22 October 2020


By John Ollis

I came to Christ as a 10 year old in 1951, I am the product of alcoholic heavy smoking ungodly parents . The comparison between my home and home life compared to the Christian Evangelical world I entered into was so dramatically different.

Then as a young adult moving into the Pentecostal world was also another transition and I guess because of the lack of Biblical Discipleship and not understanding the reasons for the THOU SHALL NOT’S” found in the Bible I sadly developed a very legalistic and then judgemental attitude of people who I did not think “obeyed” the “thou shall nots” in the Bible.

It took me a long time for me to recognise this problem in my life, because with legalistic people your rigid attitude to the legalism often replaced the positive Biblical reason/s why I would not do certain things, it can and did create a “holier than you” attitude.

I can testify the Lord is helping me in this area but after it being a practice for nearly 70 years, I am still struggling because of old entrenched attitudes. Please pray for me.

What I have come to see at last is not only that I SHOULD NOT DO certain things, but that I WILLINGLY AND JOYFULLY CHOOSE NOT not to do certain things.

Secondly, it is NOT MY PLACE TO CRITICISE AND CONDEMN CHRISTIANS WHO CHOOSE TO DO CERTAIN THINGS, that I think the Bible tells us we should not do.

We, all live in a very sin sick world, and most Believers have to rub shoulders with unbelievers most days of their lives, and the reality is we can so easily be contaminated and polluted by all that goes on around us.

Sadly, we also seem to be living in a generation where standards of behaviour (in the church) seem to me to be dropping, and things that were definitely not acceptable in the Christian world in the past appear to now be more acceptable in certain quarters .

With the Lord helping me, I am choosing to pray now for fellow believers instead of judging them, and believing they will hear the Lord clearly convicting and convincing them to live holy lives.

Speaking personally, with the Lord working with me, and not out of legalism, I list some things, I CHOOSE:

Not to curse and swear, I know words change their meaning over the years, but I only want pure unambiguous language to flow from my lips.

To be extremely wise when it comes to any consumption of alcohol, I do not believe the Bible teaches total abstinence, but I happily make choice that it will never become a significant part of my life.

With the Lord’s help I want to only look at or listen too, or be exposed to those things that will not pollute my mind,

The Lord helping me, I choose in all my interactions with people to exhibit, the life of Jesus Christ in all aspects of my behaviour.

I suppose I could go on and on, but to me the above are core areas for me that I choose to do.

I am not sure what sort of reaction I will get to this blog, I am speaking out of painful experience of many years of legalism and being judgemental. I trust it may help others who can relate to the above.

Any comments would be appreciated.