, we shouldn’t allow religious people to come in between our relationship with God. By storing God’s Word in our heart, we are able to discern the purpose God has for us. We are not asked to die on a cross, but we are asked to know God. Spending time with God in His Word equips us with the Armor of God. We are not invincible to bad experiences, or being the cause of someone’s bad experience; but, we are provided the tools to guard ourselves, and to seek forgiveness.
I hope you enjoyed this post. Leave a comment and share if you feel bad religious experiences interfere with your relationship, or lack of, with God?