Restoration simply means returning something to its original condition. Our belief that God is a God of restoration is the basis of our hope, and it is fundamental to our faith as Christians. We are reconciled to God, and our relationship with Him is restored forever, by faith in Jesus Christ. But that is only the beginning, God is the Master restorer and His restoration work reaches out to ALL things!
What is The Meaning of Restoration in the Bible?
Scripture is clear that our Heavenly Father is the God of restoration. One day everything will be made new, God will restore all things in heaven and on the earth. But, for now, we live in a time of tension, between what is and what is still to come.
“Heaven must receive him (Jesus) until the time comes for God to restore everything as he promised long ago through his holy prophets.”Acts 3:21
Our hope for the future stirs our hearts to pray for our relationships, our nation and our communities. As we capture the vision of God as being the God of restoration our expectations rise to see what God can do!
God Will Restore What Was Lost
God will restore what was lost – and that begins with our sin damaged relationship with Him. As we experience God’s healing, we look ahead with hope to the day that He will restore ALL things.
God Restores Relationships
God is Jehovah Rapha, the one who heals our brokenness, and who can make us whole. Our broken relationship with God is restored, by His grace, through Jesus Christ.
“For if, while we were God’s enemies, we were reconciled to Him through the death of His Son, how much more, having been reconciled, shall we be saved through His life!”Romans 5:10
Once we were separated from God by sin, but now because of Jesus we are reconciled to God. Our relationship with Him is restored, not by our behavior but by God’s grace. Through faith in Jesus we receive forgiveness for our sins and are accepted into the family of God.
The restoration of our relationship with God is just the starting point. From then on God begins to restore our value and worth with the knowledge of who we are in His sight. As we receive the full measure of God’s love, it begins to flow through us to those around us.
God is able to restore our broken relationships with one another. He can restore marriages, and family relationships. In the mess of this life, however, there may be some relationships that are not healthy to reconcile. But God can heal our hurts so that we are able to forgive, move forward, and leave the past behind.
Divine Restoration in the Bible
God is the God of restoration it is His identity, and who He is. Scripture is full of God’s promises to restore what was lost. He will restore what the enemy has stolen! God will restore what was lost, and God will restore your wasted years.
But God’s restoration is far bigger than the individual person. He will restore families, communities, and even nations. God will restore Israel, His chosen people, and finally He will restore His creation.
“I will plant Israel in their own land, never again to be uprooted from the land I have given them, says the LORD your God.”Amos 9:15
The day will come when God will finally and fully restore Israel – never again to be destroyed. The people will be regathered to the promised land. This began with the formation of the nation of Israel in 1948 and is continuing now.
Israel will never be completely rejected or abandoned by God. He has promised, as the God of restoration to redeem His people. There is a growing ministry to bring the revelation of Jesus to God’s chosen people.
“Israel, put your hope in the LORD, for with the LORD is unfailing love and with him is full redemption.”Psalm 130:7
5 Examples of Restoration in the Bible
There was no difficulty in finding examples of restoration in the Bible, because God is the God of restoration! The problem was in selecting which ones to share. I’ve chosen five different stories which reveal different aspects of God’s restoration work, in individuals, in families, and in communities.
Restoring Relationships – Re-uniting Family
In the story of Joseph, Jacob’s son, we see God throughout his life working all things together for good. When Jospeh’s brothers wanted to get rid of him and sold him to slave traders, it must have been hard for him to understand what God was doing. But ultimately, God brought reconciliation and healing to Joseph and his family and reunited them in Egypt.
“But Joseph said to them (his brothers), “Don’t be afraid. Am I in the place of God? You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives. So then, don’t be afraid. I will provide for you and your children.”” Genesis 50:19-20
Healing the Broken – Restoring Protection & Provision
Naomi’s story of personal restoration is found in the book of Ruth. The story began when Naomi, with her husband and two sons, left Bethlehem because of famine. But several years later she returned without them, accompanied only by her widowed daughter-in-law, Ruth.
Related Post: Why Did Naomi Change Her Name To Mara?
