Restoration From New to New
Bear with me for a minute and turn to the beginning of your Bible, Genesis 1:1 and 31a. They say, “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth, and God saw all that He had made, and it was very good.”
Now, please turn to near the very end of your Bible, Revelation 21:1-5, this says, “Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. And I saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, ‘Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.’ And he who was seated on the throne said, ‘Behold, I am making all things new.’“
This absolutely tickles me. God starts and ends with new. God loves new. He is the maker of new. In fact, He says in Revelation 21:5 that He is making all things new.
We were originally made in the image of God. We were made to reflect His glory into the world, but Adam and Eve usurped God’s position in their relationship with Him and sin entered into their lives. That ruined the new.
Through disobedience Adam and Eve rejected God. This led to a rejection of self (shame – Genesis 3:7), a fear of rejection (Genesis 3:8, Genesis 3:10), and rejection of others (Genesis 3:12-13). The manifestation of the break in the relationship between God and man was rejection and the fear of rejection.
That spirit of rejection is still alive and well in the hearts of men and women in the 21st Century. The fear of rejection drives most of our decisions. We can trace the need to control, perfectionism, fear of relationships, need for power, anger and hostility, and even war to the fear of and reaction to rejection. The greatest human need is to be accepted. The greatest source of darkness in the human heart is rejection, and “if you reject me, I will reject you.” Humans are remarkably clever and devious in how they “get back” at the ones they believe rejected them.
Fear not! Remember, God is a maker of new. Almost as soon as Adam and Eve had to leave the Garden, God began restoring people back to Himself. To restore is to “bring back to a previous, normal condition.” In fact, renew, redeem, restore, and reconcile have the same root meaning, which is to restore to a previous condition or position. This is something that God loves to do!
I love God’s desire to restore. 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). Not only can He renew a life and redeem its future, but He can also redeem its past.
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.
Jesus said, “I have come to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives, and release from darkness for the prisoners “(Isaiah 61:1; Luke 4:18-19). Jesus accepted the rejected, the prostitutes, the infirm and the sick, Samaritans, tax collectors, women, and the demon possessed. They were all rejected by the Jewish culture in the time of Jesus. He healed them and cast out demons. He accepted and restored them.
As Christians, restoration/reconciliation is the heart of the message of Jesus. He calls us to partner with Him in this ministry. (2 Corinthians 5:17-20)
“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come! All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting men’s sins against them. And He has committed to us the message of reconciliation. We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: be reconciled to God.” (NIV)
We don’t need to wait for a clean slate. We can take off our old self with its practices and put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator” (Colossians 3:9-10).
New beginnings bud around us and within us every day. God is in the business of making all things new. His healing brings restoration beyond understanding, no matter where we come from or what we’ve done.
From New to New, you have to love how God works!
Ambassador of Care
Did you enjoy this article? Let us know.