God is not a man, that he should lie, nor a son of man, that he should change his mind. Does he speak and then not act? Does he promise and not fulfill?” —Numbers 23:19, NIV

The story behind this statement comes courtesy of a somewhat wayward sorcerer by the name of Balaam. Balaam was asked by the King of Moab to curse Israel so that the Moabites could defeat them in battle. Balaam had already had a rather scary encounter with one of God’s angels when he tried to accommodate Israel’s enemies, so this time Balaam got it right.

In verse 20 he explains to King Balak that God told him to bless Israel because that was his will and all Balaam could do was bless Israel. God’s purposes for his people were always benevolent ones even in their dark days of sin and the subsequent punishments that were necessary to get them back on track.

Yesterday I had a mini-meltdown. It happens once in a while, especially when I am feeling overwhelmed or thwarted in my plans. Those are times when it passes through my mind that God has changed his mind about blessing me. Silly, I know, but sometimes I get really silly—a politer version of calling myself stupid, which I also did yesterday.

The point is that God doesn’t change his mind about taking actions that are for the ultimate good of his children. No one can thwart his purposes (and I’ll get done what HE wants me to get done, and much more efficiently without the hissy-fits). Balaam admitted that even if he did curse Israel, it would do no good because God had willed that they be blessed. He told Balak: “The Lord their God is with them; the shout of the King is among them” (23:21). Don’t you just love that last phrase?

Some people scoff at Christians for using God as a “crutch.” Since God never changes and is always faithful it will be the believers who have that proverbial “last laugh.” It makes perfectly good sense to lean on the one One who will never let us down.


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