Are You Following Jesus or Religion?

I have been on this kick of decolonizing and deconstructing my faith and what people in my country call “Christianity.” At the root is not a heart of judgement. It is a heart plagued with confusion. What we say we believe has not matched what we are demonstrating to the world. If I notice it, who else notices? I am running into more and more people completely over American Christianity and some have abandoned God altogether.

I will tell you 2020 opened the eyes of many people, myself included on how crazy Christianity is in America. I have never seen people go so insane over politics, vaccines, masks, conspiracy theories, etc…People dumped long term friends over things that will not matter in 5 years. People disgraced and dishonored the name of God for politics. I saw racism spring forth out of white church friends. There were Christians who made a mockery of God’s name.

I used to think using God’s name in vain was primarily about using swear words. It’s not. It’s also about assigning God’s name to things, ideas, and ideologies that have nothing to do with God or for selfish gain. The “God told me crowd ” are some of the greatest offenders when it comes to using God’s name in vain. What they say does not match the character, heart, or person of God.

It’s been a roller coaster of emotions for me since 2020. I have honestly been jaded by church (religious activities). I don’t want to go. I worship at home and fellowship with my biological family. The church I was attending was more focused on getting Trump re-elected than preaching the Gospel. There was more focus on trying to get people into church buildings than addressing the hurting and dying on the street. I recall going out to feed the homeless in lock down and the line to my car was unreal. There are people in my city who eat of the trash and sleep on the cold streets, yet the highest concern was getting back into a building or forcing God to make someone President.

I think I am strange because my main concerns when it comes to my faith are honoring God, helping the poor, sharing the Gospel. We are filling buildings with people who may still be on their way to hell. I am not sure we are teaching people how to have their own personal relationship with Jesus.

When I have tried to mentor or disciple people for Jesus there has normally been some form of conflict that arose with some people who wanted me to simply tell them they were amazing instead of teach what Jesus taught. They bucked any form of correction or anything that held them to a higher standard. Quite a few either left and abandoned the group or picked a fight with me or said God was calling them elsewhere. We have created in America a “Me-Centered gospel,” that promotes calling out the gold in people rather than teaching them they are accountable for their choices. It keeps people immature and carnal. The early apostles never changed the words of Jesus to make people feel good about themselves. Unfortunately we have a pendulum that has swung from intense judgement to anything goes (un-sanctified mercy).

Aside from the priorities, I have heard the most ridiculous conspiracy theories that make God seem like an incompetent loser. We tell people God is all powerful, all knowing, undefeated, cannot be sabotaged, and then pass around these theories on how the social elite can overthrow God’s plans. It is lunacy to me. Either God is who He says He is or we need to just all go home and sit down and be quiet. The same God who saved the life of Moses and Jesus from being murdered before their time, who delivered His people out of Egypt, parted the Red Sea, raised up King Saul and then took him down is now powerless against secret societies and those pesky Democrats. It all came off as crazy and as manifested unbelief to me.

It’s puzzled me because I have thought, “Maybe I am following a different Jesus.” I truly have sat with the Gospels and studied the life of Jesus. I have read the bible cover to cover many times and even studied some texts in their original language. What I have struggled with most are the priorities of the modern Western Church vs the priorities of Jesus. The behavior part, well we are all still in process. God is still working on me and I do my best to yield to God. We can only expect perfection from God. The world (people who do not know God) should see something different in a person united with Jesus. Those are His words, not mine.

The Jesus I know is highly concerned about the poor, outcasts, the rejected by society, widows, orphans, human beings being sold as slaves, injustice, racism, sexism, all the isms that seek to subjugate or diminish His father’s creation, the broken hearted, the oppressed, those who are not reconciled to the Father (evangelism is a priority), revealing the Father’s heart, delivering the oppressed, truth telling, service to the world, feeding the hungry, clothing the naked, bringing God’s hope to the hopeless.

I do not know self centered Jesus who is mostly concerned with Himself, His rights, pushing Himself on others, bullying, excessive rudeness, doing all He can to make Christians rich and comfortable while asking nothing from them.

I do not know political Jesus who rants and raves that you must support whatever political party He chooses or be doomed for hell.

I do not know Jesus of the patriarchy, because Jesus shocked the world by loving women, empowering women to speak for Him, listening to women, protecting women, cherishing women, honoring women, and healing women. Jesus came to serve, not be served.

I do not know white Jesus who mainly cares about white people and their desires. He cares nothing for the other 90% of the world’s population nor the billions of people of color who existed before there were any white people. I know brown Jesus from Nazareth who died for the entire world.

