If you just give your math teacher the correct answer for a problem they are not really too impressed, in fact, they will probably assume you cheated. Likewise, God is interested in much more than you giving Him the right answer, He wants to see how you got there. He wants to see you work out your salvation with fear and trembling1. That includes both the good things and the mistakes you make because God knows the process you go through to get the answer and He knows that process will make you eternally faithful to Him. The key is staying connected to God through it all.
I’m sure you realize that the very first rebellion that ever took place involved a creature named Lucifer who was sinless. He created sin from his own mind alone, there were no outside temptations he could blame it on. God doesn’t want that to ever happen again. The hard work and problems that happen in your life are a type of proof, it produces a strong fortitude that ensures you won’t rebel from God someday along that infinite timeline called the eternal future.
Most math problems involve two sides to the equation. I suppose you could have an equation where y equals something really complicated all on one side, but a good math teacher will give you two sides to work with. Well, God is a really good math teacher. You will see different variables on both sides of the equation and you will have to deal with them in order to come up with the answer. One side of the equation involves kindness, gratitude, love and the other side of the equation involves developing good judgment, righteousness, and knowledge that helps you become holy like God. Everyone, even those that don’t know God appreciate kindness, warmth, and the goodness of God. These things lead us to repentance2.
But the other side of the equation is very important. These are things like holiness, pure thinking, and honesty that can keep us from falling into traps of the devil. However, these variables are prone to mishandling if we only use them to judge others and not what they are intended for, which is to judge ourselves, we get into trouble. To say something is governed by law means that something is regulated by a constraint – usually, an equals sign separating various relationships. God even submits himself to spiritual legal constraints. If you want to find out more about the legal nature of life see my post The Spiritual – Legal Realm.
We want to become more like God in as many ways as we possibly can. We pray that the world would not fall off a cliff into a very bad place that is hard to get out of. That is where the world is at right now. The promises of God are not fatalistic they involve us participating with Him. We choose to pray and be obedient to God so we can qualify for becoming the hands and feet of Jesus. God gives us a once in a lifetime opportunity in this life to help Him accomplish the mission of reconciling this hurting world back to Himself. We use the right side of the equation with its love and peace as powerful forces that will never be diminished or cheat the left side of the equation from its purpose.
Of course, most of God’s math problems can be solved using a different order of steps which is simply because God loves to see his children tackling problems with creativity. We have been given a variety of gifts that allows us to work a problem in different ways. God gives us many quizzes along the way. We get unit tests and midterms and someday we will stand before Jesus himself and get a final exam. As a well-known writer in the United States, Rick Joyner, has said, none of us are going to make it off this planet without being tested.
If you are interested in relating popular themes in life to the Bible, such as this math metaphor essay you will find many more on this website under the category Prophetic Media which is at the bottom of the page along with the search box or click here: Prophetic Media
- Philippians 2:12
- Romans 2:4