"Religion" Says Do, Jesus Says Done.

I've been critical of Jeff's work on YouTube before. Namely, his "Why I Hate Religion" viral video.  I follow his channel on YouTube and came across this piece this morning.

Jeff's heart is in the right place and he has clearly heard and prayerfully considered the criticism that has come his way regarding his use of the term "religion." He's clear within the above video to point out that religion, in terms of community and church, is good. What he wants to make distinct here is the difference between earning your way to Heaven and Jesus doing the redeeming. This, so it seems, is what he refers to as the world's view of "religion."

In other words, he seems to insist that the way people think about religion is to, unsurprisingly, think about salvation.  How do I get to Heaven? Jeff asserts that other religions seek to require earning salvation; there are things you must do in order to be saved.

I disagree with Jeff in terms of his use of the word "religion" here, but agree with his premise that Jesus is the one who redeems and saves. Let us not forget, though, that many Christians not only assert that a personal commitment to Christ must be made in order to be saved ("When were you saved?  I was saved at 12 when I was baptized"), and many of these Christians attend the same church that Jeff does. Contrast that, perhaps, with my preferable answer to when one was saved, "I was saved 2000 years ago on the cross at Calvary."

All in all, I think, Jeff seems to get that. Jeff seems to get that what needed to be accomplished to save humanity was accomplished and that we are not saved of our own doing.  Or, as Paul wrote to the church in Ephesus, "It is by grace that you have been saved through faith, it is not of your own doing." 

Jeff's criticism of "religion" only seems to take into account justification, the act of being saved. Yes, Jesus does that. Wesleyans (and many others) believe that we can participate in our own salvation--in our sanctification, the act of growing into Christ's likeness.  This is why I refrain from applauding his use of "religion."