Logically, we know that God cannot change. It cannot be limited to His ethical nature or to His love, and, while it is true that these incommunicable attributes are revealed with especial richness in God's saving activity, they cannot be limited to marks of God's saving action or purpose. The phrase “do not change” is from the Hebrew shanah lo’, meaning God does not need to “repeat” (or “do a second time”). His righteousness is as immutable as mountains (Psalms 36:6)); and His power also is unchangeable (Isaiah 26:4). The unchangeablehess or immutability of God is that divine attribute which expresses the truth that in His nature and perfections, in His knowledge, will and purpose, He always remains the same in the fullness of His infinite and perfect Being; infinitely exalted above change, becoming and development, which are the specific characteristics of all finite existence. This way of conceiving of God, which is the error of Rationalism, Socinianism and Arminianism, is as unscriptural as that which conceives of God as abstract Being, unknowable, and entirely out of relation to the world. God shows this when He gives us salvation in Christ, which we do not deserve. This follows from His unchangeable ethical nature. And frankly that … Unchangeable definition is - not changing or to be changed : immutable. Third, this unchangeableness is set forth as one of the specific characteristics of Deity in distinction from all that is finite. It is connected with the name Yahweh (Isaiah 41:4; compare also 48:12), where Yahweh affirms that He is the first and, with the last, the same God, thereby asserting not merely His eternity, but also that He is the same in His divine existence throughout all ages. Hence while everything finite changes, God remains ever the same (Psalms 102:26-28). Unlike us, God is always truthful. Copyright © 2020, Bible Study Tools. The everlasting God, the LORD, The Creator of the ends of the earth, Neither faints nor is weary. Every descendant of _____ needs grace to be saved. As Creator of the heavenly bodies, God is called the Father of lights. Follow my blog with Bloglovin Bible Reading: Hebrews 13:8 The focus of the New Age movement is self – you decide what is right for you and I decide what is right for me. God is expressing in the Bible the way to a happy and a successful life. What is the significance of the immutability of God? On the one hand, then, the Bible never represents the unchangeableness of God as a dead immobility out of all relation to man and the world. "Great is the LORD, and greatly to be praised; and His greatness is unsearchable" (Psalm 145:3). The power of God to change the unchangeable as people seek Him for the solution, for the answer. The Bible consist of 66 Books of the prophecies. John goes on to say, "The love of God was made very clear" (John 4:9). This is one of what theologians have called the incommunicable attributes of God, that is, one of those specific characteristics of the divine nature which make God to be God in distinction from all that is finite. God’s gift is infinite, eternal, and unchangeable- truly a “changeless Christ, in a changing world.” “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son …” (John3: 16). Moreover, since the finite mind cannot comprehend the infinite God, back of all that God has revealed of Himself, back even of His absoluteness, eternity and unchangeability, lies the fullness of His infinite Being, unsearchable, unknowable, and incomprehensible alike in His nature and attributes (Psalms 145:3; 147:5; Job 11:7-9; Isaiah 40:28). In connection with His covenant promises, God's unchangeableness gives the idea of His faithfulness which is emphasized in the Old Testament to awaken trust in God (Deuteronomy 7:9; Psalms 36:5); Psalms 92:2 (Hebrew 3); Isaiah 11:5; Lamentations 3:23). Those things were both unchangeable, and when his word and oath are once passed, what he promises is secure. The Constancy of Our Unchangeable God. Isaiah 57:15 says that God "inhabits eternity." First, it is not lifeless immobility, but the unchangeableness of a living Person. He is so great that His relations to the created universe cannot begin to exhaust His Being, and yet He stands in the closest relations to man and the world as Creator, Preserver, Governor, and Saviour. Salem Media Group. But the highest truth is that which is eternal and unchangeable. In its reaction from the denial of God's living relation to the world, this view does not stop with limiting God by reason of this relation, but merges Him completely in the world-development. While the heavens and the earth change and are passing