Tag Archives: video

Why I Love Jesus AND Religion

[Please, if you would, take a moment right now to pray for a special intention of mine today.  Thank you so much!]

This video was making the rounds on my Facebook news feed yesterday.  You may have seen it:

Now I was a fan of this guy’s last video.  And in this video, he does say some things that are right, and I get that his heart is in the right place.  Where I take issue is that he is not merely saying that Jesus is greater than Religion (which, by the way, I agree with).  He is saying that Jesus hates religion.  And while it may be tempting to play the, “yeah, I think religious people are lame, too” card in an attempt to get more people to hear our message, we need to be careful that our message does not fly in the face of the Gospel.  I don’t have time to cover everything misleading in the video here, but I will try to hit the main points.

What if I told you Jesus came to abolish religion?

…Then I’d say you probably haven’t read the New Testament very carefully.  Jesus is pretty clear in Matthew 5:17 when He says,

“Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the prophets.  I have come not to abolish but to fulfill.”

The Law, of course, being the Law of Moses, i.e. The Old Covenant, i.e. RELIGION.

In the Old Testament, God actually calls religious people whores

Yes, God called some religious people whores in the Old Testament—when they were being unfaithful to the Law (in other words: when they were disobeying the laws of their RELIGION—their religion given to them by God, by the way)

In the New Testament, Jesus refers to the scribes and Pharisees as hypocrites an awful lot, but remember the definition of a hypocrite: a person who acts in contradiction to his or her stated beliefs or feelings.  Jesus actually told the disciples that they should DO what the scribes and Pharisees tell them.

“…practice and observe whatever they tell you, but not what they do; for they preach, but do not practice” (Matthew 23:3).

“Whoever then relaxes one of the least of these commandments and teaches men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven…For I tell you, unless your righteousness exceeds that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven” (Matthew 5:19-20)

Doesn’t sound like Jesus hates religion to me.  In fact it sounds like He takes it pretty seriously.

When individuals use religion as a mask or for personal gain?  Yes, Jesus hates that.  But only because religion is not (and never was) meant to be a mask.  It’s meant to be an aid.

If I’m sick, knowing the doctor is definitely going to be important.  I’m going to need a relationship with him in order to let him know what is hurting me so that he can heal me.  But the fact of the matter is, if there’s no hospital, I’m not going to be able to find a doctor.  If I don’t go in for regular check-ups (even when I don’t feel like I’m sick), I’m not going to remain healthy.  If there’s no medicine when I am sick, my relationship with the doctor isn’t going to be enough to make me well again.  There’s a reason the doctor prescribes medicine, just like there is a reason God gave us the rules of religion.

A Chicken-Egg Situation

As sort of a newbie to this whole blogging game, I often find myself trying to network with fellow Catholic and young-adult bloggers in order to expand my readership.  I’ll write guest posts for other blogs or publications, I’ll email people who are doing it better than I am, and I will just generally spend a lot of time researching what “the other people” are doing.  For the most part, it works just fine.

But sometimes, I don’t quite do the research that I ought to…Like a few weeks ago:

In Googling other Catholic blogs for young adults, I came across one in particular that seemed fairly popular.  After spending all of 20 seconds on their site (over-eager, rookie mistake), I found the contact page and shot off an email, reading something to the effect of:

“Please please please can I write something on your blog so that mine can be noticed???”

I later got a reply making sure I really understood what I was asking.  Apparently, this particular blog was written by “progressive” young Catholics, who do not always agree with Catholic doctrine, and are hoping and working for specific teachings of the Church to be changed, so that the Church can be more “democratic”.  I guess, judging from my posts, they got the impression that maybe I wouldn’t be on board with that mission.

From their email response (which I will mention was very kind and considerate):

“I can see that your own judgment and thinking has led you to stances that are more in line with official Catholic teaching on all, or at least most, issues”

My initial reaction was, “of course it has!”  But then I had another thought.  Which brings me to my chicken-egg situation:

Which ought to take precedence—what I feel is right by my own logic, or the teaching of the Catholic faith I profess?

I think the “progressive” answer would be to say that it is my duty to skeptically question every little detail about the Catholic faith, judging it by my own reason, and then, only when I get all of my questions answered, I can decide to accept Catholicism.

But there is one rather large problem with that.  I’m not God.  My reason is often flawed, and I make many, many mistakes.  In realizing I am a flawed human, I actually try not to let my own judgment shape my beliefs, because I am just that—flawed.

I can only hope that, if and when I fail to understand a teaching of the faith, my reason will eventually come to be shaped by my faith, and not the other way around.  I know my track record of using reason and I know God’s.  It seems logical to conclude that the Church that He who is without fault set up will be right, even if my reason has trouble understanding how or why at first.

And speaking of chicken-egg situations…

Sexual Healing – Video

Get Clean

Two of my friends at school made this for the iConfess video contest.  Check it out; it’s incredible: