KEY SCRIPTURE Psalm 19:7 The law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul: the testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple.
RELEVANCE I was talking to a person a few days ago, who told me about a book he read on why God added pain to the human being?
It was really interesting. But, as he spoke, my immediate thought was how similar it is to the Law of God. Not the ceremonial Law of the Priesthood (killing lambs, etc), but the moral/civil side of the Law—the ten commandments, the case laws of Exodus 21, 22, 23, the myriad of civil and moral codes sprinkled throughout Exodus—Deuteronomy. We do not obtain salvation through keeping these laws, as that comes exclusively by grace through faith. But they shows us what Godly and ungodly behaviours are. Pain is so important to our wellbeing. We walk to the car's rear and hit our knee on the tow bar. PAIN!! We are more cautious next time, or we remove the hazard. We're cutting vegetables in the kitchen and slice our finger. Ouch! Next time, we use the correct slicer. We lean our hand on the fireplace and burn our palm. Days later, we can still feel it. We don't do that again. We accidentally step on broken glass. Without pain, we would simply bleed out until we realised or fainted. It's fairly obvious that God added nerves and the feeling of pain to stop us from damaging ourselves and/or dying. Now, imagine leaning on the fireplace and not feeling pain. Our hand would burn until the smell arose in our nostrils. By then, our palm would have been rendered inflexible and useless after a single incident. Pain converts us. It stops us from doing something perilous to the body more than once. Because we are living humans we feel pain immediately. Using the Law of the Lord as God expects does the same thing. Like pain, it convinces us to change our behaviour—to avoid further danger. When we're in tune with the Spirit, we feel the pain of sin immediately. But only if we know that what we did was a sin. The Law shows us that. The Apostle Paul said in Romans 7:7 "...I had not known sin, but by the law: for I had not known lust, except the law had said, Thou shalt not covet." Paul, unlike many of us, understood the reason for the Law. It convinced him of his folly and changed his behaviour. Like a child learning about fire, it taught him right and wrong and what he should do to protect himself from risks. WHAT IF WE READ THE LAW BUT DON'T CHANGE OUR BEHAVIOUR? We think only a fool would place his hand on a fireplace twice. When we don't take notice of God's advice, we become those who look in the mirror and see their faults, then turn away without dealing with them. They remain with the same flaws and sins, sometimes for many years still thinking they're okay. All the while calling themselves Christians. Do you think that's right? The Law is not dead in our New Testament world, as taught in some institutions. It is living and vital to guide us into the rights and wrongs of the Christian life and to keep us safe in God. PRAYER Dear Lord, thank you for adding pain and nerves to my body. I don't like it when I hurt myself, but I'm grateful you care enough about my body and life to include warning signals for both.
Photo by Towfiqu Barbhuiya