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Psalm 119:45, “And I will walk at liberty: for I seek thy
The Psalmist is saying I will
walk in liberty because I keep thy commandments. This is a strange statement to
me for it seems to me that the opposite would be true. It seems like one would
walk in liberty if one did not keep commandments. However, verse 45 is amazing
for God says that those who keep his precepts or his commandments will walk in
liberty. I will walk in liberty because I keep God’s commandments!
In our churches,
schools, and colleges we have some rules, regulations, and standards. We have
rules about dating, dress, haircuts on the males, makeup on the females,
hairstyles, clothing, smoking, dancing, bad music, Hollywood movies, speech, respect
for authority, proper conduct, etc.
Immediately the accusations begin
to come when such a stand is taken. The cry is always the same and the charge
is always the same. “Why, that is nothing but legalism with all those rules,
standards, and regulations for they are nothing but promoting legalism!”
The truth of the matter is when
you associate legalism with rules, regulations, and with standards people with
neo-evangelical hearts who masquerade make such statements in fundamental
Baptist clothing. Sometimes they are made by people who were real fundamental
Baptist at one time and yet have become weary of the battle and long to return
to the onions, watermelons, leaks, cucumbers, and garlic of acceptance. Also,
this cry of legalism often comes from the desks of colleges and seminaries
built on fundamental foundations with walls of compromise and a leaking roof of
pseudo liberty.
We have grown to desire that our
truth be accredited by worldly educated error. We want a license from wrong to
do right! My I extol and return all of us to that fundamental world we believed in and
practiced before we had teenagers, home-schoolers, liberal fundamental
colleges, Bill Gothard, Oral Roberts University, Benny Hinn, his girlfriend
Evangelist Paula White, amusement parks, and before Jerry Falwell slid down a
charismatic water slide!
May I push what Dr. Jack Hyles
used to call that little “reset button” to return us back to the old fashioned
fundamental Baptist convictions. I’m speaking of when we believed in separating
ourselves from the world and building walls to protect the next generation from
being sucker punched by Satan and his crowd.
Since when did it hurt to not
smoke? I would suggest that separation is not bad, but good for the next
generation. No one can sow so-called wild oats and then pray for a crop failure
with success! Each institution must decide themselves what is going to be good
or bad for those following them. I am talking of old-fashioned standards our
fathers use to have for us.
of our fathers living still
spite of dungeon fire and sword

This generation must not listen
to the prophets of compromise who are silently bridging fundamentalism to a
liberal Southern Baptist Convention in order to garner the crowds. No one is
legalistic who insists on standards. When someone adds anything to salvation
other than the shed and applied blood of Jesus Christ is by definition a
When you conveniently compromise
you are not only betraying Billy Sunday, Sam Jones, Bob Jones Sr., Mordecai
Ham, John Wesley, John R. Rice, Curtis Hutson, Lester Roloff, Lee Roberson, Tom
Malone, and Jack Hyles but you are betraying your own standards of just a few
years back.
If we cannot have our padded pews
with hell fire and brimstone preaching then let us go back to the sawdust trail
and the store front buildings while sitting on wooden benches.
If we cannot have organs with
trained choirs without the seven-fold Amens and the crusty anthems then let us
go back to the “pie-anar” and tuning fork.
If we cannot have a marriage of
proper grammar and the mourner’s bench with preaching on hell, heaven, the
rapture, the second coming, and separation then let us go back to split
infinitives, dangling participles, and hung gerunds.
If tiled restrooms and
chandeliers are not conducive to the old time religion then let us mark off a
path and build an outhouse. Let us screw a 60-watt light bulb in it and order a
Sears and Roebuck catalogue for the outhouse and get right with God.
If we have to include
Kierkegaard, Brunner, and Niebuhr in our required reading in order to be
intellectual theologically then let us go back to the Blue-black Speller, the
ABC’s, the alphabet, and the simple preaching of thus saith the Lord God! 
have listened too much to psychologists in the pulpit and not enough to leather
lunged Baptist preachers. We have listened too much to philosophers and not
enough to old-fashioned prophets of God. We have listened too much to so-called
Christian TV and radio and not enough to men of God.
Ladies and gentlemen common shoes
have historically shod the beautiful feet of those who preach the gospel of
peace. The hands that have wielded the sword of the Spirit have been old and
calloused ones. The eyes that have looked through the helmet of salvation have
been tear stained ones. The bodies that have been protected by the shield of
faith have been pure and separated ones.
