The Myth: Our World is Changing All Around Us and Will Never Be the Same
Lest we forget what the Bible says, “There is no new thing under the sun (Eccl 1:9).” Having worked for ten years with Wall Street investment firms, I had to learn to ignore daily, weekly, monthly, and even bad years in the stock market. It was good discipline for living life. We are conceived, born, and die in a vaporous span of time, marked by a few historical moments of note.
Whatever those note-worthy points may be on the timeline, the truth is that nothing really changes. Consider Noah’s generation, who were removed by a water pandemic (Gen 6–9). The wickedness of humanity still resided in Noah’s family, despite the temporal salvation of the Lord. That historical event would later serve as a type of salvation through Jesus Christ.
When God gave Israel His holy Law nothing really changed. The Law only put a name and a clear consequence to the already existing sins being committed, by all people everywhere. The same was true for humanity, when God sent His only begotten Son into the world (Jn 3:16). Men were in a state of condemnation (Jn 3:18) because they loved darkness (Jn 3:19). Their deeds were evil (Gen 6:5), and so were their self-professed good works (Is 64:6).
What about today? Should we have believed those who claimed that our lives will be forever changed by the Corona Virus/Covid-19? The natural man is conceived in sin, lives in sin, and dies in his sin. He then is judged for his sins, and this leads to eternal punishment for his sins. The course of the natural man does not change. It has been this way from the time of Adam until this very day.
Nothing has changed the course of natural man throughout history. Witnessing God’s judgment for sins in the lives of individuals, nations, and occasional global pandemics have not changed sinners into saints. The Law, the covenants, the Temple, the priesthood, the sacrifices…nothing, produced the change in man that was truly a change.
If there is a rule that there is no change in man, even through his own will and ability, then, we must present the unique exception to the “no change rule.” Jesus Christ is that one exception. Only one man, the God-man has ever thwarted humanity’s descent into everlasting damnation. Here is the one person and event in human history that brought change to the mind of a man, even to his heart.
With this change in the heart and mind came the exclusive claim, “He changed my life!” God the Father planned this change, for His elect people, before Creation. Because man could not alter his course toward death, judgment, hell, and the lake of fire, God sent the one and only change agent, Jesus Christ.
His was an addition. The eternal Son of God took on flesh (Jn 1:14), to become a man like us, yet without sin (Heb 4:15). He changed Himself in an act of sacrifice, leaving heaven, to suffer in the flesh and in the world. Holiness walked amidst the filth of humanity. He emptied Himself of glory (Phil 2:5–11), in order to become the Mediator between God and man (1 Tim 2:5).
The turning point in history was on that dark day, at the hands of sinners. When Jesus laid down His life for His sheep (Jn 10:11, 15), He bore the sins of His beloved church in His body on the cross (Eph 5:23; 1 Pet 2:24). He purchased His church with His precious blood (Acts 20:28; 1 Pet 1:19), as the unblemished Lamb of God (Phil 1:29), serving as a propitiation, for the sins of His people throughout history and around the world (Rom 3:25; 1 Jn 2:2; 4:10).
Just as the Father did not plan a possible salvation, Jesus did not execute a sacrificial offering that had no sure application. The Father and the Son entrusted the application of Christ’s finished work to the Holy Spirit. Dead men, who could change nothing about themselves nor the trajectory toward destruction, were now forgiven of their sins. They were brought to life, spiritually, by the regenerating work of the Holy Spirit (Jn 3:1–8; Eph 2:5; Col 2:13; 1 Pet 1:3).
The three works of the Trinity and the three phases of salvation should not be severed from one another. They should be taken as a whole, with three discernible parts. The process of salvation has no rogue variables and certainly no unknown possibilities. Salvation, at no point, is considered uncertain. It is a sure thing because it is all a work of God (Ps 3:8; Jon 2:9; Rom 11:36; Titus 3:5; Rev 19:1), revealed to us in Holy Writ (Jn 5:39).
God knows the end from the beginning because He is omniscient. He accomplished all His holy will because He is omnipotent. We have His Word of promise that does not change (Mt 5:18; 24:35). It does not change because He does not change (Heb 13:8). The immutable God has made an unchanging decree (Job 22:28), which includes the one and only change that is true…the change of heart and mind in His chosen people.
The world claims to change, but it is the same. Man claims to change but he, too, is the same. It is God who changes man and equally important…his eternal home.
Spokane Valley, Washington
November 18, 2022