A God Who Never Changes
Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change. -James 1:17
The immutability of God is the attribute of the unchanging nature of God over time or the inability of Him to change. This attribute stands true to the character of God and I believe that by studying it we can come to deeper knowledge of who He is and of His worthiness. Recognizing the unchanging nature of God shows us more of His beauty and glory. Psalm 102:27 states, “…but you are the same, and your years have no end.” We can take great comfort and security in the knowledge that the God we worship is always the same, regardless of how we are feeling or how terrible our circumstances may seem. While our feelings fluctuate and the seasons of life we go through change, we can hold fast to the knowledge that our God remains the same. We see this truth throughout the whole story of scripture as it is essential for us to realize that the God of the Old Testament is the same God we serve today. He has not changed, nor has His power diminished. He is the same and He is good, just as He was yesterday, today, and forevermore.
Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever. -Hebrews 13:8
The beauty of the Lord’s immutability has become extremely real and important to me over these last couple of weeks. I was driving a few weeks ago in Charlotte, North Carolina when I was in a very serious car accident. In short, my car ended up flipping on the interstate while I was going about sixty miles per hour. Thankfully, by God’s grace alone, I was left without much more than a scratch. However, the Lord has used this experience to teach me more of how He is unlike me in His unchanging nature. Amidst my sheer fear, anxiety and panic, I was given the peace and assurance that the Lord never changed throughout this chaotic experience. He did not change, and neither did His plan or purpose for my life. Although I was uncertain of the outcome and filled with fear, the steadfastness of the Lord and His faithfulness remained the same.
Throughout the next few days, I was reminded of God’s steadfast and unchanging faithfulness again and again. I held on firmly to Psalm 62:2 which reads, “When my heart is faint, lead me to the Rock that is higher than I.” I let this verse be my prayer and I encourage you all to do the same. Cling on to Him, for He is your rock and this is a comfort we have as believers. Life is bound to change and it will change, people will come and go, uncertain situations will arise but the truths of scripture and the nature of God will never change! He is our one and only constant in life.
Let us find encouragement in the fact that our God is the one who is immutable in spite of the fact that we are not. In our sin and our reoccurring struggles, God’s immutability is like a breath of fresh air to us. Jen Wilkin encouragingly sums up this attribute by saying, “Just as my assurance of salvation rests in the fact that God cannot change, my hope of sanctification rests in the fact that I can.”
In contrast, immutability is a characteristic and trait that no human will be able attribute to themselves. Yes, God is unchangeable, but we are not, and praise the Lord for that! As we come to understand the unchanging nature of God we are comforted in the fact that He is refining and changing us day by day. When you feel stuck in the same sin patterns in your life grasp on to this certainty, and take heart, the Lord is shaping you to be more like Christ. As the message of the gospel stands secure, let us be assured that His work in our lives is not over. His work continues as Christ draws us closer to Himself and continues to mold our hearts.
I think All Sons & Daughters sum it up perfectly in their song Rest In You as they sing, “You cannot change, yet you change everything.” Praise be to God that He does not change, but in Christ He so graciously invites us to be changed and transformed more into the image of His son.
Photo by Jake Maddox