can God change His mind?

Discussion in '2003 Archive' started by massdak, Nov 18, 2003.

  1. massdak

    massdak
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2002
    Messages:
    1,271
    Likes Received:
    0
    can God be swayed from acting in judgment and mercy depending on the outcome of human obedience?

    since God is all knowing then how does this work with scripture?
     
  2. Walls

    Walls
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2002
    Messages:
    802
    Likes Received:
    0
    Yes, He can. This has been demonstrated many times in the Bible.
     
  3. Daniel David

    Daniel David
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2002
    Messages:
    5,316
    Likes Received:
    0
    God does not change his mind as though he didn't know what he was going to do. Only open theists believe that. This is a forum for believers though. Open theists are all lost and still in their sins.

    Many times, God says that he will bring judgment with the implication that repentance will stay the hand of judgment.
     
  4. LarryN

    LarryN
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2003
    Messages:
    958
    Likes Received:
    0
    I myself am by no means an open theist, but such a flat, unbending statement seems awfully harsh to me. Would anyone else agree with Daniel's assessment?
     
  5. post-it

    post-it
    Expand Collapse
    <img src=/post-it.jpg>

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2002
    Messages:
    1,785
    Likes Received:
    0
    Example:
    My son knows he will be punished if he lies.
    So my son does his best not to lie.

    I know my son will lie at some point.
    To prevent my son from getting in the habit of lying, I will be swift to punish, but can also be swayed depending on the circumstances, including his repentance.

    Even if I could read his mind and knew when he would lie, it would change nothing from the dynamics of the above motif.
     
  6. Daniel David

    Daniel David
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2002
    Messages:
    5,316
    Likes Received:
    0
    Larry, it is a complete redefining of who God is. That is idolatry. Although I don't base my statement on it, many big names have said the same thing.
     
  7. LarryN

    LarryN
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2003
    Messages:
    958
    Likes Received:
    0
    Fair enough. I've just never heard that statement made before.
     
  8. Jailminister

    Jailminister
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2003
    Messages:
    907
    Likes Received:
    0
    I don't believe that God ever changes His mind, but here are some interesting scriptures to deal with:
    Gen 6:6 And it repented the LORD that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him at his heart.
    Exd 32:14 And the LORD repented of the evil which he thought to do unto his people.
    1Sa 15:35 And Samuel came no more to see Saul until the day of his death: nevertheless Samuel mourned for Saul: and the LORD repented that he had made Saul king over Israel.
    2Sa 24:16 And when the angel stretched out his hand upon Jerusalem to destroy it, the LORD repented him of the evil, and said to the angel that destroyed the people, It is enough: stay now thine hand. And the angel of the LORD was by the threshingplace of Araunah the Jebusite.
    Amos 7:6 The LORD repented for this: This also shall not be, saith the Lord GOD.
    Jonah 3:10 And God saw their works, that they turned from their evil way; and God repented of the evil, that he had said that he would do unto them; and he did [it] not.
     
  9. Dr. Bob

    Dr. Bob
    Expand Collapse
    Administrator
    Administrator

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2000
    Messages:
    29,402
    Likes Received:
    12
    To MAN'S eyes (from our perspective) it appears that the Lord does change His mind.

    Of course, that is ludicrous. James reminds us "the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning."

    If God could, because of any outside force or action or attitude, "change His eternal mind", I would be in eternal fear.

    He could change His mind about my eternal salvation. :(
     
  10. Baptist Believer

    Baptist Believer
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2002
    Messages:
    6,649
    Likes Received:
    187
    I myself am by no means an open theist, but such a flat, unbending statement seems awfully harsh to me. Would anyone else agree with Daniel's assessment? </font>[/QUOTE]The evil one. He's the accuser of the brethern.
     
  11. massdak

    massdak
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2002
    Messages:
    1,271
    Likes Received:
    0
    it is an interesting subject on how the scriptures have to relate to our limited understanding of God. john mcarther has a question on this subject and answers it concerning analogy.&gt;&gt;&gt;&gt;&gt;
    http://www.biblebb.com/files/macqa/70-12-4.htm

    it is also interesting after looking at some free will and liberal sites how they tend to explain their god in human terms and attributes. very sad to see how misled liberals are.
     
  12. Mark Osgatharp

    Mark Osgatharp
    Expand Collapse
    Banned

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2002
    Messages:
    1,719
    Likes Received:
    0
    Dr. Bob said,

    By contrast God inspired Moses to write:

    Moses didn't say that it seemed to man's eyes that God repented. Moses said that the Lord repented of the evil that He thought to do to His people. The man who doesn't believe it just doesn't believe what the Bible says.

    Mark Osgatharp
     
  13. massdak

    massdak
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2002
    Messages:
    1,271
    Likes Received:
    0
    charm.org
    also had an interesting conclusion&gt;&gt;&gt;&gt;&gt;

    Conclusion

    We see that the Hebrew word for "repent, relent, change," etc. is "nashash" that has a scope of meaning, which we see in other translations, that can infer God's change of direction and purpose towards a people.
    We see that Moses was a type of Christ demonstrating the intercessory work of Christ, to which God would listen.
    God must have known the present condition of the Jews and would have known they were going to commit idolatry, yet kept Moses on Mt. Sinai until after their sin. This had to be done for a purpose, both to demonstrate the Law of God for those who were destroyed and the mercy of God upon those who repented.
    If God changed His mind, in that He adapted to knew information, then God does not know all things (1 John 3:20), did not even know the then present condition of the Israelites, waited too long with Moses on Mt. Sinai, and was influenced by Moses who disobeyed God's command to leave God alone. It would make more sense to say that God waited for a reason, threatened to destroy Israel, and allowed Moses to intercede on their behalf so they would be saved.
     
