Monday, November 25, 2013

My Name Is Reagan Ramm, And I Am A Legalist

I saw this great video a while back by British Freedom Party leader, Paul Weston. I thought it would be funny to copy his speech, but apply it instead to an issue other than racism, maybe something that ties into Christian circles.

Mr. Weston's speech:

My rendition: 

Hello, my name is Reagan Ramm, and I am a legalist. I know I’m a legalist, because I’m told I’m a legalist by a great deal of people. The hard Left think I’m a legalist, Conservatives think I’m a legalist, homeschoolers think I’m a legalist, publicschoolers think I’m a legalist. So I must therefore be…a legalist.

Why am I a legalist? It’s very simple, I wish to live the best life I possibly can, and I want others to live the best life they can live as well. I believe this is done by loving Christ, which means obeying His commandments (John 14). I want myself and others to live a vibrant life with a spirited faith in Christ, a faith that must also have works, for faith without works is dead (James 2)…and in believing so, this makes me a designated legalist in today’s Christian circles.

Now this is something has been moved by Post-modernism and Egalitarianism. The goalposts have been moved considerably by the Christians who have been influenced by these ideologies. In order to be a legalist in the past, you had to actively live and believe that merely following the works of the law led to salvation. One example of a group of people who were “legalists" were the Pharisees. Now, I don’t believe that works are what “save” us. What I do believe—what I see as truth—is that obeying the commandments of Christ are how we love God, and in turn, this leads to human flourishing, and I see this belief as under a massive attack. Our families can’t cope, our churches can’t cope, very little can cope. So if I want to defend Biblical principles and commandments…I am apparently, according to absolutely everybody today, a legalist.

You know we have a huge problem in Christianity which is not going to go away. It’s going to get worse and worse and worse. Many in the church believe that the details of our lives don’t matter and that sin is inconsequential. Or they think that God cares for little else besides our weekly church attendance and our verbal, mental, and/or emotional proclamations of our love for Him. However, The Trinity is not like the ancient gods of the Aztecs who required a blood quota to be appeased. Our God—the one true God—is not seeking appeasement from us, and yet, so many Christians live this way. We think if we just do X, Y, and Z, God won’t care about the rest of our lives. We can easily quote Ephesians 2:8-9, “For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.” but how many of us can quote the part that comes next? “For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.”

As a result of believing that the details of our lives don’t matter, we see so many Christians not behaving like Christ, and living lives that contradict what they say. So I’m going to denounce those practices and beliefs that go contrary to God and the Bible, since these false ideologies are harming and enslaving the saints. We need to denounce practices which harm, and beliefs which don’t coincide with reality. We need to call these things out for what they are, and we need to start mounting some sort of defense against these things. But the trouble with mounting a defense against such beliefs are you get hit with the legalist accusation.

“I’m not a legalist, but…” Well here’s the thing, I am a legalist. If I want to avoid the pitfalls and negative effects of Feminism, the dating-culture, Liberalism, Post-modernism, and so on, I am prepared to accept being called a legalist, and you should be prepared to accept being called a legalist as well. Let’s all just say, “Yes, we’re dreadful, dreadful legalists,” and let’s start denouncing the ideologies and practices which are separating the church from Christ. Let us reject and condemn these sinful, hurtful, and false ideologies that we’ve willfully imported into the church from non-believers and the Left who did it deliberately in order to undermine our culture, our people, and our country. They did it deliberately and then they said, “You’re not allowed to actually argue with us about this.” Well I am arguing with them about this, and I’m going to tell you this…it doesn’t matter that you hate me or ostracize me for being legalistic, I don’t believe in that. I believe in only one thing, and that is becoming like Christ.

I am a legalist.   


  1. Halleluyah! I am right with you. Yahweh called me out of these type of churches that basically disagree with scripture and twist and turn it however they like. Then again these same places celebrate pagan holidays and try to Christianize them. Yahweh gave me a wake up call! Thanks for the great post!

  2. I've been in your shoes. In my late teens and early 20s I was pretty legalistic about a lot of things, and generally proud of my high standards. But God knocked me down a peg. He forced me to realize that my legalism was not only hurting others, but putting Him in a box as well. You can love Jesus, want to live like Him and encourage that same discipleship in others without being a legalist though. I don't know you well enough to say if you're actually even a legalist or not - nor, much less, where God has you and is taking you - I'd only encourage you in this - as someone who has been there - Embrace Grace!

    Holy and righteous living doesn't (and in fact, Biblically, shouldn't) come with legalistic ties to issues of little "o" orthodoxy . . . and without love and grace for all (as we are called to give). You can disciple without bludgeoning. You can affirm sound doctrine without harping on differences in practice. Where God has given us freedom, let us live free and without blame.

    Christ hated sin so bad he died for it . . . but the sin didn't come only from the prostitutes and tax collectors - it came too from the religious. And the religious missed out on His grace because they were too busy "following the rules". The prostitutes knew they were living in sin and clung to grace . . . the religious knew they were "holier than thou" and didn't think they needed it.

    In truth - we ALL do - every last one of us. Perhaps, most especially, we the religious.

    1. Thank you for the gracious comment!

      I agree with you! Just as Paul Weston is not really a racist, I am not really a legalist. I was just demonstrating how if you DO try to seek Christ and believe certain practices are better than others (such as homeschooling over public schooling) many will call you a legalist. It's really pretty silly.

      Love is ultimately what matters, though. As our old brother Paul said in 1 Corinthians 13, "if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing."

      I believe love is willing the good of others. Parents don't let their children play in the street. Is this because parents don't want their kids to have any fun? Of course not, it's because they love their children, and they know that playing in the street is dangerous. Getting hit by a car is not very good for their health.

      Likewise, I think there are many practices which do more harm than good. That doesn't mean they're necessarily sinful, but to quote Paul again, "All things are lawful, but not all things are profitable. All things are lawful, but not all things edify." (1 Cor. 10:23).

      You are very right, all have sinned and we are all in need of God's grace. I also believe Jesus not only died to pay the price for our sins, but he died to actually FREE us from our sin as well. We don't have to keep living in sin. We can start living eternally today!

      But that's a lot to unpack in a comment, and goes beyond the purpose of my post, which was just to point out how the word "legalist" is used to classify people and beliefs as legalistic when they are not actually so. It's really become more like name-calling when people use the word "legalist". Just as the term "racist" is thrown around a lot today to classify people as racists when they really are not.

  3. Wow, I must be a legalist too.

    Great post, Reagan!

  4. Reagan,
    We are all in need of the grace of God! This is excellent, and I am blessed and thankful that you shared it here! I hope you keep on writing. What a gift to bring glory to the Lord :)