Romans 7:18-25 (NIV)
Where an action takes place, it is met with an equal and opposite reaction. If you are moving in a forward direction, wanting to do something pleasing to God, you will experience a sinful reaction.
That is what Paul was describing in Romans. He wanted to do something good, but he was experiencing an equal and opposite sinful action. You may relate to this, you want to restore a relationship, but then you remember how that person hurt your feelings.
In order to avoid the reaction, we would no longer need an action in the first place. Inaction is the answer. You decide not to do anything. That is not the correct attitude.
The law of inertia = an object that is in rest stays in rest, an object in motion stays in motion unless there is a force that causes the direction to change.
This could be applied to our spiritual life by thinking as ourselves of objects in motion. We will continue to stay in this motion forever. In Romans 7, it says sinful nature is the force in our lives. Sin already lives in us, although we try to do good, the evil is right there with us. The law of sin is already at work within us at birth. We are in a nonstop motion of sin. We don’t need to learn, or make an effort to be sinful. If we stay inactive, we will bear sinful fruit.
Inaction can’t be the answer because there is a force already working in our lives. If we decide to do nothing, applying the law of motion, we will continue to move in a sinful action. The Bible says the wages of sin is death. That is the destination if we continue in this sinful way. Death does not just refer to physical death but also the absence of God in our lives.
As the law of inertia states, an object in motion stays in motion UNLESS there is an intervention of another force. Something that will stop us from continuing in this direction. The intervention we need is God’s unfailing love; God’s compassion towards us. As Paul said, thanks be to God who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord. That is what we need in our lives.
To apply this to our lives… we all have an inherent sinful nature. That power of sinful nature drags you in the direction of death whether you want to be taken there or not. What we need is God’s intervention in our life. He wants to rescue us, he wants us to stop moving in that direction. Through his unfailing love and compassion, we have hope.
In last week’s message, we talked about how there is a reaction that meets our actions. Divine action causes sinful reaction. When we try to do good things and experience the opposite result, we will be discouraged. We may be tempted to not do anything. If we think divine action comes first, and sinful reaction comes second we will remain discouraged.
However, if we shift our mindset and think the first action is sinful nature, then the reaction is God’s divine reaction. It is not us who commit evil things in our lives, but our divine God reacts, helps us and reaches us. The order of the action and reaction has changed, and we can always be encouraged. We may want to do something sinful, and God will come and intervene. We will be met with God’s divine, holy intervention.
Jessica’s Reflection: This was a much needed reminder of God’s love for me. I often feel very undeserving because as much as He is good, I do not reciprocate in my actions, thoughts, intentions, etc. I know that there are often times that God is intervening for me, and I don’t even realize it. When I think about how God is there to protect and rescue me, it always gives me hope.
Can you share a time that you were headed in the wrong direction and felt God’s divine intervention?