Hebrews 13:8 Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever.
Wow! How can our finite minds even begin to comprehend this? Let’s face it, we only understand things on a limited level. What a contrast to God whose understanding is infinite – Ps 147:5. Jesus Christ has never changed, and never will. While we are blown around by the latest wind, He is immutable, Is 64:6; Malachi 3:6 – I am the Lord, I change not!
But this verse is packed with more than Mal 3:6. This verse is another affirmation of the deity of Jesus Christ. Just as he himself declares in John 8:58 (before Abraham was, I am), and just as He is pictured throughout scripture as Lord of lords and King of kings, (Rev 19:6,16), and as He stated in Revelation 1, He is the alpha and the omega, the beginning and the end. Jesus is God, has always been God and always will be God. This is not easy to understand and many cults have obscured this view!
Let’s take a look at some of the confusing issues, taking the scripture and see if we can make some sense of things.
Some will say that according to John 3:16, if Jesus is God the Father’s son, then Jesus was “born” or that he is a created being. Jehovah’s Witnesses employ this strategy. But does this make any sense? Jesus as the firstborn among many brethren Romans 8:29…does this prove that He is created, rather than eternal? I think that people are applying human reasoning to scriptural things. The fact is that I no more made my own son than I make any cell in my body. That Jesus was begotten of the father doesn’t mean that he was created, but rather that he is of the same nature, cut from the same fabric to use a phrase we understand today. Contrary to declaring Christ as a creation, this emphatically declares Christ as one with the Father, fully God (John 10:30). We must always remember to get our view of scripture from scripture, not from human wisdom applied to scripture (Proverbs 14:12).
Let’s look at scripture again. Scripture is quite clear that Jesus is worthy of all our praise and worship, that He alone deserves honor and praise and glory and that he will receive it for all eternity. Revelation 5:12-14
12Saying with a loud voice, Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honour, and glory, and blessing.
13And every creature which is in heaven, and on the earth, and under the earth, and such as are in the sea, and all that are in them, heard I saying, Blessing, and honour, and glory, and power, be unto him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb for ever and ever.
14And the four beasts said, Amen. And the four and twenty elders fell down and worshipped him that liveth for ever and ever.
…That being said, for God to speak so disdainfully about worshipping the creature rather than the creator in Romans 1:25 would be contradictory to the plain fact that Christ (the lamb of God from John 1:29) is worshipped for eternity if Christ were a created being! Let me repeat that another way…God cannot and will not contradict Himself…In Romans 1, He is clearly calling men unrighteous who have worshipped “creatures” rather than the “Creator”, yet Christ is constantly worshipped in scripture! So Christ could not be created…if you believe the Bible!
Refer to Colossians 1:16 and John 1:1-3. Really…mouse over those references and read words! All things were made by Him and all things are held together by Him. Nothing that was made was not made by Him! It is so clear, He is the maker of all the earth (including all men!). Why do men insist on denying this? Romans 1:18 – so that men may continue to indulge in the sin they love. For if it is acknowledged that Christ is creator, then he is also the rightful judge and we are all accountable. And frankly, we are all in trouble, for we all have sinned. Our situation is hopeless except for the fact that he chose to save us by becoming a man and taking on the shame of the cross in order to satisfy the Holy Righteous judgment that is required for sin.
So how do I explain that Jesus Christ is the same, yesterday and forever, yet he became a man? This makes no sense to us in human terms! Because we live within and are constrained by the confines of this thing called time. Time is something that Jesus is not subject to and never has been subject to. Christ lives outside of time, and sacrificed himself before the foundations of the world. He elected to save us before he even created the world. (Eph 1:4) He was not surprised by Adam’s sin, nor by yours. Jesus is unchanging because He is God. God is unchanging because He cannot improve, He is already perfect, and He cannot degrade, as the result of His perfection. He became incarnate to reveal himself to us, but He is immutable, unchanging. His thoughts of you have never changed, His Word has never changed and will never pass away (Luke 16:17)
The fact that Jesus is God necessitates that He is immutable! If He was changeable, then He would be imperfect.
Dear Christian, this is a great comfort! When you sin as a Christian, (and you will, by the way), you can remember that God already knew you would sin after being saved. Oh, it is one thing to realize that he knew the evil you would do before you were saved and to be excited about the fact that He would save you by grace in spite of your enmity with him, but it is another level of joy to know that He saved you knowing the evil you would still commit in your heart and deeds AFTER giving you the promise of forgiveness. To know that he has provided you with the means to trample on His grace, to suffer the shame of seeing Christians everywhere drag his name into mud, but because of his great love and patience 2 Peter 3:9, and for His name’s sake would save you from your sin, and the consequence of that sin, what unspeakable mercy! What love. Oh how hard is it for us to forgive others in this world. And how impossible it would be for us to forgive someone if we knew they would “do it again!” But Jesus commanded that we do so continiously, and we can and should, because He does!
So Jesus Christ is the same, yesterday and today and forever. Be comforted, brothers and sisters, the same God that spent His life on that cross for you is still your advocate (1 John 2:1), His intercession on your behalf is eternal (Heb 7:25, 9:24-25), and based in His great Love and His faithfulness. Now enjoy the fruit of this love and walk in obedience to Him, joyfully, for his yoke is not burdensome!
28Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.
29Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.
30For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.
1 John 5:3-4
3For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous.
4For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.