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Shmuel states: The law of the government is the law (even according to our law).
The Gemora in Shabbos (88a) teaches that when Bnei Yisroel stood at Mount Sinai and heard the word of Hashem, He held the mountain over our heads. Hashem declared, “If you’ll accept the Torah, all will be well. If not, this will be your burial place!” Rav Acha bar Yaakov said: This can now be used as an excuse for Klal Yisroel when they do not perform the mitzvos. For when they are summoned for judgment, they can claim that they were coerced into accepting the Torah; it was not done willingly.
The Perashas Derachim asks from our Gemora which states that the law of the kingdom is the law. If so, this should certainly apply by The Holy One blessed is He, Who is the King of all Kings. How could Klal Yisroel use the coercion as an excuse? The law of the kingdom is the law, and they took an oath obligating themselves to perform His mitzvos!
He answers that Rabbeinu Tam holds that the principle of the law of the kingdom is the law is only applicable if the king decrees on all his subjects. However, if the decree is issued only on part of his kingdom, this principle does not apply. Since Hashem is the King over all the nations of the world and He only forced Bnei Yisroel to accept His mitzvos, this principle would not apply and hence, a claim of coercion can be effective.
It emerges that regarding the seven mitzvos that were given to all Bnei Noach, the principle of the law of the kingdom is the law would apply, and a claim of coercion would not be valid.
According to this, the Ketzos HaChoshen explains the argument between Pharaoh and the midwives. Pharaoh asked them, “Why didn’t you listen to my commandment? The law of the kingdom is the law and since I the king decreed that all the Jewish children should be killed, you are obligated to listen to me!” They responded to him, “Your decree is not a universal one; it was only issued regarding the Jewish children and not to any others. Accordingly, the principle does not apply and we are not obligated to adhere to the laws of the kingdom. Thereupon, Pharaoh immediately decreed that all children born must be thrown into the sea.
Reb Shlomo Kluger uses this principle to explain Adam HaRishon’s response to Hashem. He answered, “The woman that you gave to me gave me from the tree and I ate.” What kind of answer was this? Adam HaRishon was saying that since his was wife was here as well and she was not commanded not to eat from the tree. Therefore, the law of the kingdom does not apply and that is why he ate.