  14. Walls

    Walls
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2002
    Messages:
    802
    Likes Received:
    0
    That's exactly what I had in my mind when I said yes He can. Many times God turned from what He said He would do. Although there was normally someone pleading on behalf of those who were the subject. One thing that sticks heavily in my mind was in the day of Noah, Ge 6:7 And the LORD said, I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth; both man, and beast, and the creeping thing, and the fowls of the air; for it repenteth me that I have made them.
     
  15. AllenLim

    AllenLim
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2003
    Messages:
    25
    Likes Received:
    0
    Hmmm... I've never given this much thought, but it is quite perplexing...

    OK which scenario is correct?

    God says I will do A
    People repent and pray and ask for B
    God says Ok since you prayed so I hard I give you B

    Or....

    God says I will do A knowing you want B
    People repent and pray and ask for B
    God says OK since you prayed so I hard I give you B

    Both scenarios hold problems for me. Or is there some other way of looking at this?
     
  16. Mark Osgatharp

    Mark Osgatharp
    Expand Collapse
    Banned

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2002
    Messages:
    1,719
    Likes Received:
    0
    Granting mercy to the penitent is just as much part of God's character as His holiness or omniscience. This is the reason Jonah didn't want to preach to the Ninevites. He knew if they repented God would repent of the judgment He intended, and Jonah didn't want the Ninevites to be spared; he said:

    "I knew that thou art a gracious God, and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness, and repentest thee of the evil."

    The Lord said the same thing of Himself in Joel 2:13:

    "Therefore now, saith the Lord, turn ye even to me with all your heart, and with fasting, and with weeping, and with mourning: and rend your heart, and not your garments, and turn unto the Lord your God: for he is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness, and repenteth him of the evil. Who knoweth if he will return and repent, and leave a blessing behind him; even a meat offering and a drink offering unto the Lord your God?"

    Now hear this:

    "And when the LORD raised them up judges, then the LORD was with the judge, and delivered them out of the hand of their enemies all the days of the judge: for it repented the LORD because of their groanings by reason of them that oppressed them and vexed them."

    Characterize this with all the Genevan slanders you will, it is an explicit statement of the word of God that He changed His mind in response to the groanings of His people. Now hear these words of truth from I Samuel 15:

    "It repenteth me that I have set up Saul to be king: for he is turned back from following me, and hath not performed my commandments. And it grieved Samuel; and he cried unto the LORD all night."

    But,

    "And also the Strength of Israel will not lie nor repent: for he is not a man, that he should repent."

    But again,

    "And Samuel came no more to see Saul until the day of his death: nevertheless Samuel mourned for Saul: and the LORD repented that he had made Saul king over Israel."

    In the same account we have two statements that God did repent right along side a statement that He will not repent. God repented of making Saul king because the continuation of Saul's dynasty was conditioned on his obedience. When Saul failed to obey God changed His mind about who would be king; and Samuel told Saul that God would not repent of this decision.

    We see therefore that some things are, indeed, left open for God to alter His course of action in response to the actions of men. And yet when God asserts that a thing will not be altered then it will not be altered.

    Mark Osgatharp
     
  17. Angie Miller

    Angie Miller
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2002
    Messages:
    216
    Likes Received:
    0
    With all the mercy and love for us in His heart, He does not change His mind. If He did where would we as Christians be, probably not Christians!
    If I changed my mind all the time in the diciplining of my kids what would they learn? That they could get away with misbehaving and the consequences are 0 and their bad behavior just esculates and people will be hurt and mistreated by them. That sure is not what God wants so why would He change His perfect way.
    On the other hand He COULD if He so desired but does not.
    In Christ, Angie
     
  18. Paul of Eugene

    Paul of Eugene
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2001
    Messages:
    2,782
    Likes Received:
    0
    Another way of looking at this. The many worlds theory of quantum mechanics.

    God, of course, being aware of and in control of all the many worlds at once.

    God announces, niniveh, you will be destroyed in 40 days.

    In the infinite number of universes, there are some in which Niniveh never repents and, indeed, gets destroyed within the 40 days.

    There are some in which Niniveh repents. In those universes, Niniveh is spared.

    God knew all about all of them all the time, but to men, it appeared that free will changed the outcome, allowing God to change His mind.
     
  19. AllenLim

    AllenLim
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2003
    Messages:
    25
    Likes Received:
    0
    No offense... but that sounds a bit like parallel universes and science fiction...

    Even should there be multiple ninevehs as you propose, God would have to be consistent in each one...

    I'm still hoping someone would answer the 2 scenarios I proposed earlier, or offer an alternative...
     
  20. Jim1999

    Jim1999
    Expand Collapse
    <img src =/Jim1999.jpg>

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2002
    Messages:
    15,460
    Likes Received:
    0
    There are some things God CANNOT do, and change His mind is one of them. It would violate the absoluteness of the truth of God and convert it to transitional morality.

    God cannot change His eternal attributes as taught in scripture.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     

Share This Page

Loading...