Spirit of Grace Ministries
Spirit of Grace Ministries
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God Does Not Change

By Dennis Pollock


The Bible affirms that our Creator, the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, does not change. In Malachi we read: "For I am the LORD, I do not change." (Malachi 3:6). In Hebrews we read that Jesus Christ is "the same yesterday, today, and forever." This should not be too much of a surprise. If God is perfect and all-knowing, we would expect that His attitudes, values, and ways would remain constant from generation to generation. There will never be an improved version of God. We, humans, can grow in our understanding, knowledge, and maturity, but since God is perfect from all eternity, there is no room for Him to grow. He will always and forever be precisely as He always was, perfect in all His ways, and perfect in knowledge and wisdom.


This is not only true of God, but it is true of His word as well. The Holy Scriptures, which have come to us as men were moved upon by the Holy Spirit, are perfect and complete, and there is no need for any amendments to them or deletions from them. Although differing Bible versions may use slightly different language, the essential meaning of the Scriptures remains exactly as it always was from the day the words were first penned. When I read John 3:16, which declares: "For God so loved the world He gave His only begotten Son," I am reading the same thing that my dad read when he first began reading the Bible in the 1930s. And should our world last another thousand years, and some man or woman from that future time pick up a Bible and turn to John, the verse will be just as it is now, and has been since the gospel of John was written 2,000 years ago. It will still read: "For God so loved the world He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life."


Much in the church does change, however. Many of our churches today bear little resemblance to the churches from 70 years ago. In my boyhood, nearly every pastor came to church on Sunday wearing a suit and tie, and usually a white shirt. Today, pastors often stand up to preach wearing jeans and a tee-shirt, eager to identify with their casual audiences. In the past, churches sang about how great it will be "when we all get to heaven," but today songs about heaven are considered very uncool. And when we sing today, we read the lyrics of the songs which are projected onto a screen using a computer program. In the old days, we were simply told to turn to song #256. 


No Going Back


I have to admit that there are some aspects of modern Christianity and modern church services that I am not exactly thrilled with, but there is no going back. Just as dress styles change, church styles change as well, and it would be entirely futile for me or anyone else to make it their life's mission to bring us back to the ways of the churches of our childhood. It's not going to happen.


And in some cases, the church has made some significant improvements. At one time, some pastors would spend an entire sermon railing against the evils of women wearing lipstick or trousers, or trying to prove that it is a great sin for women to cut their hair or wear makeup. Those churches and that kind of preaching are long gone, and good riddance. If you could manage to find a church that focused on such things today, you can bet it would be small, lifeless, and making no impact on the community.


But though styles may change, God's word does not. And this is not only true concerning salvation through Jesus Christ, but the morality of the New Testament is also equally unchanging. And this is where evangelical Christians stand out from the rest of our world. For secular folks whose values are not anchored in the Scriptures, morality is constantly changing. Today in America, our moral values are shifting at breathtaking speed. We believe and accept things today that would have been rejected out of hand by our parents.


Some areas of morality are still embraced by Americans today. We still believe that stealing and killing are wrong, but in many other areas, we feel we have moved on. This is, especially true concerning sexuality. The Bible is strict and even severe regarding the sexual practices and lifestyles which God allows. The Scriptures declare that any form of sexual expression, except that between a married man and a woman is unlawful. All other types of sex fall into the category of "fornication" or "adultery" and we are told that people who indulge in these sins will not inherit the kingdom of heaven.


No Getting Around the Truth


We are told this so often in the New Testament and with such severity, there is absolutely no getting around it. People have tried desperately to argue that the Bible does not really mean what it obviously says, but their arguments are pathetic. You might as well be arguing that gravity is a myth, or that two plus two equals five. You can say it boldly and loudly, and you can get all your buddies to say it along with you, but anyone who reads the Bible knows it's just not true.


And it will never be true as long as we read the same Bible that Christians have been reading for two thousand years. Those who deny the Bible's strictures about sexual immorality have only two choices: they can either ignore the Bible and pretend like these verses and passages do not exist, or they can simply say that the Bible was written by ordinary men and is deeply flawed. This is something we evangelicals find entirely unacceptable. There is no Bible eraser we can buy at the store, that we can use to go through the Scriptures, erasing the parts that do not match our current culture and personal desires.


This puts Bible-believing Christians at odds with nearly everyone else. The farther our world moves from Biblical morality, the more odd and freakish we evangelicals seem to be. The world wonders: "What's wrong with the simple-minded Christians, these bigots, these antiquated relics? Why can't they move to the right side of history?"


Tethered to the Word of God


What they do not get is that we are tethered and anchored to the words that we are persuaded have come from the mouth of God. While most of our world is essentially chameleons, changing their values to match the environment in which they live, we refuse to change our colors. The same Bible which tells us that "God so loved the world" also tells us that all who practice sexual immorality will not go to heaven. We do not find the "freedom" to embrace the idea of heaven but throw away the concept of Biblical morality.


If you happen to be a bright pink lizard sitting among a bunch of dark green leaves you will stand out. And the other side, those who push and strain, and demand free sex, all kinds of sex, and sex which the Bible forbids, see us as the only remaining opposition. They instinctively recognize that all their cajoling, mocking, and name-calling will never be able to move us to come over to their side. And often they hate us for that.


But we will love them, forgive them, and continue to insist that God's word is true, not only the parts that speak of His love and forgiveness, and Jesus' death on the cross on our behalf, but also those passages which reveal what God loves and what He hates, and those sins which will preclude us from entering His holy city, the New Jerusalem. We will stand firm in our beliefs. As the great reformer, Martin Luther famously declared when asked to recant his position on justification by faith in Jesus: "Acting against one's conscience is neither safe nor sound. Here I stand; I can do no other."




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