By John Rae

Spiritual but not Religious?

The statement, “I’m spiritual but not religious” has a good curbside appeal but what is this house like inside? Is it the house of God? and what actually goes on, in there? There is a viral strain of the religious that can find a home in a whole range of human activities, including the Church. In 2021 we can now worship at secular, political and even “woke” religious altars. Religious structures are organized around the altar, the site of sacrifice, the place where the adherents of the religion are nourished. What is the main dish on the viral sacrificial menu? This sacrificial specializes in offering up the “innocent victim of the day”. Look at the child sacrifice of the Canaanite religion or the current woke “cancel culture” where you or I could unwittingly find ourselves being listed as the featured entrée on tomorrow’s menu. This dyslexic religion reads Hosea 6:6 backwards, for they hunger for sacrifice and not mercy.

In the Easter story the High Priest Caiaphas, the poster boy for this religious crowd, said (of Jesus) “that it is better that one man should die than the nation perishes”. You can see a version of this logic in, “its better that your small business goes bankrupt than we should perish from the pandemic”. The internal logic, of the dyslexic religious, always makes total sense to those on the inside but, from an outside perspective, not so much. You want to “Come out from among them, and be ye separate, says the Lord. Do not touch what is unclean”, 2 Corinthians 2:6.

So, “I’m spiritual but not religious”, has the ring of truth about it but the question is, “will your home brewed spirituality be enough to inoculate you against the religious virus or will you end up just helping to spread the infection?” What is the effective antidote to this viral religion? That antidote is the “gospel” which is created by the knowing self-sacrifice of Christ on the cross. Jesus allows himself to be served up as the “innocent victim of the day”, but a shot of God’s love brings him back to life! “O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting?”, 1 Corinthians 15:55. Death, the tool of sacrifice, has been broken. Jesus harvested the serpent’s venom and, in his own body, produced the anti-bodies that in turn bind to and neutralize the toxin of evil. Satan has been bound.

Where do we go to receive injections of both the life-giving vaccine of God’s love and the anti-bodies from Jesus’ resurrected body? Jesus has given us the gift of his Church, that hospital where the protocols are in place to safely administer His sacramental vaccines. In the Eucharist we receive a direct infusion of Jesus’ own anti-bodies to ensure that we become both spiritual and truly religious. Without regular injections of this heavenly vaccine and concreated anti-venom we are susceptible to the viral infections of false religion and its yearly mutations.


Blog image: Wikimedia Commons

Last modified on Thursday, 22 April 2021 16:54