D.I.Y faith, using God to defend self-interest not good

DIY faith and making Jesus into the person we want him to be creates obstacles to a true relationship with Christ and his mercy says Pope Francis.

“The admonition of Jesus is always present: even today man constructs images of God that prevent him from enjoying his real presence,” the Pope said during the general audience on 7 September.

“Some carve out a ‘do it yourself’ faith that reduces God in the limited space of their own desires and their own beliefs.

“But this faith is not conversion to the Lord that is revealed, in fact, it prevents him from arousing our life and our conscience.”

In his catechesis, Pope Francis named several different ways in which people create false images of God, such as those who invoke his name in defense of their own interests, or in the interest of hatred and violence, or those who deny Christ’s divinity, considering him just a good ethical teacher and leader.

“For still others God is just a psychological refuge,” Francis said, “where he is reassurance in difficult times: it is a faith turned in on itself, impervious to the power of merciful love of Jesus which pushes brothers.”

Pope Francis also mentioned those who he said “stifle faith” by making it entirely about their personal, intimate relationship with Jesus while ignoring the missionary aspect of the Church, “capable of transforming the world and history.”

“The message that the Church receives from this account of the life of Christ is very clear.

“God did not send his Son into the world to punish sinners, nor to destroy the wicked,” he continued.

“They are instead addressed the invitation to conversion so that, seeing the signs of divine goodness, they can find their way back.”

The Pope concluded his catechesis by urging those present to not place themselves above the mercy of Christ by believing in a false image of the Messiah.



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