Paul discovered the principle that whenever he tried to do good, evil was present with him.
Have you ever realized that there is such a law?
If we do not try to do good, it seems that evil is not present. But it is a law that whenever we try to do good, the evil is present.
For example, if you do not try to be humble, pride will not seem to be present. But if you make up your mind to be humble, pride will be present with you.
Likewise, if you do not make up your mind not to lose your temper, your temper is not present.
But whenever you determine never to lose your temper again, your temper is present immediately.
This is “the law that.” This law has no commandments, only the principle that whenever we will to do good, evil is present.
Not many Christians, including the seeking Christians, know that there is such a law.
However, we all have been troubled by the fact that whenever we purpose to be patient, we fail.
Instead of being patient, we become angry.
In like manner, whenever we make up our mind to be humble, we end up being proud.
Before we were saved or when we were not diligent in seeking the Lord, we seemed to be doing rather well. Later, we learned that we should be a new person.
I was taught in this way. But the more I tried to live like a new person, the more the old person was present with me.
Then I was taught to reckon myself dead, and I practiced this teaching. However, the more I reckoned myself dead, the more living I became.
The more I tried to do good, the worse I was.
I believe that we all have experienced this.
When we were careless, we apparently were all right. But when we desired to do good to please the Lord, it seemed that our behavior became worse.
For example, a brother may say, “As a Christian who loves the Lord, I should not lose my temper with my wife or mistreat her. I will ask the Lord to help me in this matter.”
However, shortly afterward, this brother loses his temper with his wife.
The Wrong Button
I was bothered by matters like this for eight years, from 1925 until 1933.
During those years, there were many times when I could not eat or sleep well because I was troubled about my Christian life.
Some with this problem have even thought to stop being Christians and have said to themselves, “I don’t want to be a Christian any longer.
I was told that if I became a Christian, I would be happy. But now I am troubled every day. I want to be humble, but instead I am proud.”
Through this kind of experience I was exposed, unable to believe how evil I was.
Through reading the Bible and through my experience in the Christian life, I have found that there is a law operating in human beings that when we try to do good, evil is present.
When I discovered this law, I realized that I should not be so foolish as to keep on trying to do good.
Trying to do good is like pushing the button that causes evil to be present.
If you do not push the button, evil is not here. But if you push it, evil comes immediately, eager to work.
It was in 1933 that I first stopped pushing this button.
I found it difficult, however, to keep from pushing it, for I had been pushing it all my life.
Although I know better than to push this button, I must confess that sometimes I push it even now.
Probably you have pushed this button already today.
Maybe we shall not stop this completely until we are raptured or until we are in the New Jerusalem.
The Right Button
We all need to be reminded to push the right button, not the button which causes “the law that” to function.
Do not teach me to love my wife, for in my human life I simply cannot do so.
Instead, teach me to put my finger on the right button, the law of the Spirit of life.
If I do this, I shall love my wife spontaneously.
Likewise, do not teach the sisters to submit to their husbands. The more you teach them to do this, the less they will be able to submit.
Rather, teach them to press the right button, and they will submit to their husbands automatically.
The right button is in our spirit.
The Spirit witnesses with our spirit (8:16), and the button is the Spirit of God Himself.
Day by day and hour by hour, we must keep our finger on this button.
To do this is to have our mind set on the spirit and to walk according to the spirit.
Never take your finger off the button of the Spirit.
If you keep your finger on the button, you will be in the spirit, the Spirit will be life to you, and every negative thing will be put to death.
The secret to keeping our finger on the right button is to know that we have a human spirit and that the Spirit of life is in our spirit.
We need to turn our mind, our whole being, to the spirit and to set our mind there.
Then we shall walk according to the spirit. When we do this, all the negative things are spontaneously put to death, and we enjoy the divine life.
As we do this, the desire for good by the human life with its law of good is satisfied, and the requirements of the law of God are fulfilled.
Furthermore, the evil law of the satanic life is defeated.
All is a matter of law.
Do not try to love or to do good.
Instead, turn your being to your spirit and keep your finger on the right button, that is, on the Lord Himself, who is everything to us as the Spirit of life.
In this way you will enjoy Him, and you will live by the law of the Spirit of life.