What constitute a pure and genuine religion? There are many religions in the world that exist today. Fortunately, several democratic countries have already given their people the freedom of religion. So this freedom has given everyone the privilege to choose his or her religion to embrace. Some people prefer to not have religion at all. Because of numerous religions we have these days, it is just very important that we know what represents a pure and authentic religion. The religion that God our Father accepts as pure and unflawed is this:
James 1:27 (NIV)
Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.
What does the passage mean? It means that the pure and genuine religion that God accepts is one that constitutes charity and holiness. It’s the religion that represents love, kindness and godliness. Definitely, it removes the following religions:
1. Religions that are built to profit from money instead of helping the destitute
2. Religions that don’t reach out and help the distressed people
3. Religions that don’t have the full knowledge of the Word of God
4. Religions that teach false doctrines
5. and religions that are unspiritual
A pure religion, as stated by the Gospel, is one that keeps you away from being polluted by the world. In other words, it keeps you away from Earthly things such as lust and greed of money.
Colossians 3:5 (NIV)
Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry.
Furthermore, the religions of people, who considered themselves religious but are not doing the words and commandments of God, are worthless.
James 1:26 (NIV)
If anyone considers himself religious and yet does not keep a tight rein on his tongue, he deceives himself and his religion is worthless.
This is why we must not just mere listen to the Words of God – we must also follow them and do them. A genuine religion doesn’t consist of hypocrite people. Instead it is composed of persons who don’t just listen to the Word of God, but also do them. This is how they become loving, caring and free from the corruption of the word.
James 1:22-25 (NIV)
Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like a man who looks at his face in a mirror and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. But the man who looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues to do this, not forgetting what he has heard, but doing it—he will be blessed in what he does.