Revival Sermons

Theology => The Sabbath => Topic started by: Richard OFfill on September 18, 2008, 06:30:53 AM

Title: They Call It Legalism
Post by: Richard OFfill on September 18, 2008, 06:30:53 AM
Have you noticed that often when we talk about keeping the Sabbath someone will say it is legalism. I have noticed that it is more and more frequent when we talk about holy living that someone will use the words legalistic, Pharisee or judgemental.

Some of our people are genuinely confused. Is it possible to be legalistic, a Pharisee or judgemental? When is a person one and when is it a false allegation?
Title: Re: They Call It Legalism
Post by: Jim on September 18, 2008, 07:56:53 AM
I believe this is determined by motives. Why is a person obeying?  If a person is trying to obey out of fear of punishment or hope of reward they are only serving themselves and thus are being legalistic by attempting to obey the law under their own power.
Title: Re: They Call It Legalism
Post by: newbie on September 18, 2008, 09:49:22 AM
This accusations will never die.... 

We do them because we trust God knows what is best for us.  We trust that all the inspiration He has given us is for our own good.  Why do we trust Him?   Because He loves us.  You can trust if you know you are loved and then love in return and to do His will. 
Title: Re: They Call It Legalism
Post by: colporteur on September 18, 2008, 11:25:25 AM
Since it is about motives it is "judgemental" to refer to a person or a person's actions as legalism. I was manning a literature booth at campmeeting. A man stopped by and visited. He said he sells all out books. I was impressed by his words that he sells alot of books not our own and is kind of a maverick. He wanted to know the prices of some of the books. I explained that prices were not available on the Sabbath. He was quite put out and said, "that's legalism!"  I wished I could have the moment back as I would have asked, "would you buy them on the Sabbath as well?"
Title: Re: They Call It Legalism
Post by: Larry Lyons on September 18, 2008, 03:47:55 PM
Have you noticed that often when we talk about keeping the Sabbath someone will say it is legalism. I have noticed that it is more and more frequent when we talk about holy living that someone will use the words legalistic, Pharisee or judgemental.

Some of our people are genuinely confused. Is it possible to be legalistic, a Pharisee or judgemental? When is a person one and when is it a false allegation?
We have had a couple of members in the past who, as they say, walk on the "progressive" side of the Adventist street. I recall that one would defend his views by saying that he "stayed within the bounds of the Adventist fundamental beliefs." That sounds like legalism to me.
On the other side of the street there are those who, like the original Pharisees, spend more energy on looking good than they do on doing good or being good. 
Title: Re: They Call It Legalism
Post by: Raven on September 18, 2008, 05:04:05 PM
I avoid stealing when I enter a retail establishment.  I do my best to be honest.  I have never cheated on my wife.  Is this legalism?  Why is it legalism to try and keep the Sabbath, but not to honor your father or mother?  There is no logic in these arguments against Sabbath keeping.
Title: Re: They Call It Legalism
Post by: colporteur on September 18, 2008, 07:19:45 PM
I avoid stealing when I enter a retail establishment.  I do my best to be honest.  I have never cheated on my wife.  Is this legalism?  Why is it legalism to try and keep the Sabbath, but not to honor your father or mother?  There is no logic in these arguments against Sabbath keeping.

Yes, if a thief were to pull a gun on a homeowner and then pull the hammer back would the homeowner cry " if you don't shoot its legalism!"

