Newton’s third law of motion states:
For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.
He was, of course talking about physics and forces; the push-pull concept. What goes up must come down.
When humans are involved the reaction is not always equal. Sometimes we feel the consequence for action is too severe. Other times our reaction to the actions of someone else is extreme. When emotions get involved our instantaneous reactions can be so severe we wish we could take them back. We even find consequences to our reactions!
However, consequences are not always bad.
In the gospels we find a list of consequences in what we know as the Sermon on the Mount:
1. When we are poor in spirit,
we gain the kingdom of heaven.
As we become more interested in holiness – in what the Holy Spirit desires for us we will be rewarded with eternity in God’s perfect Heaven.
2. When we mourn,
we will be comforted.
God’s heart breaks for us when we mourn. Not only when bad things happen in our lives, but when we mourn over our wrong attitudes and actions, or when we mourn for others’ misfortune and a world that doesn’t know the love of God. He will comfort us and strengthen us to go on and shows us how we can make a difference in our world.
3. When we are meek,
we will inherit the earth.
Our society would have us believe that the strongest and most forceful people are the most influential and will go the farthest in this world. That is the opposite of God’s plan. As we follow Jesus’ example of being meek and putting the needs of others ahead of our own desires we will gain influence that money can’t buy not only in God’s kingdom but here on earth as well.
4. When we hunger and thirst for righteousness,
we will be filled.
It is the desire of God’s heart for us to be like Him. When we desire honesty, integrity and goodness we will be filled with blessings beyond measure. As it says in Luke 6:38:
Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.
5. When we are merciful,
we will be shown mercy.
Our human tendencies are to treat others the way we are treated – to do unto others the way they do to us. But God’s kingdom is the opposite of this. Matthew 7:12 tells us:
So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you…
Showing mercy, not retaliation is God’s desire for us. As we show mercy to others we will be shown mercy and goodness in return.
6. When we are pure in heart,
we will see God.
Ah to be pure in heart all the time. I long to never think the wrong think or act or speak badly towards anyone. While that is my desire sin gets in the way. But when the desire of our hearts is to be pure and when we come before the Lord with confession, repentance and crave His will in our lives we will see all that He has for us and will be rewarded with a glimpse of His kingdom.
7. When we act as peacemakers,
we will be called children of God.
Holding our tongues, allowing someone else to have their way, being the neutral buffer in the middle of a disagreement – all of these things help keep the peace. People will notice when we are peaceful in the middle of a tumultuous world and ask us about our actions. Then we can point others to God, our Father and perhaps see them become children of God as well.
8. When we are persecuted because of righteousness,
we are given the kingdom of heaven.
No one likes to be made fun of for being different. When we act righteous in a world where people revel in sinful ways we most likely will be. In extreme cases persecution may even lead to death. We may not see the reward for living right here on earth but one day will be given the reward of the kingdom of Heaven.
This is a tall order, a list we cannot achieve on our own. But through the Spirit of God and His power we will see glimpses of perfection and the consequences will always be positive!
Blessings and peace to you,