For I will proclaim the name of the LORD; ascribe greatness to our God!
The Rock, his work is perfect, for all his ways are justice.
A God of faithfulness and without iniquity, just and upright is he.Deuteronomy 32:3-4
Who is GOD? He is immutable. The more common word we use for it is changeless. As a GOD trait, that is a good thing. (We aren’t even going to go to the place we have seen where it is a huge negative in humans! NOT today.)
But at the same time, there is nothing about Him that is capricious. He has set “the rules”. Whether it is the laws of nature or moral laws. They don’t change. He doesn’t have moods that affect him. He doesn’t show favoritism. As GOD, these things aren’t part of His character.
When you think of a Rock, you think of something or Someone you can depend on. cf. Deuteronomy 32:4 (above). He is not swayed by changing circumstances. He just is there. Immovable. In the case of GOD, He had no beginning, no end and there is no variableness in Him.
Don’t be deceived, my dear brothers and sisters.
Every good and perfect gift is from above,
coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights,
who does not change like shifting shadows.
James 1:16-17 ESV
There are three specific ways in which GOD is changeless.
- GOD is changeless in His essence. He has no need to change or grow or improve. GOD is already perfect. cf. Malachi 3:6. He is unaffected by anything outside Himself to either improve Him, diminish Him or cause His glory to fade. Exodus 3:13-15. Was that in His mind as He was being beaten and unfairly treated during the days leading up to the dross? No one could make Him feel “less than” because He never changes. He doesn’t struggle with His self esteem. False accusations don’t affect Him.
- It makes me stop and think about the basis of self-esteem and self confidence. No wonder He was able to be quiet before these earthly leaders when they were accusing Him, crowds were screaming and chaos seemed to be reigning supreme all around Him! He is/was changeless and self-existent…so far we have learned that much. Those two traits alone give a completely different twist to His behavior! He was secure and self-existent. No one could remove that from Him no matter how they treated Him because they are based on something internal, not external.
- He is changeless in His attributes. The attributes He has now are the same ones He has had for all eternity. He had them 5,000 yrs. ago and continues to have them now! His veracity/truth is the same now as it always has been. cf. Psalm 119:89-91. His love is eternal. cf. Jeremiah 31:2-3. His mercy is endless. cf. Psalm 100:5…to name just a few.
- He is changeless in His counsel. His will never varies. Here are some Scriptures to look at for the questions you have when you say, “But didn’t He change his mind here? cf. Genesis 6:5-8; cf. Numbers 23:19-20; and what about I Samuel 15:29?” If you look closely, I think you will agree that GOD is accommodating His language regarding Himself to our limited capacities...just as He does in other places describing Himself as having arms and other human body parts.
GOD doesn’t change. Only He is totally reliable because reliability is not only dependent on His desire to meet a need, but the ability and resources to do it as well. GOD has both! The permanence/unchangeableness of God’s character guarantees fulfillment of His promises. cf.Isaiah 54:10.
For the mountains may depart
and the hills be removed,
but my steadfast love shall not depart from you,
and my covenant of peace shall not be removed,”
says the Lord, who has compassion on you.
Isaiah 54:10 ESV
Isn’t it comforting to know that we can take our prayers to a GOD who doesn’t change?
His character remains the same. As you read those Scripture passages, if you are “in Christ”, you will be comforted to know His steadfast love remains the same for you; His faithfulness continues; He is totally and completely dependable…yet not boring!
What attributes of GOD are encouraging to you? Why?