Paul was saying that instead of heeding ungodly rules, giving a false show of religiosity, the Christian is to heed true godliness. One should not say, for example, that celibacy or a particular diet produces godliness. Many falsely equate such rules with godliness, whereas the Lord desires true godliness, not just outward forms. For example, to not marry does not mean one is a better Christian. However, if celibacy is sincerely done for the Lord—if one refrains from marriage in order to wholly devote himself to doing God’s will and to be fully dedicated to Christ’s work—it is spiritually beneficial. The point is that a child of God has the liberty to marry or not to marry, to eat meat or not to eat meat. Following outward formalities very sanctimoniously is a form of godliness but is not true godliness unless it is done in sincerity, without hypocrisy, and out of a pure heart.