10.16.2005

good quote from a good book

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“There may not be a more dangerous weapon for violence or oppression than religion. It seems counterintuitive, but when human beings create religions, we use them to control others through their guilt and shame. True religion always moves us to serve others and to give our lives to see those oppressed find freedom. [The Apostle] Paul persecuted followers of Christ and even instigated their deaths, but then he risked his own life so that others might live. He once personified the very worst that happens when a religion becomes civilized. It moves away from God and oppresses humanity in God’s name. Paul was once consumed by religion, but then he was transformed by the living presence of God Himself.

We, too, must find the barbarian way out of civilization. How have we come to this sanitized view of the faith to which Jesus calls us? Somewhere along the way the movement of Jesus Christ became civilized as Christianity. We created a religion using the name of Jesus Christ and convinced ourselves that God’s optimal desire for our lives was to insulate us in a spiritual bubble where we risk nothing, sacrifice nothing, lose nothing, worry about nothing. Yet Jesus’ death wasn’t to free us from dying, but to free us from the fear of death. Jesus came to liberate us so that we could die up front and then live. Jesus Christ wants to take us to places where only dead men and women can go.”

Erwin Raphael McManus, "The Barbarian Way"




10 comments:

Hidden Valley Girl said...

Great stuff, Jimmy! I'll have to make that one of my next reads . . .

Roman said...

Awesome--I just orderd the book!

Jarred D said...

good stuff bro, being a part of that "civilized religion" is so easy to do... it seems, for me anyway, that the constant struggle is filtering everything that comes in searching for God in it. if it seems that it is less God and more this conditioning from men i try to take it with a grain of salt for what its worth. the stuff that is God i apply it to my everyday life. but so much of it comes in a great package, & labeled just like it was hand delivered from st. peter himself, sometimes it hard to tell what is truly from the heart of God, and what is simply mans drum beat...jarred

Jenny Jorg said...

Wow, that totally corresponds to all this stuff I've been learning in my History classes. People use religion in a way that is frankly Horrifying. Voltaire was one of the guys of late that strongly spoke against religion stating that it was destructive to one's faith. The Catholic Church at the time was probably detructive! But who's to say it doesn't work now? People just need to see outside of themselves and realize that the structure of church isn't all it has to offer.

-from someone who doesn't know what their talking about-

Darla said...

I agree with Jenny. We both don't know what we are talking about. I was definatelu in the "Christian bubble" for a long time. I guess I still am by going to church and a christian college, but I have seen how I was able to handle my relationship with God outside of all that and I was lost. Realizing all this I am currently working on establishing my own relationship with God and not just following the crowd.

jimmy said...

This guy writes really good stuff. I've read one of his other books. He really draws you in, and for me, gets you fired up. Has anyone tried clicking on the picture yet? It takes you to his personal site. It's got a pretty cool flash intro then this phrase pops up on the screen:

"The greatest enemy to the movement of Jesus Christ is christianity."

WHOOOO!!! Wow, this dude pulls no punches...

Manateechik said...

"The greatest enemy to the movement of Jesus Christ is christianity."

This quote is so very interesting. I think people have warped Christianity into something, sometimes, fairly ugly. And somewhat in line with what your post says, into something that is being used right now, albeit covertly, to "conquer the world" in a violent manner. Scary to me. I think this pushes people much farther away from the word of Christ than they ever would have been otherwise.

Jeff said...

heard that message at a conference a few years ago. changed my life.
the danger is that we want part barbarian and parts civliized. that way, we have ways to deal with inability to completly embrace this thought process.

love the book. it was stirring in my heart long before the book was written.

lee said...

on pg #76 now...

lovin' it, 'cept i'm afraid that it's only gonna thro mo' gas on the fire...

i thought i caught enough crap already...

guess not...

bjk said...

He definitely stirs you up in Uprising he said ....' a bad attitude is arrogance'...I didn't like reading it and cannot to this day have a bad attitude without remembering what he said. My daughter is doing an internship at his church in LA Mosaic.....turning into quite an experience for her....he leaves no stone unturned or any Christian untouched or unscathed....