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50 Bible Verses about Legalism

Most Relevant Verses

Romans 9:31-32

But Israel, who followed after the law of righteousness, has not attained to the law of righteousness. Why? Because they sought it not by faith, but as it were by the works of the law. For they stumbled at that stumbling stone;

Galatians 3:10-11

For as many as are of the works of the law are under the curse: for it is written, Cursed is every one that continues not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them. But that no man is justified by the law in the sight of God, it is evident: for, The just shall live by faith.

Matthew 23:13

But woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for you shut up the kingdom of heaven against men: for you neither go in yourselves, neither allow you them that are entering to go in.

Romans 3:20-24

Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin. But now the righteousness of God apart from the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets; Even the righteousness of God which is by faith in Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference:read more.
For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus:

Philippians 3:8-9

Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but rubbish, that I may win Christ, And be found in him, not having my own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith:

Philippians 3:4-6

Though I might also have confidence in the flesh. If any other man thinks that he has reasons he might trust in the flesh, I more: Circumcised the eighth day, of the stock of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew of the Hebrews; concerning the law, a Pharisee; Concerning zeal, persecuting the church; concerning the righteousness which is in the law, blameless.

Galatians 1:14

And advanced in the Jews' religion above many of my equals in my own nation, being more exceedingly zealous of the traditions of my fathers.

Micah 6:7-8

Will the LORD be pleased with thousands of rams, or with ten thousands of rivers of oil? shall I give my firstborn for my transgression, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul? He has showed you, O man, what is good; and what does the LORD require of you, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God?

Matthew 23:14

Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for you devour widows' houses, and for a pretense make long prayer: therefore you shall receive the greater condemnation.

Luke 10:31-32

And by chance there came down a certain priest that way: and when he saw him, he passed by on the other side. And likewise a Levite, when he was at the place, came and looked on him, and passed by on the other side.

John 7:49

But this people who know not the law are cursed.

Luke 18:11-12

The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, God, I thank you, that I am not as other men are, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this tax collector. I fast twice in the week, I give tithes of all that I possess.

Matthew 6:1-2

Take heed that you give not your alms before men, to be seen of them: otherwise you have no reward of your Father who is in heaven. Therefore when you give your alms, do not sound a trumpet before you, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may have glory of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward.

Matthew 23:5-7

But all their works they do to be seen of men: they make broad their phylacteries, and enlarge the borders of their garments, And love the uppermost places at feasts, and the chief seats in the synagogues, And greetings in the markets, and to be called of men, Rabbi, Rabbi.

Romans 10:3

For they being ignorant of God's righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God.

Mark 7:6

He answered and said unto them, Well has Isaiah prophesied of you hypocrites, as it is written, This people honor me with their lips, but their heart is far from me.

Mark 7:7-8

But in vain do they worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men. For laying aside the commandment of God, you hold the tradition of men, as the washing of pots and cups: and many other such things you do.

Matthew 23:27-28

Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for you are like unto whitewashed sepulchers, which indeed appear beautiful outwardly but are within full of dead men's bones, and of all uncleanness. Even so you also outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within you are full of hypocrisy and iniquity.

1 Samuel 15:19-22

Why then did you not obey the voice of the LORD, but did pounce upon the spoil, and did evil in the sight of the LORD? And Saul said unto Samuel, Yea, I have obeyed the voice of the LORD, and have gone the way which the LORD sent me, and have brought Agag the king of Amalek, and have utterly destroyed the Amalekites. But the people took of the spoil, sheep and oxen, the best of the things which should have been utterly destroyed, to sacrifice unto the LORD your God in Gilgal.read more.
And Samuel said, has the LORD as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the LORD? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams.

Matthew 15:3-9

But he answered and said unto them, Why do you also transgress the commandment of God by your tradition? For God commanded, saying, Honor your father and mother: and, He that curses father or mother, let him die the death. But you say, Whosoever shall say to his father or his mother, It is a gift devoted to God, whatsoever you might have received from me;read more.
And honors not his father or his mother, he shall be free. Thus have you made the commandment of God void by your tradition. You hypocrites, well did Isaiah prophesy of you, saying, These people draw near unto me with their mouth, and honor me with their lips; but their heart is far from me. But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.

Mark 7:9-13

And he said unto them, Full well you reject the commandment of God, that you may keep your own tradition. For Moses said, Honor your father and your mother; and, Whoever curses father or mother, let him die the death: But you say, If a man shall say to his father or mother, It is Corban, that is to say, a gift devoted to God, whatsoever you might have received from me; he shall be free.read more.
And you allow him no more to do anything for his father or his mother; Making the word of God of no effect through your tradition, which you have delivered: and many such things do you.

Matthew 23:25-26

Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for you make clean the outside of the cup and of the platter, but within they are full of extortion and excess. You blind Pharisee, cleanse first that which is within the cup and platter, that the outside of them may be clean also.

John 7:19

Did not Moses give you the law, and yet none of you keeps the law? Why go you about to kill me?

John 9:16

Therefore said some of the Pharisees, This man is not of God, because he keeps not the sabbath day. Others said, How can a man that is a sinner do such miracles? And there was a division among them.

Matthew 16:6

Then Jesus said unto them, Take heed and beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and of the Sadducees.

Mark 8:15

And he charged them, saying, Take heed, beware of the leaven of the Pharisees, and of the leaven of Herod.

Matthew 16:12

Then understood they that he bade them not beware of the leaven of bread, but of the doctrine of the Pharisees and of the Sadducees.

Galatians 4:10-11

You observe days, and months, and times, and years. I am afraid for you, lest I have bestowed upon you labor in vain.

