I am currently a Christian who considers his relationship with God to be based on that Jesus paid for our sins at the cross, and faith or trust in Him for eternal life causes one to receive eternal life. Going to church or practicing a religion does not slowly earn one salvation or "help" one to keep salvation. Years ago I did not know that. I thought that going to church every weekend would earn me more points so that hopefully I could outweigh my sins and go to heaven. At that time the Holy Spirit directly spoke to me, telling me to have faith Christ for salvation, and that I would be assured of salvation and have a real direct relationship with God without going through any church to get to God. However at that time, and here is the shocker, I told God, "well I seek you in church, I have my own religion." So I literally told GOD, "No thank you, I've got my own religion". Amazing that I would even THINK of doing something like that, but I did. Over the next several years I kept feeling despair about how to get into heaven, I had an increasing awareness of how abysmally tiny my good works or attempts at them would weigh at God's judgement. Then a little later someone showed me some bible verses on how the shed blood of Christ paid for our sins, and other verses saying that we are saved by faith in Him INSTEAD of good works. Then I had faith in Christ and physically felt the Holy Spirit enter me after that. Now I view church, bible study, prayer, good works, as things that can aid in spiritual growth, but have 0% factor in whether or not you go to heaven over hell.