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Summary: True religion is the relationship with God. This sermon shows the impure religion and the pure relationship.

RELIGION AND RELATIONSHIP

Text: II Timothy 3 (quickview) : 1-17 3-21-04

The passage of scripture that was just read shows a time when men would pervert the order the things of God.

As we look into this passage we can see that these aren’t heathens being spoken of.

They are the religious people. v. 5 says “they have a form of Godliness.”

The ones being described here are people who know of God.

Notice I said they know of God, not they know God.

There is a big difference. Scripture says the devils believe in God and tremble.

But to know God is different.

As we look into the Word of God , we will see the difference between:

Religion and Relationship.

I. What does religion do?

A. Pure religion brings us to the heart of God.

1. The worship, obedience and service.

2. Our attitude as we approach.

B. It has been said, “The number one cause of atheism is Christians.

Those who proclaim God with their mouths and deny Him with their

lifestyles is what an unbelieving world finds simply unbelievable.”

(Christianity Today, 2001)

C. In the text we see what happens when religion loses this purity.

1. The focus goes from God to man. (vv 1-7) being served.

2. The form is there but no substance. (generic)

D. They have reached their end. (v 8-9)

II. What relationship does.

A. How do you form a relationship with someone?

1. Spend time getting to know that person.

2. Learn all that you can.

B. Paul tells Timothy the same thing. (vv 10-12)

C. The focus of relationship is Jesus.

D. The person with this will never reach their end. (Heaven)

III. What do you have?

A. Jesus said not everyone who calls me Lord, Lord shall enter into the Kingdom of Heaven. (Matt. 7:21)

B. Jesus said many will come to me and say Lord, Lord have we not prophesied in you name, cast out devils, and done many wonderful works in your name? (Matt. 7:22)

C. To these He will say. Depart from me sinner for I never knew (had a relationship with) you. (Matt. 7:23)

Conclusion:

Pure religion is what God desires of us.

That pure religion is a relationship with Him. Seeking to know Him.

The only way to have that relationship is through salvation.

Isaiah 1:18 (quickview)  Come now and let us reason together, though your sins be like scarlet, they shall be white as snow, though they be as crimson, they shall be as wool.

That’s the beginning. The road starts there. You and I must then keep the relationship intimate with God from then on.

What religion has become breaks that relationship and turns the focus to our desires, our will. What do you have?


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