If a hood knocked on the door of someone who is fond of using "legalism" to excuse Sabbath breaking, and said I want to have sex with your wife would the husband say, "by all means" we're not  legalists ?
Title: Re: They Call It Legalism
Post by: The time now on October 23, 2008, 03:25:28 PM
Keeping the commands of God is not legalism in my "Good Book"

I see the changing priorities every where I go these day's. The Church is drifting into dangerous ground when you hear people say that keeping the Sabbath is legalism in
our own church. Faith based on loyalty is now replaced by a simple
Title: Re: They Call It Legalism
Post by: Share on November 01, 2008, 07:09:17 PM
Keeping the commands of God is not legalism in my "Good Book"

I see the changing priorities every where I go these day's. The Church is drifting into dangerous ground when you hear people say that keeping the Sabbath is legalism in
our own church. Faith based on loyalty is now replaced by a simple
Title: Re: They Call It Legalism
Post by: wondering on November 02, 2008, 06:09:32 AM
This also stems from a wrong view of the 10 Commandments. They are really promises to those who live in Christ...promises that we can overcome sin in our lives through the power of God.

Paraphrase it this way...

When you live in Christ you will not (and not want to) steal, etc.

We are told that the Law will be written on our hearts and minds, so we won't even want to do those things. He is promising that he will change both our desires and behaviors.
Title: Re: They Call It Legalism
Post by: teresa on November 15, 2008, 01:45:35 PM
Have you noticed that often when we talk about keeping the Sabbath someone will say it is legalism. I have noticed that it is more and more frequent when we talk about holy living that someone will use the words legalistic, Pharisee or judgemental.

Some of our people are genuinely confused. Is it possible to be legalistic, a Pharisee or judgemental? When is a person one and when is it a false allegation? 

there was one lady who was quite tricky in taking me down "bible" roads.   she was very nice, and kind and all that mumbo-jumbo but the end result was that she was trying to trick me into "seeing" that keeping the sabbath was legalistic.

i would answer the best i could but i didnt feel my answers were very good.  its hard realizing your in agreement with someone until they get to the punchline and find youve been sucker-punched.

this one particular time she started in on her nicey-nice trip down manipulation lane.  realizing that i was being tricked yet again, i prayed and asked God to answer her.  He did.  she didnt do that again for a long, long time.
Title: Re: They Call It Legalism
Post by: Deborah Risinger on November 15, 2008, 05:40:35 PM
Theresa...there is only one person you need to be concerned with concerning "legalism"...yourself.  Only two people have access to your heart...God and you.

I have often ask The Lord if I was offending Him...am I a legalist???  Am I honest with God and trying to "become" and "live" as He would have me???  Or, am I deluding myself.

Christians will continue to wrestle with these issues...it is part of the "sanctification process." 

As time goes on...being called a legalist will be mild compared with what is coming....

Hold on tight...

God Keep Us All
Deborah
Title: Re: They Call It Legalism
Post by: newbie on November 15, 2008, 08:14:27 PM
Quote
nicey-nice trip down manipulation lane

teresa,
I like the way you put this...  we all have to be careful of such devices.  Thanks for sharing.
newbie
Title: Re: They Call It Legalism
Post by: mindbender46 on January 14, 2009, 01:00:58 PM
Have you noticed that often when we talk about keeping the Sabbath someone will say it is legalism. I have noticed that it is more and more frequent when we talk about holy living that someone will use the words legalistic, Pharisee or judgemental.

Some of our people are genuinely confused. Is it possible to be legalistic, a Pharisee or judgemental? When is a person one and when is it a false allegation?
[/quote]


I find it odd that people who would never think of committing murder or robbery see no harm in violating the sabbath. The sabbath seems to have no moral significance to so many people.  And yet it is the ONLY one of the ten that has the word, "REMEMBER" included in its message to us.

I doubt any would think it legalistic to say, "Don't steal". "Or don't kill". But remind them the sabbath is holy and they go ballistic.

I have a theory.  People like to do it...."My way". They willingly go to church, pay tithes, offerings, help with the church program, but after church or on days they don't attend, they want to do what pleases them. And they don't want you telling them that's wrong.

Here is what God's word has to say about it.

Isa.58:13
If thou turn away thy foot from the sabbath, from doing thy pleasure on my holy day; and call the sabbath a delight, the holy of the LORD, honourable; and shalt honour him, not doing thine own ways, nor finding thine own pleasure, nor speaking thine own words: Then shalt thou delight thyself in the LORD; and I will cause thee to ride upon the high places of the earth, and feed thee with the heritage of Jacob thy father: for the mouth of the LORD hath spoken it.

