Summary: As believers, our hope ultimately rests in the promise that Christ will come back for us one day and make all things new. But what about the here & now? The Bible is full of examples of how God makes things new for His glory & our good.
WHEN GOD RESTORES: STEPS TO RECOVERY & RESTORATION IN GOD
1. 2 KINGS:8 1 Now Elisha had said to the woman whose son he had restored to life, “Arise, and depart with your household, and sojourn wherever you can, for the Lord has called for a famine, and it will come upon the land for seven years.” 2 So the woman arose and did according to the word of the man of God. She went with her household and sojourned in the land of the Philistines seven years. 3 And at the end of the seven years, when the woman returned from the land of the Philistines, she went to appeal to the king for her house and her land. 4 Now the king was talking with Gehazi the servant of the man of God, saying, “Tell me all the great things that Elisha has done.” 5 And while he was telling the king how Elisha had restored the dead to life, behold, the woman whose son he had restored to life appealed to the king for her house and her land. And Gehazi said, “My lord, O king, here is the woman, and here is her son whom Elisha restored to life.” 6 And when the king asked the woman, she told him. So the king appointed an official for her, saying, “Restore all that was hers, together with all the produce of the fields from the day that she left the land until now.”
2. 2 KINGS 6: 1 The company of the prophets said to Elisha, “Look, the place where we meet with you is too small for us. 2 Let us go to the Jordan, where each of us can get a pole; and let us build a place there for us to meet.” And he said, “Go.” 3 Then one of them said, “Won’t you please come with your servants?” “I will,” Elisha replied. 4 And he went with them. They went to the Jordan and began to cut down trees. 5 As one of them was cutting down a tree, the iron axhead fell into the water. “Oh no, my lord!” he cried out. “It was borrowed!” 6 The man of God asked, “Where did it fall?” When he showed him the place, Elisha cut a stick and threw it there, and made the iron float.7 “Lift it out,” he said. Then the man reached out his hand and took it.
3. JOEL 2: 2-26 “And I will restore to you the years that the locust hath eaten, the cankerworm, and the caterpillar, and the palmerworm, my great army which I sent among you. And ye shall eat in plenty, and be satisfied, and praise the name of the LORD your God, that hath dealt wondrously with you: and my people shall never be ashamed.”
4. PSALM 126: 1 When the Lord restored the fortunes of Zion, we were like those who dreamed, Our mouths were filled with laughter, our tongues with songs of joy. Then it was said among the nations, “The Lord has done great things for them.” 3 The Lord has done great things for us, and we are filled with joy. 4 Restore our fortunes, Lord, like streams in the Negev. 5 Those who sow with tears will reap with songs of joy. 6 Those who go out weeping, carrying seed to sow, will return with songs of joy, carrying sheaves with them.
New is one of God’s promises to us, and we know that all of his promises are fulfilled in Jesus Christ (2 Corinthians 1:20). As believers, our hope ultimately rests in the promise that Christ will come back for us one day and make all things new (Revelation 21:5). But what about the here and now? What can I hang my hope on today, tomorrow, and every other day of this new year? The Bible is full of examples showing how God makes things new for his glory and for the good of his people.
1. God Restores: He restores us to a right relationship with him through the gift of forgiveness and justification. He is able to restore earthly relationships. And he can even restore days and years that have been lost to the effects of sin (Joel 2:25). That has to be greatest evidence of the extravagant nature of God’s mercy. Not only can he renew a life and redeem its future, but he can also redeem its past. In Scripture, We See God’s Power Of Restoration Countless Times. When Jacob was finally reunited with his lost son, Joseph, he described the grief-filled days of his life as “few and evil” (Genesis 47:9). But in his last days, through God’s mercy, Jacob was able to look back on his life and see that God had been his shepherd all along and that he had been redeemed from the evil that once marked his life (Genesis 48:15-16). In the story of Ruth, we see God take a family whose name faced extinction and not only restore to them a secure future but knit them into his grand story of redemption by placing them in Jesus’ family line. In the New Testament, we see Jesus live a ministry of restoration. He restores sight to the blind, the ability to walk to the crippled, hearing to the deaf, and new clean skin to the diseased (Mark 8:22-26; Matthew 9:2-8; Mark 7: 31-37; Luke 5:12-25). In all of these accounts, Jesus didn’t just heal a condition. He restored life, security, and hope to broken people. What has God restored to you? Time? Relationships?