Why can’t God’s law be changed today?

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By BibleAsk Team


The idea that God’s law cannot change according to the shifting tides of human culture or societal norms is deeply rooted in theological principles found throughout the Bible. Central to this concept is the unchanging nature of God Himself, as well as the eternal and immutable nature of His moral law. Let’s examine these concepts in God’s Word.

The Immutability of God

A foundational aspect of understanding why the law of God cannot change is the unchanging nature of God Himself. In Malachi 3:6, God declares, “For I am the Lord, I do not change.” This statement underscores the eternal constancy of God’s character, His purposes, and His moral standards. Unlike human beings who are subject to change and fluctuation, God remains the same yesterday, today, and forever (Hebrews 13:8).

The immutability of God is not merely a theological abstraction but has practical implications for understanding His law. If God were to change His moral standards based on human preferences or societal trends, it would imply a fundamental instability in His character and undermine His sovereignty over creation. Therefore, the unchanging nature of God provides a firm foundation for the enduring validity of His moral law.

Earthy kings like Herod, Ahasuerus, and Darius made laws they later wanted to change but could not. If the laws of earthly kings were unchangeable, how could the God’s law be changed? If the law could be changed, Jesus didn’t need to come to uplift its requirements.

The Ten Commandment law can never be changed. It is as permanent as God Himself. Jesus said, “And it is easier for heaven and earth to pass away than for one tittle of the law to fail” (Luke 16:17; Romans 3:31). And the Lord declared, “My covenant will I not break, nor alter the thing that is gone out of my lips” (Psalms 89:34); “All his commandments are sure. They stand fast for ever and ever” (Psalms 111:7, 8); “For I am the Lord, I change not” (Malachi 3:6).

The Permanence of God’s Word

Throughout the Bible, God’s Word is depicted as enduring forever and standing firm amidst the changing circumstances of human history. Psalm 119:89 declares, “Forever, O Lord, Your word is settled in heaven.” This verse emphasizes the eternal stability of God’s Word, which transcends temporal considerations and remains authoritative for all generations.

Jesus affirms the enduring nature of God’s Word in Matthew 5:18, stating, “For assuredly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, one jot or one tittle will by no means pass from the law till all is fulfilled.” Here, Jesus underscores the permanence of God’s law, affirming that even the smallest details will remain unchanged until the fulfillment of God’s redemptive purposes.

Moreover, in Isaiah 40:8, we read, “The grass withers, the flower fades, but the word of our God stands forever.” This verse contrasts the transitory nature of human existence with the enduring truth and reliability of God’s Word. It emphasizes that while human cultures and civilizations may rise and fall, the Word of God remains a steadfast anchor in the midst of variation.

The Moral Absolutism of God’s Law

Another reason why the law of God cannot change according to the changing times is rooted in its moral absolutism. Unlike human laws that may be subject to revision or repeal, God’s moral standards are based on His perfect holiness and righteousness. As Psalm 19:7 declares, “The law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul; the testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple.”

The moral absolutism of the law of God means that it transcends cultural relativism and subjective human opinions. As such, it provides an objective standard by which human conduct is evaluated. In Romans 3:23, Paul affirms, “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” This verse underscores the universal applicability of God’s moral law, which exposes the sinfulness of humanity and points to the need for redemption through Christ.

Furthermore, in James 1:17, we read, “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning.” This verse emphasizes the consistency of God’s character and the unchanging nature of His moral standards. Just as God Himself is unchanging, so too is His law, which reflects His eternal attributes.

The Purpose of God’s Law

Understanding the purpose of God’s law also illuminates why it cannot change according to the changing times. In Galatians 3:24, Paul describes the law as a “tutor to bring us to Christ, that we might be justified by faith.” Here, the law serves as a mirror that reflects humanity’s need for salvation and points to the redemptive work of Christ. The moral imperatives of the law of God are not arbitrary rules imposed on humanity but are rooted in His desire for human flourishing and obedience. As Deuteronomy 10:13 states, “to keep the commandments of the Lord and His statutes which I command you today for your good.”

God’s law reflects His wisdom and love for His creation, guiding humanity towards righteousness and holiness. Moreover, in Romans 7:12, Paul affirms, “Therefore the law is holy, and the commandment holy and just and good.” This verse underscores the intrinsic goodness and righteousness of God’s law, which remains relevant and applicable for all time.

The Law – A Transcript of God’s Character

God’s law cannot be changed, because it is a transcript of His character. God created us to enjoy life with all of its functions and God’s law is the road map that points out the right way to find this ultimate happiness (Romans 7:12).

Jesus came to reveal to men the character of His Father. He is therefore the law demonstrated. If men wish to order their lives in harmony with the law of God, they must look to Jesus and copy His life (Galatians 5:18; Revelation 14:12). The transformation of men’s characters after the divine character is the great purpose of the plan of salvation (Romans 8:2).

The same words in Scripture that describe God also describe His law. Here is a comparison between God and His law:

Characteristics:God Is:The Law Is:
GOODLuke 18:19Romans 7:12
HOLYIsaiah 5:16Romans 7:12
JUSTDeuteronomy 32:4Romans 7:12
PERFECTMatthew 5:48Psalms 19:7
LOVE1 John 4:8Romans 13:10
RIGHTEOUSExodus 9:27Psalms 19:9
TRUTHDeuteronomy 32:4Psalms 119:142,151
PURE1 John 3:3Psalms 19:8
SPIRITUALJohn 4:24Romans 7:14
UNCHANGEABLEMalachi 3:6Matthew 5:18
ETERNALGenesis 21:33Psalms 111:7,8

Conclusion

In conclusion, the belief that God’s law cannot change according to the changing times is firmly grounded in biblical teachings concerning the immutability of God, the permanence of His Word, the moral absolutism of His law, and the purpose of His law. The unchanging nature of God’s law provides a stable foundation for moral living and ethical decision-making, transcending the shifting sands of human culture and societal norms. As Psalm 119:160 affirms, “The entirety of Your word is truth, and every one of Your righteous judgments endures forever.” Therefore, believers can trust in the eternal validity and relevance of God’s law, knowing that it reflects His unchanging character and provides guidance for righteous living in every age and circumstance.

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In His service,
BibleAsk Team

Categories Law

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