Restoration

Psalm 23:3 He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.

Looking over all the issues of restoration from the Old Testament, they all seem to be about wealth, position, territory, reputation, and everything personal, genealogical, or national they had gained but then lost.

Only here in Psalm 23 did the restoration of the soul get addressed. That was not for the individual’s sake but for God’s sake, for His name, His reputation, God’s glory. It was no wonder that Israel had little if any understanding of God’s true intentions of restoration. Restored personal relationship with His creation, you and me.

Jeremiah 30:8 For it shall come to pass in that day, saith the Lord of hosts, that I will break his yoke from off thy neck, and will burst thy bonds, and strangers shall no more serve themselves of him:

No wonder their confusion over this verse that promised freedom as the yoke they sought to have broken. The bondage release they sought was the Roman Empire at time of salvations coming, the birth of their savior. When Christ proclaimed their salvation, it did not match their vision, desire nor personal need from this historical understanding.

Acts 5:31 Him hath God exalted with his right hand to be a Prince and a Saviour, for to give repentance to Israel, and forgiveness of sins.

“Nope, sorry, that is not what we were expecting, or want.” With that attitude they rejected the sacrifice that was offered, their only opportunity for restoration of relationship with God.

Psalm 118:22 The stone which the builders refused is become the head stone of the corner.

Jeremiah 3:14 Turn, O backsliding children, saith the Lord; for I am married unto you: and I will take you one of a city, and two of a family, and I will bring you to Zion:

His bride said, “I do not love you.”

I know how I feel in rejection, but what did God feel?

Shortsighted

1 Kings 8:27 But will God indeed dwell on the earth? behold, the heaven and heaven of heavens cannot contain thee; how much less this house that I have builded?

Why build a house for the Lord if your thoughts are that He cannot occupy that house? This was the ultimate shortsightedness of all Israel. It is the shortsightedness of all religions, less one.

Matthew 19:26 But Jesus beheld them, and said unto them, With men this is impossible; but with God all things are possible.

They believed Jeremiah when he wrote that the heart is desperately wicked so it never entered into their vision that God Himself should ever take up residence within the heart of man. Even now, today, learned men deny God’s ability to live with man, much less take up residence in the hearts of the corrupt.

God had always been an external force to them, a hovering spirit at best. They saw Him in the cloud by day and fire at night as they followed Him for forty years in the wilderness.

Exodus 34:30 And when Aaron and all the children of Israel saw Moses, behold, the skin of his face shone; and they were afraid to come nigh him.

Even this was seen as an external or outward sign and not an indwelling. Israel and the rest of the world always looked to the outward signs, those things which God could and would do for them as met their needs and desires, to be fed, sheltered, and given possessions.

Know me and try me sure, but do it from heaven, not from within my heart. The words of Isaiah rang too true for them.

Isaiah 6:5 Then said I, Woe is me! for I am undone; because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips: for mine eyes have seen the King, the Lord of hosts.

They knew nothing about restoration.