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In Christianity, God is the aggressor and man is the beneficiary (Romans 8:3).

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However, practically speaking, Christianity has a key difference that separates it from other belief systems that are considered religions. Most religion, theistic or otherwise, is man-centered. A theistic religion, such as Judaism or Islam, holds to the belief in a supreme God or gods; while non-theistic religions, such as Buddhism and Hinduism, focus on metaphysical thought patterns and spiritual “energies.” But most religions are similar in that they are built upon the concept that man can reach a higher power or state of being through his own efforts.

In most religions, man is the aggressor and the deity is the beneficiary of man’s efforts, sacrifices, or good deeds.

He wants us to grow in grace and knowledge of Him (2 Peter ).

But we do these things because we are His children and want to be like Him, not in order to earn His love.

We can only accept His invitation to know Him as Father through adoption (Ephesians 1:5; Romans ).

When we join His family through faith in the death and resurrection of Jesus, the Holy Spirit comes to live inside our hearts (1 Corinthians ; Luke ; 2 Corinthians –22).He then empowers us to live like children of the King.He does not ask us to try to attain holiness by our own strength, as religion does.According to Christianity, God did for us what we cannot do for ourselves (Colossians ; 2 Corinthians ).Our sin separates us from His presence, and sin must be punished (Romans ; Matthew ; ).He asks that our old self be crucified with Him so that His power can live through us (Galatians ; Romans 6:6).

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