If God is the same yesterday, today, and forever, then reconcile the Old Testament with the New Testament for me.
I could write a novel about this. Let me just say that for starters, God is the God of life. That is why He created the Garden of Eden. From the beginning of time, man has been rebellious against God. God has had to plan to redeem and bring them back to life in the Garden of Eden. That is heaven. That has been His plan all along. His plan was life. The thief came to steal, kill, and destroy. But He came to bring life.
That is how God is the same today and for always and forever. He is for you, not against you. He wants to prosper you, not to harm you. He wishes, in all things, for you to be in good health. That is His heart for you. His heart is the Garden of Eden. He has been reconciling our screw-ups back from the beginning of time in Genesis 3 all the way to the New Testament and all the way through today.
There was a curse put on us when we decided to depart our ways from God. When you don’t stay under the ways of God, guess what happens? The enemy has free reign in your life. Submit to God, resist the devil, and he will flee. But if you don’t submit to God and you don’t resist the devil, he will pester you. He will take your life. He will destroy you. He is out to take you down. God is a gentleman. He is not in control of your life. He is only in control when you surrender. He is in charge of this world. He has the beginning and the end in His hands. He knows the outcome. You can trust Him in all things because He is the beginning and the end.
He is the reconciler. He is reconciling man to Him, the earth back to heaven. He is the ultimate reconciler. He paid the price. He sent His only Son to die for you so His Holy Spirit could live in you. In the Old Testament, the Holy Spirit could only come upon you because there hadn’t been a sacrifice. Jesus’ Spirit wasn’t released into people yet.
It’s like when Noah was on the boat and he sent out the dove, and it came back. It had nowhere it could land. The second time it went out, it came back because all it could do was pick from the trees. It still had nowhere to land. But the third time he sent it out, it landed and never came back. That is the picture of the Holy Spirit.
The first time the dove went out, it was like the Holy Spirit. God would give His Spirit to people and let them use the Holy Spirit for a little while, and then He would take the Spirit back. Then when Jesus came, it was a unique time for the Holy Spirit because the Spirit resided in Jesus. He could give the Holy Spirit, and the Spirit came back. But the Holy Spirit didn’t go back fully and never returned to God until Jesus died. When Jesus died, He sent His Spirit, who is permanently deposited into us, guaranteeing our inheritance now.
It wasn’t like that in the Old Testament. In the Old Testament, after we sinned there became curses for our sin. Guess what? Jesus became the cursed for us when He died. We no longer live under the law. We live under the blessing.
People do not understand that God is the same yesterday, today, and forever if they don’t understand that God is the God of the New Testament, that He is Jesus, or if they have not read the Word from cover to cover and understand that God is love. He is not a wrathful, angry God who is sitting up in heaven, mad and angry. He has blotted out our transgressions as far as the east is from the west.
What He is upset about is that you have rejected His Son, Jesus Christ. You have rejected the gift. You have rejected receiving the Holy Spirit, so He cannot be your guide and your protector. You have rejected His provision for the plan to work out salvation in you. You have rejected it, and you continue to reject it daily. You have accepted Him as your Savior, yet you turn around and continue to reject Him and live in your own ways and your own understanding. You live according to your own time, your own calendar, and your own schedule.
He has given us everything we need for life and godliness through the knowledge of Him. He has given us the opportunity to know Him. He walked in the garden with Adam and Eve. One of the things I hate the most is when people say, “Sin separated you from God. God can have nothing to do with you when you are in sin.” But the first thing God did when Adam and Eve sinned was He went after them. He came into their presence and said, “Where are you? Come out.” Why? Because He is love.
God has been seeking after us all along. Sin didn’t separate Him and make Him angry and make Him not have anything to do with you. No. He has been working it out, seeking you, pursuing you, wanting to know people, and wanting to get people to come to Him. That is His heart. His heart’s desire is to seek and find the lost. He came for the sick. He spends time with the sick. He doesn’t just spend time with the holier-than-thou. He didn’t come for that. He didn’t come for the righteous. He never did, but He wants to be in community with us. His heart is for everyone to be saved.
Yet people die without being saved and knowing Him. Why? Because He is a gentleman. He gave man a choice. He gave us a choice from the first day: good and evil. “Here are two trees. Pick which one you will choose. Pick one you will follow.” Every day we get that in front of us, minute by minute. “Who will you choose? Will you go out and party with friends, or will you stay here with Me? Will you spend time with Me, or are you going to put yourself on the throne? Where are you going to be?”
He is the same God yesterday, today, and forever. When you remove yourself from His umbrella of protection, just like Adam and Eve did, the enemy comes to steal, kill, and destroy. The locusts will start taking apart your life. You are not under the protection when you remove yourself.
Yes, He is the same. He is the same loving guy who is trying to restore what we have destroyed.
In Jesus’ name, I bind all of this.