away, God endures forever and forever the same God (Psalms 102:26-28 (Hebrew versification, 27-29)). In this instance, the NIV changes the scriptures by saying that Jesus is God’s “one and only” Son instead of His only begotten Son. In which it is impossible for God to lie (εν οις αδυνατον πσευσασται τεον — en hois adunaton pseusasthai theon). As the One infinitely perfect and absolute or self-existent Being, God is exalted far above the possibility of change, because He is independent, self-existent and unlimited by all the causes of change. He is not a man that He should repent (1 Samuel 15:29). This is an expansion of the covenant name Yahweh in Exodus 3:13-15, denoting not merely eternity but also immutability. Encyclopedias - International Standard Bible Encyclopedia - Unchangeable; Unchangeableness, California - Do Not Sell My Personal Information. God's love will never end; it is. Consequently, the pantheistic idea is also unscriptural, which idea, going farther than the anthropomorphic and dualistic conception which places the world over against God, completely merges God's Being in the world and its processes of change, affirming that God comes to self-realization in the evolution of the world and man. God wanted to have man to rule for Him on this earth, but man did not attain to God’s purpose. The apostle Paul likewise asserts the incorruptibility, eternity and immortality of the divine nature, all of which ideas imply the unchangeableness of God (Romans 1:23; 1 Timothy 1:17; 6:16). THE UNCHANGEABLE PURPOSE OF GOD. 102-9. in the Beitrage zur Forderung christlicher Theol., I, 7-111; see pp. In the fullness of time He became incarnate through the Son, and He dwells in His people by His Spirit, their experience of His grace being greater at some times than at others. God knows eternally the changing course of events, and He acts differently upon different occasions, but all events, including human actions, are determined by God's unchangeable purpose, so that God's knowledge and actions are not contingent upon anything outside Himself. The logical result of this is to conceive of God as abstract Being or Substance, so that the word "God" becomes only a name for the Unknowable. In Genesis 3 the fall took place and sin entered; man came under the power of Satan, and everything seemed to come to an end. The Bible reveals the unchangeable nature of God (see also Numbers 23:19 and Isaiah 46:9-11). Adam. The Scripture doctrine of God reaffirms this truth. Robertson's Word Pictures in the New Testament. "International Standard Bible Encyclopedia". When for man's salvation the Son of God became incarnate, it was not by any change of His nature in laying aside some or all of the attributes of Deity, but by assuming a human nature into personal union with the divine nature. We'll send you an email with steps on how to reset your password. II. He created time and is therefore outside of time (read about God's relationship to time in this article). His gifts or graces and election are without repentance (1 Thessalonians 5:24; Romans 11:29); He is faithful toward men because unchangeably true to His own nature (2 Timothy 2:13); His faithfulness abides in spite of men's lack of faith (Romans 3:5), and is in many places represented as the basis of our confidence in God who is true to His election and gracious promises (1 Corinthians 1:9; 10:13; 2 Thessalonians 3:3; Hebrews 10:23; 11:11; 1 Peter 4:19; 1 John 1:9). It conceives of God as a living Person in relation to the world and man, and at the same time as absolutely unlimited by the world and man, and as absolutely unchangeable. Is God immutable? Both kinds of attributes can be known only in so far as God reveals Himself, and furthermore the so-called negative attributes involve a positive idea, while the positive ones in turn imply the negation of all finite limitations. (13) There is no constant factor in Nature, and there could be no unchangeable laws. God is even eternally a rock, the never-failing object of confidence and trust (Isaiah 26:4). He is unchangeable in His nature. Some are warm, but volatile and inconstant; he was warm too, but steady and unchangeable. He is unchanging. This idea of God's immutability, as contrasted with the mutability of finite existence which is His creation, is given expression in the New Testament by the apostle James. In the New Testament the thought of the passage in Exodus 3 is reiterated in the Apocalypse where God is described as He who is and was and is to come (Revelation 1:4). For a fuller discussion see Charhock, "The Immutability of God," Works, volume I, 374-419; Dorner, Ueber die richtige