Angels Are Unchangeable Because They Love God
“Even in his servants he puts no trust, and his angels he charges with error; how much more those who dwell in houses of clay, whose foundation is in the dust, who are crushed before the moth” ( Job 4:18-19).
Although the angelic nature remains unchangeable in its own state, because it stands fast in the contemplation of its Creator, yet in that it is a created being it does have the possibility of change in itself.
To be changed is to go from being one thing to being another; a thing that changes does not have stability in itself. Every being is becoming some other thing, by as many steps as there are changes it goes through. Only the incomprehensible Nature cannot be moved from its fixed state: it is always the same, and cannot be changed.
Since the essence of angels was created good by its Maker, if it had not been changeable, that nature in the corrupt spirits would never have fallen from the pinnacle of its blessed condition. But in a wonderful way God created the nature of the highest spiritual beings good; yet he made them at the same time capable of change, so that those who refused to remain would come to ruin, and those who continued as they were created might be confirmed in that state even more worthily because it was their own choice, and become all the more meritorious in the sight of God because they had resisted the motions of change by the staying power of the will.
So the angelic nature itself is also changeable, but it has overcome that changeability by being bound by chains of love to God, who is always the same.
Angels Never Lose the Vision of God
Well, now we’re adding one question to another. When we try to untangle the loop, we’re only tying a knot. How can the angels either always be in the presence of the Father, or always behold his face, if they are sent on their missions for our salvation?
But we will find this easier to believe if we remember how subtle the angelic nature is. They never go so far away from the vision of God that they are deprived of the joys of inner contemplation. If they did lose the vision of the Creator when they went out, they could never have raised up the fallen or announced the truth to those who were ignorant of it. They could not give the blind that fountain of light if they were deprived of it by leaving it behind.
This is how the nature of angels is different from our nature in its present state: we are limited by space and hemmed in by the blindness of ignorance, but the spirits of angels—though they are indeed bound by space—have a knowledge that extends incomparably far beyond ours.
So they do always behold the face of the Father, yet at the same time they come to us. As a spiritual presence, they go out to us; but they always keep themselves there in the place from which they left, by their inner contemplation.