The Laws of Nature
The Bible begins with this colossal declaration: “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.” The implications of this truth are immense and practically inconceivable. In the beginning God created everything.
In six days, God made everything we see and everything we don’t see. He made the world and all of the invisible attributes of creation that make our world what it is. He created light but also the entire spectrum of electromagnetic energy. He created the earth, but he also established the balance and symmetry in the universe that allow the earth to experience night and day and the changing of seasons. He created fish, birds, mammals, and microorganisms, but he also created in these creatures the instincts and life cycles that keep the entire natural world in perfect balance. He created atoms and elements but also fashioned the energy and nuclear forces that hold the universe together.
The nature and existence of the physical world depends entirely on the invisible attribute of creation. Secular science has described several of these attributes as laws of nature. These include the law of conservation of energy, the law of conservation of mass, the law of inertia, the law of entropy, and the law of gravity. It is these laws that provide order, logic, and sustainability in the natural world. They have been woven into the fabric of the universe from the very beginning.
The Nature of Natural Laws So what makes these principles a “law of nature”? Here are a few general observations:
They always have been and always will be. In other words, they do not change, and if they did, the universe would cease to exist in its present form.
They exist without human observation. A law of nature is a law regardless of whether or not it has been described or identified as such.
They can be resisted but never changed. Consider the law of gravity – I can resist and even act as though it doesn’t exist, but its influence on me and the universe will remain unchanged.
They are universally true. Laws of nature are equally true everywhere in every situation.
Supernatural Laws of Nature Are the laws of nature defined by secular science the only natural laws? Of course not. Natural laws do not pertain only to the natural world – some exist for the supernatural world. Certain laws implemented by God at the creation were implanted to serve a more spiritual purpose. The Bible describes many laws that have been purposely programmed into this world by God to satisfy the spiritual needs of his creation.
The Human Conscience Every human being born into the world with a rational mind is imbued with an inherent knowledge of God and sense of moral justice – the Bible calls this the law of the conscience.
In Romans 2:14-15 the Apostle Paul explains how Gentiles uneducated in the Mosaic Law still practiced the moral elements of the law.
“when Gentiles, who do not have the law, by nature do the things in the law, these, although not having the law, are a law to themselves, who show the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness, and between themselves their thoughts accusing or else excusing them”
Why is this a law of nature? Like all natural laws, this law exists to define the nature of our existence. The law of the conscience embedded in every human mind puts in us a natural sense of morality and justice, without which the world would be in chaos. While the lusts of the flesh draw us away from God, the impulses of the human conscience draw us back.
Heterosexual Marriages This natural law hardly needs explaining. Marriage is an institution created, consecrated, and defined by God as the union of one man and one woman. This is the nature of the creation. To pervert this design through pursuit of homosexual relationships is against nature. Paul explains this in view of the carnal relationships of the Gentiles. The Gentiles rejected the truth of God, therefore, Paul explains:
“God gave them up to vile passions. For even their women exchanged the natural use for what is against nature. Likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust for one another, men with men committing what is shameful, and receiving in themselves the penalty of their error which was due” (Romans 1:26-27).
Why is this a law of nature? Besides the fact that homosexuality is condemned by God (1 Corinthians 6:9), nature tells us it’s unnatural. It’s “against nature.” Homosexuality opposes the natural course of procreation. In fact, the Bible explains that His design for human unions (heterosexual monogamous marriages) is the ideal mechanism for reproducing and rearing children: Malachi 2:15,“Did he not make them one, with a portion of the Spirit in their union? And what was the one God seeking? Godly offspring.”
Like other laws of nature, humanity can act as though this law doesn’t exist, but it can’t make it go away. Heterosexual marriages will always be the only natural course of procreation and the only kind of union condoned by God.
Gender Distinctions Perhaps as a part of the law of the conscience, the Apostle Paul introduces another law of nature in 1 Corinthians 11:14-15: “Does not even nature itself teach you that if a man has long hair, it is a dishonor to him? But if a woman has long hair, it is a glory to her; for her hair is given to her for a covering.” Have you ever wondered why a woman with short hair looks a little unnatural? Or why a man with long hair seems somewhat strange? Even after generations of cultural conditioning that would convince us otherwise, short hair still makes the most sense on a man, and long hair makes more sense on a woman. This is no accident. It’s natural and it’s an instinct given by God.
Why is this a law of nature? As already discussed, heterosexual relationships are an essential staple of all creation, and this passage emphasizes this necessity. We should see the differences between genders. Distinctions between genders must be maintained for numerous reasons – normal reproduction, successful churches, successful families, etc. The visible distinction between men and women is embedded into our collective human conscience so as to confirm and clarify the larger more significant distinctions between the genders.
Conclusions What would the world look like without these natural laws? What if we had no conscience? What if we had no inclination towards heterosexual relationships? What if God didn’t define the differences between the genders? This world would be like one without gravity – there would be no world at all. These laws sustain the human race and point us toward our redemption. God’s laws are for our good.