Fassung des dogmatischen Begrifts der Unverdnderlichkeit Gottea, u.s.w. The unchangeableness of the divine nature is also asserted by the prophet Malachi in a difficult passage (3:6). God is also represented in Scripture as unchangeable in His knowledge, will and purpose. Since every good and perfect gift comes from Him, evil cannot proceed from Him, nor can He tempt any to it (James 1:13). View in context We are old friends now, united in that unchangeable friendship which is born and cemented amidst extreme dangers. It is true that God is unchangeable in His love and grace and power to save, but that is only because it is the love and grace and power of the absolute, infinite and immutable God. Some recent writers would derive these words from the Hiphil stem of the verb, and affirm that it signifies that God is the giver of life. Find another word for unchangeable. This latter tendency goes too far in the opposite direction, and falls into the error of conceiving God's knowledge, will, purpose and power too anthropomorphically, and as limited by the free acts of man. It is this idea to which expression is given by calling God a rock, the rock of our strength and of our salvation (Deuteronomy 32:15; Psalms 18:2); 42:9 (Hebrew 10); 71:3; Isaiah 17:10). Ps. God's nature or character is immutable, that is, it has never worsened or bettered - it remains the same. Something that is immutable is unchangeable. While the opposite tendency kept God out of all relation to the world, this one erects God's relation to the world into something which limits Him. But on the other hand, the Scripture always asserts in unmistakable terms the unchangeableness of God. Although, therefore, the idea of God as pure abstract Being, out of all relation to the world, is unscriptural, it is no less true that conception of God which represents a reaction from this, and which conceives of God anthropomorphically and as conditioned and determined by the world and man, is also quite contradictory to the Scripture conception of God. Unchangeable: not capable of changing or being changed. Over against this error, the Scripture represents God concretely as a Person in relation to the world and man. You can count on Him in any situation. God intended, in advance, that the Old Covenant Levitical priesthood last for only a short time (Hebrews 7:11 - 12, 9 - 10) and be replaced. The love of God, however, is greatly misunderstood —although there's no excuse for that. The unchanging God. Besides the commentaries on appropriate passages, and the discussion of the divine attributes in the general works on systematic theology, see Dillmann, Handbuch der alttest. The fulfillment of God’s purpose seems impossible. Although the name 'El Shadday, by which He made Himself known in the patriarchal period of revelation, denotes especially God's power, this name by no means exhausts the revelation of God in that period. In which it was impossible for God to lie - That is, it would be contrary to his nature; it is not for a moment to be supposed; compare Titus 1:2, "God - that cannot lie." All rights reserved. Theol., 1896, 419; Davidson, The Theology of the Old Testament, 1904, 45-58, 165. His unchangeable … The Westminster Catechism, in presenting a brief definition of God, succinctly says that He is infinite, eternal and unchangeable in His Being. (14) When we say something is a part of our nature, it makes it seem to be a permanent, unchangeable thing. This tendency of thought, fearing anthropomorphism, proceeds on the principle that to make any definite predications about God is to limit Him. Each one of us is his own master, his own god. He repents (Genesis 6:6; 1 Samuel 15:11; Amos 7:3; Joel 2:13); He becomes angry (Numbers 11:1; Psalms 106:40); and lays aside His anger (Deuteronomy 13:17; Hosea 14:4). He sustains a different relation to the godly and the wicked (Proverbs 11:20; 12:22). The same idea of God's immutability is reaffirmed in the prophecy of Isaiah. This attribute finds its clearest expression in the name Yahweh as revealed to Moses, the significance of which is unfolded in the passage Exodus 3:13-15. immutable. Synonyms: fixed, hard-and-fast, immutable… Antonyms: alterable, changeable, elastic… Find … While their lights, however, are intermittent, God's light is subject to neither change nor obscuration (James 1:17). ; Article I, "Die neueren Laugnungen der Unveranderlichkeit des personlichen Gottes, u.s.w.," JDT, I, 201-77; II, "Die Geschichte der Lehre von der Unveranderlichkeit Gottea bis auf Schleiermacher," JDT, II, 440-500; III, "Dogmatische Erorterung der Lehre von der Unveranderlichkeit