Posted by: dhkrause | July 2, 2017

The God Who Restores

He restores my soul

God is in the business of restoring lives!  We are made in the image of God, but that image, character, has been marred by sin.  Because of man’s rebellion against God, we are all born with a selfish and rebellious nature.  The Bible’s history is HIS STORY, recounting how God prepared the way and in the fullness of time sent the promised Savior to restore people to right relationship with Him, in spirit, soul and body.  The story begins in Genesis:

Genesis 1 (NKJV)
26 Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” 27 So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. 28 Then God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”

Genesis 3 describes the rebellion of our first ancestors in the garden of Eden, and the consequences of their sin.  This account includes both judgments and a redemptive promise, particularly in these words God speaks to the devil who had deceived Eve into sinning against God:

Genesis 3 (NKJV)
14 So the Lord God said to the serpent:
“Because you have done this,
You are cursed more than all cattle,
And more than every beast of the field;
On your belly you shall go,
And you shall eat dust
All the days of your life.
15 And I will put enmity
Between you and the woman,
And between your seed and her Seed
;
He shall bruise your head,
And you shall bruise His heel.”

The “seed of the woman” has long been understood by scholars to denote a Savior born of a virgin.  The bruising of the devil’s head is seen as referring to the Savior’s taking authority (headship) away from the devil.  The bruising of the Savior’s heel is a reference to His suffering and dying, taking the judgment of sins upon Himself.  This is further detailed in many prophecies, perhaps most notably in Isaiah 53:

Isaiah 53 (NKJV)
Surely He has borne our griefs
And carried our sorrows;
Yet we esteemed Him stricken,
Smitten by God, and afflicted.
But He was wounded for our transgressions,
He was bruised for our iniquities;
The chastisement for our peace was upon Him,
And by His stripes we are healed
.
All we like sheep have gone astray;
We have turned, every one, to his own way;
And the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all
.

Restoration begins with repentance.  David’s prayer of repentance and plea for forgiveness and restoration sets an excellent example for all to follow.  After acknowledging and repenting of his sin, he prays that God will restore him spiritually, and vows to then help others to be likewise restored.

Psalm 51 (NKJV)
10 Create in me a clean heart, O God,
And renew a steadfast spirit within me.
11 Do not cast me away from Your presence,
And do not take Your Holy Spirit from me.
12 Restore to me the joy of Your salvation,
And uphold me by Your generous Spirit.
13 Then I will teach transgressors Your ways,
And sinners shall be converted to You.

King David and the prophets of old looked forward to the coming of the Messiah, the Savior, who would bring true salvation to Israel and to all who believe in Him.  Also, in Psalm 110, David appears to be listening in to a conversation between the Father and the Son of God:

Matthew 22 (NKJV)
41 While the Pharisees were gathered together, Jesus asked them, 42 saying, “What do you think about the Christ? Whose Son is He?”
They said to Him, “The Son of David.”
43 He said to them, “How then does David in the Spirit call Him ‘Lord,’ saying:

       44 ‘The Lord said to my Lord,
“Sit at My right hand,
Till I make Your enemies Your footstool”’?  [Psalm 110:1]

45 If David then calls Him ‘Lord,’ how is He his Son?” 46 And no one was able to answer Him a word, nor from that day on did anyone dare question Him anymore.

The central message of the New Testament is that the way back to right relationship with God is through receiving and walking with Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord, as succinctly stated in Romans 3:23-24 and John3:16:

Romans 3 (NKJV)
23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus,

John 3:16 (NKJV)
1For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.

Like King David in Psalm 51, when we ourselves have been restored, we can then lead others to be restored as well.  As new creations in Christ, we are called to be ambassadors for Him.

2 Corinthians 5 (NKJV)
17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new. 18 Now all things are of God, who has reconciled us to Himself through Jesus Christ, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation, 19 that is, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not imputing their trespasses to them, and has committed to us the word of reconciliation.

20 Now then, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were pleading through us: we implore you on Christ’s behalf, be reconciled to God. 21 For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.

The restoration God brings to those who are fully set apart for Him is for the whole person: spirit, soul and body, as Paul so aptly prayed:

1 Thessalonians 5 (NKJV)
23 Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you completely; and may your whole spirit, soul, and body be preserved blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. 24 He who calls you is faithful, who also will do it.

Come to Me

David Krause, dhkrause@neteze.com,7/1/2017  https://compellinglove.net/


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