The Laws of the Divine Providence
Introduction: The First Three Chapters
- The heavens recount the glory of God,
And the expanse tells the work of His hands.
- Day unto day utters a saying,
And night unto night shows knowledge.
- There is no saying and there are no words
Without their voice being heard.
- Their line has gone out into all the earth,
And their statement into the end of the world.
In them He has set a tent for the sun,
- And He, as a bridegroom going out from His chamber,
Has joy as a hero to run the path.
- From the end of the heavens is His going out,
And His circuit upon the ends of them;
And there is nothing hidden from His heat.
The First Three Chapters of Divine Providence:
- Divine Providence is the Government of the Lord’s Divine Love and Wisdom.
- The Lord’s Divine Providence has as its end a heaven from the human race.
- The Lord’s Divine Providence looks to what is infinite and eternal in everything it does.
From Divine Providence
THE DIVINE PROVIDENCE IS THE GOVERNMENT OF THE DIVINE LOVE AND WISDOM OF THE LORD.
DP 1. In order that it may be understood what the Divine Providence is, and that it may be seen to be the government of the Lord’s Divine Love and Wisdom, it is important that the propositions which have been advanced and illustrated concerning the Divine Love and Wisdom in the treatise on these subjects should be known. They are as follows:
- In the Lord the Divine Love [belongs] to the Divine Wisdom, and the Divine Wisdom [belongs] to the Divine Love (n. 34-39).
- The Divine Love and Wisdom cannot help but be and come forth in others created by themselves (n. 47-51).
- All things in the universe were created by the Divine Love and Wisdom (n. 52, 53, 151-156).
- All things in the universe are recipients of the Divine Love and Wisdom (n. 54-60).
- The Lord appears before the angels as a Sun, and the heat proceeding from it is Love and the light proceeding from it is Wisdom (n. 83-88, 89-92, 93-98, 296-301).
- The Divine Love and Wisdom which proceed from the Lord make one (n. 99-102).
- The Lord from eternity, who is Jehovah, created the universe and all things in it from Himself, and not from nothing (n. 282-284, 290-295).
These propositions are set forth in the treatise entitled Angelic Wisdom Concerning the Divine Love and Wisdom.
DP 2. ...However, as in that work creation itself was discussed and not the preservation of the state of things after creation, which is the Lord’s government, we shall now take up this subject. We shall consider in this section the preservation of the union of the Divine Love and the Divine Wisdom, or of the Divine Good and the Divine Truth, in the things that were created; and we shall speak of these in the following order:
- The universe, with all things in general and in particular in it, was created from the Divine Love by means of the Divine Wisdom.
- The Divine Love and the Divine Wisdom proceed from the Lord as one.
- This one is in a certain manner imaged in every created thing.
- It is of the Divine Providence that every created thing, both as a whole and in part, should be such a one; and if it is not, that it should become so.
- The good of love is not good except so far as it is united to the truth of wisdom; and the truth of wisdom is not truth except so far as it is united to the good of love.
- The good of love not united to the truth of wisdom is not good in itself, but only apparent good; and the truth of wisdom not united to the good of love is not truth in itself, but only apparent truth.
- The Lord does not allow anything to be divided. Therefore it must be either in good and at the same time in truth, or in evil and at the same time in falsity.
- That which is in good and at the same time in truth is real; and that which is in evil and at the same time in falsity is not real.
- The Divine Providence of the Lord causes what is evil and at the same time false to serve for equilibrium, relation and purification, and so for the union of good and truth in others.
Questions and Comments
- How wonderful that the universe, and we in it, are governed by Divine Love and Wisdom! What are some competing theories about the universe that are popular either among the learned or in common culture?
- The Lord’s love and wisdom cannot help but do something for and with others. What does this teach us about truly human nature?
- How does it help us to know that the Lord appears as the Sun of heaven, pouring love and wisdom and thus life into all the universe? What if we did not know this?
- Providence is concerned with the preservation of the universe, or its continual re-creation. Compare parents caring for their children.
- Providence is concerned with preserving the union of love with wisdom in created things. The Lord wants all of us to be one in Him. (See John 17.)
- What is an illustration that love is not love without wisdom? And what is an example of how wisdom is not wisdom without love?
- If evil and falsity are not real, why do they seem to have such an impact on us?