What are rituals? And can a person be saved through rituals?
The Miriam-Webster online dictionary defines a ritual as “an act or series of acts regularly repeated in a set precise manner.” This would especially include any religious ceremony that happens the same way every time.
A person cannot be saved through rituals. If it were possible, that would mean that a person could save himself through his own actions. That would mean that Jesus did not have to die on the cross, because there would be another way to be saved.
“Christ is become of no effect unto you, whosoever of you are justified by law; ye are fallen from grace.” (Galatians 5:4)
“And if by grace, then is it no more of works; otherwise grace is no more grace. But if it be of works, then is it no more grace; otherwise work is no more work.” (Romans 11:6)
Although we are not saved by rituals, they have their place in our lives. Jesus told his followers to use the Lord’s Supper as a way to remember him. We are not saved by it, but we use the ritual as a memorial to Jesus. Humans are creatures of habit, so we feel more comfortable when something is done in a ritual way. There is nothing wrong with many rituals; they just can’t save us.