There are different types of laws written in the Bible. The mostly widely known law is the Ten Commandments as given on Mount Sinai (Exodus 20). Although many Christians believe this law was done away with at the cross of Calvary (quoting Colossians 2: 14–16), it is none-the-less an eternal law (Matthew 5:17–18).
There is another law that was given to Ancient Israel and many religious people do not distinguish this law from the Ten Commandments. This law is the Ceremonial Law—the law of ordinances, feasts, and sacrifices given to the Israelites in the wilderness. It is this law that was done away with at the cross.
Then there are other laws recorded governing man’s life such as laws of health, hygiene and temperance, all of which, if violated, are in reality a violation of the Ten Commandments. You are breaking the 6th commandment (Thou Shalt Not Kill), if you violate health laws to the detriment of your health.
Then there are other laws instituted by God—laws that don’t govern human behaviour. People that have studied the sciences know that there are many laws in nature. Nature has a different set of laws that it is under; for example, the law of gravity, the law of motion, the law of the water cycle, and so on. These laws were instituted by God also. All nature operates under these laws.
The laws governing human behaviour take an effort on the part of man to keep. The laws of science in nature seem to be spontaneous reactions to certain actions. For example, sunlight on a green leaf can cause photosynthesis, which is a process of producing energy (food) for the plant. In this process it takes in carbon dioxide and at the end oxygen is emitted back into the air.
In science, every action has an equal and opposite reaction (Newton’s Third Law of Physics). We can say that photosynthesis is governed by this law, carbon dioxide in, oxygen out.
Science has another law that was discovered by Newton. It can be, but may not be, an action that is “opposite”.
It is Newton’s first law of motion, which states that an object is either at rest or at a constant velocity until acted upon by an external force.
These two laws that Newton described (instituted by God) in reality also describe nature and we can learn lessons for the spiritual life of man as well. Any law that comes from God is considered a Divine Law.
NEWTON’S FIRST LAW OF MOTION
We will now look closer as to how we can we apply Newton’s first law of motion to nature (an object is either at rest or at a constant velocity until acted upon by an external force). Using the example of the seed, it is at rest in the ground and will not move until acted upon by another force—it is given water, nutrition, sunshine and then it moves—it grows.
Applying this law to humanity, a person continues in the current direction of their life until they are acted upon by another external force—they continue in the way of wickedness and keep on going until the Holy Spirit intervenes and applies a force that will either arrest them in their downward journey, or will cause them to make a U-turn in their lives. This is the only force that can change the direction of a person’s life from bad to good. Without the force applied it is impossible to change the direction of the life. “Can the Ethiopian change his skin, or the leopard his spots? then may ye also do good, that are accustomed to do evil.” Jeremiah 3:23. In other words—it is impossible in human strength. “Howbeit when He, the Spirit of truth, is come, He will guide you into all truth.” John 16:13. “For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ: Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto His glorious body.” Philippians 3:20–21. Yes, only by a force outside of ourselves can we alter our downward direction that our lives may have been taking.
The same is true, unfortunately, for the opposite. A person may be going on happily serving the Lord until a force comes to alter the course of his life in the wrong direction. It may be the influence of another person, by entertainment, or something like loss or disappointment that causes one to lose hope and alter their course. “Satan is vigilant in his efforts; his perseverance is untiring, his zeal earnest and unabated. He does not wait for his prey to come to him; he seeks for it. To wrench souls from the hand of Christ is his determined purpose.” Testimonies for the Church, vol. 2, p. 223
The reality though, in the Christian world, is that these external forces that come to alter the course of a person’s life will fail if the person’s will is stronger than the force applied. In this case there is no movement, or alteration from the current course. The force of the Holy Spirit can be, but will not be applied stronger than the will of man. Satan, on the other hand, will apply a force stronger than the will of man—he is ruthless and uses all his power to move the follower of Christ away from their forward direction. Therefore, it is wise to stay away from Satan’s enchanted ground. There are two forces working for the soul of each person—each working in an opposite direction; each wanting to direct the course of the life. The will of man decides which force is stronger.
“A vigilant foe is upon their track; yet they are in no danger while they make God their trust. But unless they do this, their strength will be weakness, and they will be overcome by Satan.” –Testimonies for the Church, vol. 2, p .223
Natural law tells us that whatever seed you place in the ground, that type of plant will grow if nurtured properly with the external forces. You will sow what you reap given the correct conditions. This divine law also can be applied to the spiritual life of a person: “Even as I have seen, they that plow iniquity, and sow wickedness, reap the same.” Job 4:8. “But this I say, He which soweth sparingly shall reap also sparingly; and he which soweth bountifully shall reap also bountifully. Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver.” 2 Corinthians 9:6–7. Be careful what you sow and what forces are influencing your life.
