Legalism and licentiousness are two different reflections of our faithlessness in our Christian lives.

On the one hand a legalistic spirit relies on the accomplishments of what one has done or is doing to maintain the relationship with God.

On the other, licentiousness takes grace and abuses it for their own purposes. “I am saved by grace so it does not matter what I do” is a common misrepresentation of the Gospel.

The only hope for us no matter which one we struggle with is a correct understanding of grace as communicated through the Gospel. Is it any wonder that Paul was concern for the Galatians wondering who bewitched them that they would go after some other teaching? Grace corrects the fleshly heart and the self-righteous heart. Are you resting in Christ’s accomplishments or your own? Are you being disciplined by grace and not allowing your fleshly mind to excuse your sin?

“For by grace are you saved through faith and that not of yourselves, it is a gift of God lest anyone should boast. We are created in Christ Jesus for good works that God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.”