I recently watched a documentary on the private life of King Henry 8th and what a gruesome moment in history that was. How many world leaders past and present, have started out with such promise, only to become tyrants, unfriendly dictators or weak and useless. One perception of God of the Old Testament is a God who is judgmental, vengeful and ready to punish, whereas Jesus in the New Testament is perceived as a loving God. How can this be when Hebrews 13:8 states that "Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever"?
If there was anyone who seemed most unlikely to be a patriarch of what would become the Israelites/Hebrews/ Jews, it was Jacob. He was a cheat and a liar and destined to become a loser, yet years later he was feted by the Pharaoh of Egypt. How did this come about?
While Jacob was at his lowest, having had to flee his home and country as a result of his cheating and lying, God met with him and reassured Jacob that he, God was with him now and always, and would bring him safely back to Canaan. Jacob was a changed man after that encounter, and through the ups and downs of 20 years living and working at his Uncle Laban's property, Jacob knew that God was his friend and he could now say with certainty that God was his God - 'a loving God, slow to become angry and abounding in steadfast love.'
As we observe the changes in people and society, some good and some not so good, we can always rely on the promise that our God has not become out of date nor out of touch.
He is the same 'yesterday, today and forever.'