IMMUTABILITY OF GOD
In his unchangeableness. He is immutable in his essence, James 1:17. In his attributes, Ps. 102:27. In his purposes, Isa. 25:1. Ps. 33:11. In his promises, Mal. 3:6. 2 Tim. 2:12. And in his threatenings, Matt. 25:41. “This is a perfection,” says Dr. Blair, “which, perhaps, more than any other, distinguishes the divine nature from the human, gives complete energy to all its attributes, and entitles it to the highest adoration. From hence are derived the regular order of nature, and the steadfastness of the universe. Hence flows the unchanging terror of those laws which from age to age regulate the conduct of mankind. Hence the uniformity of that government, and the certainty of those promises, which are the ground of our trust and security. An objection, however, may be raised against this doctrine, from the commands given us to prayer, and other religious exercises. to what purpose, it may be urged, is homage addressed to a Being whose plan is unalterably fixed? This objection would have weight, if our religious addresses were designed to work any alteration in God, either by giving him information of what he did not know, or by exciting affections which he did not possess; or by inducing him to change measures which he had previously formed: but they are only crude and imperfect notions of religion which can suggest such ideas. The change which our devotions are intended to make, are upon ourselves, not upon the Almighty. By pouring out our sentiments and desires before God, by adoring his perfections, and confessing our unworthiness; by expressing our dependence on his aid; our gratitude for his past favours, our submission to his present will, and our trust in his future mercy, we cultivate such affections as suit our place and station in the universe, and are to be exercised by us as men and as Christians. The contemplation of this divine perfection should raise in our minds admiration; should teach us to imitate, as far as our frailty will permit, that constancy and steadfastness which we adore, 2 Cor. 3:18; and, lastly, should excite trust and confidence in the Divine Being, amidst all the revolutions of this uncertain world.”
Charles Buck (1771-1815) was an English Independent minister, best known for the publication of his “Theological Dictionary”. According to the “Dictionary of National Biography”, a Particular Baptist minister named John C. Ryland (1723-1792) assisted Buck by writing many of the articles for the aforementioned publication. One may conclude, based not only Buck’s admiration for his friend Ryland, but also on the entries in his Theological Dictionary, that he stood head and shoulders with the High-Calvinists of his day.