Can God change His "mind"?

There are some verses in the OT which seems to indicate that according to circumstances God changed his mind. Do you think that thing its possible? Do you have any other explanation? Thanks and God bless!

Which verses are you thinking of specifically? Like Genesis 6:6 where it says God regretted making humans?

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I would say it seems that scripture teaches that he is willing to change his mind. He will let us petition towards his nature. Should he use justice in this case or should he instead use grace.

We also see this in the heavenly hosts and god discuss how to handle Ahab.

Yeah together with that verse which Moses seems to speak to God and then changes his mind. I forgot which is it actually. Have to look it up!

Thats sounds problematic to me if its true since you know hes God?Does it to you?

No it does not sound like a issue. A issue would be a God who was not willing to listen to the cries of his creation. Changing your mind does not mean you are weak or you were wrong. It means you decided to go a different route.

The Jews all deserved to be destroyed in the wilderness. They repeatedly dismissed God. He had every right to strike them down and start all over.

But he listened to the plea of a Moses and decided instead to react with grace and mercy.

Was it problematic when Jesus listened to the gentile woman? Emotions are not evil or weak. God has emotions. He’s a emotional God. If he was hit a robotic super being who looked at everything as his way or destruction we would all be destroyed.

Moses never forced God to do anything. God could have made a thousand choices. He allows us often to help with those choices.

We need God. He does not need us. He could have managed the garden all alone. He could have named the animals himself. He chose to let mankind in. He knew Cain killed Abel. He did not need to ask. He knew it was going to happen before it did. Yet he still decided to reach out even to Cain and listen to him and Mark him for safety.

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My last argument here would be that changing your mind its a human attribute. How can a supernatural beign like God(The Father) change his mind?

Well it seems that it must also be possible action for every intelligent being. Even animals change their minds.

In general I let scripture speak for itself.

If the Bible says God can change his mind, then I don’t presume to tell him he can’t because I think it’s wrong. Same for doctrine. I don’t tell the Bible to say what I want it to say. I read what it says.

Can God change His mind?


Though I think most of the examples that prompt this are cases where He has regrets or where He changes strategies. I don’t think He gives up.

But yes, I think God can change His mind. I think God can do anything. He can do evil if He chose. He can make sacrifices and limit Himself as He chooses. He can take risks, give privacy, and have doubts. This is because knowledge is no different than power which He can use as He chooses and not as a slave to some theology.

He is a rational being. When He sees the results of one strategy then He switches to a different strategy when that does not work. Why didn’t He know the first way would not work. Because he is dealing with living things who have a will and choice of their own. It is not because God cannot know such things but because He cannot know without effecting them (a fact of quantum physics). When something exists in a quantum state of superposition then to know which will happen is to make a measurement which collapses the superposition. Knowledge alters the thing you know. In other words, knowledge precludes free will. Then what about Biblical prophecies? Much is still predictable especially because sin destroys free will. But it does mean that the fall of man was not pre-known and so God could regret the creation of man when He saw the misery that resulted (because make no mistake, evil causes misery and you cannot have mankind doing only evil continually without enormous misery).

It is apparent that He has changed His mind at different times. But He did plan and accomplish our redemption through Christ without any change of mind. He redeemed us by the blood of Jesus. No amount of persuasion would have changed that and nothing will change that.

2 instances come to my mind:

  1. Abraham interceding for the city of Sodom. He “bargained” with God to spare the city if they had 10 righteous men in it, down from the original 50 nos

  2. Moses interceding for the Israelites and averting God’s judgement on them.

My response is: God doesn’t change His mind because that implies that God isn’t omniscient or does not have foreknowledge.

God doesn’t need to consult with man to make decisions. He is self-sufficient and doesn’t need to “talk things over” with someone else to “feel better”.

The purpose of God engaging and sharing his plans with Abraham and Moses is for their intercession. God’s justice calls for judgements on Sodom and Israel but God, who is pleased to show mercy, called those 2 men to intercede and appeal to God’s mercy.

I see this consistently throughout the Bible. The perfect example is - Jesus Christ, our Advocate who makes intercession for us.

This is how God operates. An intercessor can appeal to God’s mercy to avert His judgement.

"I looked for someone among them who would build up the wall and stand before me in the gap on behalf of the land so I would not have to destroy it, but I found no one. Ezekial 22:30

Finally, God’s foreknowledge doesn’t exclude God from expressing regret or grief over mankind’s sin.

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if he would change his mind he would alter the future to be other that what it was as he knew it. If God would change his mind he would already have known before that he did, thus would not change his mind but do exactly what he knew what he would do. It would only appear to us not knowing the future as if he would change his mind. He would have already known that you were going to repent and that he would spare you this time etc.
Would he declare what he calls a sin to become a permissible action would be a more relevant question. Do you think he would change his mind on sex and accept our attitude to turn sex from a creational act into a recreational act or that its okay to desire someone’s husband or wife - just for some innocent recreation?

that wasn’t there when I started typing. You actually said id better than me.

I always wonder why people, if they do not die when they expected that they felt they averted judgement. It’s only postponed, and having been reminded of the call to judgement (e.g. having been given your eviction notice) only makes you more aware of the judgement to come. It definitely did to me and gave me the urge to talk about God

I would say all of the Bible anthropomorphizes God to some extent to make his Person accessible to our minds. In the Bible he changes his mind because of an emotional response. Does God have emotional reactions? In whatever sense he does, they aren’t the same as ours, which are at least in some part rooted in hormones and brain chemistry. So in whatever analogous way God changes his mind, it isn’t the same way we do with our finite brains and capacity to take in information and comprehend situations. God changing his mind is an analogy to our own embodied human experience and since he is not human, the analogy will break down at some point.


Or perhaps would he change something that was a permissible act to a sin? As some say he did with incest in the YEC interpretation.

Also I think sex as recreational is something God always was good with in the context of marriage, looking at Song of Songs, and other verses.

It becomes recreational if it is decoupled from its natural consequence.

incestual relationships were often associated with unhappy outcomes, so displayed as problematic. Would you say God was okay with murder before issuing the ten commandments? Its a bit like saying gravity only existed after Newton.

I agree. If God wants to tell something to humans, He needs to use proper language and expressions the receivers can understand. Emotions play a strong role in thinking and life. Use of emotionally loaded words may aid understanding.

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In many parts of the scriptures, humans are given a choice between two roads. One leading towards God, another leading away from Him. My understanding of these roads is that they are like alternative realities or parallel universes. Gods message is tied to the road. As long as we are on a road, we hear a certain kind of message. If we get the possibility to jump to the other road, the message changes. Maybe this is where the writers have used the expression ‘God regrets’ or God changed His mind. The message that is tied to the road does not change but the individual jumping to the other road experiences a change at the personal level. The same seems to happen at the level of tribes, or the nation of Israel.

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