The question of what is forbidden in Christianity cannot be answered with a simple list. Because on the one hand Jesus gives us a lot of freedom, on the other hand there are restrictions in this earthly world.
But as a rule of thumb, we can apply the following: Everything is forbidden that harms the next (human). But as with many rules of thumb, the same applies here: It depends on the details. Let’s take a look at these.
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List of common prohibitions in Christianity
Below you will find a list of things that are considered “prohibitions in Christianity” in common usage. But this list is very vague and should be understood with the rest of the text.
- Not to honor God
- Hating other people
- Opposing one’s own conscience
- Worship false gods
There is no real forbidden list in Christianity!
In Christianity, there is a misleading difference between a forbidden list and a permitted list. There is no official list, maybe the Ten Commandments (see here), which says what is allowed and what is forbidden. It is always important what is the inner attitude towards “something”. The focus is on the double commandment of love: that is, love God and love man.
What contradicts these should be refrained from. At first glance, this sounds easier than it actually is.
Prohibitions in Christianity are a matter of conscience
For in this rule, we as human beings have many freedoms, but also restrictions that are not immediately apparent. For example, we can freely choose a certain profession if it does not harm others. This does not necessarily have to be a profession that supports the commandment of charity. It should only not act contrary to this.
An exception to this can be that someone has the urgent desire to work in a profession of charity (such as nurse). Then this person has this on his conscience. If this person does not follow these certain ones, it can be considered a sin. Here, although all sins have died, that person would pretty much walk around permanently with a guilty conscience because the Holy Spirit is working into their life at this point. For another person, this non-calling to this particular profession is not a reason for a guilty conscience.
Obsolete regulations of the Old Testament
Let us briefly consider the phenomenon of the Old Testament. In the Old Testament, clear and distinct rules are given by God for people to follow. Corresponding rules these commandments also corresponding prohibitions. So in the Old Testament there were corresponding prohibitions for certain things. These rules are clear and distinct and also meant to be rules.
But with the coming of Jesus Christ, these rules were fulfilled by Jesus personally and ensure that today’s people (in the sense of: members of Christianity!), who believe in Jesus Christ, are no longer subject to the burden of the law.
The Old Testament, however, also indicates that a Messiah will come who will take these rules away from people. At that time it was not quite clear to the Jews, but with the advent of Jesus and the appearance of Paul, it was given to the people and preserved to us in the New Testament. That is, today this list of commandments in the Old Testament no longer applies. Thus, there is also no longer a clear list of prohibitions with a legal character. At least not with the effect that God punishes someone directly for it.
Example: Prohibition of certain foods in Christianity.
An example of this lifting or are the food commandments. As described in another article (i.e., this one), the food commandments are abrogated for Christians today. They are completely abrogated. As long as a Christian can reconcile this with his conscience, he can eat what he wants. But: If his conscience speaks against it, then he should urgently leave the paws of it.
This is an important principle that applies through Jesus Christ: The conscience counts. It is no longer the scripture alone that counts, but the conscience.
The personal conscience of the believer gives prohibitions and commandments
What does the conscience have to do with forbidden? Basically, it is very simple: with the acceptance of Jesus Christ as Savior, sooner or later we receive the Holy Spirit.
This Holy Spirit sits within us and is a kind of “advisor” for us. This advisor influences our thoughts and our feelings. That is, if you suddenly have a bad feeling about something where we did not have a bad feeling before, the Holy Spirit will work in that place. Through this, God acts directly on us and directs us directly into His will and specifications. However, since we are human, we can sometimes be mistaken about what the Holy Spirit actually wants. If we have such a feeling, we can check it with the Bible. Because the Holy Spirit never contradicts the Bible.
Does this mean that the Bible is a written rule book?
In particular, for Christians, the New Testament. I would like to repeat again: The Bible is not a law in the sense that it has fixed regulations whose wording must be followed.
At least not for Christians. For all others it should be a hint that Jesus Christ is coming to judge them. The Bible helps us to form our own thoughts and let the Holy Spirit work. This creates a personal list of prohibitions and commandments for each individual.
Is this list the same for every believer? By and large, this list is the same for every believer, that is, for Christians. Christianity shares a large number of values. These values are given by God. Therefore, although every Christian has some kind of personal code within him (through the Holy Spirit), the basis is identical.
In detail, for example, in the choice of profession or special skills, this person differs greatly. But they have one thing always the same: Never, but really never, do the inner attitudes given by the Holy Spirit contradict the Bible! Never!
Of course, if you are a human being, you can now start to summarize certain principles, these very principles that are given by the general principles of Christianity. This creates a kind of catalog of values to which Christians have to adhere. What contradicts this is forbidden by God.
But when certain things start to be a prohibition, every Christian has to agree with God for himself personally. Nevertheless, God is clear: many commandments or attitudes already begin with a thought of doing this act. In this respect one could, if one wants to, also speak of kind of thought-crime. So who does not think these thoughts, these commandments, thus the principles of Christianity correspond, does not correspond to the will of God, and thus this could be evaluated as prohibition.
Summary of the topic “What is forbidden in Christianity?”
Let me summarize it again: In Christianity, what is forbidden is what is contrary to the will of God. This may be different in each Christian. Nevertheless, each Christian is in a different position with God, and thus know the details can look different in each person. One person thinks it is right never, but really never, to lie. The other thinks it is ok to keep social norms.
How do I personally find out what is forbidden in Christianity?
If you want to find out if you are doing something forbidden, you can do two things:
- a) Pray and wait for God to answer you.
- b) Read the Bible.
If you think something is wrong, examine the Bible and prayer to see if your opinion is right. The best way to do this is to talk to experienced coasts, such as pastors or elders, who can give you tips there. How you then deal with this prohibition that you have determined, you best with your conscience. Act in such a way that your conscience is not burdened. Even if it means great consequences!