The Redemptive Work: Part 1
Are you ready for some good news?
God is not only passionate to restore what has been broken, lost and stolen, He’s also committed to restoration for His own glory.
When the people of God were exiled in Babylon, God made a powerful promise through His prophet Jeremiah:
“This is what the Lord says: “‘I will restore the fortunes of Jacob’s tents and have compassion on his dwellings; the city will be rebuilt on her ruins, and the palace will stand in its proper place.” (Jeremiah 30:18, NIV)
God loves you. He deeply, passionately cares about your well-being. But there is an even deeper, more resolute reason that God restores. God is committed to the glory and integrity of His own name. This holy commitment in the heart of God shines forth in Ezekiel’s prophecy:
“Therefore thus says the Lord God: Now I will restore the fortunes of Jacob and have mercy on the whole house of Israel, and I will be jealous for my holy name.” (Ezekiel 39:25, ESV)
Some years ago, my office wasn’t heating well. One day, our Executive Director, Mickey, was in my office noticing how chilly it was.
“I’m going to call the heating and air repairman to come work on your office,” Mickey commented.
“Oh no,” I said nobly, “Don’t worry about me, it’s not too cold for me – I can manage.”
Mickey’s response was classic: “With all due respect pastor, I wasn’t thinking of you. I was thinking of the Sunday School Class that meets in your office. I was concerned about the older women in that class.”
“Oh,” I swallowed hard. “Go ahead and call the repairman.”
God loves you. He cares infinitely about you. But, there is something that is bigger at work than the mere fact that He loves you. He cares about the whole cosmos. His reputation is on the line. His character is at stake. God was not honored by His people living in exile. Even if God had lacked compassion for His people (which is impossible because God is love), He would have brought them home for His own name’s sake. When you think about what has been lost, broken or stolen from your life, remember not only God’s compassion for you but also His commitment to His own glory. He redeems because there is something more than mere mercy at work – there is the fulfillment of all His promises in Christ. You can count on the redemptive work of God in your life in Christ because God will insist on His own glory and integrity forever. And that’s the Gospel!
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