Religious structures and Jesus didn’t (don’t) get along

To experience being unstructured and spontaneous, many people depend on alcohol. The new wine of the Holy Spirit works for me!

The flow of the Holy Spirit and religious structure are often at odds. Too often, in Christianity, structure is allowed to dominate. Unfortuately for church, the more organized a meeting is, the less spontaneous heart-connection will happen.

Religious structure separates people. It doesn’t unite them the way that Jesus prayed in John 17.

In the Bible, the Old Testament shows that religious structure couldn’t change hearts. The New Testament is the testimony of hearts changed by Jesus.

It’s hard to continually experience the living Jesus if we won’t step beyond religious structures into the freedom of the Spirit. Church is often like a structured tour of a famous city. It rushes you by the sights, but doesn’t let you fully experience them.

Biblical Christianity thrives when people freely follow the Holy Spirit, but drowns when highly structured. It’s about empowering individuals from within, not about building hierarchal, organizational structures.

Traditional Christianity, unlike early Christianity, takes a very structured and controlled approach to God. Structured, routine, and typical church, that follows the same pattern every week, seldom helps me connect with the living Jesus.

Perhaps church services are so highly organized because Christians (and their pastors) fear unstructured time with God. Too much structure and organization turns Christianity into a dam that shuts down the free flow of the Holy Spirit.

Humans don’t like to be unstructured and spontaneous. We even organize our play and then call it sports or games. One of the main reasons that Christians quench the Holy Spirit is because we fear unstructured time.

When we’re unwilling to be unstructured and spontaneous, the Holy Spirit doesn’t feel welcome. Jesus wants us to relate to Him like children precisely because they’re unstructured and spontaneous.

Jesus was born in a highly structured Roman/religious world. His spontaneity wasn’t well received (nor is it today). The Pharisees, of that time, wanted Jesus crucified because they saw Him as a threat to their religious traditions and structures.

Some Christians are cessationists and believe that God no longer does miracles. I’m a continuationist and experience miracles daily. If the gifts of the Spirit aren’t operating in you, it’s not because they ceased to operate, but because you’ve quenched the Spirit.

Every time you ignore an inner prompting from God (regardless of the reason), you “quench” the Holy Spirit. If you’re a Christian, the Bible warns you not to “quench” (hinder or hold back) the Holy Spirit.

People need freedom! To act like human beings are only physical beings is like saying that a book is only paper and ink.

Christian dogma barks,
Howls and growls.
Christian love
Changes hearts.

To follow Jesus
It requires
We set aside
Our own desires.

Photo by Pixabay on

About Steve Simms

I like to look and think outside the box. In college I encountered Jesus Christ and I have been passionate about trying to get to know Him better ever since. My wife and I long to see the power and passion of the first Christ-followers come to life in our time. I have written a book about our experiences in non-traditional church, called, "Beyond Church: An Invitation To Experience The Lost Word Of The Bible--Ekklesia." If you need encouragement, search for: Elephants Encouraging The Room and/or check out my Amazon author page. Thank you!
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