I do not know capitalist or American Jesus who values money and profits more than people. Money is not the highest goal of Jesus, it’s relationship with people. Jesus is not a consumer. Jesus does not treat people like commodities. He loved people enough to die for them.

I do not know the Jesus who quotes scripture at people without helping them to understand it or live it out. Jesus enters into the suffering and lives of flawed people to assist them, not harm them.

I do not know nationalist Jesus who only cares about certain nations. God so loved the world! The entire world.

I do not know the Jesus who hates Africans or black people, nor uses them as the scapegoat. God’s first humans were African. Their melanin rich skin was not called a curse. It was called a blessing.

I will keep inviting my heavenly Father to teach me who He is, and I will keep pursuing Jesus of Nazareth-Yahusha. I don’t know who others are following if it does not match the scriptures of who Jesus is. Cultural Jesus can save no one. He’s not real. He is the god made in human’s image, not the Son of God.

I know this post is long, yet I hope it helps someone. Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever. Jesus did not come to establish a religion. He did not come to form a political party. Jesus came to reconcile the entire world to the Father. He came for RELATIONSHIP and out of that relationship we are transformed. Transformed people transform cities. Jesus changed the world starting with 12 disciples. There are supposedly 2.2 billion Christians on this planet. What are we transforming? Loads of people are running away from Christians and it’s because the agenda of Christians does not match the agenda of Jesus. Our agenda needs to align with Jesus, not the current Christian culture.

I leave you with this note I sensed from Father God on New Years. I am not saying, “Thus sayeth the Lord.” I am sharing something you are invited to pray over and test/weigh against the full counsel of God, the character of God, and the witness of the Holy Spirit. God is not mocked. Claiming the name of Jesus is not a joke. He asks for our entire lives. Our lives are no longer our own, they were purchased with a high price.

What I sensed from the Father, certainly test and weigh it.

You will see a continued dividing line between those united to my heart and those united to their religion. Their festivals and conferences bring me no joy. They have set their faces to be like Israel was; honoring me with their lips while denying me with their actions. I will purify my true church, my people. You will see more clearly who is following my son and who is following their own agenda.

I am not mocked. I am calling those bearing the name of my son higher. I’m calling them into agreement with my son. Some will listen and grow; some will ignore my correction. Those who ignore my correction will notice a tension and struggle upon their lives. My grace abounds upon those yielded to my son. Your nation has polluted the other nations with her greed, sexual immorality, gluttony, perversion, and pride. She must be purified.

I have sown pockets of my remnant in your nation to pray, to preach, to model the precepts of my son. Those who do not have true unity with my son will see tension in the years to come. The idols of America will not save her. Her military will not save her. Her police state will not help her. Her economy will not save her. She will see that I alone am God.

Mankind has repeatedly played the role of desiring idols over my presence. I continually invite my people into relationship with me through my son and to live out of my presence. This is where they will find life, hope, peace, joy, goodness, identity, love and their purpose. Invite people into my presence.

I am tired of man’s religion and systems of oppression. I have watched pastor’s rob the flock while denying them any access to their presence, counsel, and love. I have watched my people in churches suffer in silence and it rips away at my heart. I will purify those who claim my name.

I have given many opportunities to the church to repent and they do not. They believe they are the “Untouchables” due to my promises of mercy and grace. They forget that I am just. I am the God of Perfect Justice.

Your world will continue to try to contain plagues environmental challenges and discord. They have collectively opened the doors to evil and partnered with the evil one. He comes to steal, kill, and destroy. The world, the earth, the environment responds to spiritual allegiances. Your world has given their allegiance to sin and idols. Behind those idols is bondage, death, destruction. I’m not punishing the world. The world is suffering because of mankind‘s allegiances. They are partnered with death.

Even amongst the people who call themselves the church there are idols. They play the harlot worse than Israel. They prop up their agenda, politicians, festivals, conferences, and services and then stamp my name on their agenda while neglecting what I actually told them to do!

I love my son instructed my people to love me with all of their being to honor me with their entire lives; to seek first my kingdom, to care for the poor, to fight for for holy justice; to make disciples, to add value, to preach the genuine good news of my son.

Your world must pursue my son to live; seek him and live. Come out of agreement with what does not align with the kingdom of heaven; come into alignment with what my son is doing. This requires those who are called by my name to seek my voice, know my voice, and follow. Lay aside personal and cultural agendas to pursue heavens agenda. We are calling your world to repentance and relationship.”

I am blessing you. May you and I pick up our cross and follow Jesus.

Love in Him,

Erin Lamb

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