Naomi’s faith in God was restored as she saw His hand working to provide for them both in Bethlehem. Ruth married Boaz who was a distant relative of Naomi, and they had a son together. The story ends with Naomi restored and with a double blessing. She is provided for, safe, secure, and caring for her new grandson.
“Then Naomi took the child in her arms and cared for him. The woman living there said, “Naomi has a son!” And they named him Obed. He was the father of Jesse, the father of David.” Ruth 4:16-17
God of Restoration – New Season of Hope & Joy
The book of Nehemiah records the story of the Israelite exiles beginning to return to Jerusalem. This was the long-awaited season of restoration. But Nehemiah was still in Babylon when he heard the news that Jerusalem was vulnerable as the city walls were damaged. Through Nehemiah’s willingness to respond to a need, God gave him favor with the king of Babylon.
Nehemiah was able to return to Jerusalem and inspire the people to start the restoration of the city walls. But Nehemiah’s work progressed far beyond rebuilding the walls. Faith and trust in God, with a renewed call to worship, were also restored. This led to restoring relationships between the people and brought an end to social injustice. In fact, there was complete, structural, social, and spiritual reform. So much to celebrate and only what God, as the God of restoration, can do!!
Related Post: React or Act?
“Nehemiah said, “Go and enjoy choice food and sweet drinks, and send some to those who have nothing prepared. This day is holy to our Lord. Do not grieve, for the joy of the LORD is your strength.” Nehemiah 8:10
Restoring Self-Worth – Free From Condemnation
Jesus encountered a woman by a well at Sychar, a town in Samaria. This is one of the few conversations of Jesus recorded with a Gentile. It is remarkable, not only because she was a Gentile, but also a woman, and a woman with an immoral lifestyle. But what is even more remarkable is that Jesus revealed who He was, as Messiah, to the most unlikely person.
This is the only occasion before His trial where Jesus publicly declared that He was the Messiah. In recognizing the Samaritan woman for who she was and yet not condemning her, Jesus restored her value and self-worth. Straight away she went to tell her neighbors about Jesus and became one of the first evangelists outside of Israel!
“They said to the woman, “We no longer believe just because of what you said; now we have heard for ourselves, and we know that this man really is the Savior of the world.” John 4:42
God of Restoration – Restoring the Truth
In the book of Acts there are three accounts of Saul’s dramatic conversion. He was a man who thought he knew the truth of God’s word. But Saul was spiritually blind and persecuting Christians. Saul became blinded by a bright light on the road to Damascus and had an encounter with the risen Lord Jesus.
Jesus revealed the truth of who He was to Saul and changed his life forever. After three days of being blind, the Lord Jesus sent a man to pray for Saul. God restored Saul’s sight, so that he could see both physically and spiritually. He restored Saul from error into the truth – the revelation of Jesus, as the Messiah, the Savior of the world.
“Jesus answered, ‘I am the way and the truth and the life. No-one comes to the Father except through me. If you really know me, you will know my Father as well…” John 14:6-7
Related Post: Three Lessons from Saul’s Conversion
One Day God Will Restore All Things!
We have the promise that one day God will restore all things. But because He is the God of Restoration, this is His character, we can live in His restoring work right now. We can see God healing our broken hearts, the mess of our lives, and making us whole.
God’s restoration work is a process and as we submit to Him, He will work in us and through us. But we also live with the tension, that our God of restoration is holding back the complete fulfilment of His work. What we see now is only shadow of what is still to come.
Restoration of Creation
Today society is beginning to acknowledge that creation is in decay. But few people recognize that it is waiting to be restored, by God, to the freedom and glory it once declared. The universe is not destined for destruction but for renewal with a new heaven and earth.
The power of sin will be forever broken. The new heaven and earth will be a place where God’s presence will be among His people. There will no longer be any separation, old hostilities will be gone forever because our old nature will be transformed.
Look! God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and he will dwell with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.Revelation 21:3-4
I pray that God will restore your hope, even now, that in Him the best is yet to come!