by Ernest O'Neill
Have you ever had to live for a month in a room that lacks the conveniences or orderliness that you are used to? Isn't it uncanny how you adapt so well to your situation that the end of the month finds you much less irritated by the things you missed than the beginning? This is because we human beings have been given a remarkable ability to adapt to inferior surroundings when we have to.
This is what we have done in regard to the present life we now live here on earth. The Maker of the universe intended us to live in a close personal relationship with him that would impart to us His insight into the functioning of our own personalities and the world itself. We rejected that gift in order to do what we wanted with ourselves and the world. He thereupon withdrew access to this superhuman life and we steadily deteriorated until we ended up with the impaired minds, unbalanced emotions, and weakened wills that hamper our lives today. However, we used the gift of adaptability that we had to make this "deteriorated" life bearable. We have created such a complete, "alternative" life-support system that billions of us today fail to realize that our present life is a huge "second-best". This then was the first great need after the human "fall" thousands of years ago--our Maker had to make us aware that "there was something rotten in the state of Denmark"--that something was not as it was meant to be.
Origin of Law
This was why the first murderer in human history was given a visible mark and became a fear?ridden fugitive in Genesis 4:8-16. Our maker wanted us to realize that a better life was possible than the one we were adapting to. We were not made to kill each other or be angry with each other or be jealous of each other. So, our maker began to outline the way normal "superhuman" life would operate--through the early centuries He set out the "laws" of this life. Just as the 'law of gravity' describes the normal behaviour of heavier-than-air objects, so these "laws of God" describe the behaviour of humans who live off superhuman life. These were first expressed in a written form about 1400 B.C. One copy of them is found in Exodus 20. People who live in a close personal relationship of trust to the maker of the universe will not steal (because they trust the Creator's plan for provision of their needs). They will not kill (because they depend on their Creator and not on their own ability for their safety). They will not worship stone idols (because they know the real God who made them and the earth).
Origin of Moralism
But we all know what we human beings have done with these "laws". We have made it our goal to live up to these laws of superhuman life--using only the "human" life that they are meant to expose! Then when we have failed to do that, we have used our failure as proof that there is no God and that all such idealism is unrealistic. So, our Maker is faced with a world-full of humans who not only accustom themselves to an inferior life-power but try to use that life-power to measure up to the descriptions He has given of the real, superhuman life He has available for them.
Real Purpose of the Law
Most religions, including that of non-christian Christendom, have adopted this moralistic purpose as their raison d'etre. The aim is to prove to the Maker that they have superhuman life because they can imitate some of its characteristics through their purely human life. They never can, of course, so they end up in constant frustration and guilt. The "laws" of superhuman life were revealed to mankind by the Creator to convince them that they were missing a super-life that He could make available to them again. The law therefore is a diagnostic tool to convince us that we lack what we were originally intended to possess: it is a list of "symptoms" of health with which we are meant to diagnose our sickness. Instead, we behave like cancer patients who try to rouge their cheeks and pad their bodies to disguise the symptoms of their disease.
The Human Response to the Law
Nevertheless, for fifteen hundred years the Creator used the nation of Israel as a living, practical illustration of the fact that we humans could not reproduce the advanced characteristics of His original, superhuman life with the deteriorated human life we possess. Those fifteen hundred years tell a story of repeated human "trying hard" when what is needed is superhuman power. It's a story of people trying to be like the Creator without the Creator's life--and this independence and misuse of the laws of God is known as sin. Paradoxically, sin itself is not immorality but morality attempted without superhuman life. Thus, we have taken the Maker's diagnostic tool and turned it into a sledge-hammer with which to batter ourselves senseless. The law, which was intended as a way to show us what we were missing, has been perverted into something else we try to do without God. The marks of superhuman life have been rationalized into a way of improving ordinary, human life.
Acceptance of a true diagnosis is the first big step towards health. Let's look together in the next article at some of the marks of superhuman life that may help you to take your first step.
Read Superhuman Life No. 20
Return to Table of Contents
Return to Home Page