Understanding the Basics of Pietism

Over the last several weeks we have been taking an in-depth look at genuine Christianity contrasted with man-made “Christianity,” which, no matter what it is called, is another religion. One of the most insidious forms of this is “pietism,” which all of us are susceptible to if we are not mature in our faith yet have a deep hunger to go deeper and there are false teachers available very willing to tell those who don’t know any better that there is indeed a higher form of Christianity and “higher level” of Christian that is attainable, but there is a cost. It sounds “almost” biblical, but it isn’t. Our brother Bob DeWaay went through this himself as a young Christian, as did I, but not to the extent he did. You can read about it by following the link below to his fine article. Enjoy and be blessed. – Mike Ratliff

Understanding the Basics of Pietism

8 thoughts on “Understanding the Basics of Pietism

  1. Mike, THANK YOU!!! for linking to Bob’s article. I read it a few years ago at CIC and yelled out “yes!”. Oh my, pietism is everywhere, in all sorts of stripes, one big one being (as Bob mentioned) the PD movement that claims there are “world class” Christians vs the rest of us hoi polloi. And of course the mysticism of old is resurfacing as “contemplative prayer”, etc. There truly is nothing new under the sun.

    The verses from Galatians 3:2-3 and Colossians 2:16-23 really address the heart of the issue of pietism – it is a false practice of trying to perfect oneself in the flesh with self made religion, which as you mentioned sounds “almost” biblical, but isn’t (aka, pietism has the appearance of wisdom, but has no value).

    Great post!


  2. You are very welcome Carolyn. Yes, when I read it this morning, I knew I had to use Bob’s post as it sets the foundation so well for what we have been discussing here. As you said, Pietism as the appearance of wisdom, but has no value.


  3. Pie and tea! I love pie and tea!!! Just had homemade strawberry rhubarb pie yesterday, but no tea…


  4. Pingback: The Sermon on the Mount Part 12 « Possessing the Treasure

  5. Oh Mickey! Let me guess, you grew the rhubard in you own garden! [and for the record you spelled rhubarb correctly:-] If you remember from previous comments we share the PA roots. My grandmother grew the most amazing rhubarb and it is a most cherished childhood memory.

    The affliction of pietism is severe and so subtlety destructive that it may be the most understated attacks of the enemy.

    I have fallen prey to this beast, that oh so gently puffs up ones own spiritual significance. I should never think of myself as having some inside track to God. If we are all called by GRACE according to His purposes then my particular piece in God’s puzzle is no more or less significant than that of my brethren. May God grant me the faith and grace to always keep this in perspective and allow me to long suffer with struggles of the children of God.

    In the immeasurable long suffering of Christ, charisse


  6. I had an acquaintance in my previous church who was raised in a Mennonite culture. He described himself as a post-modern Christian and could not see how it was a contradiction in terms, using his upbringing for his perspective. If the Lord does not open our eyes, we will be deceived by what our eyes of flesh perceive and be unwilling or unable to see the Truth.

    I will take deep-dish blackberry (or dewberry) pie with coffee, please.


  7. Hmmmm, my mother, before she went to live in an assisted living center in Norman, Oklahoma, made what my late Dad called “The best Apricot Cobbler in the Universe.” I would make the 5.5 hour trip right now for a couple of bowls of that with some vanilla ice cream on top, with some of my own freshly ground coffee. 🙂


Comments are closed.