When Legalism Becomes an Idol

You would think in a world that is so dark and troubled that Christianity would have “evolved” past the point of legalism so that we could unite over the Gospel and reach the lost. People are seeking something to fill the thirst and hunger for their souls. That answer is the Holy Ghost (Spirit, whichever you prefer).

I had considered breaking this up into a series, but I want to be sure I complete this in its entirety. Thank you for taking time to read it! We appreciate all of our readers! Y’all are awesome.

First some background on me: Growing up in the church was amazing, I did it all – church camp, national conventions and the carwashes that go with it. I wouldn’t be where I am without those things. I am called to preach, but I feel that I have been conditioned to preach rules and standards. I have felt like mentioning God’s love and His grand plans should be left to the TV preachers, It was not the full gospel. I have felt like I needed rules and standards to teach me how to get God’s love and to keep it. The last few weeks or so I have began a new journey, not of rules and standards but to seek after God’s love. I want to understand the completeness of God’s love and not rules and standards. I long to be closer to God – not just simply be an Apostolic. I love the doctrine.

However, I’ve continuously heard God’s love taught right beside the standards. It’s created a fissure in me. I, for one, am tired of it. We can’t earn God’s love. There’s no “points system” with God. Dressing a certain way doesn’t make anyone better than the person that doesn’t dress that way. It’s NOT of God for us take hours getting ready for church – or anything for that matter. At that point who are we REALLY dressing up for? No, if we’re children of God we shouldn’t be walking around with cleavage hanging out and our clothes literally skin tight, but come on.. WE (the church) ARE BETTER THAN THIS. We should know this stuff by now. 

I applaud those who genuinely search out God and find the way they should properly dress. I think it’s awesome! I love when God reveals things like that to people! However, that’s where I feel it should be placed… in God. My church has always leaned more toward this point of view, and we’ve got women on stage and in Sunday school rooms that wear pants. We’ve got men who wear shorts on stage. I love my church’s stance. Why? Because it doesn’t worship the dress code. That doesn’t mean it’s perfect by any means.

There are many people who genuinely know why they dress a certain way beyond a scripture in Deuteronomy. They felt the conviction from God. It wasn’t a man or woman that came to them. I applaud and respect that. I know many women and men who are powerful through God who adhere to a strict dress code. I am not speaking against standards. I am speaking against legalism.

I also know many men and women who are powerful through God and don’t adhere to those standards. They dress modestly, but maybe the man wears shorts and the woman wears pants. Maybe they have tattoos all over them, but they’re winning souls.

‭‭Deuteronomy‬ ‭22:5‬ ‭NKJV‬‬ A woman shall not wear anything that pertains to a man, nor shall a man put on a woman’s garment, for all who do so are an abomination to the LORD your God.

Now, I’ve heard the whole spill about ceremonial law, religious law, and civil law. Truth is, that was made up by scholars. At the time this was given it was “The Law.” It was all one thing. But the problem with following this line of thought is when you bring up the next few verses about wearing mixed fabrics.

‭‭Deuteronomy‬ ‭22:11‬ ‭NKJV‬‬ You shall not wear a garment of different sorts, such as wool and linen mixed together.

I’m sorry to inform you, but if you’re going to use verse 5 for your argument please follow verse 11. It’s all one law. These were rules for Israel’s conduct toward themselves, each other, worship, and God.

It’s crucial to remember that the knowledge of sin came by the Law. Salvation never came by the Law.