I am continuing the writing of "Irreligious Followers" online so that I can get feedback and comments which I will use, when possible, in the final book. Chapter one can be found here.
(Note: I am, in fact, traveling in Africa but scheduled these posts in advance).
This is the introduction to Chapter 2: Freer Still.
The English word ‘religion’ has its roots from the latin root ‘lig’ which denotes ‘binds’ and ‘binding’ as in ‘ligature.’ Adding the prefix ‘re’ indicates the meaning: ‘to bind again.’
Edmond Dantes is the main character in the novel, The Count of Monte Cristo, who is imprisoned unjustly and placed on a small island sentenced to life imprisonment. After many years, he did manage to escape by ingeniously placing himself in the coffin of a deceased prisoner in place of the body. By imitating death, his coffin his thrown into the sea thus allowing him to find freedom from his captivity. Sadly, however, Edmond is not ready to be truly free and he binds himself in a new prison, one of his own making. He takes on the new identity of the Count of Monte Cristo, He wraps his new life up in the hatred of his enemies and determination to seek revenge. He leaves one prison only to bind himself up in another.
Unfortunately, this story is repeated again and again by those who find freedom in Christ from past lives of degradation, poor choices, and internal conflict. Yet these same people so often do what I have done and re-bind ourselves with re-ligion. We place ourselves in another captivity, a man-made one, one of our own making.
Fortunately, this is not the end of our story. Those whom Jesus sets free become, not just free, but ‘free indeed.’ God will not rest until we find freedom from all binds, including the religious ones.