It is sad to say but there are
those inside the walls of a local independent Baptist church that would have
their man of God forsake his standards simply because their daughter does not
like them. It is sad to say, but there are those outside the walls of the local
church who would have you forsake your standards or as they refer to it as
Standards do not make nor keep
you right with God, but they do keep you from wrecking your life with one stupid
stunt. No man of God is attempting to run anyone’s life, but he must do his best
to use his influence to warn. I hate to say this, but there are more people in
fundamentalism who want us to lower our standards than who want to raise the
standards. These are the ones who cry “legalism.”
Legalism has nothing to do with
living right, talking right, or walking right. Legalism is adding to faith
something else for required for salvation other than just faith in Jesus
Christ’s death, burial, and resurrection.
Dr. Bill Rice was a half-brother to Dr. John R. Rice. He was preaching a revival
camp meeting when a deacon jumped him about being so negative with his
preaching. One night Dr. Bill preached against dancing, then the next night
against movies, then the next night against smoking, then the next night
against teen petting and necking.
The deacon told Dr. Bill that he
would have to preach something positive or he would see to it that the meeting
was closed down. Dr. Bill agreed to do so. The next night Dr. Bill stood up
behind the pulpit and announced that a deacon had asked him to preach a
positive message. So he told them he was going to do that very thing. He said
tonight my sermon is “If you don’t get saved you are positively going to Hell!”
Legalism is salvation by faith
plus works! It is salvation plus baptism, plus church membership, plus keeping
the law, plus communion, plus confession.
The Seventh Day Adventist
doctrine, Church of Christ doctrine, Catholic doctrine, Armenian doctrine,
Armstrong World-Wide Church of God doctrine, the Mormon doctrine, and the
Jehovah (False) Witness doctrine are legalism.
Legalism is not a godly mother
who insists that her daughter dress modestly. Legalism is not parents enrolling
their children in Christian school that believes as they do about separation
from the world. Legalism is not a dedicated aged godly dad who takes his son to
the barbershop instead of a beauty shop every two weeks.
Legalism is not a faithful youth
director who insists his teenagers dress appropriately. Legalism is not a hard
working pastor who insists that his Sunday school teachers not smoke, not drink
alcohol, no tobacco use, no movies, they visit absentees, and go soul winning.
Legalism is not the careful godly
educator who forbids his students to dance or listen to bad music. Legalism is
not the man of God who cries aloud against mixed swimming, in essence mixed
nudity, against vampire lipstick promoting drugs, and young males with their
Billy Idol bleached porky pine spiked chili bowl hair do!
Right has not changed and wrong
has not changed just because you enter into a different century. Black is still
black and white is still white. Good is still good and bad is still bad.
Legalism is not the faithful man of God who cries aloud against sin.
Was Paul a legalist when he told
men not to have long hair in I Corinthians chapter 11? Was Paul a legalist when
he told the ladies not to have short hair in the same chapter? Sit still and
read the rest of the article before you become mad!
Was Moses a legalist when he
said, “Thou shalt not kill,” “Thou shalt not steal,” or when he said, “Thou
shalt not commit adultery?”
Was Paul a legalist when he said in I Timothy
chapter 3 that the deacon should not be double tongued, or when he said a
deacon should be the husband of one wife, or should be honest, or should be
Was Paul a legalist in I Timothy
chapter 3 when he said the pastor should be sober, or the husband of one wife,
or not greedy of filthy lucre? Was Titus a legalist if he obeyed the Apostle
Paul in Titus chapter 2 when he told the aged men to be sober, grave,
temperate, sound, loving, patient and the aged women to be holy and temperate?
Was he a legalist when the told the young ladies to be discreet, chaste,
keepers at home, obedient to their husband, and the young men to be sober and
of sound speech?

Most of the Scriptures are about
rules on how Christians ought to live! I challenge you to take Genesis and try
to show unsaved people how to be saved or redeemed form going to hell. Now you
will find types of salvation but you will have a tough time finding the plan of
salvation in Genesis.
Ok, after that go to Exodus. You
will find the Passover and it is a type of salvation but the plan of salvation
is not listed there. Try Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy, Joshua, Judges, Ruth,
Samuel, Kings, Chronicles, Ezra, Nehemiah, and you will have a tough time
finding the plan of salvation.
That is why in Acts when the
Ethiopian Eunuch was reading Isaiah the best chapter on salvation in the Old
Testament and the best part of that chapter on salvation he said, “How can I
understand unless some man should guide me.”
