Restoration or Renewal?
Immediately upon reading the title of this piece, I am convinced that many verses will bounce into your mind. The dictionary defines restoration as follows:
‘The action of returning something to a former owner, place, or condition.’
Renewal on the other hand means, the replacing or repair of something that is worn out, run-down, or broken.
We can all relate to the second, at least I know I can. We’ve all at some point in our lives felt worn out, run down and broken by life events, i.e., sickness, broken relationships, spiritual warfare etc. So, when the Lord tells us in Titus 3:5
‘He saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of His mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit’
Therefore, we can be confident in the fact that Jesus saved us and that the Holy Spirit possesses the ability to renew all things.
Restoreth my soul, O my Lord
So, when we read the words David wrote in Psalm 23, we may ask the question – what is the difference between restoration and renewal? Are they not one in the same? Well, the definitions themselves suggest that there are subtle differences. Renewal means to reinstate back to a former condition, to a former owner and to a former place.
When Jesus died on the cross for us, He created a new ‘blood covenant’ with God on behalf of mankind. He renewed and restored the broken relationship that had existed between God and man, since the fall. No other human being or animal was worthy. Only Jesus.
Jesus’ body became the veil, so that all mankind could access the Holy of Holies and have a relationship with the one true God.
‘…by a new and living way opened for us through the curtain, that is, His body,’ Hebrews 10:20
Is renewal or restoration ongoing?
From the moment we accept Jesus as our Lord and Savior, I believe we are constantly being renewed and restored unto the Father. Jesus picks up all the broken pieces of our lives and rebuilds us.
‘For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love’ Ephesians 1:4
We may never feel the same again. We will have scars from the battlegrounds. But we will be renewed and restored. Returned to our former condition, before the foundations of the earth!
‘…and have put on the new self, which is continually being renewed in fuller and fuller knowledge, closer and closer to the image of its Creator.’ Colossians 3:10