Sunday, November 3, 2013

GCHEM Devotional 2

A lot of the ideas in this devotional came from my ENGL 101 class...I hope it makes sense even to those who were not in the class. :) Blessings!

          Since childhood, I’ve loved playing with magnets. When I was six, my mom bought me a magnet set, and soon I was deep into my own childlike experiments. How close could the negative end of a magnet get to a positive end without them colliding? Why did a magnet run away when I pointed the positive end of my magnet wand toward its positive end? Attraction and repulsion were my playmates, and any magnetic metal was my toy. I would try to wrestle two positive magnets together for hours, but I could never overcome the force that drove them apart.
            Similar attraction and repulsion powers go on in everything around us. Atoms, the building blocks of our world, are made up of three main particles: positive protons, neutral neutrons, and negative electrons. Knowing this, one would assume that the positive protons and negative electrons would be attracted to each other and balance each other out. J. J. Thomson even made a model in which he pictured “small electrons to be embedded in the atom much like raisins in a pudding or seeds in a watermelon.”1 However, a scientist named Rutherford made a surprising discovery: “The results from Rutherford’s experiment were astounding…The only model of the atom consistent with this Rutherford experiment is that a small central core (the nucleus) houses the positive charge and most of the mass of the atom, while the majority of the atom’s volume contains discrete electrons orbiting about the central nucleus.”2
            Although science still has much to learn about the atom, the mystery of the nucleus was greatly unveiled by Rutherford’s work. Since then, scientists have discovered the “strong force,” which holds the nucleus together. Nuclear particles interact “through the strong, short range nuclear force, which is responsible for the binding of these particles in atomic nuclei.”3
            This holding together of opposing forces by a single strong force can also be seen in the spiritual realm. The protons are truth, and Christ is the strong force that holds it together. Just as two true protons repel each other, opposing truths repel each other while both remaining true. “Truth is by nature paradoxical; that is, it always contains balancing principles.”4 Examples of these dipolar truths are: the invisible vs. the visible, abstract vs. concrete, and subjective vs. objective.  Specific dipolarities are God’s hatred of sin and love of sinners, His unending grace and immutable law, and Christ’s simultaneous complete divinity and complete humanity.
            Yet, in Christ’s embodiment of humanity and divinity, we see truth lived out. He says, “I am the way, the truth, and the life…”5 Satan has tried to twist the truth and place God’s character traits of grace and justice against each other, but Christ came to rejoin those truths: “Satan represents God’s law of love as a law of selfishness. He declares that it is impossible for us to obey its precepts. The fall of our first parents, with all the woe that has resulted, he charges upon the Creator, leading men to look upon God as the author of sin, and suffering, and death. Jesus was to unveil this deception. As one of us He was to give an example of obedience…As He went about doing good, and healing all who were afflicted by Satan, He made plain to men the character of God’s law and the nature of His service. His life testifies that it is possible for us also to obey the law of God.6
            Through a loving life of perfect obedience to God’s law, Christ holds together the “protons” of God’s grace and law. Not only that, but “by His humanity, Christ touched humanity; by His divinity, He lays hold upon the throne of God. As the Son of man, He gave us an example of obedience; as the Son of God, He gives us power to obey.”7 Through Christ, truth is unified, and through Truth, I am set free. 8

                        1 Brown L. Theodore, H. Eugene LeMay Jr, Bruce E. Bursten Catherine J. Murphy, and Patrick Woodward, Chemistry: The Central Science, 11th ed. (Upper Saddle River: Pearson Education Inc, 2009), 11
                        2 “The Atomic Nucleus,” Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. accessed September 9, 2013,
                        3 Chew, Geoffrey F, Murray Gell-Mann, and Arthur H. Rosenfeld, “Strongly Interacting Particles,” Santa Fe Institute, accessed September 9, 2013,
                        4 A. Leroy Moore, Adventist Cultures in Conflict (Michigan: Moore Publishing, 2009), 11.
                        5 John 14:6 (King James Version).
                        6 Ellen G. White, The Desire of Ages (Nampa: Pacific Press, 2005), 24.2.
                        7 Ellen G. White, The Desire of Ages (Nampa: Pacific Press, 2005), 24.3. 

            8 John 8:32 (King James Version).

1 comment:

  1. This wonderful magnet devotional, despite some technical speech :) reminded me of Colossians 1:17: “He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together.” Thanks for the lesson and the blessing!