The key to Restoration
2 Chronicles 7:11-15
By Ysrael De la Cruz
When you read the Bible, you are confronted with the notion that God is a God of restoration. Even after mankind failed God, he drafted a plan to restore mankind back to himself. When his people were enslaved, he made the provision to rescue them and give them a new beginning in the land of the promise. When his people went into captivity, he sent prophets to tell them that he will restore them back to their land. When we go through difficulties in life, we may feel discouraged or hopeless because of how things develop. However, God in his word gives us hope; he gives us the key to be made whole again. To be revived. HE is a God of restoration and he tells us that in his word.
King Solomon, the son of David, built a magnificent temple to the LORD. The God of the Jews would have a temple instead of a tent of meeting. Solomon finished it during his 11th year. He laid the foundation during his 4th year of his reign. So it took 7 years to build it. Solomon uttered to God a prayer of dedication found in 2 Chronicles 6:12-42. He asked the LORD to hear the prayers of anyone who would come to the temple to pray. Hear the supplications of your servant and of your people Israel when we pray toward this place. Hear from heaven, your dwelling place; and when you hear, forgive. 2 Chro.6:21
God answered Solomon’s prayer:
When Solomon finished praying fire came down from heaven and consumed the burnt offering. God’s glory filled the temple. God showed up at the dedication of the temple and people worshiped him.
(2 Chron.7:1-3) “He is good; his love endures forever.”
Not soon did Solomon finished praying; God was already answering his prayer.
God appeared to Solomon to let him know he heard his prayer. Everyone would love to have an answer like that.
I have heard your prayer and have chosen this place for myself as a temple for sacrifices. (v.12)
Then God goes on to laid some conditions between his people and him; also between Solomon and himself. God and his people had entered into a covenant. A covenant that started in Gen.12 with Abram. “You will be my people and I will be your God.”
God’s message to Solomon (v.13) When I shut up the heavens so that there is no rain, or command locusts to devour the land or send plague (pestilence) among my people.
Why did God say this? Why would he keep the rain from coming or send pestilence among his people?
God is answering Solomon’s prayer. (6:26)
-Solomon recognized that God would not send rain if his people sinned. Sin will keep you from God’s blessing.
Solomon knew that God would not bless his people if they departed from his ways. He knew that sinning against God would bring disaster and misfortune on the land.
Then the Lord tells Solomon the condition to bring and restore his people. (7:13-14)
When I shut up the heavens so that there is no rain, or command the locust to devour the land, or send pestilence among my people. ESV
(IF) If my people, who are called by my name humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways,
(Then) then I will hear from heaven and forgive their sins and heal their land.
Here is the key to restoration:
If God’s people (Over whom God’s name is called). The Israelites were known as the children of God. God’s people today are those who profess faith in Jesus.
Restoration begins with:
–Humility (humble themselves). The Bible tells us that God exalts those who humble themselves and he humble the proud. “Humility is not thinking less of yourself; it is to think of yourself less.” C.S Lewis
Humility is the opposite of arrogance. God is saying if my people stop being arrogant and proud then I will answer.
Jesus modeled humility on earth. Php.2:8 He humbled himself to the point of death.
When my people have humbled themselves and pray:
-Pray (bring your request or petition to God) pleading with God. The Bible tells us that the first Christians were devoted to prayer.
-Seek God’s presence (longing to be in the presence of God. This was Moses’ prayer. He did not want to lead his people if God did not go with them. David longed to be in the presence of God. Ps.51:11 Cast me not away from your presence and do not take your Holy Spirit from me. Restore unto me the joy of your salvation and sustain me with your willing Spirit.
Mary of Bethany always longed to be in the presence of Jesus.
For restoration to be possible according to the words of the LORD, there must be an attitude of humility; prayer and this longing to seek God’s presence. Then also.
-Turn from evil (wicked ways) To turn from means to repent. To turn from evil and turn back to God. God has always been calling his people to turn away from evil or wrongdoing and to turn back to him.
God always called his people to turn to him with all their hearts. Joel 2:12-13
What you ever wondered why your prayers are not being answered?
God will not answer the prayers of the arrogant and proud in their own ways.
God will not answer the prayer of his people when they continue living in sin.
When my people display humility and pray and seek my presence and choose to stay away from wickedness or wrongdoing. Then God says he will move to answer their cause.May3
Then I will hear from heaven, forgive their sin and heal their land.
God will hear
God will forgive
God will heal the land.
Restoration will not happen until God’s people have humbled themselves, prayed, sought his face and turned away from wickedness.
When God has allowed you to go through trials or difficulties, just like he did his own people in the Old Testament. He showed them how they could be restored and healed.
God is teaching us today that restoration is always possible; we too can be revived and healed. He is calling his people to humble themselves, to pray, to truly seek his presence and to depart from sin. Then only then he will be moved to answer us, forgive us and restore us.
This is where the healing begins.