You will find how to live in
Genesis and rules in Exodus, standards in Leviticus, Deuteronomy, Samuel,
Kings, Chronicles, Ezra, and in Nehemiah. The truth is if you do not believe in
standards and rules you will have to neglect most of the Scriptures.
These pussyfooters dote in II
Corinthians 3:17, “Where the Spirit of the Lord is there is liberty.” The truth
is that verse is not talking about where the Spirit of the Lord is there is
liberty for the child of God to do what he wants to do.  It is not saying that where the Spirit
of the Lord is the deacons can drink liquor or the Sunday school teachers can
smoke. He is saying where the Spirit of the Lord is there is liberty for the
Holy Spirit to work among his people.
As a result in our day we find ourselves not fighting the vehicle of formalism; as Dr. John Rice boldly put at the top of his SWORD OF THE LORD paper in a banner. We find ourselves fighting INFORMALISM. The pendulum has swung to another extreme with the same cry against the rest of us who hold our feet to the fire on being separatist and are being called “legalist.” 
It takes more than facial hair to make a man. Your flowery shirts and glass pulpits are not impressing the Holy Spirit at all. Your “worship teams” disguised as a singing group are not fooling anyone. , especially the Holy Spirit of God. Your colored lights to get the atmosphere you want is insulting to the Holy Spirit. When you decided to secretly follow Rick Warren you had to embrace the tactic of calling the rest of us “legalists.” You are substituting convenience for conviction.
Psalm 119:45 is saying, ”I will
walk in liberty because I keep thy commandments” or “I will walk in liberty
because I walk within the walls of the city.” Let us suppose that your church
building is a city. Suppose your pastor were the mayor. Suppose outside the
walls the enemy lurks with his weapons of warfare. Now are you at liberty
outside the walls or inside the walls of the church auditorium?
Where is the freedom inside or
outside the walls? I will walk in liberty if I keep thy commandments and the
commandments of God are walls built around us to give us a little area where we
can walk in liberty and not be enslaved with the captor outside of the walls.
The enemy is outside and he cannot reach those inside of the walls.
God’s people have a choice! You
can be free inside of the walls or you can be enslaved outside the walls. It
bothers me when I hear God’s people using liberty as a license to sin. Liberty
is inside of the Laws of God and not outside of the Laws of God. Every
commandment, rule, or standard of God has been given for one purpose and that
is to build walls around his people especially the young people.
Liquor, dope, elicit sex,
Hollywood, cigarettes, bad music, etc., enslaves and is addictive. God’s do’s
and don’ts build walls of protection for his people!
If fundamentalism is not careful
we will lose everything that is near and dear to us! Being a fundamentalist is
more than believing salvation by grace, verbal inspiration, plenary
inspiration, preserved inspiration, virgin birth, sinless life of Christ,
security of the believer, and vicarious death of Christ. Being a fundamentalist
also includes having some rules and standards to live by so we can be free.
Those rules are bricks in a
mighty wall that has been built by our founding fathers so that we might have a
place of freedom in this world of slavery. Rules and standards have never
enslaved for the truth is they liberate for all that enslaves has been placed
outside the wall.
We know cigarettes enslave so we
put nicotine warnings on the outside of the packages so why shouldn’t God’s
people put them outside the wall. The same is true of marijuana, liquor, and
Rationalize with me as I ask you
a question. “Thou shalt not kill” is a law but you say I want my freedom so who
is free, the man who does not kill or the man who does kill?
I’m free and if I want to go
outside the walls of God’s Laws for dope I’ll do it! Yes, and you will find out
when you arrived outside those walls that you will be a slave on the outside
and that you left your freedom inside of those walls you escaped from. Where is
the freedom in I am free to drink liquor? Where is the freedom in I am free to
use dope? Where is the freedom?
Love is not breaking down the
walls for love is the building up of the walls! Love is not freedom to go to
the captor for love is freedom from the captor!
Elvis Presley was free he thought
and yet ended his life at the young age of 42 enslaved to dope. The same is true of Jimmy Hendricks,
Janis Joplin, and hundreds of other rock stars. The youth director who breaks down
those walls loves himself more than he does his youth The truth is he loves
their love and not them.
The preacher who breaks down
those walls loves you not for he loves your love. The principal who breaks down
those walls loves his students not for he loves their love. The preacher, the
youth director, and the principal that love will build up the wall of standards
and rules to keep the ones they love from that which will enslave them.
