God Does Not Change
We live in changing times, but that’s always been true. Society changes. Individuals change, sometimes for the better but also for the worse. It isn’t easy to put our trust in man because of this. It’s common to hear of adulterous relationships, leaving a heartbroken spouse and children. People can do horrible things to each other. We could easily list the ugliness perpetrated by individuals, but you get the idea. We’ve also experienced changes in our lives, some for good but some not so good.
Fortunately, God never changes.
Who He is right now is who He has always been and will be. All the attributes He had before the foundation of the world are the same today. His character and nature are always the same, and we certainly need this.
Many people endeavor to live good, moral lives, but it doesn’t appear there’s enough of them to make a difference. The news consistently reports society’s failures. If you think the world is chaos now, try imagining it without God.
Without God, the world’s inhabitants go from bad to worse! Even though God has given rock-solid morals by which men may prosper, the world continues its messy existence. To their demise, men won’t follow His word. Societies that move God out of their lives become dangerous places. We see the evil around us. Man becomes an animal by not heeding God’s words.
Man cannot live without God. Everyone should know that God has done something about the world’s plight – He’s sent Jesus to clean the mess men have made. He came to make a reconciliation between men and God. Jesus offers everything God would have for us. However, millions ignore Jesus. This results in the chaos we see today.
We are fortunate, though, that God is constant. He’s given us laws to live by, rules that are good for us. These laws are the same each day. God doesn’t provide a particular set of laws one day and changes them the next. We can always count on God to maintain His nature, and that’s a good thing! If we read the New Testament, we know what to do, how to live, and how to one day go home to heaven.
Can you imagine what it would be like if God were unhappy one day and happy the next? One day we might be living a joyous life, and the next, we might live in caves to escape His unhappiness. What if He became angry at the whole world, did away with all of us, and then said, “Oops. I shouldn’t have done that.”
We want a never-changing God. As His created beings, we need that. His disposition is constant. That’s not to say He doesn’t get angry, for He does, but He’s always consistent with how He handles anger and provides a way for men to be reconciled to Him. We can always be assured of His constancy. We stake our very existence on that.
God’s word doesn’t change. His words do not change what He said in the Old Testament was valid for the covenant people of that day. His message today in the New Testament is the unfolding of the plan of salvation through Jesus. Men must believe that word and act on it. Eternal loss is sure for those who don’t.
God states what is required for salvation. The requirements apply to everyone. His plan for our salvation cannot be denied or ignored, changed, added to, or deleted. No one can argue with God about salvation’s requirements.
Many falsely believe “faith only” saves. That’s not true; by His word, that isn’t true, James 2:20, NASB. Some say, “O Lord, I am a sinner. Please come into my heart and save me right now.” That’s nowhere in the Bible. Others say, “Salvation is by grace alone, and man can do nothing for salvation, else it becomes a work and not grace.” Well, that’s not in the Bible either. People often give gifts based on criteria—in the case of salvation, man must meet God’s requirements for redemption, Hebrews 5:9, NASB. To be clear, salvation is conditional. If one does not believe, he is lost, John 8:24, NASB. That’s certainly a condition. Ignore that, and the consequences are tortuous!
Jesus calls faith a “work” in John 6:29, NASB. James 2:20, NASB states that faith without works is foolish. Then, James 2:21-22, NASB follows: “Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered up Isaac his son on the altar?” The 23rd verse claims that Abraham was justified by his faith. We see that his offering of Isaac was something he did. James states that a man is justified by works, not faith alone, James 2:24, NASB. God’s word hasn’t changed, but man’s ideas about salvation have changed several times over the centuries.
Even before the world was created, God knew men would sin. The Bible is clear about what happens to people who do not repent. Because of their sin, they will one day be judged to eternal punishment, Mark 9:43-48, NASB. However, God does not want a single soul in hell, 2 Peter 3:9.
He planned to send Jesus one day for man’s redemption before the earth was created, Ephesians 1:3-14, NASB. God’s moral justice needed a result if men were to be saved. Jesus became the perfect answer for that. It was Jesus that substituted His death for our death. The Bible states, in Romans 6:23, NASB, that anyone guilty of sin deserves death, but Jesus died in our place. He substituted His death for ours.
One must follow the pattern for salvation as offered through Jesus. One must believe, repent, confess his belief in Jesus, and be baptized to remove sin from our soul. This is the way God graciously offers salvation to everyone. It’s repeated in various ways throughout Acts and the Epistles.
To understand all this in a short sentence from God – “So will My word be which goes forth from My mouth; It will not return to Me empty, Without accomplishing what I desire, And without succeeding in the matter for which I sent it,” Isaiah 55:11, NASB. His words will never change. People have been saved this way for over 2,000 years.
God’s purposes never change.
He has been unfolding the gift of Jesus Christ since Adam and Eve, even before the world began, Ephesians 1:3-4, NASB. It may seem incomprehensible to us how He works this, but His way is always right and always best. We may not see Him moving from Point A to Point B, but that’s what He’s done. God has worked through Adam, Noah, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, the Hebrews, Jesus, the church, the apostles, and the preachers. In each step, He was bringing salvation closer to realization to its fullness today.
God’s great purpose is that man is redeemed through Jesus. A second purpose is that all who are saved live righteously before Him. Will we be perfect in this? No, but as long we do not practice sin, we may be forgiven, 1 John 1:7-9, NASB.
Thirdly, He has a purpose for the church belonging to Jesus; the inspired word of God calls it the church of Christ, Romans 16:16, NASB. The saved are in Jesus’ church. God accepts worship from the church, and the church carries out God’s mission for evangelism, benevolence, and edification.
Everyone must know that Jesus will judge all men on the last day, Acts 17:31, NASB. That’s also God’s plan and purpose. The saved have a home in heaven. The lost have a place in hell.
God is always busy. He never sleeps. He’s always bringing about His purposes. One way or another, we are caught up in His plan of salvation, some to hell and the rest to heaven.