It is excruciatingly painful to witness the destruction of a person’s life or the broken state of a church or group; even more so when it’s your own. If you are reading these posts as a humiliated person looking to be restored, you will find understanding, compassion and answers. If you are reading them with a heart to bring restoration to a situation, you will find exactly the same thing. The difference is that in the latter case, you will tend to intellectualize rather than realize; and I caution you against that. Jesus was moved with compassion and walked this earth on a spiritual level, being tempted in all things according to scripture. His was not an intellectual exercise—it was a spiritual connection based on the premise of bridging humans to the love of God. It was real.
Unlike other approaches, Christianity embraces the notion that broken people and institutions can be restored. One of the central premises to the work of Christ is that His blood covers sin and the salvation God has offered through His atoning sacrifice is transcendent, i.e., we have been saved from the penalty of past sins, are now being saved from the power of current sins, and will be saved from the very presence of sin when we come to the culmination of life and enter His presence. Scripture teaches that the gifts and callings He gives are “without repentance” and thus do not stop as a result of sin. For example, in the case of one famous evangelist who was exposed in a moral failing, consider this: He was involved in the secret sin for many months yet mounted the pulpit in power with the result of many coming to Christ during the pendency of his error. Are those people any less redeemed as a result of his failing?
Did God remove the mantle of an evangelical anointing from him while he was visiting clandestine lovers?
No, He did not.
Thus, sin is not a disqualifier of gifting—as difficult as that may be to accept—and neither is it a disqualifier of men, women, churches, groups, denominations, or nations. It is a devastator and destroyer, certainly; but not a disqualifier. The purpose of this series of posts is to demonstrate that the destruction brought into the lives of people by sin is the canvas upon which God paints restoration. He did this in the history of Israel numerous times–one of the most notable being Nehemiah’s restoration of Jerusalem, He did it in the work of Christ, He has done it in countless individual lives and He will do it for you.
Using Nehemiah as a pattern, these posts will point out ways that God reveals Himself as the ultimate restorer. Whether for your personal journey back to spiritual renewal or for the purposes of learning to bridge others to a place of fortified productivity, Nehemiah’s story will offer insight into the restoration process, identify barriers and pitfalls, as well as give practical direction to your journey. Who knows, it may even inspire the courage to get up and try again.