Gottes," JDT, III, 579-660; H. Cremer, Die christliche Lehre von den Eigenschaften Gottea, 1897, pub. We know very little of God until we know of his love. His unchangeableness is involved in His eternity as made known to Abraham (Genesis 21:33). Ask one of the kids in the group to remind you what you’re learning this year. How to use unchangeable in a sentence. Unchangeable in His nature and attributes, God is likewise unchangeable in His relation to the world, which relation the Scripture represents as creation and providence, and not as emanation. As uncaused and self-existent, God cannot be changed from without; as infinitely perfect, He cannot suffer change from within; and as eternal and independent of time, which is the "form" of change and mutability, He cannot be subject to any change at all. It appears, therefore, that the Scripture idea of the unchangeableness of God lays emphasis upon four points. John even went as far as to say, "God is love" (1John 4:8). The unchangeablehess or immutability of God is that divine attribute which expresses the truth that in His nature and perfections, in His knowledge, will and purpose, He always remains the same in the fullness of His infinite and perfect Being; infinitely exalted above change, becoming and development, which are the specific characteristics of all finite existence. “What is another god? LESSON OUTLINE: REVIEW PREVIOUS LESSONS: . God's love is universal and anyone can find it. Not only is the unchangeableness of God's nature asserted in Scripture, and placed in relation to His dealings with men, but also it is declared to be the distinctive characteristic of God's nature as contrasted with the entire universe of finite being. ... *For a deeper study on the meaning behind the different names of God, check out Marilyn Hickey’s powerful book The Names of God. The phrases "the Alpha and the Omega" (Revelation 1:8; 21:6; 22:13); and "the first and the last" (Revelation 1:17; 22:13); and "the beginning and the end" (Revelation 21:6; 22:13) bring out the same idea, and are applied to Christ as well as to God, which is a clear indication of our Lord's Deity. Please enter your email address associated with your Salem All-Pass account, then click Continue. Hebrews 6:17-18 reads as follows in the NASB: [17] In the same way God, desiring even more to show to the heirs of the promise the unchangeableness of His purpose, interposed with an oath, [18] so that by two unchangeable things in which it is impossible for God to lie, we who have taken refuge would have strong encouragement to take hold of the hope set before us. Yet Moroni 8:18 says, ‘For I know that God is not a partial God, neither a changeable being; but he is unchangeable, from all eternity to all eternity. He is the manly one (arren), or … It is thus the religious significance and value of God's unchangeableness which is especially emphasized throughout the Scripture. “For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given …” (Isaiah 9:6). Fourth, God's unchangeableness is not dealt with in an abstract or merely theoretic manner, but its religious value is invariably emphasized as constituting God the one true object of religious faith. God comes and goes, reveals Himself and hides Himself. Jehovah—The Unchangeable, Intimate God. Not God. The concept of God’s word standing and being unchangeable means that no matter what man or anything else does to change, pervert, or eliminate it, will not alter what is going to stand unchanged in the end, God’s word. 119:89. No one has the right to say that either of us is wrong. And He intrudes into the series of finite causes miraculously, producing events in Nature which are due solely to His power. The Moral Law Has Not Changed: “Thou shalt have no other gods before me. In accordance with this idea of the unchangeableness of God's nature, the Scripture, in ascribing life and personality to Him, never regards God as subject to any process of becoming or self-realization, and the views which so conceive of God are unscriptural whether they proceed upon a unitarian or a trinitarian basis. God's unchangeablehess, therefore, follows from His self-existence and eternity. God cannot change, nor can He be changed. But Ephesians 3:11 tells us good news: “According to the eternal purpose which He made in Christ Jesus our Lord.” God’s purpose is eternal and unchangeable; nothing can frustrate Him from fulfilling it. But not only that, we also see in this story the power of God to change the unchangeable to the extent that there is a permanent, lasting result. See FAITHFULNESS. Second, it is, however, a real unchangeableness of God's