Legalistic Christianity

Here is my definition of legalism: using God’s law (or man made additions to God’s law) in ways they were never intended to be used. As John Calvin says, “Our Hearts Are Factories of Idols”. We have such a tendency to want to promote human means for salvation above the divine way of salvation! When you look at all the religions of the world, it becomes so apparent that there are in fact only two religions in the world! Do and Done! Every religion has its lists of ordinances (including Christianity) but only Christianity has a savior who was crucified on a tree for those who failed at perfecting themselves with these ordinances. As Paul says “and be found in Him not having a righteous of my own that comes from the law, but that which comes through faith in Christ…” And in case you doubt that, then listen to these words spoken before Mormonism, Islam, Roman Catholicism, Buddhism, or Hinduism ever came on the scene:

Abraham believed the Lord, and it was counted to Him as righteousness.
— Gen 15:6

Paul says in the NT:

1 O foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you? It was before your eyes that Jesus Christ was publicly portrayed as crucified. 2 Let me ask you only this: Did you receive the Spirit by works of the law or by hearing with faith? 3 Are you so foolish? Having begun by the Spirit, are you now being perfected by the flesh? 4 Did you suffer so many things in vain-if indeed it was in vain? 5 Does he who supplies the Spirit to you and works miracles among you do so by works of the law, or by hearing with faith- 6 just as Abraham “believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness”?
— Galatians 3:1-6

It is so natural for us to build up layer upon layer upon the worship of the one true God, let us beware of this in our own hearts and in our own churches!  As Isaiah tell us

These people come near to me with their mouth and honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me. Their worship of me is based on merely human rules they have been taught.
— Is. 29:13

The problem with human rules is that they cannot perfect you, it is grace given through the means of grace (Prayer, Word, Fellowship, Sacrament, Service, etc...) that will perfect you!

In Prayer Today:

Ask God to make you diligent in your use of the means of grace, so that you would indeed draw nearer to Him in the way that He has ordained!