See the word "pleasure" in that statement?

I think it is about pride. Me, I, my way.

I firmly believe it is never legalistic to obey the sabbath any more than it is to obey the other nine commandments.
Title: Re: They Call It Legalism
Post by: Larry Lyons on January 14, 2009, 06:56:31 PM
Have you noticed that often when we talk about keeping the Sabbath someone will say it is legalism. I have noticed that it is more and more frequent when we talk about holy living that someone will use the words legalistic, Pharisee or judgemental.

Some of our people are genuinely confused. Is it possible to be legalistic, a Pharisee or judgemental? When is a person one and when is it a false allegation?



I find it odd that people who would never think of committing murder or robbery see no harm in violating the sabbath. The sabbath seems to have no moral significance to so many people.  And yet it is the ONLY one of the ten that has the word, "REMEMBER" included in its message to us.

I doubt any would think it legalistic to say, "Don't steal". "Or don't kill". But remind them the sabbath is holy and they go ballistic.

I have a theory.  People like to do it...."My way". They willingly go to church, pay tithes, offerings, help with the church program, but after church or on days they don't attend, they want to do what pleases them. And they don't want you telling them that's wrong.

Here is what God's word has to say about it.

Isa.58:13
If thou turn away thy foot from the sabbath, from doing thy pleasure on my holy day; and call the sabbath a delight, the holy of the LORD, honourable; and shalt honour him, not doing thine own ways, nor finding thine own pleasure, nor speaking thine own words: Then shalt thou delight thyself in the LORD; and I will cause thee to ride upon the high places of the earth, and feed thee with the heritage of Jacob thy father: for the mouth of the LORD hath spoken it.

See the word "pleasure" in that statement?

I think it is about pride. Me, I, my way.

I firmly believe it is never legalistic to obey the sabbath any more than it is to obey the other nine commandments.
Greetings Mindbender, and welcome to the forum!
I totally agree with what you say. I think many of us do not have a high enough concept of what it means to keep the Sabbath. I have noticed that conversation before and after church services and at potluck, for example, often does not indicate that we are "remembering"  the Sabbath to keep it holy, but instead we are talking about the same things that concern us during the rest of the week.
Title: Re: They Call It Legalism
Post by: Arnie on January 18, 2009, 02:24:45 PM
Greetings Mindbender, and welcome to the forum!
I totally agree with what you say. I think many of us do not have a high enough concept of what it means to keep the Sabbath. I have noticed that conversation before and after church services and at potluck, for example, often does not indicate that we are "remembering"  the Sabbath to keep it holy, but instead we are talking about the same things that concern us during the rest of the week.

