I’m Chris, former member of shepherds (El Camino UBF). Today I would like to share with you all revelations from the Holy Spirit itself regarding the religious spirit.
From a group message with survivors:
Here’s another part to the religious spirit, that also influenced us from shepherd’s, and that is to do good or religious activities in order to cover up not having a pure and clean conscience. It’s where we do things that we think are spiritual and in order to seem spiritual, in order to gain favor or blessing from God or leaders. You see the focus is trying to do something good in order to gain something. So you see the motive could be self centered at its core, still in a self seeking pursuit. That’s where pride comes in attaching itself to self achievements, and boasts in good things done. Self righteousness grows in the pride to puff oneself up in comparison to look down upon others. So the iniquity is the sin of the motives being centered around selfish pursuits and self seeking gains for position, power, blessing, and favor.
You see iniquity has to do with the heart, and the motives of the heart, pride can easily blind us from seeing out motives, and ignore examining them before the Lord. God calls us to purity of the heart and having a clean conscience before Him but such power it out of our own hands. And this is why sin can be deceiving, sin deceives us to believe that we can clean our consciences by good works and outwardly trying not to sin, and trying to discipline the flesh. This is how we become religious and prideful. We are ignoring the power of sin the iniquity of the heart.
If we can realize our slavery to iniquity, then we could look towards the Lord to deal with our hearts, but we have to come to a place to willingly humble ourselves to submit to Him. It’s where we submit our hearts in surrender, allowing him to expose our iniquity before Him, and repent of them, and allowing His bloods to cleanse us from iniquity, His blood is the power that can clean our conscience and gives a pure heart. This is actually his promise that he would give us a new heart and mind and with His written inside of us. Only when we allow him to cleanse our conscience can we truly know the power of His blood in a personal way of knowing He has taken away our iniquity.
Iniquity is the hidden invisible sin of the heart, like pride, greed, impurities like the worship of images in your mind like lustful fantasies, and idolatry, and like bitter roots, jealousy etc. These are things that good works can not cover up, good religious work can not save people from iniquity, they can teach the bible, they do a mission, of fishing, go to meetings Fridays and Sundays, but if their not submitting to the Lord so that He can deal with their hearts, and allow him to uproot the iniquity, so that they can experience the cleansing of the blood, and the purity from its power, then they’re just religious with iniquity, focus on good works but not a pure and clean heart by the blood.
It’s only the blood of Christ that has the power to give us a cleanse conscience, and wipe away the record of sin even from our past sinful deeds. It’s religious to talk about dedicating yourself to God by doing the mission life, and Friday testimony and church service, but no focus on the power of the blood for cleansing because it’s not the focus of trying to discipline your flesh, and trying not to sin, as we know that’s what shepherd church focus upon, the focus has to be our pursuit of the person of God, to desire to hunger and thirst for him, so that in desire we can willing submit to Him, and then our hearts will be open to the conviction of sin our hearts, and his goodness will lead us to repentance so that we can experience His cleansing blood to purity our hearts and convict us with the gift of righteousness us gives by our trust in Him who justifies us, and sets us free from guilt, shame, and condemnation.
You see the Kingdom of God will be able to flow through us powerfully, when we have allowed him to purity and clean our hearts by our faith and trust in his blood, sin has a tendency to weaken confidence and trust in God, because sin corrupts our conscience, and it makes us uncertain about where we stand before God, sin opens the door for enemy to hold an accusation against our conscience, so it’s like where we feel a finger pointing at us on the inside of our hearts, this is the enemy accusing us of sin, so that we shut down, get discouraged, and feel condemned, and guilty and turn away from God, the enemy wants to hold these things down in our conscience so that we don’t have confidence in God, and so that we don’t trust God, but rely on our own methods, schemes, and devices. The enemy wants us our hearts to be defiled and corrupted, so that we allow the sin to turn us away from God, and not purse a relationship with Him.