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Does God Change?

Updated on May 1, 2013
A statue holding a cross
A statue holding a cross

Humans Have a Hard Time Comprehending

Humans have a hard time grasping that God is unchangeable, partly because we operate within linear time. God is not limited to linear time, and does not only reside in the present. God exists in the past, present, and future all at once.

God does not need to make decisions as humans do. He knew what He would do from the beginning, and will carry it all out as he had is planned.

What God did on the cross as Jesus took place before you and I were even born, but Jesus sacrificial act in the past made it possible for us to have salvation today. Of course, the blood of Jesus only covers your sins if you ask God for forgiveness, and repent (change) from your wicked ways.

A person that says, "I accepted Jesus as my Lord and Savior" but doe not change the sinful behavior, did not truly repent. If the words don't match the lifestyle, then it was not a real change.

Bible Passage from Amos

Amos 7:4-6 says:

"This is what the Sovereign Lord showed me: The Sovereign Lord was calling for judgment by fire; it dried up the great deep and devoured the land. Then I cried out, 'Sovereign Lord, I beg you, stop! How can Jacob survive? He is so small!' So the Lord relented.”

God relented from destroying the land (and the people in it). God did not change his mind, He simply chose a different option because a righteous man (Amos) prayed, begging God not to.

If a righteous man prays, God listens. However, if no one had prayed, God would have carried out his judgment.

An Open Bible

Supporting Bible Verses

Numbers 23:19

God is not a man that he should lie; neither the son of a man that he should repent.

1 Samuel 15:29

The Strength of Israel will not lie nor repent: for he is not a man, that he should repent.

Ezekiel 24:14

I the LORD have spoken it: it shall come to pass, and I will do it; I will not go back, neither will I spare, neither will I repent.

Malachi 3:6

For I am the Lord, I change not.

God is Unchangeable

One of the most important attributes of God is that He is unchangeable.

God does not change, and neither do his promises laid out in the Bible.

Consider this example:

If I had a child, and my child chooses to misbehave, I will discipline my child appropriately to correct my child. If my child behaves, then I choose not to discipline my child. These are two examples of “if” statements. I am not changing my mind based on the action of my child – I am simply picking my action based on the action of my child.

This is the best example I can give, despite the fact that God doesn't have to make decisions in the present like we do. He knew what would happen from the beginning.

I often hear the question: If God knows what I am going to do in the future, why do I have to do anything?

You still have to make decisions and live your life. Just because God knows everything, it does not mean you need to sit back and do nothing. Every human has free will, and still have to makedecisions and choices.

Every man (and woman) has to choose whether or not he will follow God. It is a conscious decision that one must choose. Not everyone will go to Heaven based on being a good person. You have to choose to live for God and to seek God. Heaven is a place of 24/7 worship of God.

If you don't worship God here on the Earth, why would you go to a place where everyone is worshiping God all the time?

Prayer Does Not Change God


A Changing God?

The implications of a changing God would be that God's promises would also change.

The Prayer of a Righteous Person

James 5:16b says: “The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.”

When believers pray, it doesn’t change the mind of God. He already knows what will happen. But it still requires a choice from the believer to pray. That’s what God tells us we should do.

Praying to God

Video: You Are God Alone

Aren't We Supposed to Pray?

Yes. The Bible tells us that we are to pray to God. That is how we talk to God. When we talk to God, we use words that are intelligible and speak to God. You can also pray to God in your mind inaudibly. The point is that one cannot simple babble things and say you are speaking to God in a "love language." If you have no clue what you are saying, it is not a meaningful prayer, and means absolutely nothing whatsoever.

Luke 11:1-4 says:

One day Jesus was praying in a certain place. When he finished, one of his disciples said to him, “Lord, teach us to pray, just as John taught his disciples.”

He said to them, “When you pray, say:

hallowed be your name,
your kingdom come.
Give us each day our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins,
for we also forgive everyone who sins against us.
And lead us not into temptation.’”

Jesus was God in human form, and taught the disciples how one should pray to God. We pray asking for the will of God.

The more you read your Bible, the more you understand how to pray within the will of God. You obviously should not ask for sinful things that are against the known will of God.

Instead, ask God to mold you into the man or woman that he wants you to be. God wants you to have an abundant life. The best life you can have on Earth is a life following Jesus. He loves you and wants a relationship with each and every person.

Two Things that Prayer Doesn't Do

  1. Prayer does not twist God's arm until he gives in.
  2. Prayer does not change God's mind.

Prayer actually changes us. Prayer brings the Christian closer to God because as we read God's Word, and apply it as we pray, we become more in line with God's Will.

As we become more in line with God's Will, our prayers will not only reflect that, but you will see more of your prayers being answered with a "Yes" than with a "No."

The take away is that God doesn't change. We do. Prayer changes the believer. Not God.


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