There is
dope outside those walls
There is
liquor outside those walls
There is
addiction outside those walls
There is
indecency outside those walls
There is
heartache outside those walls
There is
heartbreak outside those walls
There is
disease outside those walls
There is
divorce outside those walls
There is
wife beating outside those walls
There is
child abuse outside those walls
There is
enslavement outside those walls
The Psalmist said he would walk
in liberty because he of keeping God’s commandments and not because he breaks
them. God has built for his people a wall where he can protect his people. This
gives freedom to his people from those enemies outside of that wall who would
enslave God’s people.
If I unplug the microphone from a
pulpit because the microphone cries and pleads to be free does not give freedom
to the microphone. The microphone was made for one purpose and that purpose is
to be attached to the source of power.
Here is a piece of steel or iron
in the ground. It is held captive by earth. A man takes a pick and shovel. He
digs, digs, digs, and digs! He reaches down into the ground and retrieves that
piece of steel or iron. That piece of steel or iron is detached but not free
because that piece of steel or iron is meant to be apart of a great machine
somewhere. It is not free because it is detached! It is free only when it is
being used for what it was intended to be used for.
When you go to servitude that is
a higher servitude from a lower servitude you are free. It is not leaving a
purpose but arriving at a greater service that is true freedom. Jesus pleaded,
“Come unto me all ye that labor and are heavy laden. I will give you rest…”
However, he did not stop there for he continued, “… take my yoke upon you and
learn of me for my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”
He is saying come unto me and I
will free you, not to be detached, but so you can be attached! That is why the
Scriptures speak of  “the law of
Here is a piece of coal held
captive by the earth and the earth says, “I’ll hold you.” The piece of coal
says, “I want to be free!” A miner comes to that Kentucky mine and he goes down
into that mine. He breaks free that piece of coal from its’ captor. He puts
that piece of coal from that mine on the ground outside the mine. That piece of
coal is not free it is just detached! That coal was not made to just be
detached and to lie there on the ground. That coal was meant to give warmth,
blessing, energy, or comfort to human beings by its usage somewhere!
Jeremiah puts it this way, “Thou
hast broken the yokes of wood but thou shalt make for them yokes of iron.”
young person says I’m tired of rules and slavery of my Christian school. Let me
be free! So he or she runs from the yoke of wood of the rules of their school
and so the yoke of dope overtakes him or her. “I’m free to drink liquor if I
want too!” He or she breaks away from the yoke of wood of the rules and the
yoke of liquor captures him or her.
God is saying to the government,
parents, schools, colleges, and churches free the young people by building
walls of standards and rules around them so they will be safe from the captors
outside of the walls. That is why our educational system in the USA is so low in world rankings.
That is what Romans 8:2 means
when it says, “For the law of the spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me
free from the law of sin and death.”
A law made me free from a law! Freedom is
when you are liberated from a bad law by a good law.
King David said, “I’ll be free to
court Bathsheba.” He went outside the wall that he though enslaved him and
found slavery was outside the wall. He ultimately discovered he was really free
on the inside of the wall.
Samson said, “I’ll be free! If I
want Delilah’s head in my lap, or if I want to live in sin with Delilah I’ll be
free to do so!” He later found out he was really free on the inside. While on
the outside of those walls the put out his eyes. They bound him to the mill.
Blind and bound while grinding around and around and around on that giant
grinding wheel!
I do not hear him saying how much
he loves this freedom now! Samson you are a slave!
Leaders must take this seriously
and quit massaging their egos by being like Aaron and allowing the people to do
what they want to do and start speaking for God to man. Leaders must quit
bringing God down to man and start bringing man up to God. We are made in his
image! God is not made in our image! We conform to him not he to us!
Leaders please let us keep the
people free with walls of standards, rules, and protection so that the enemy
from without will not capture those whom God loves and we love!
I thank God every day for an
old-fashioned wall building Mama, teachers, and preachers! Thank God for wall
building schools, colleges, churches, Bible Conferences, and leaders who stand
firm inside the walls. This is not legalism but rather it is liberty!
We need the walls to remain
strong so that our young people can stay innocent and remain fearful of an
enemy that lurks on the outside of the walls of protection where there is the
bondage of compromise. Give me liberty inside of the walls.
The rules must be consistent
between the pulpit, parent, and peer pressures. If all three are going in the
same direction and provide the same consistency the odds are in favor of the
follower being allowed to make right decisions! Liberty or legalism?
Rules do
not make rebels they merely expose rebels
the rules does not make one spiritual
keep you from that which will scar for a life time
will keep one innocent
It is the
responsibility of leaders to provide standards and rules
cannot be established by a novice
come from Scriptures

come from Seniority that has dealt with destructive behaviour

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