Probably the one divine characteristic which helped me most in the formative years of my Christian walk was God’s immutability. I was struck by the thought that God doesn’t change. Everything around me was susceptible to change and it demonstrated that the world could not be relied upon. Societal standards shift. Loved ones die. Friends come and go. Health is fleeting. Employment is unstable. My first impression of God’s immutability came when I went to a church service and saw these words on the wall behind the pulpit – Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever Hebrews 13:8. They were there for everyone to see, yet it felt as though they were being spoken to me. And not just spoken in my hearing, but deep into my soul. I never returned to that church and I don’t recall 35 years later what the sermon was about. But I have never forgotten the effect of Heb 13:8 as the Lord ministered comfort, peace, and hope to me. Divine immutability is a reality I have clung on to ever since. It is a reality upon which we can build our lives. God does not change.
God’s love is immutable – I am referring specifically to the love He has for His people. Jer 31:3, “I have loved you with an everlasting love; Therefore with lovingkindness I have drawn you.” What was said to Old Covenant Israel applies to all who receive Christ. Eph 3:17-19, “That Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love, (18) may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the width and length and depth and height— (19) to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge; that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.”
God’s power is immutable – He is omnipotent and unchanging in His omnipotence. If God’s power could diminish, He would be neither omnipotent nor immutable. This means He is able to do what we ask of Him. It means He is able to accomplish all that He has said He will do. Dan 4:35, “All the inhabitants of the earth are reputed as nothing; He does according to His will in the army of heaven And among the inhabitants of the earth. No one can restrain His hand Or say to Him, “What have You done?” Eph 3:20, “Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think.”
God’s salvation is immutable – we cannot be saved one day and lost the next. If we have trusted in Christ, we are in possession of eternal life – not the possibility of eternal life. The blood of Christ has atoned for all of our sins. God’s power and love ensure that we will be kept to the end. John 27-28, “My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me. (28) And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand.” Rom 8:30, “Moreover whom He predestined, these He also called; whom He called, these He also justified; and whom He justified, these He also glorified.”
The list goes on and on. God’s law is immutable – we do not have to navigate an endless array of changing standards. God’s mercy is immutable – if we humble ourselves and confess our sins, He will receive us. God’s justice is immutable – He will bring judgement to the earth, punishing the wicked and vindicating the righteous. In the midst of so much change and uncertainty we can sing – Ascribe greatness to our God the Rock, His work is perfect and all His ways are just. A God of faithfulness and without injustice, good and upright is He.
May the knowledge of divine immutability continually impart comfort, peace, and hope.