There is a problem with just being religious.
You could interpret the religious as being pious and dedicated and good. Pure of heart and intention. The nonreligious would then be considered unholy with a bent towards hatred, murder, disease and the like. But what happens when religious persons murder even in the name of God or the church? In this skewed version of God’s will and fervor for God you can see how easy it is to loose sight of your target.
Proverbs 16:2 (New International Version)
2 All a man’s ways seem innocent to him, but motives are weighed by the LORD.
You would think that if I loved the Lord my God with all of my heart soul and mind then I would be fulfilling the whole of God’s will, since it is one of the teachings of Jesus. But it is possible to think you are doing this commandment with pure intention and miss the mark (sin) completely. What is missing?
Let’s take another look at the will of God.
Romans 13:10 (New International Version)
10 Love does no harm to its neighbor. Therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.
Could it be that the true religion has only one true intention? Love and servanthood in the name of giving to your fellow humans (without the impurity of getting something in return) leads to true piety. Power seeking and domination (needing to be right) in the name of self or in the name of religion and God leads to murder, hatred, making you miss the mark. You can perform the rituals of your church and still have hatred in your heart therefore committing murder.
Micah 6:8 (New International Version)
8 He has showed you, O man, what is good. And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.
To aim truly you must aim with love. Intend and feel the love, kindness, goodness that is from the love of God.
Galatians 5 (New International Version)
22But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. 24Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the sinful nature with its passions and desires. 25Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. 26Let us not become conceited, provoking and envying each other. Shalom