How to pick the right religion

Picking the right religion for yourself or your family can be a daunting challenge. There are so many religions. Over 40,000 of them, some research says. Probably a good starting point would be to decide what you believe. Then, search for a religion that matches your beliefs.

For instance, are you pro life or pro choice? That’s a biggie in many religions. Do you believe gays and LGBT’s can love Jesus? Should women have to wear dresses to church? Would you seek a religion that baptizes children? Should men wear suits? Or would it be okay in your religion to wear jeans to church? What about a religion that said drinking wine was a sin but supported gay marriage?

Would you want a religion that believes it’s a sin to dance? Or watch R rated movies? Or, heaven forbid, drink alcohol? Or get a divorce? What if a religion made it a requirement to read your Bible at least once a week? Would you seek a religion that believes only its members would go to heaven? Would you like a religion that required its members to serve in one of it’s ministries?

Do you begin to see the real dilemma? What if the religion you settled on was proreligion choice, but required a dress code for all men and women? Or what if the religion you liked was okay to wear jeans to church, but believed all gays were condemned to go to hell? Or what if you favored a religion that believed the Bible is God’s word but preached dancing is a sin? What if you found a religion that encouraged its members to work real hard to achieve victory over sin but didn’t believe in divorce.

How could you reconcile all the conflicting beliefs with your search for the best religion for you?

Actually, that’s a trick question. You can never reconcile any religion’s system of beliefs with yours. If you’re seeking a religion to match your beliefs you’ll never find it. Religion can tell you what you need to do and where you need to go. But it has no answers for how you get there.

Only Jesus can. And only through an intimate personal relationship with Him. And with Jesus, there are no rules. There are no standards of behavior. There’s not even any right or wrong. We have only to accept the gift of salvation Christ has to offer us.

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8 thoughts on “How to pick the right religion

  1. I read this yesterday..then again..and a third time. There was always something bringing me back t it with a sort of “something is wrong with this” attitude. I wasn’t about to comment until I searched for my own resistance, figured out where it was coming from and could speak semi-logically. And then Michael posted about Buddhism. And there it was. The basic tenets as we now call them that Jesus preached and lived by are found in Buddhism.A comparison of the Way of Jesus and the teachings of Buddha are, I believe, a necessity for anyone searching for “truth”, especially in religion. One finds that there is very little difference between the two. I often wondered if during the “unknown years” of Jesus he didn’t perhaps travel and stay with Buddhists for a time prior to his teaching.

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    • Dear Suze,
      Jesus may very well have hung out with some Buddhists in the years He spent between 12 and 30. He hung out with all kinds of people He created (every Buddhist as well–see Colossians 1:15-16). Most major “religions”, promote similar tenants of belief. We can find them in Hindi, Buddhism, Catholicism, Islam and Christianity. They all share some of the same tenants. The singular difference between Jesus’ teachings and everyone else’s is the difference between a religion and a relationship. You can’t have a personal relationship with Buddha or the Pope or an iman. Even if you could, a relationship with one of them would do nothing for you. A personal relationship with Jesus means you will never die and spend eternity with God. No other “religion” can make such a claim. And Jesus taught, different from all other “religions”, that the only way to get to heaven is through a personal relationship with Him. You’re right. Many “religions” share some similar tenants, but no other “religion” offers salvation and eternal life through a personal relationship with Jesus.

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      • We have consistently interpreted “Him” as being Jesus himself. Think for just a second…what if Jesus said “Him” when talking about God? Then the rebirth in Christ becomes something quite different. All of us are capable of a relationship with God.

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      • I’m afraid I don’t understand this comment. Christ can not be “re-born”. He has always been and will always be. He came to earth in the form of a man (Philippians 2). That was in the flesh. By the Holy Spirit Christ has never been reborn.

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  2. Buddhism is for everyone. It is a practice meaning TO TAKE ACTION and is often lumped in and called a religion like other forms of ‘worship’ people are familiar with. This, in my opinion, is erroneous thinking. Buddhism is more correctly, a set of guidelines, grounded in philosophical guidelines delineating the kinds of behaviors required to be focused on winning in life, no matter what obstacles one faces or how firmly experience has taught one how comfortable life can be when you give up and quit. Buddhists believe when we confront and battle a powerful enemy, we either win, or we are defeated. There is no in-between. Life’s biggest battles are those against life’s negative functions. It is through being victorious in such encounters, which we must deal with every day, that we become happy human beings. We must win, and we can, but not until we realize that we must have absolute control of our minds to have any measure of control over our lives. That is the summary of our greatest challenge in life. To have control of our lives, we must be in control of our minds. To do this, we must become self-renewed individuals. That journey begins the moment we acknowledge and accept that our pasts have, for the most part, been spent within a universe of fundamental darkness. That darkness is ignorance and does not exist outside of our bodies. It is the same with every human being on this planet. Fundamental Darkness is IGNORANCE plain and simple; existing within the self.

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    • Michael,
      Thank you for your comprehensive summary of Buddhism. I appreciate you taking the time to explain some of the tenants and beliefs of Buddhism. I must admit I knew little about Buddhism until I read your comments today. It sounds as if you are well grounded in it and devoted to its principles and teachings. I hope you are grateful, like me, that we can choose the life path we follow and worship in the way we believe is right for us. Thank you again.

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