“But he is unchangeable, and who can turn him back? What he desires, that he does. For he will complete what he appoints for me, and many such things are in his mind…” (Job 23:13-14)
These verses were part of my morning bible reading this morning. They give me great hope. Consider what Job knows and affirms of God:
He never changes… never alters… is never fickle or capricious. Rather, he is unchangeable. Not just “unchanging”, mind you, but unchangeable. There is no need for him to change because he never makes a mis-step or a mistake. Oh, the rest, peace and hope of serving an unchangeable God!
Second, he is unstoppable, un-interruptable: “who can turn him back?” When I look out around me, everything is change and kinda scary… where is this world careening to. But, the unchangeable God is the unstoppable God. None can derail him.
Third, He always accomplishes what he sets about to: “what he desires, that he does.” At this point, Job is just piling on similar truths. Perhaps it’s to help us GET it! Nothing in our lives is unchanging. But God is unchanging. Even the rocks and mountains change. Up in Northern New Hampshire, in the White Mountains, there has always been a venerable rock formation called “The Old Man of the Mountain.” For generations, you could drive up there, and see a facial profile in a rock formation. …UNTIL, one spring (2003) it had fallen to pieces. Ice and snow and melt and freeze pried the rock off the granite cliffs. Everything in this world changes! But not God. He does everything that he desires.
Fourth, it’s personal with God. “he will complete what he appoints for me.” He hasn’t simply set in motion a world of physics and natural laws, that inexorably take their course, while he tools off to another part of the universe to watch from afar. Rather, he as appointed plans and purposes for each of us. This unchangeable, unstoppable, accomplishing God brings this to bear in each of our lives, just as assuredly as he did in Job’s. Psalm 138:8 reiterates this: “He will accomplish his purposes for me.” Romans 8:28 as well: “in all things God works for the good of those who love him and are called according to his purpose.” Eph 2:10: “We are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance that we should walk in them.” Job is on to something here: God has a purpose for you and for me, and is going to accomplish it. Even if, like in Job’s case, it’s not a purpose that we would choose!
Finally, “many such things are in his mind.” Wow. We are just scratching the surface of him. 2 verses in Job 23… yet 30,000 more verses of God’s revelation to us. There’s more in his infinite, wise, glorious, mysterious, inscrutable, good, kind, and merciful mind than we can dare to dream. No wonder Paul ends Romans 11 with: “Oh the depths of the riches of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable his wisdom, and his paths beyond tracing out.”
Today–in our changing world, in our changing plans, in our changing lives, in our changing culture, changing jobs, changing pressures–will you cling with Job to the unchangeable, unstoppable, effective, personal and infinite God? Job’s safe-harbor is for us all.