Thursday, July 19, 2012

NonModern Nugget: Legalism Defined

Legalism: the erroneous belief that God created humanity with such vast diversity so the Church could cram it all into one mold.

Even as a teen, it was obvious (and annoying) to recognize the contrary drives to be both an individual but to fit in with everyone else. To some degree teens are to be pitied because they are in a stage of development where they can’t help themselves. Once (and if) they mature, they get over the second impulse and become their own person.

Of course there are those who don’t outgrow it. Is there anything more annoying than a group that insists their pursuit of individuality leads them all to have the same taste and interests? Or worse, that those individuals who don’t are inferior? The current crop doesn’t so much like popular things; they used to like them before everyone else did, but can’t now as they are too mainstream—unless they do so ironically. It is silly.

The religious equivalent to all of this is displayed when a group is driven by the impulse to fit in, but do so by forcing everyone to be the same. When a group imposes fashion, musical style, artistic and aesthetic taste, and even opinions as a sign of righteousness, they are the religious equivalent of a high school clique or a bunch of holier-than-thou hipsters.

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