Questions 10 & 11

Everything we can see had a beginning. All people had a beginning. The heavens and the earth had a beginning. They began when God made them.[1] Even the things that we cannot see had a beginning. The angels* are spirits* that serve and worship* God. We do not know when God made them, but they were present when he made the earth.[2] But long before there was anything else, there was God. He made all things. Nothing was made that he did not make. But no one made God. He had no beginning. He will have no end. He always was. He is now. He will always be.[3]

 

So, God has always been and God is perfect. He needed nothing else to make him complete. God did not need to learn. He has always known all things. He did not need to grow stronger. He has always had all power. He has perfect control of all things. Because he was perfect from the beginning, he has never needed to change.

 

Everything we know about changes. People change. The earth changes. We change. When a thing changes, it can change in many ways. It can change to become better. It can change to become worse. It can change to become something different than it was. But God is perfect.[4] He cannot change to become better than he is, because he is already perfect. Because he is perfect, he would not change to be less than he is.  God will never be anything other than the perfect God. This is why the scriptures* tell us that God does not change.

 

God never changes. But it is also true that God is a God who shows mercy* to people. There are stories in the Bible* that show this. God would send a prophet* with a message. The prophet would tell the people that God was about to judge them because of the evil* things that they were doing. But the people listened to the prophet’s words. They turned away from the evil things they were doing. So, God did not judge the people. His judgement* changed to mercy. But God did not change when he chose not to judge them. He has always been a ‘loving God who shows mercy.’[5] This is who God is. He can show mercy to anyone he wishes to show mercy to.[6] This is the way the God truly is. That is the way he has always been. He delights to show mercy to people who turn away from evil and turn to him.

 

Think about it this way. A man is riding his bicycle to town. He is riding into a strong wind. The wind makes it very hard for him to go down the road. We could say that the wind is against him. Then he turns to go home. He begins to go back the way he came. Now the wind is not against him. Instead, the wind is helping him. If we told someone about his ride, we might say this. ‘The wind changed. It was against him. But on his way back home, it helped him.’ That is one way we could tell the story. And everyone would understand what we were saying. But the wind did not change. The man changed.

 

The scriptures tell us that when a person or a nation is doing evil, God is against them. He will judge them for the evil that they are doing. But when a person or a nation turns from their evil way, God may choose not to judge them. He may show them mercy instead. That is the kind of God that he is.

 

God had no beginning. He will have no end. This is what we mean when we call him the everlasting* God. And the everlasting God does not change.


[1] Psalm 102:25
[2] Job 38:4-7
[3] Revelation 1:8
[4] Psalm 18:30
[5] Jonah 4:1-2; Joel 2:13-14
[6] Exodus 33:19