Changing God’s Mind

We don’t think about God changing His mind, but it happens. An incident involving Isaiah and King Hezekiah illustrates it:

In those days was Hezekiah sick unto death. And Isaiah the prophet, the son of Amoz, came unto him and said unto him, Thus says the Lord: Set your house in order, for you shall die and not live. Then Hezekiah turned his face toward the wall and prayed unto the Lord, and said, Remember now, O Lord, I implore you, how I have walked before you in truth and with a perfect heart, and have done that which is good in your sight. And Hezekiah wept severely. Then came the word of the Lord to Isaiah, saying, Go and say to Hezekiah, Thus says the Lord, the God of David your father: I have heard your prayer, I have seen your tears; behold, I will add unto your days fifteen years. And I will deliver you and this city out of the hand of the king of Assyria, and I will defend this city. OC Isa. 13:13

God’s word to Isaiah was that the king would “die and not live.” True to the Lord’s word, Isaiah delivered the message to Hezekiah and left. In the account of this incident in 2 Kings, as Isaiah was leaving, “before Isaiah was gone out into the middle court, that the word of the Lord came to him, saying, Return, and tell Hezekiah…” 2 Kings 6:13

It was immediately following Hezekiah learning of his impending death that the Lord spoke again to Isaiah and decreed another outcome. So Isaiah returned, and delivered a new message, contradicting and rescending the first decree.

A message from God can be changed. The outcome of His decree can be altered. Although Hezekiah wept, he did not ask for the Lord to alter the outcome, he accepted it. Bitter as it was for him to realize his life was ending, all he asked was for the Lord to remember his life’s faithfulness and that he had done good in God’s sight.

Accepting God’s decree and submitting to His will is more likely to result in the decree changing than by refusing to do so. God can and does take far more into account than can we.

I have seen the illnesses and deaths of friends and fellow believers and been troubled by the losses. I’ve tried to change God’s mind and prayed for a different outcome for many of those who have suffered recently. In response to continuing prayers to understand God’s will, I learned on February 25th that “some people are taken and not healed because in the Wisdom of God the person is ready and if left will recede rather than advance, and some are taken because, if left, would interfere with and delay or hinder God’s purposes for others, and some are given to suffer because it gives them the opportunity to develop in Godly attributes they would not otherwise attain. God’s Wisdom is greater than man’s and sees more than can man. But in all matters there is reason and wisdom in how matters of health, life and death unfold.”