I totally agree Larry. I attend the only conservative church here in the mountains where I live. This church is at a ski resort so we get many visitors and many conference workers and "important" people because of the location of the church. The conversations right before the church service, after the church service in the sanctuary and during potluck are about skiing, working, construction work, cars, sporting activities, etc. etc. This type of conversation even comes from conference workers and pastors besides the regular members. It makes me wonder how many have read Vol. 5 Testimonies on "Behavior In The House Of God." Often I hear... "As long as the person means well, or has good intentions, that is all that matters." One person went on to say that there is a story about a man who worked on the Sabbath doing plumbing. A job in which he performed during the other 6 days of the week.  As long as his heart or intent was good, God would accept his working on the Sabbath because he was trying to witness to those while working. So to them, if I was to work at a gas station, factory or grocery store on the Sabbath, I am ok then if my intentions are good.....I am hearing quite a bit of this type of talk lately. As long as your own intentions are good, God will accept those good intentions. It amazes me how intentions now play the deciding factor in many peoples lives instead of obedience to God and what God asks us to do. There is a difference in "my best intentions in what I think" compared to "doing my best in what God thinks" and has asked me specifically to do. My best intentions might go against what God wants, and what pleases Him. It should be, what can I do to the best of my God given ability in honoring and glorifying Him in what He has asked me to do according to Scriptures.
Title: Re: They Call It Legalism
Post by: Larry Lyons on January 18, 2009, 06:03:25 PM
I totally agree Larry. I attend the only conservative church here in the mountains where I live. This church is at a ski resort so we get many visitors and many conference workers and "important" people because of the location of the church. The conversations right before the church service, after the church service in the sanctuary and during potluck are about skiing, working, construction work, cars, sporting activities, etc. etc. This type of conversation even comes from conference workers and pastors besides the regular members. It makes me wonder how many have read Vol. 5 Testimonies on "Behavior In The House Of God." Often I hear... "As long as the person means well, or has good intentions, that is all that matters." One person went on to say that there is a story about a man who worked on the Sabbath doing plumbing. A job in which he performed during the other 6 days of the week.  As long as his heart or intent was good, God would accept his working on the Sabbath because he was trying to witness to those while working. So to them, if I was to work at a gas station, factory or grocery store on the Sabbath, I am ok then if my intentions are good.....I am hearing quite a bit of this type of talk lately. As long as your own intentions are good, God will accept those good intentions. It amazes me how intentions now play the deciding factor in many peoples lives instead of obedience to God and what God asks us to do. There is a difference in "my best intentions in what I think" compared to "doing my best in what God thinks" and has asked me specifically to do. My best intentions might go against what God wants, and what pleases Him. It should be, what can I do to the best of my God given ability in honoring and glorifying Him in what He has asked me to do according to Scriptures.
Amen Arnie!
"There is a way tht seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death." (Proverbs 14:12)

I think your post may be an indication of how easy it will be for some to rationalize breaking the Sabbath when keeping the Sabbath will involve severe legal penalties.
Title: Re: They Call It Legalism
Post by: Dalfie on January 18, 2009, 08:36:28 PM
Arnie, your description (apt, by the way) made me think of an old saying that shows the very fallacy of the idea that God accepts anything, as long as the intentions are good. Interesting that even the secular world sees the problem!

"The road to hell is paved with good intentions."
Title: Re: They Call It Legalism
Post by: colporteur on February 04, 2009, 09:06:43 AM
Arnie, your description (apt, by the way) made me think of an old saying that shows the very fallacy of the idea that God accepts anything, as long as the intentions are good. Interesting that even the secular world sees the problem!

"The road to hell is paved with good intentions."


I was wondering if one or more of our forum search hounds could help me find a SOP quote. I thought I had it saved but cannot find it and do not recall where iin the the SOP we are told that those doctors and nurses that must necessarily work on Sabbath give the money earned during Sabbath hours to the church.

I appreciate any help.
Title: Re: They Call It Legalism
Post by: Ruth on February 04, 2009, 12:16:07 PM
I was wondering if one or more of our forum search hounds could help me find a SOP quote. I thought I had it saved but cannot find it and do not recall where iin the the SOP we are told that those doctors and nurses that must necessarily work on Sabbath give the money earned during Sabbath hours to the church.

I appreciate any help.

Is this what you're looking for, Cp.?

Quote
Physicians need to cultivate a spirit of self-denial and self-sacrifice. It may be necessary to devote even the hours of the holy Sabbath to the relief of suffering humanity. But the fee for such labor should be put into the treasury of the Lord, to be used for the worthy poor, who need medical skill but cannot afford to pay for it.--Health, Philanthropic, and Medical Missionary Work, page 42.  {MM 216.2}

I found this in Section Eleven of Medical Ministry on the EGW CD... the section is entitled, The Sanitarium Family.
Title: Re: They Call It Legalism
Post by: Greg Goodchild on September 08, 2009, 10:23:14 PM
Legalism is best described as Adam and Eve making clothing for themselves out of fig leaves. They did not go to Jesus for help and they decided that by their own works they could stand before a holy God clothed in fig leaves. When they surrendered their filthy self made garments to Jesus and allowed Him to clothe them with garments that He had made for them then they were righteous and holy.