Galatians 5:2-4

Behold, I Paul say unto you, that if you be circumcised, Christ shall profit you nothing. For I testify again to every man that is circumcised, that he is a debtor to do the whole law. Christ is become of no effect unto you, whosoever of you are justified by the law; you are fallen from grace.

Acts 15:10

Now therefore why test God, to put a yoke upon the neck of the disciples, which neither our fathers nor we were able to bear?

James 2:10

For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all.

Galatians 4:21-31

Tell me, you that desire to be under the law, do you not hear the law? For it is written, that Abraham had two sons, the one by a bondmaid, the other by a free woman. But he who was of the bondwoman was born after the flesh; but he of the free woman was by promise.read more.
Which things are an allegory: for these are the two covenants; the one from mount Sinai, which brings forth to bondage, which is Hagar. For this Hagar is mount Sinai in Arabia, and answers to Jerusalem which now is, and is in bondage with her children. But Jerusalem which is above is free, which is the mother of us all. For it is written, Rejoice, you barren that bear not; break forth and cry, you that travail not: for the desolate has many more children than she who has a husband. Now we, brethren, as Isaac was, are the children of promise. But as then he that was born after the flesh persecuted him that was born after the Spirit, even so it is now. Nevertheless what says the scripture? Cast out the bondwoman and her son: for the son of the bondwoman shall not be heir with the son of the free woman. So then, brethren, we are not children of the bondwoman, but of the free.

Ephesians 2:8-9

For by grace are you saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.

Mark 2:24

And the Pharisees said unto him, Behold, why do they on the sabbath day that which is not lawful?

Luke 6:2

And certain of the Pharisees said unto them, Why do you that which is not lawful to do on the sabbath days?

Luke 13:14

And the ruler of the synagogue answered with indignation, because Jesus had healed on the sabbath day, and said unto the people, There are six days in which men ought to work: in them therefore come and be healed, and not on the sabbath day.

Romans 14:14

I know, and am persuaded by the Lord Jesus, that there is nothing unclean of itself: but to him that esteems anything to be unclean, to him it is unclean.

Acts 22:3

I am verily a man who is a Jew, born in Tarsus, a city in Cilicia, yet brought up in this city at the feet of Gamaliel, and taught according to the perfect manner of the law of the fathers, and was zealous toward God, as you all are this day.

Luke 11:45

Then answered one of the lawyers, and said unto him, Teacher, thus saying you reproach us also.

From Thematic Bible


Inconsistency » General marks of » Legalism

John 7:23

If a man on the sabbath day receive circumcision, that the law of Moses should not be broken; are you angry at me, because I have made a man every bit whole on the sabbath day?

Legalism » What legalism does

Legalism » Liberty being threatened by legalism

Galatians 5:1-13

Stand fast therefore in the liberty with which Christ has made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage. Behold, I Paul say unto you, that if you be circumcised, Christ shall profit you nothing. For I testify again to every man that is circumcised, that he is a debtor to do the whole law. read more.
Christ is become of no effect unto you, whosoever of you are justified by the law; you are fallen from grace. For we through the Spirit wait for the hope of righteousness by faith. For in Jesus Christ neither circumcision avails anything, nor uncircumcision; but faith which works by love. You did run well; who did hinder you that you should not obey the truth? This persuasion comes not of him that calls you. A little leaven leavens the whole lump. I have confidence in you through the Lord, that you will not be otherwise minded: but he that troubles you shall bear his judgment, whosoever he be. And I, brethren, if I yet preach circumcision, why do I yet suffer persecution? then is the offense of the cross ceased. I would they were even cut off who trouble you. For, brethren, you have been called unto liberty; only use not liberty for an occasion to the flesh, but by love serve one another.

Religion » Characteristics of » Legalism

Acts 22:3

I am verily a man who is a Jew, born in Tarsus, a city in Cilicia, yet brought up in this city at the feet of Gamaliel, and taught according to the perfect manner of the law of the fathers, and was zealous toward God, as you all are this day.

Acts 16:3

Him would Paul have to go forth with him; and took and circumcised him because of the Jews who were in those places: for they all knew that his father was a Greek.

Acts 21:20

And when they heard it, they glorified the Lord, and said unto him, You see, brother, how many thousands of Jews there are who believe; and they are all zealous of the law:

Luke 6:2

And certain of the Pharisees said unto them, Why do you that which is not lawful to do on the sabbath days?

Galatians 1:14

And advanced in the Jews' religion above many of my equals in my own nation, being more exceedingly zealous of the traditions of my fathers.

Religion » Inconsistency in religious life general marks of » Legalism

John 7:23

If a man on the sabbath day receive circumcision, that the law of Moses should not be broken; are you angry at me, because I have made a man every bit whole on the sabbath day?

FALSE » Religion characteristics of » Legalism

Acts 22:3

I am verily a man who is a Jew, born in Tarsus, a city in Cilicia, yet brought up in this city at the feet of Gamaliel, and taught according to the perfect manner of the law of the fathers, and was zealous toward God, as you all are this day.

Acts 16:3

Him would Paul have to go forth with him; and took and circumcised him because of the Jews who were in those places: for they all knew that his father was a Greek.

Acts 21:20

And when they heard it, they glorified the Lord, and said unto him, You see, brother, how many thousands of Jews there are who believe; and they are all zealous of the law:

Luke 6:2

And certain of the Pharisees said unto them, Why do you that which is not lawful to do on the sabbath days?

Galatians 1:14

And advanced in the Jews' religion above many of my equals in my own nation, being more exceedingly zealous of the traditions of my fathers.