But the promise is given, “and let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.” Galatians 6:9. Never give up doing good deeds, even if you see no results now. It is all written down in the book of remembrance in heaven. When the Lord applies external forces to your good deeds, there will be a harvest.
NEWTON’S THIRD LAW OF MOTION
According to Newton’s third law of motion, each action has an equal and opposite reaction. In the spiritual realm, we can apply this law by saying that each action for the Lord has an equal and opposite reaction in the enemy camp, and vice versa.
Each time a person prays to the Lord, it causes the enemy to go running. “Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.” James 4:7. “And when angels, all-powerful, clothed with the armory of heaven, come to the help of the fainting, pursued soul, Satan and his host fall back, well knowing that their battle is lost.” –Counsels for the Church, p. 319
“Draw nigh to God, and He will draw nigh to you.” James 4:8. “At the sound of fervent prayer, Satan’s whole host trembles.” –ibid., p. 319
On the other hand, “but if we seek the company of sinners, and are pleased with their coarse jests, and entertained and amused with their stories, sports, and ribaldry, the pure and holy angels remove their protection
and leave us to the darkness we have chosen.” –Testimonies for the Church, vol. 2, p.222. This the Christian may not expect. Many are presumptuous—they love their sin, but want God’s protection. The relish for sin causes an opposite reaction than many may expect.
Many do not expect the results they receive. You may be selfish in this life—hoarding all for yourself, but, what will you reap? Jesus spoke a parable, “And He spake a parable unto them, saying, The ground of a certain rich man brought forth plentifully: And he thought within himself, saying, What shall I do, because I have no room where to bestow my fruits? And he said, This will I do: I will pull down my barns, and build greater; and there will I bestow all my fruits and my goods. And I will say to my soul, Soul, thou hast much goods laid up for many years; take thine ease, eat, drink, and be merry. But God said unto him, Thou fool, this night thy soul shall be required of thee: then whose shall those things be, which thou hast provided? So is he that layeth up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God.” Luke 12:16–21. I am sure this man did not expect to die that night.
“The Lord sometimes opens the eyes blinded by selfishness by simply reducing their income to the amount they are willing to give.” –Testimonies for the Church, vol. 4, p. 484. It can definitely happen that you work hard, but have little to show for it. You do not seem to be reaping what you sow. In the days of Haggai the prophet, he told the people, “Ye have sown much, and bring in little; ye eat, but ye have not enough; ye drink, but ye are not filled with drink; ye clothe you, but there is none warm; and he that earneth wages earneth wages to put it into a bag with holes. Ye looked for much, and, lo, it came to little; and when ye brought it home, I did blow upon it.” Haggai 1:6,9.
They sowed and expected a good harvest, but it never came. The Lord clearly told them the reason for this lack of reaping. “Why? saith the LORD of hosts. Because of mine house that is waste, and ye run every man unto his own house. ” Haggai 1:9. “Thou shalt eat, but not be satisfied; and thy casting down shall be in the midst of thee; and thou shalt take hold, but shalt not deliver; and that which thou deliverest will I give up to the sword. Thou shalt sow, but thou shalt not reap; thou shalt tread the olives, but thou shalt not anoint thee with oil; and sweet wine, but shalt not drink wine.” Micah 6:14
Rather than putting our own interests first and giving God the remnant coins that are left over at the end of the week, perhaps it would be wise for us to put the interests of the Lord’s work first and then we will have a good harvest. “Thus saith the LORD of hosts; Consider your ways.” Haggai 1:7
David said, “They that sow in tears shall reap in joy.” Psalm 126:5. This sounds like an odd statement. How can you reap joy when you have not sown joy, but sown tears? When doing missionary work, often it can be very disheartening when very few are willing to listen to the gospel message. The missionary may spend much time weeping and praying for souls, but when one person accepts, there is much joy. Jesus spent time weeping for souls, but when the resurrection comes, there will be much joy when His chosen children are saved.
“Cast thy bread upon the waters: for thou shalt find it after many days.” Ecclesiastes 11:1. And again, if you give to the Lord, (even your last) He will take care of you. If you give away, to a worthy cause, you will not suffer loss. In your time of need, the Lord will take care of you. How can you receive more when you give away more? In application of Newton’s law of motion to this principle, there is an equal and opposite reaction. Each action mentioned has an opposite reaction than one would humanly expect.
