An Unchanging Changing God

“Long ago, at many times and in many ways, God spoke to our fathers by the prophets, but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed the heir of all things, through whom also he created the world. He is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his nature, and he upholds the universe by the word of his power.” Hebrews 1-3a (ESV)

How do you feel about change? Some people hate it. They prefer for life to maintain a steady consistency and they find comfort in the familiar. Other people need it. They get bored with the mundane and seek new experiences at every turn.

In a theology class I once took, my professor insisted that God was unchanging. You know how it goes, “In the beginning was the word and the word was with God and the word was God.” (John 1:1) God has always been and will always be the same. Further, Jesus has always been God, “the exact imprint of God’s nature” as in says in the letter to the Hebrews. The consistency of God, and Christ as God’s imprint, has been a capstone for many believers. Indeed, the supremacy of Christ alongside the unvarying God was a key message of this letter.

Interestingly enough, though, the letter also talks about God changing within the very same verses. See it says that God used to speak to people though prophets and now he speaks through Christ. We also know that at times God spoke to people directly, at times with miraculous signs, and now with the spirit and holy advocate.

I believe that my theology professor was correct. God is unchanging, perpetual, constant. In the theological sense, God is and has always been the same. However, in the personal sense, God changes and moves with us every day. I felt the presence of God differently when I was a child then I do now. I saw Christ differently when I graduated with my masters then when my mother died. The spirit moved me differently in worship on Sunday then when I saw the twin towers fall on 9/11. God communicates differently with me each day, just as God has communicated with people differently all across time.

God is unchanging and yet God moves with us. God fits in our modern day world and needs. God communicates with us anew, fresh each day. Not all change is good but the change of an unchanging God is one I welcome with open and desperate arms.

How might God be reaching out to you in a new way today?

Prayer: God, thank you for being present differently based on my need. Thank you for being constant throughout time and yet, different for me then you are for others. You are a God to all and for all. You meet our needs anew each day. Amen.

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