An Opposite use of legalism?

Discussion in '2006 Archive' started by Chris L., Aug 14, 2006.

  1. Chris L.

    Chris L.
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    Many IFB'ers are accused of being legalistic, and the criticism is not entirely without merit, however I've noticed there is also a type of legalism that is used by the same ones who despise the IFB's.

    With a proper understanding of scripture, it becomes apparent that the Bible covers many aspects of our lives, without being necessarily specific about every little thing. It would take a library to contain the Bible if it did.

    Many Christians (???) become furious when anybody might preach on certain things or dare to question their "liberty" and they say things like:

    "The Bible doesn't say I can't listen to rock music, or smoke marijuana, or wear shoes to church, or wear speedos, get my tongue pierced or... etc.

    It should be obvious that if one is seeking to serve, follow and to please God and has the Holy Spirit dwelling in them that one ought to know better.

    This is certainly taking advantage of God's grace, but couldn't this also be a form of legalism in the opposite extreme?
     
  2. rbell

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    Extremes I see...

    Legalism: Rules determine righteousness.

    Libertine: My behavior has no bearing on my righteousness.

    The danger point for some IFB's is their lack of recognition that some areas just aren't as cut and dried as they'd like them to be. Then, it becomes (on both parties) important to approach disagreements in the right spirit.

    On the other side, any person should be willing to look at their behavior/habit/action and evaluate it by the light of God's word and the Holy Spirit's leading. No one should be afraid to do that.

    Unfortunately, we have Legalists among us, and Libertines as well.
     
  3. Andy T.

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    Yes, the type of legalists you're talking about, Chris, are those who are always demanding a specific verse. They only want to obey the letter of the law, not the spirit. They are so immature that they need a list of written out rules for what they can and cannot do. If there is no written rule againist it, then they feel free to do it without any thought otherwise. They can be just as 'Pharisaical' as the ones they themselves call 'Pharisaical'.
     
  4. tinytim

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    I feel there are extremes at both end of the spectrum.

    But a pharisee was one who had extra biblical rules....
    I have a problem with someone that does not stick to what the BIBLE says... If it is not in the BIBLE, I am not required to believe it, or do it.

    Yes, I require things, that are taught to me, to be from scripture...that does not make me a legalist, but a biblicist, or even a true fundamentalist.

    There is nothing in the Bible concerning many things that are taught in legalist churches today....

    Preaching opinions about women, clothes, hair lengths, versions you use, music, is all worthless... They are OPINIONS not based in Scripture...They are ascriptural.

    There are too many things to preach, that our people need to hear, that are in the Bible... But these are foolish questions that Paul instructs us to avoid.

    All teaching should be held to "what saith the scripture"
    That is not legalism... that is being a Christian.

    If it is not in the Word... Don't preach it!
     
  5. Andy T.

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    Pharisees were also those who left certain things "undone" as Jesus told them in Matt. 23:23. The legalists I'm thinking of are the ones so obsessed with their own personal freedom that they ignore the weightier matters of faith like love and mercy.

    I don't deny that there are the typical legalists of the fundy stripe. But they are in the minority today. Yes, their legalism is a problem, but it is isolated. The far bigger problem in the Church today is antinomianism.
     
  6. NaasPreacher (C4K)

    NaasPreacher (C4K)
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    Did I understand this post? Are you saying its legalistic to ask for Biblical reasons for standards and practices?
     
  7. ktn4eg

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    Lest both extremes forget....

    "When thou pointest thy finger of accusation against thy brother, thou shouldst also count the number of fingers of accucation on thy hand that pointest back to thee."

    Assignment for both extremes:

    Read, heed, and fully comply with the teachings of Romans chapter 14. (There will be a test!)
     
  8. Chris L.

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    No, I'm trying to say that the same people that would accuse somebody of being a legalist for sticking too closely to the Bible, will stick closely to the Bible themselves when trying to rationalize or justify their sin.

    Legalists will use a Bible verse to push a certain issue, the liberal legalists will use the lack of a verse as a reason to not obey a certain issue. I'm not talking about babes in Christ here but Christians who should know better, or people who may not be Christians at all.
     
    #8 Chris L., Aug 16, 2006
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 16, 2006
  9. tinytim

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    So in other words, people at both ends of the extremes like to twist scripture to justify what they beleive.

    With that I can agree with you.
     
  10. Chris L.

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    What I understand legalism to be is not preaching that women ought to wear dresses, or a man keeping his hair short but setting a certain type of standard for those things, like: "The dress can only be these certain colors, or must come down to this many inches below the knee, or the hair has be this style and so many inches above the collar, etc. These are the types of things that the pharisees would've done, and from what I've heard and read about the pharisees, they were way more hard line then even the most strict IFB Pastor.

    I think "legalist" is an overused term and an unfair one. It's not being legalist to preach about something if the Bible covers it, and the Bible covers many things, some directly and indirectly. What God thinks women ought to do on certain matters or how they should look, and what men are to do or how long their hair should be are a few of them.

    The problem I have with many IFB's is with the frequency and obsession that these things are preached on.
     
    #10 Chris L., Aug 16, 2006
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 16, 2006
  11. I Am Blessed 24

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    Some people look in the Bible to see what they can get away with.

    Other people look in the Bible to see how they can draw closer to God.

    All things are lawful for me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but all things edify not.
    1Cr 10:23
     
  12. tinytim

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    And still others never bother to open it, but takes what their preacher says as the gospel. We need to be bereans.
     
  13. Gayla

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    "We need to be Bereans."

    Amen!
     
  14. Brice

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    And some people look in the Bible to find reasons to come down on others.
     
  15. NaasPreacher (C4K)

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    And some people look into the Bible to compare what man says to what God says.
     
    #15 NaasPreacher (C4K), Aug 16, 2006
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 16, 2006
  16. NaasPreacher (C4K)

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    I must say, not a lot surprises me in this type of discussion forum, but to imply it is ever wrong to ask for Bible evidence for "rules", standards, and policies is almost a shock to me.

    We must, at the very least, have a Bible principle to back up our stands or they are nothing better than opinions.

    Why should I obey and principle, rule, or policy that is extra-biblical.

    The vast majority of my friends in this country did that most of their lives in obedience to a certain "church" and are just now beginning to question.

    I praise God when people question me on these things. If I can't defend what I preach with the word of God I have no right preaching it.
     
  17. Ulsterman

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    Brother, The Bible does have things to say on these subjects, yes opinions may differ, but that is true on many other areas of doctrine. It is wrong to say these are "ascriptural".
     
  18. tinytim

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    The opinions are ascriptural.
    To say that a woman must wear a dress to be holy is ascriptural... you cannot find it in the Bible.

    What length of hair on a man is holy?
    To preach that a man must have a crew cut is ascriptural... it is not there.

    Yes the Bible touches these issues, but when we move from preaching what the Bible says into preaching what we want it to say just because our grandpappy said so, or some great preacher of ol' says so, it is wrong.

    The Bible was written to be relevant in all cultures, not just Southern USA.
     
  19. Marcia

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    I agree!

    I
     
  20. Marcia

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    I agree!

    (I tried to post the above and a message popped up telling me that this was too short and I had to add 10 characters. What's up with that?)
     

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