The Religious Plan

This plan, in principle, is virtually the same as the pagan plan.

While religions (including some professing to be Christian) differ with their various names, promises, sacraments and rituals, the formula of acceptance with God is the same.

God is seen holding hell over our heads unless we constantly perform by His standards. When we come short, various works and rituals are prescribed to appease His anger - until the next time we fail.

Pros

For the most part a creator-God is acknowledged.

Certain righteous actions are required to earn God's favor. This can improve community life.

These particular beliefs are usually passed from generation to generation creating roots of belonging and family heritage identity which is seen as helpful for "self esteem."

The belief that your religion is right can act as a placebo (psychological comfort) at the time of death.

Cons

This plan does claim some authority as its source. Some claim angelic inspiration or human authority invested with God's power or government sanction. Some even use parts of the Bible to support the plan. However, it lacks the authority of the gospel of God as revealed through His only Son, Jesus the Christ.

It is built on the assumption that God will accept sincerity (no matter how different from God's way) as an atonement for sins. It ignores Proverbs wisdom that " There is a way that seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death". (Proverbs 14:2)

By claiming absolute rightness, it claims absolute power for God and has controlled societies of people to the extent of justifying war and killing the opposition - all in God's name. It also controls quite a few pocketbooks with its power and promises.

It defies the logic of "the inner controls the outer." A plane cannot perform without the inward power of an engine. Outer rules cannot create a new heart.

Conclusion

It makes the man the offerer or savior to appease God. It points man to a system on earth where priests die rather than to the Mediator in heaven that lives forever.


THE CHOICES