“Why I Hate Religion, But Love Jesus” – feedback please!

Hey TD’ers,

I just came across this video recently, and judging by the 25 million views, it looks like I’m late to the game.  Have you guys seen it already?  I’m not endorsing it nor not endorsing it right now.  I’m just curious to know what you think of it.  Would you mind either commenting on it or emailing one of the counselors with your thoughts?  Thanks.

Btw, most of TD’s leadership will be retreating together this weekend to refresh, plan, seek, and pray for you all at TD.  Please pray for us!  God does work through sincere prayers.  As I said, we’ll be praying for you! – Arthur

10 thoughts on ““Why I Hate Religion, But Love Jesus” – feedback please!

  1. I saw this around the time it came out, but now I realize its message more than ever. I feel that it’s Biblical, although it does make a few assumptions, and, judging from the amount of Likes it has, I believe that the world seems to appreciate what the video is presenting… which is a curious thing. What’s even more interesting is the arguments that happen in the comment section haha.

  2. Like Sean, the message made much more of impression on me this time than it did the first time I watched this video. It definitely made me feel convicted and ever thankful for the Lord’s grace. But, again, like Sean did, I noticed that there were a few claims in there that seemed too .. quickly claimed and unsupported? (Assumptions?) Haha.

    One of the parts that struck me most in the video was the part where he talked about “playing a church kid.” Because I feel like I can relate more.. because I am constantly in danger of doing just that. Anyway, his comparisons to playing church kid were very memorable: “spraying perfume on a casket” and “saying you play for the Lakers just because you bought the jersey.” These analogies definitely bothered me (and I’m glad they did), but.. I will now look at the analogy about the Lakers just because I haven’t heard of this one before!

    Assumptions, assumptions. 😀 “Saying you play for the Lakers just because you bought the jersey” is the same as “saying you’re part of a team when you’re really not.” Following the analogy thoroughly, we find at the end that it assumes that playing church kid means pretending to be GOOD enough to be on a team when you’re actually not. However, in seconds after this Lakers analogy, the speaker says something like “Now I boast in my weaknesses.” (HOLD IT! This ain’t consistency! First he says that playing church kid is not being good enough to be on a team, and then he says that being a Christian means boasting in one’s failure to meet the standards of being on the team.)

    Okay, sorry for jumping around! This comparison is so interesting! This is how I worked this out in my head: that the person who buys the jersey (and says that he’s on the team when he’s really not) only buys the jersey because he REFUSES to let the Coach recruit him. God sent Jesus to die for us.. it’s not like He’s sitting up there, waiting for someone good enough to try out for the team. And it’s not like we were ever good enough anyway. One gets on the team by ACKNOWLEDGING the fact that he isn’t not good enough.

    I don’t know if this Lakers comparison was worth tracing, but it gave me new perspective! Sorry it’s so long; thanks for reading, whoever’s reading! Haha, I should get a life..

    Nah, I’ve got life already. ^_____^

  3. Hahaha Melody! 🙂
    A verse that came to mind as I watched this…
    “Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the Father, is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world.” – James 1:27
    I think something that Sean and Melody both might have been hinting at is how the word “religion” is so broadly used that it loses some of its original meaning and throws the baby out with the bathwater (aka the “assumptions”). It misses the point a bit by attacking religion itself rather than the object of the religion (just like on Sunday school when we talked about “mountain-moving faith” – it’s not the faith itself that saves, but the object of that faith) – and it really comes down to if that religion worships yourself/others or if that religion worships God.
    But I like the picture he painted of what the church should be (“a hospital for the broken”) and the gospel sharing at the end – that was powerful. 🙂

  4. I see the issue of “religion” and “faith” (I’m using quotation marks too because both are being used so arbitrarily) really comes down to personal merit vs divine grace. The video does a good job of distinguishing the two.

    However, (Melody, I think this is what the video does not seem to address) God is even the principle instigator of our acknowledging of ourselves that we aren’t good enough but, rather, are in need of saving. To me, we seriously underestimate the sovereignty and all-powerfulness of our God in our lives, and that gives rise to the idea of “getting to God.” Everything in this universe has been fashioned because of His hand for His righteous purposes, from the tiniest component of baryonic matter in our brain, to the galactic forces that keep the fabric of spacetime from unravelling like a scroll. And all of this works out, somehow, that the end result is us accepting salvation.

    To put it simply, I don’t believe in chance and randomness. Everything from creation God has made for a purpose. Thus, even the way our mind functions and how our body moves has been predetermined by God for His purpose! This is why I love science, because the complexity of the physical world not only points to, but COMMANDS us to glorify our majestic God.

    Also, what should be noted from the video is the “love” part of it. Going back to this blog after a few days, I think the video really got most of its likes because the state of rebellion is more present in individuals today more than it has ever been before. To “hate religion” is something we want to hear, since it gives us more freedom from, well, all the mundane commandments and rituals in life that just aren’t desirable for us. We want to do our own things our own way for our own pleasure. And now, the term “love” is being misused and misunderstood, and to “love Jesus” seems to just be a fan of His, cheering Him on behind our computer screen, but not really committing our attention, time, and energy no matter the cost (a problem I struggle with!). Maybe we have “liked” the video just because its message seems so “easy.” But I think it’s not easy at all to take up our cross and follow Jesus. Thoughts on this?

    Please correct me if I’m wrong and have written down strange doctrine.

    • I definitely especially agree with your last paragraph. I hesitated to watch the YouTube video when I’d first seen it trending because the title sounded so rebellious (like, more people-pleasing than God-pleasing). I feel you were right on when you said, “To “hate religion” is something we want to hear, since it gives us more freedom…”

      But I think it’s easy for viewers, when watching, to forget about the much more radical, and even more “rebellious,” cause behind making this video, and instead, focus on the rebelliousness of saying that they “hate religion.” (Sean, good call. :D) Taking up our crosses and following Jesus is not in the least easy, and it is definitely much more rebellious and radical than having the courage to say that “I hate religion.” Let us, then, be true rebels, in a way, living wholly rebellious lives against the world and clinging to the cross! (not just saying we “hate” religion!)

      • A life in rebellion against the world, I hope, is caused and fueled by the love that God gives us. Doesn’t mean that we should close ourselves from “sinners.” We were all sinners before rebirth, and we should show God’s love to them just as He did to us. I feel it’s easy to fall into the extremes of lifting up a certain aspect of life above our God, and rebelliousness is one of those aspects, along with social justice, asceticism, etc.

        I like where this is going though!

  5. Hey guys, thanks for sharing your thoughts and comments. Believe it or not, it is very helpful for me to hear and learn from you. You guys are insightful and thoughtful, yet sensitive and real, which I love.

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