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For I say unto you, that except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven. Matthew 5:20

Religion has been described by philosophers as the opium of the people. Opium is a drug that gives a sense of relieve and bliss to gravely sick people but is also being used by people who desperately want to escape the challenges of life. Opium is easily addictive because abusers keep it flowing in their blood streams in order to be in a perpetual sedate and blissful state of mind; this numbs their minds to the responsibilities of daily living and harmonious co-existence with their neighbours. Thus addicts are often criminally minded and a menace to others around them

Today, the fight to control addictive drugs is a global war of sorts because governments are desperately trying to save vulnerable people from self-destruction through drug abuse. Religion is also addictive, practitioners get carried away with routines and the sense of accomplishment they derive from being getting their acts right. They vigorously pursue perfection in their actions thinking that puts them in right standing with God. But God is interested in our hearts and not our acts because when our hearts are right our acts will automatically become right. Moreover, our relationship with God is not a religious practice but a work of righteousness that was initiated and accomplished by our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.

Obviously, the Pharisees misunderstood righteousness, thinking it was a product of religious rituals and routines. But Jesus warned those who listened to Him that unless your righteousness is better than the righteousness of the teachers of the religious law and the Pharisees, you will never enter the kingdom of God. Jesus by His shameful death on the cross made provisions for the perfect kind of righteousness He was talking about; the righteousness that is by faith in His finished works on the cross.

Liberation thought: We are the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus.

Further reading: John 4:1 – 32

Let the Blood of Jesus separate me from religious spirits working against my relationship with God, in the name of Jesus!
I pull down every imagination or stronghold that is founded on religion in my mind in the mighty name of Jesus.
Father, thank you because I am just as Jesus is in this world, in the name of Jesus


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