In science, energy is described in two forms: Kinetic Energy and Potential Energy. Again, these laws were instituted by God. Kinetic energy is movement—the energy that something has when it moves. Potential energy is something at rest—with the potential for movement. However, that potential energy is useless unless converted to kinetic energy and put into motion. Every Christian has potential energy stored inside (talents) and they also will be useless unless this potential energy is put into motion.
A seed has potential energy, having no value, unless the energy is converted to kinetic energy, and it begins to grow, and continues to grow. Plants are constantly growing. You look at the trees—each year they are a little taller, a little rounder. And then one day they stop growing at which point they die and have no energy left. When a Christian runs out of energy they too die—they are spiritually dead and can no longer be reached by the Holy Spirit. “I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing.” Revelation 3:17. These Christians have no more energy to move or grow.
Peter encourages the Christians to “Grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.” 2 Peter 3:18. Just like the seed cannot grow on its own—without the external force—neither can the Christian grow without external forces (Holy Spirit). There is always room for growth.
When we do missionary work, we can find many satisfied Christians. They are satisfied with their beliefs, as they do not want to alter their lifestyle of ease and pleasure. They are satisfied with their current knowledge and religious experience. There are many, many churches in the world to suit the differing beliefs and lifestyles of all classes of society. Many do not want to change—do not want to grow and therefore have no spiritual energy. They have potential energy but no kinetic energy. Soon they will die.
Even in God’s church, people can be guilty of this. People feel they know all there is to know that is necessary for salvation. These people are spiritual dwarfs—they are not growing. Is your Bible knowledge and knowledge of God greater and deeper than it was a year ago? A month ago? Even from yesterday? Has God taught you something new today? Are you converting your potential energy into kinetic energy? “It is the Lord’s desire that His followers shall grow in grace, that their love shall abound more and more, that they shall be filled with the fruits of righteousness, which are by Jesus Christ, unto the praise and glory of God.” –The Seventh-day Adventist Bible Commentary, vol. 7, p. 947
To grow as a true Christian is to be giving. The religion of Christ is not a religion of selfishness—keeping your religion to yourself or hiding your light under a bushel. “The law of true Christianity is that the light will shine spontaneously. When one is filled with Christ—it will shine. “Christ does not bid His followers strive to shine. He says, Let your light shine. If you have received the grace of God, the light is in you. Remove the obstructions, and the Lord’s glory will be revealed. The light will shine forth to penetrate and dispel the darkness. You cannot help shining within the range of your influence.” –Christ’s Object Lessons, p. 420 (emphasis added)
And here is one of the most important laws laid down by God. “One of the divine plans for growth is impartation. The Christian is to gain strength by strengthening others. ‘He that watereth shall be watered also himself.’ This is not merely a promise; it is a divine law, a law by which God designs that the streams of benevolence, like the waters of the great deep, shall be kept in constant circulation, continually flowing back to their source. In the fulfilling of this law is the secret of spiritual growth.” –The Seventh-day Adventist Bible Commentary, vol. 7, p. 947 (emphasis added)
It is written that it is not merely a promise but “a divine law” that a Christian gains strength by strengthening others. It is a divine law that the Christian must be constantly imparting—in order to grow. As the streams constantly flow down the mountains—they never run dry. They keep on giving and giving; God has placed a law in motion to prevent the mountain streams from drying out—the water cycle. The Christian is also as the water cycle—constantly giving fresh water, but never running dry. Their potential energy is constantly being converted to kinetic energy.
Yes, those that are saved are the last ones that will be boasting about their good works—all their good works came in and through the external force applied by the Holy Spirit. Jesus wants to plant His laws in our hearts and minds. “This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, saith the Lord, I will put My laws into their hearts, and in their minds will I write them.” Hebrews 10:16. And we recognize our dependence in Him. “God be merciful to me a sinner.” Luke 18:13
In conclusion, Divine Law dictates that when the Holy Spirit is living in the heart of the person, the individual will be led into the full truth (not into erroneous churches), they will be growing, they will be shining. “Pray that the mighty energies of the Holy Spirit, with all their quickening, recuperative, and transforming power, may fall like an electric shock on the palsy-stricken soul, causing every nerve to thrill with new life, restoring the whole man from his dead, earthly, sensual state to spiritual soundness. You will thus become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust; and in your souls will be reflected the image of Him by whose stripes you are healed.” –Testimonies for the Church, vol. 5, p. 267. Amen.