Don't think you're religious. Be religious. Care for the needy around you and think before you speak.
Published March 1st, 2020
Main point summary
Following untainted religion is caring for the least and keeping yourself untainted by the world around you. While following worthless religion is deceiving yourself and speaking thoughtlessly.
It is always right to care for the least of those around you, in the early church, that was orphans and widows. Today I would say those categories still apply, but also expand them to include, single mothers (technically single fathers too), the disabled, and (blanket statement) the poorest in society. This passage seems to be two sides of the same coin. Worthless religion is a uncontrolled tongue and a heart that deceives itself. While pure religion is controlling your actions caring for those around you, and keeping yourself pure, not deceiving yourself or thinking that you can handle the taint of the world around you on your own.
If anyone thinks he is religious
q and does not bridle his tongue
but deceives his heart,
this person’s r religion is worthless.
Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the Father, is this:
s to visit t orphans and widows in their affliction,
and u to keep oneself v unstained from the world.