The meaning of religion

Tuesday, May 22, 2018 | 2 a.m.

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The May 8 column “Hypocrisy and the flight from religion” asks the question, “Do you wonder why the proportion of Americans declaring themselves unaffiliated with organized religion has skyrocketed in recent decades?”

First, let me say what religion is not:

• It’s not about GOP tax cuts.

• It’s not about “imposing accountability on a president who is a proven liar and trashes the rule of law for his own selfish purposes day after day.”

• It’s not about “conservative politics and a lean toward the right in the culture wars.”

According to Robert Putnam and David Campbell, “Many young people came to regard religion as judgmental, homophobic, hypocritical and too political.” Who can blame them?

The New Testament Book of James 1:27 gives the best definition. “Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.”

May we all take that verse to heart.