GE, I did a thread like this sometime ago, to show that nearly everyone is legalistic to one extent or another, even those who attack legalism. I was just in a thread with someone who always attacks legalism, yet showed herself legalistic by trying to turn something the Bible doesn't say is sinful into a sin. We all are legalistic to one degree or another. Before I address the individual things you mentioned, I want to adress the picture of the person in handcuffs, and the comment that goes with it. I don't believe Jesus came to give us freedom to do things. Who needs freedom to do what they want and wear what they want? Sinners do that already. We need freedom from sin. It is the bondage of sin Jesus came to set us free from, not legalism. Jesus said that he didn't come to do away with the law, but to fulfil it.You May Have Legalism (And Not Even Know It) In Your Life…
1. If you believe God’s love for you depends on your efforts or what you do. I don't believe that.
2. If you believe God’s love for you depends on how much you have done for Him lately and the love you have shown him recently.I don't believe that.
3. If you fall short because in your mind you need to be a better person, you haven’t prayed enough, or you don’t have enough faith.I do believe that. We should all strive to do better. That is not the same as saying a person isn't saved because they aren't where they should be. It is just to say most of us can do better.
4. If you believe God is predisposed to be angry with you because you are a sinner and let’s face it He knows you can do better.I believe he becomes angry with us when we wilfully choose to sin, but not that he is predisposed to be angry simply because of human failures. None of us can live up to God's standard of holiness, but we do anger him when we simply choose to rebel.
5. If you know God’s law but don’t have a personal relationship with Him.Not the case.
6. If you focus more on your fellow Christians church attendance, tithing, version of the Bible, outward appearance rather than getting to know others and accepting them where they’re at in their walk with the Lord.Regarding Bible attendace, we are just told not to forsake the assembling of ourselves together, so I don't make judgements based on that. While I believe in tithing, I don't go around trying to figure out who pays tithes? I also recognize there are valid questions over the purpose of tithing, so I don't make judgments on that. My only concern with Bible translations is that those using new translations are going to be led astray by changes or ommissions to the text. I would avoid a church that uses new translations, but I don't assume someone is less saved because of their Bible translation. With regard to outward appearance, it all depends. Some new Christians don't know what the Bible says about our appearance, and I fully get that, but I do look at those who promote things like women in pants, women with short hair, men with long hair, tattoos, and the like, as doing the devil's work in not only setting a bad example, but in leading others into the ditch with them. A person that has been saved for any length of time should know better.
7. If you have grown accustomed to living by the expectations of others, especially those in positions of authority or those in your local church, as this is essential to your life.I used to, but no more. I lost confidence in church leaders when I saw them go from teaching strict holiness to the phony freedom in Christ message to get more members. I decided to stay in the Bible to get my answers, and away from what others are teaching. That is not to say I have no regard for what others think? If I believe a minister is a real man of God, and he is living right, I do value his opinion. I have a lot of respect for the minister at the church I am attending, and believe that he and his wife are living the Christian life. I don't believe everything the minister believes on every topic, but I respect him enough to seek his opinion. That would not be the case if I saw him living contrary to scripture, or his wife looking like thw world with short hair and pants. I don't necessarily believe everything they say is absolute truth, but I do respect them enough to examine something if they say it is sinful.
8. If your sense of worth is based on the opinions of a Christian leader, your reputation, your church membership, or a group’s opinion of you rather than a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. No
9. If you are more concerned with your reputation than with heart change in your life conforming to Christ.I am not.
10. If you tell your children not to do something at church or around other Christian families that you allow in your home or elsewhere.I found this point interesting for one reason. Romans teaches us that we may have the freedom to do something in our personal lives, but if that thing offends others, we are not to do it. Lets suppose that I was ok with drinking a beer after work (I don't by the way), but I knew that would offend others at church. For their sake, I would keep that quiet, and would tell my children not to tell others we allow any alcohol in our home. I can actually be doing something that is ok in the sight of God, but still be sinning in doing so if it makes my brother stumble.
11. If you believe that what people wear, skirt length, swimsuit type, tattoos, piercings, hairstyle, length of hair, etc. is a clear indication of a person’s spiritual maturity and character.It is a clear indication of their spiritual maturity. Character? That depends on how long they have been saved, and who they have been learning from? Someone may not know any better. You might have a new Christian man with long hair, that doesn't know it is a shame. You might have that same man getting a tattoo because he doesn't know the Bible says not to print marks on your skin. You may have a woman wearing pants who hasn't read Deuteronomy 22:5, or has sat under false teachers that said it doesn't mean they can't wear pants.
12. You look at people’s lives and instinctively judge them rather than see them through God’s eyes – a work in progress for those who Believe and potential children of God for those who do not.We can't see through God's eyes. We may strive to, and we may believe we do, but that is impossible. That is why it is impossible for us to give righteous judgment on anyone. We don't know their heart. It is like making a judgment on the outcome of a case where we didn't see all the evidence, and thinking we know more than the jury that saw everything. All judgment has been left to Jesus. That is why it is just as wrong to assume someone is righteous as making the assumption they are a sinner. We can't tell the wheat from the tares.
13. You believe you’re standards somehow make you superior to others.I don't believe that.
14. When you miss a service or program at your church, even with a legitimate reason, you feel guilty.Sometimes.
15. You’re so loyal to man-made tradition you don’t think any significant change could possibly be from God.I reject nearly everything I see in this culture as contrary to scripture, so I know my opinions aren't based on man-made tradition. I went back to scripture and read it over and over and over again to discern what things people were saying were true, and what were lies?
16. You believe you’re church/denomination is the only group really focused on teaching God’s Word.If such a group exists, I haven't found it. I wish I could find a church that had perfect truth.
17. You believe that those who have been divorced are less valuable in the eyes of God and you feel superior to them.I don't believe that.
18. You believe that how your kids turn out is solely your responsibility and the measurement of your success or lack there-of as a Christian parent.Once someone is an adult, they make their own choices. All any parent can do is their best to train up their kids in the way they should go. If they have been neglectful, of course they bear some responsibility, but someone can do everything right, to the best of their ability, and still have a rebellious child.
19. You believe that even associating much less discussing ideas with those different than you is sinful compromise. I don't believe that, but if I see someone who is openly in sin, and I am discussing the Bible with them, I don't give as much weight to what they are saying as someone who is living right. An example would be two differen't women at my church. One has long hair and always wears a dress and one has short hair and wears jeans. I would give far more weight to what the first woman said than the second. Another example might be a man who has long hair and smokes, and another who has short hair and doesn't use tobacco. I would give far more weight to the opinion of the second man than the first.
20. If you believe that the expression of spiritual gifts (provided by the Holy Spirit) is evidence of one’s personal walk with God.I don't believe that. Sorry for any confusion over the way I did the response. I tried to put the answers in bold, but apparently forgot to put one of the where it belongs, and everything from that point on was in bold print. You use to be able to go back and fix it, but you can't anymore, so I just put the response below the question.
Edited by GoldenEagle, 16 February 2013 - 03:48 PM.
<< to fix bold answers >>