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A Never-ending Climb
Theme of the Week: Religion Won't Get You to Heaven
Sunday, March 30, 2014

Average rating: [ see ratings/comments | 3 Comments ]

Who Said It … Derwin L. Gray

Derwin L. Gray is a former professional football player and the founding and lead pastor of Transformation Church, a multi-ethnic, multi-generational, mission-shaped community with two campuses in South Carolina. He speaks at conferences nationwide and is recognized by many as the "Evangelism Linebacker." He is the author of Hero and Limitless Life. Derwin and his wife, Vicki, have two children.

What he Said … A Never-ending Climb

I'm not a fan of religion. I wasn't honest enough with that last sentence. I profoundly dislike religion. Let me explain what I mean. I define religion as humanity's attempt to reach up and earn God's acceptance, love, and blessings through good behavior or by keeping a specific set of religious principles or laws. In the historic biblical Christian context, this is called "works-based righteousness."

Religion, or works-based righteousness, paints a picture of a god sitting atop a high peak, waiting for us to scale the mountain through our good behavior or adherence to religious principles. The more "good" we do the closer we come to approaching our god. If we do something bad, however, the god on top of the mountain turns Zeus-like and throws a lightning bolt to strike us and knock us back down the mountain. After the electric shock wears off and our singed hair stops smoking, we dust ourselves off, pull ourselves up by our bootstraps, and start the long trek all over again.

Key Study Passage: Ephesians 2:3-7

Adapted from Limitless Life by Derwin L. Gray (Thomas Nelson, 2013) by permission. All rights reserved by the copyright holder and/or the publisher. May not be reproduced.

Prayer for the Week
Savior, my natural human tendency is to want to earn your love through my good works; remind me that your love is unconditional and based on your sacrifice for me.

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Displaying 1–3 of 3 comments

Garrett Atkinson

March 30, 2014  2:18pm

everyday we are doing our best to get closer to God to become more like Jesus to live a life that God would be proud of...though we the flesh is weak we as in spirit are more powerful, God's gift to us cannot be taken.

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Curt Schleicher

March 30, 2014  8:54am

Amazing. Astounding. Indescribable. All descriptors that in a word try to depict God's love for me. Undeserved. Unearned. Unconditional. 3 more adjectives that attempt to define His immeasurable mercy provided to me. All of this excellent vocabulary doesn't even come close to saying what Jesus' love means to me. I'm just so thankful to those individuals took the time to time, so many years ago, to tell me about it. It makes me desire all the more to live for Christ daily in my 'Christian' journey. Yes I know it won't be an easy 'walk in the park' at times. But that's not what I signed up for. Count me in for life.

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Bill Rosenberger

March 30, 2014  7:01am

Very well put. I often find myself in the same frame of mind, thinking that God is going to "punish" me because I missed a day of reading my Bible or because I said or did something that I shouldn't have. I always have to remember that, just like with my own kids, even when they do something they shouldn't, I still love them and would still die for them, just like Christ died for me. God's grace is truly amazing!

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