Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Legalism


Legalism is oftentimes an insulting label given to someone who seeks to raise the standard and is given by a person who would rather lower the standard. What always did not make sense to me, is that those who hide behind "your legalist" or "that's legalism" are quite unlearned in the Bible. The Bible itself, is a LEGAL document! LOL. God likes legalism evidently because he chose to use the courtroom setting, with him being the judge.......Jesus as our advocate and we are the accused. So I don't really mind when others say my beliefs are legalist, I say thank you! I choose to set high standards as God has laid out in his word. I choose to be separate from the world and all its idealism's and thinking. I'm not career-minded, I'm God-minded! There has to be a standard and lines drawn. If God said these things ought not be so, then they OUGHT NOT BE SO!

I like what one man said "Raise the Bar!" Keep reaching higher, not lower.....quit trying to cut corners and do it God's way! Someone should be able to spot you out of a crowd of people because you are different, you are separate from the world. There is a line.......its high time to stop the "blurring of the lines." (Oh and by the way I have a devotional I'm working on with that title)

Here is some more on this topic by David Cloud:

"All too often, any kind of preaching about clothing has become an oddity, and embarrassment, or a type of 'legalism'. The resistance of the rock & roll culture to such preaching is so pervasive that many pastors have decided to ignore the matter of dress, thus the battle is lost simply because the ground is abandoned.

Yet if ever there were a time when preachers need to warn their people about clothing issues, it is today. Modern society is drenched with indecency. A Vogue fashion show would make ancient Corinth blush. Standards of morality are not to be left to the pew. Surely it is the obligation of the preacher to set forth these things. Has God not spoken on this issue? We know that holiness is a matter of the heart, but is it not a matter of the body, as well? What man has ever lusted after a woman's heart? How, then, can we ignore these parts of Scripture and refuse to preach them boldly and uncompromisingly? That is what the New Evangelical does. There are some things he will not preach, and separation is one of them. But the Bible speaks as much about moral separation as it does ecclesiastical separation. The faithful Bible believing preacher cannot ignore either.

Those who are crying 'legalism' today are hypocrites in this matter. They decry the old-time preacher for the lines he draws, but they, too, draw lines for clothing. Will they allow a woman to teach Sunday School class in a bikini? No, and there are other types of attire they do not allow. They draw lines; they have some sort of standards. And if it is right to draw a line in clothing, it is wise to draw the line after the Bible's principles rather than the world's.
Let's make a clear difference between ourselves and the world. Let's not be afraid of being a 'peculiar people, zealous of good works'. Let's stand in the old paths. Those who are giving up high, plain standards of holiness in dress and moving closer and closer to the fashions of the world should remember that the world is moving farther and farther from God's word."

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11 comments:

Paula said...

I enjoyed this post, especially the part about the clothing--clothing today, especially for girls, is not modest, and boys clothing is leaning that way. I agree with what Mr. Cloud stated that the world is moving farther and farther away from God's word. I would love to hear a sermon in church about dress, but I'm pretty sure it will not happen. Really good post!!

Blessings,
Paula

Anna S said...

I've been thinking about it, and I came to the conclusion that the main difference between setting higher standards and what people usually refer to as 'legalism' is that legalism isn't originated in love of God and His commandments (and people who might think differently!), but rather doing something in a spirit of self-righteousness, arrogance, and a holier-than-thou attitude. The borderline is thin, and the balance is difficult. Thank you for sharing your thoughts!

Christian Homekeeper said...

Paula,

Thanks for your comment!

Anna S,

Most of the time those that refer to others in such a way as being holier than thou are convicted themselves because they don't want to do all that God says in his word.

Julie Fink said...

Great post and very true. The only time I hear the word "legalist" thrown around nowadays is from believers who are unwilling to obey God and be the peculiar people that He has called us to be. It's a shame though, because there is absolutely nothing legalistic about a Christian obeying the Word of God!

Christian Homekeeper said...

Thanks so much for your comment Julie!

Tracy said...

I totally agree with this post. I've been called a legalist because of my moral standards, my dress standards, etc. It's nice to look at it differently in the sense that I should be GLAD to appear different.

Christian Homekeeper said...

Thanks for your comment Tracy!

Shalene said...

I do agree with your post, but I am of the opinion that the clothing issue is taken too far in some Christian circles. It's almost as though it is like the (I'm sorry, I can't think of the term- but it's the things that the Pharisees wore on their arms.) Making some think that the ritual of dressing and what we wear will keep us from or draw us nearer to God. I do agree that when a woman dresses immodestly, that it can cause a man to stumble, and therefore, she should not do it. That includes low-cut shirts, tight pants, short skirts, etc. However, I do not think it necessary for a woman to keep her arms covered from the elbows up or to cover her hair, or to wear only ankle length skirts. These are obviously just my opinions. Thank you for you post. Blessings to you, sister.

Christian Homekeeper said...

I'm in disagreement with you however on some things. But I'm not here to debate, simply state my views on my blog.

However, thanks for your comment Shalene.

Daughter of the King said...

Great post....so many people see *legalism* as confining or rules..for most it is obedience and freedom...including the clothing genre.
Deby

Christian Homekeeper said...

Thanks Deby and what you said was so true! It is freedom!

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