Now the Spirit explicitly says that in latter times some will depart from the faith giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons. I Timothy 4:1
A contagion is a viral infection transmitted from person to person by close contact. Although many of these deadly virus's have killed millions in the past there is another deadly virus that kills the spiritual life of man: the virus of religion.
One of the definitions of contagion is the transmission of an influence on the mind or emotions. Religion certainly influences the mind of man with its many forms and shapes of seemingly harmless worship, but it has infected millions of innocent people condemning them to hell forever and destroying any hope of an intimate relationship with Jesus.
Jesus died on the cross to destroy the laws and rituals of man-made religion and set us free from the bondage it creates over the mind and emotions of mankind. Throughout history man has come under its seducing spell, allowing it to deteriorate all true spiritual life. The only remedy for this pandemic is the blood of the Lord Jesus Christ received by faith and repentance from dead religious works!
And you being dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, He has made alive together with Him, having forgiven you all trespasses, having wiped out the handwriting of requirements (certificate of debt) that was against us, which was contrary to us. And He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross. Colossians 2:13,14
ARE YOU INFECTED?
So let no one judge you in food or in drink, or regarding a festival or a new moon or sabbaths, which are a shadow of things to come, but the substance is of Christ. Colossians 2:16,17
Infection begins when religion is imposed upon us from an early age and normally from leadership ignorant of the things of God transmitting the traditions and doctrines of their forefathers and not Christ. Rules and regulations, guilt and shame leading to condemnation heaped upon the unsuspecting leaving them disillusioned, rejected, angry and in many cases end up hating God.
Preachers use scare tactics to pen up the sheep and manipulate them for their own selfish gain and to keep the overhead of "God's House" paid. If you think God sits in some dark building used only one day a week wringing His hands and wondering if you will be back on Sunday you have another thing coming. Number one, church is not a place, and you are the house of God, He either resides in you, or He doesn't!
You are cursed with a curse they shout bringing a railing judgment from Malachi that we have robbed God by not giving tithes and offerings. It works! Yes I have tried that one and it always brings a good offering, do you think that I haven't been deceived too, deceived folks don't know they are deceived. It is amazing the things we have allowed men to heap on us that are by no means from God!
We missed you brother, a common phrase to heap condemnation on you because you decided to take your family out on the "Sabbath" instead of sitting through another dead sermonette, or every head bowed, every eye closed, there's one, another, and another, yes another, I've got news for you, next time open your eyes because there ain't that many raising their hands, I know, I looked.
Let no one cheat you of your reward, taking delight in false humility and worship of angels intruding into those things which he has not seen, vainly puffed up by his fleshly mind, and not holding fast to the Head (Jesus Christ) from whom all the body nourished and knit together by joints and ligaments, (relationship) grows with the increase that is from God. Colossians 2:18,19
BREAKING FREE FROM SPIRITUAL ABUSE
Therefore, if you died with Christ from the basic principles of the world, why as though living in the world, do you subject yourselves to regulations- "Do not touch, do not taste, do not handle," which all concern things which perish with the using, according to the commandments and doctrines of men? Colossians 2:20,21
Spiritual abuse is all about control and manipulation through fear, condemnation and guilt, leading to the complete dominance of a person's life. David Koresh, Jim Jones and many other cult leaders have used these same tactics to dominate a group, holding them under their control for their own selfish motives.
If you belong to Christ, you are washed in His blood and freed from the bondage of men and their traditions and doctrines. Everyone in the body of Christ is subject to Christ and under His control and leadership, not under some Pastoral dictator with a lust for power. True leadership comes from a servant's heart, men and women who have been forged in the trials of life, not some corporate CEO trying to make a name for himself.
Satan has successfully seduced men to resurrect the old priesthood, complete with temple, priest and ritual for man to come one day a week and "worship" or in most cases be entertained and lulled to sleep in order to captivate their hearts and totally render them useless in the kingdom of God. Everyone is called to have an intimate relationship with Jesus, everyone has a special gift to employ in the body of Christ. Just think what would happen if everyone was allowed to exercise his gift in the assemblies to edify one another and to build up the faith of the body of Christ!
Are you infected with the contagion of religion? If so, do this: ask your Shepherd, the Lord Jesus Christ to free you from the bonds of religious idolatry and the worship and adoration of men. Repent of dead works and ask the Holy Spirit to reveal to your heart any strongholds of religious idolatry, and if He does, ask Him to set you free and heal your mind, body and spirit to worship the Savior alone in peace and freedom. Break the chains of religion and fly like an eagle into the perfect will of God!
Beware lest anyone cheat you through philosophy and empty deceit, according to the tradition of men, according to the basic principles of the world, and not according to Christ. For in Him dwells all the fullness of the Godhead bodily and you are complete in Him who is the head of all principality and power. Colossians 2:8-10
Your Servant in Christ, Tim Laughlin