nature, attributes and purpose. The Bible is full of the secrets of the words of God to known only to those who’re given the wisdom and understanding to interpret them. SUPPLIES NEEDED: Bibles, previous attribute of God posters, a large piece of paper with the words GOD IS UNCHANGEABLE written on it, key verse (James 1:17) printed on a piece of paper, blank paper and markers or colored pencils for each child in the group.. General Editor. Because He is unchangeably true to His promises, He is the secure object of religious faith and trust, upon whom alone we can rely in the midst of human change and decay. By calling them negative, however, it is not meant that they express the nature of God in so far as He is unknowable and incomprehensible by the finite mind, while the positive attributes, such as love and righteousness, express God's nature as revealed and known. Change is measured over time. Nothing in the future is hidden from God’s eyes (Isaiah 41:23; 42:9; 44:6–8; 46:10). "`God is a spirit, infinite, eternal and unchangeable, in His being, wisdom, power, holiness, justice, goodness, and truth,'" responded Anne promptly and glibly. Although the Bible says God is immutable (unchangeable) this quality refers not to the presence, knowledge, power or ontological make up of God, but his core moral values. 1915. (12) They are engraved on the political landscape, unchanging, perhaps unchangeable , and the current round of violence and mayhem is no exception. '” Satan was seemingly victorious and God was seemingly defeated. The Scripture often connects the unchangeableness of God with His goodness (Psalms 100:5; James 1:17); with His truthfulness and mercy (Psalms 100:5; 117:2); and with His covenant promises (Exodus 3:13). By two immutable things (δια δυο πραγματων αμετατετων — dia duo pragmatōn ametathetōn).See Hebrews 6:17.God‘s promise and God‘s oath, both unchangeable. Answer: "But as for me, I would seek God, and to God I would commit my cause - who does great things, and unsearchable, marvelous things without number" (Job 5:8-9). Look it up now! The Word of God Has Not Changed: “The grass withereth, the flower fadeth: but the word of our God shall stand for ever. Copyright 2011-2020 Got Questions Ministries - All Rights Reserved. Related. Adam lost fellowship with God because of: disobedience. There are so many things in life that are unpredictable and unreliable. Being unchangeable is one of God's attributes called. I. UNCHANGEABLENESS OF GOD A TRUTH OF NATURAL THEOLOGY, II. Grace. In the beginning He created the heavens and the earth, and from that time on He is the life of the world, especially of Israel, His chosen people. The God who has revealed Himself in the Old Testament and the New Testament is never identified with, or merged in, the processes of Nature. The idea expressed is not merely that of self-existence, but also of unchangeableness, and this unchangeableness, as the context clearly indicates (especially Exodus 3:15), is here set forth not simply as belonging to the nature of God in Himself, but is brought into closest connection with His covenant relation to His people, so that the religious value of God's unchangeableness is most clearly implied in this fundamental assertion of the attribute. This idea of God's unchangeableness in His covenant promises or His faithfulness is repeated and emphasized in the New Testament. It is these incommunicable attributes, including unchangeableness, which make God to be God, and mark the specific difference between Him and all finite existence. "Entry for 'UNCHANGEABLE; UNCHANGEABLENESS'". Bibliography Information Scriptural Doctrine of the Unchangeableness of God. 10, and especially pp. Unchangeable definition at Dictionary.com, a free online dictionary with pronunciation, synonyms and translation. I. Unchangeableness of God a Truth of Natural Theology. God sees our lives, our bodies, and our days even before we are conceived: “My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place, when I was woven together in the depths of the earth. He is eternally existent. The Love of God —Universal, Conditional, Unchangeable. Why does God seem different in the Old Testament and the New Testament. This is a clear affirmation of the unchangeableness of God, the only question being whether it is set forth as the ground of Israel's confidence, or in contrast with their fickleness, a question which depends partly on that of the text. And a successful life being subject to or susceptible to change. God’s.. Everlasting God, however, is claimed by Yahweh, and set forth one! 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