Sabbath is the same. Man made efforts to please God produce legalism and death. But when we cooperate with God and obey His Word then we experience righteousness and holiness. To be holy one must surrender to Jesus and obey Him in all ways including Sabbath.
Title: Re: They Call It Legalism
Post by: V. Hahn on September 12, 2009, 11:07:23 AM
Beautiful, Greg!
Title: Re: They Call It Legalism
Post by: Greg Goodchild on September 12, 2009, 11:12:15 PM
Zechariah 3:1-8
Title: Re: They Call It Legalism
Post by: Alpendave on August 10, 2011, 03:13:57 PM
Here is my definition of legalism: Using the letter of the law to justify one's violation of its spirit.

This can be done in two ways essentially. Both of them utilizing tactics a lawyer might use to get someone off the hook whom he knows to be guilty.

1) Disprove the charge -- basically the traditional understanding of what a legalist is. It is the claim that one has kept and is keeping the law in a technical sense, like the rich young ruler and the Pharisees. It involves literal compliance to the wording of the commandments and may even embellish them so as to stay within the technical bounds of the law's requirements.

2) Disprove the obligation -- legalistic move typically employed by antinomians. These people often claim that those who keep the commandments are legalists. However, they are just as legalistic as those in the first group because they are employing a technical legal argument to free themselves from the obligation to keep the law -- that the cross has rendered obedience obsolete.

Either way, these two groups totally miss the point that the law is a transcript of God's character of infinite love. They use their legal arguments to make up for the fact that they are at variance with the love that is the principle behind the law. The results are the same either way.

It's interesting to note that God Himself testified that in keeping the Sabbath, Israel (and us) was to be reminded that it is God Who sanctifies us and makes us holy. In other words, rather than being a legalistic relic of the Old Covenant, the Sabbath, properly understood and observed, is a safeguard against legalism.
Title: Re: They Call It Legalism
Post by: newbie on August 10, 2011, 09:06:15 PM
It's interesting to note that God Himself testified that in keeping the Sabbath, Israel (and us) was to be reminded that it is God Who sanctifies us and makes us holy. In other words, rather than being a legalistic relic of the Old Covenant, the Sabbath, properly understood and observed, is a safeguard against legalism.
I love that!! :-D
Title: Re: They Call It Legalism
Post by: Richard OFfill on February 09, 2012, 12:40:26 PM
Someone asked a friend of mine what it means to 'keep' the Sabbath. He told  me that he replied something like, 'well we don't do this and we don't do that' later he told me that is know way to keep the Sabbath! It has to be more than what we don't do. It seems that what to 'do' on Sabbath presents itself on Sabbath afternoon.
Title: Re: They Call It Legalism
Post by: ColporteurK on May 02, 2014, 07:22:34 PM
 A brother called me tonight and wants to attend our church this Sabbath. It will be a 115 mile drive for him. His former church ( I call it the "Pastor Pounder") has gone through about 6 pastors in about 10 years and is once more without a pastor. One pastor is now a Sunday keeper. This brother's  current church will not be holding a service this Sabbath. They will be meeting at another church (non SDA) and then the ecumenical group will be doing a community service washing cars. Therefore he would like to visit our church. This brother is none to conservative but even he can see that washing cars is not worshipping God.
Title: Re: They Call It Legalism
Post by: Ed Sutton on May 23, 2014, 07:52:18 PM
I am glad he chooses to try to keep Sabbath Biblically.   Please help him, even if he is a bruised reed, or a smoking flax.
Title: Re: They Call It Legalism
Post by: sdazeal on June 13, 2014, 10:17:52 PM
Who's been smoking flax?
Title: Re: They Call It Legalism
Post by: Ed Sutton on June 14, 2014, 01:15:14 AM
One of CP's church brothers with a long commute to church.