When God created the world and everything in it, He looked at what He had made and saw that it was “good”. On the evening and the morning of the sixth day, after He had created Adam and Eve, He looked at them and all His handiwork and indeed it was “Very Good”. Genesis Chapter 1.
Part of that goodness was Adam and Eve’s relationship with their Creator. Genesis 3:8(a) describes the Lord God walking in the Garden in the cool of the day. This tells us of the fellowship enjoyed by Adam and Eve with their God. This is how it was in the beginning.
Unfortunately, that relationship was broken when Adam and Eve chose to disobey God’s instructions not to eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. From a state of perfect harmony in a perfect environment death, decay and sin has permeated our world from that day to this.
Of course God, in His infinite foreknowledge, knew that would happen. His plan of restoration was there right at the beginning. The whole of the Bible is a record of how God is bringing that plan to fruition.
The word “restoration” from a Biblical viewpoint, means “to receive back more than has been lost, to the point that the final state is greater than the original condition.”
Let’s skip ahead to the book of Acts in the New Testament to find out a little more about this process of restoration. In Act 1:9-11, we read of the ascension of Jesus into heaven. “….while they watched, He was taken up, and a cloud received Him out of their sight. And while they looked steadfastly towards heaven as He went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel, who also said, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand gazing up into heaven? This same Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will so come again in like manner as you saw Him go into heaven.”
In one of the Apostle Peter’s first sermons after the coming of the Holy Spirit, Peter sheds some more light on the restoration that God is working out. Acts 3:19,20 – “Repent therefore and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, so that times of refreshing may come from the Presence of the Lord. And that He may send Jesus Christ, who was preached to you before, whom heaven must receive until the times of the restoration of all things, which God has spoken by the mouth of all His holy prophets since the world began.”
Verse 21 gives us some interesting insights which tell us that many things have yet to be restored and that heaven must receive Jesus until the times of the restoration of all things.
This process of restoration has been going on through Biblical times and ever since. Sometimes this work of God’s Holy Spirit is unseen, and sometimes it can be seen.
The spreading of the Gospel has brought about the greatest restoration we have ever known. It is the restoration of men to God through repentance and faith in Jesus Christ and His work of redemption on the Cross.
Restoration is about restoring what has been lost.
In our day we have seen God restoring to His “chosen people”, the Jews, what had been lost for 2000 years. In AD 70 the Jewish people were scatted among the nations as was prophesied throughout the Old Testament. Their capital city, Jerusalem, was destroyed. Their beautiful temple burnt to the ground. Their land was taken from them. Ezekiel Chapters 36-38 gives us a wonderful account of the prophesied restoration of the Jewish people to their land.
In recent times, we have seen the land given back to the Jews and restored from a dry, barren wilderness to a land that is fruitful and productive. After 2000 years in exile the Jewish people again have their home in Israel. They again have Jerusalem as their capital. The Nation of Israel has been re-established and its rightful owners returned to their land after 2000 years. Only God Himself could have worked this miracle.
There are many Jews who are now believers in Jesus, something that has only happened in recent times.
These things are all part of the restoration of things that have been lost.
What of the Church in this process? There is a restoration there too. The Bride of Christ is being prepared to meet her Bridegroom. Things that have been lost are being restored. The Word of God is being proclaimed and has become our foundation once again. The preaching of repentance as in the days of the apostles is being heard once again from the pulpits. God has always had a remnant of people who truly follow Him and that remnant is growing in number.
We are the generation who has seen an escalation of the restoration ordained by God in His Word and have seen many things happen that are part of what must take place before Jesus can come back to make all things new.
God is using rulers and nations to fulfill His purposes. He is also using ordinary people such as you and me. Often we do not realize the parts we play in the great theme of restoration.
Just as when Jesus came to earth 2000 years ago, so all is being prepared for His second coming. This will be much different from the first coming. This time it will be with power and great glory and every eye will see Him.
Jesus coming to set up His everlasting Kingdom on earth will bring about the greatest restoration the world has ever known.
Revelation 21:3,4,5 – “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with men, and He will dwell among them, and they shall be His people. God, Himself shall be their God. And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things are passed away. Then He who sat on the throne said, ‘Behold, I make all things new.” And He said to me, ‘Write, for these words are faithful and true.’ ”
All that has been lost will then be restored and it will be “as it was in the beginning.”