The Way Church: 5501 Dewey Dr, Fair Oaks, CA 95628

The Bondage of Religion | Friday Night Sermon

The Bondage of Religion

We have to get clear that Jesus is not a religion. There are dark forces that want to use religion to entrap people into bondage. The ministry of Jesus was to set people FREE from bondage, and this sermon by Pastor Lonnie of The Way Ministries will highlight the bondage of religion. Now, the first thing that Jesus did after coming out of the wilderness was to preach the gospel of the Kingdom by saying, “Repent, for the Kingdom of God is at hand.” In other words, now the Kingdom is available for all mankind. Jesus then goes to the temple on the Sabbath day to read (as was His custom). This time, however, is a bit different because now He is officially launching His ministry.

Luke 4:17-21 (NKJV) And He was handed the book of the prophet Isaiah. And when He had opened the book, He found the place where it was written:

18 “The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me,
Because He has anointed Me
To preach the gospel to the poor;
He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted,
To proclaim liberty to the captives
And recovery of sight to the blind,
To set at liberty those who are oppressed;
19 To proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord.”

20 Then He closed the book, and gave it back to the attendant and sat down. And the eyes of all who were in the synagogue were fixed on Him. 21 And He began to say to them, “Today this Scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.” 

You preach to people who are unsaved so they can be saved. You preach to people who are sick so they can be healed. You preach to people who are poor so they are no longer poor. You preach to people who are captive so they can be set free. You preach the gospel to those who have lost their identity, and they don’t know who they are so that they can be recovered and liberated, in Jesus name. The intent of the gospel is to liberate, to bring freedom. This freedom extends beyond just the spiritual, and into the natural: mind, soul and body. Liberty is directly tied to the preaching of the gospel, and who Jesus is. When Jesus left the planet, He commissioned His followers to do the same thing: to preach the gospel of the Kingdom, and baptize them in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. The gospel is designed to redeem people back to their rightful place in life, and restore them to their true identity. When you know who you are, you’ll praise Him. When you praise Him, you’re going to bring Him into your life because where His name is exalted, He comes. There is no physical or emotional chain that can hold you down any longer. Take the death clothes off, and put on the armor of God.

Free From All Bondage

We don’t have to build a testimony because Jesus is my testimony. We have overcome by the blood of the lamb. It’s because of Jesus that we live and move and have our being. God did not send Jesus to this world to setup a “right” religion or a new religion; He sent Jesus to rescue the human race from themselves, to bring them out of the bondage that they were in, and open their eyes to a spiritual life and a spiritual life. It is not about religion, it is about a loving, heavenly Father.

Religious Bondage

Some of the things that hold us in bondage are necessary for life! For example, food. But, being addicted to food, and being a glutton, is a sin. Or, as another example, wealth. But, hording and prioritizing riches above God is a sin. We need wealth without greed. A major source of bondage that has been pervasive, in Jesus’s day and up until now, is religion. Religion is a trap that ensnared the early church, and the apostle Paul tackled it head on. Here’s what he said:

Galations 5:1 (NKJV) Stand fast therefore in the liberty by which Christ has made us free, and do not be entangled again with a yoke of bondage. Indeed I, Paul, say to you that if you become circumcised, Christ will profit you nothing. And I testify again to every man who becomes circumcised that he is a debtor to keep the whole law. You have become estranged from Christ, you who attempt to be justified by law; you have fallen from grace. For we through the Spirit eagerly wait for the hope of righteousness by faith. For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision avails anything, but faith working through love.

In verse, where Paul says “bondage” he is making specific reference to the bondage of religion, and we know this because the next sentences he identifies an act of religion (circumcision) that is now a trap for the believer. Circumcision was part of the old rule, the old covenant, the old law.  Even now, people will come to Jesus, but get entrapped in religious bondage. What they thought would set them free, has only put them in a different type of bondage. Keeping the law only is a trap of religion. It was called the law of sin and death for a reason. The reason for the law was to expose sin and our need for a savior. When you find Jesus, but go back to the law, you have fallen from grace, Paul says. Adam and Eve fell from grace. When Jesus died on Calvary, He paid the price for His bride, the church, and she cleaved to Him, and they became One. Jesus did that for us, and Father helped Him fulfill that so He would be united with His church, Jesus being the head of the body of Christ. This means we are the body, the anointed ones, of Christ. Watch the full sermon here, and Pastor Lonnie begins preaching around the 28 minute mark: