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Impassibility of God

Impassibility of God. The belief that because God is immutable, unchanging, and unchangeable, he cannot suffer or be affected by what happens in, e.g., his creation. This view has dominated Christian theology for most of its history. However, this is far removed from the biblical picture of God as one who feels and responds, and who can hardly be unaffected by the crucifixion of Jesus, if Jesus is indeed the Son of the Father. Process theology reversed this emphasis by insisting that becoming is a necessary condition of being. Others have retained the traditional emphasis on the unchanging/unchangeable nature of God, but have insisted that change, suffering, petition, intercession, etc., are consequential to God and evoke response, but to and from one whose nature it is to make such response without his own nature changing.

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