Posted by: Bill Hornbeck | April 3, 2014

Restitution by man and Restoration by God: “O God, restore us And cause Your face to shine upon us, and we will be saved.”

Today’s devotion comes from Leviticus 6:1-7.

“Then the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, “When a person sins and acts unfaithfully against the Lord, and deceives his companion in regard to a deposit or a security entrusted to him, or through robbery, or if he has extorted from his companion, or has found what was lost and lied about it and sworn falsely, so that he sins in regard to any one of the things a man may do;  then it shall be, when he sins and becomes guilty, that he shall restore what he took by robbery or what he got by extortion, or the deposit which was entrusted to him or the lost thing which he found, or anything about which he swore falsely;  he shall make restitution for it in full and add to it one-fifth more.  He shall give it to the one to whom it belongs on the day he presents his guilt offering.  Then he shall bring to the priest his guilt offering to the Lord, a ram without defect from the flock, according to your valuation, for a guilt offering, and the priest shall make atonement for him before the Lord, and he will be forgiven for any one of the things which he may have done to incur guilt.”  Leviticus 6:1-7.


It is not enough to deceive and steal, keep the proceeds, and then only make a guilt offering.  There is a duty to make restitution.

“And there was a man called by the name of Zaccheus;  he was a chief tax collector and he was rich.  Zaccheus was trying to see who Jesus was, and was unable because of the crowd, for he was small in stature.  So he ran on ahead and climbed up into a sycamore tree in order to see Him, for He was about to pass through that way.  When Jesus came to the place, He looked up and said to him, “Zaccheus, hurry and come down, for today I must stay at your house.”  And he hurried and came down and received Him gladly.  When they saw it, they all began to grumble, saying, “He has gone to be the guest of a man who is a sinner.”  Zaccheus stopped and said to the Lord, “Behold, Lord, half of my possessions I will give to the poor, and if I have defrauded anyone of anything, I will give back four times as much.”  And Jesus said to him, “Today salvation has come to this house, because he, too, is a son of Abraham.  For the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost.”  Luke 19:2-9.

Zaccheus understood this duty of restitution, and he went way beyond the letter of the law to the spirit of the law, because he had “his eyes fixed on the prize”:  the Savior Jesus Christ.

But, this noble impulse of Zaccheus was given to Zaccheus by His Savior Jesus Christ.  When Jesus calls Zaccheus “a son of Abraham”, he does not praise Zaccheus, but rather he indicates that Zaccheus was one of the elect in the sense we see in Romans 11:26-27 and that He (Christ) is the One Who saves the lost.

“26 … all Israel will be saved;  just as it is written,

“The Deliverer will come from Zion,
He will remove ungodliness from Jacob.”
27 “This is My covenant with them,
When I take away their sins.”  Romans 11:26-27.

Christ is the One Who restores.

“Oh, that the salvation of Israel would come out of Zion!  When the Lord restores His captive people, Jacob will rejoice, Israel will be glad.”  Psalm 14:7.

“He restores my soul;  He guides me in the paths of righteousness For His name’s sake.”  Psalm 23:3.

“Restore to me the joy of Your salvation And sustain me with a willing spirit.”  Psalm 51:12

O God, restore us And cause Your face to shine upon us, and we will be saved.”  Psalm 80:3.  See also Psalm 80:7 and Psalm 80:17.

“Restore us, O God of our salvation, And cause Your indignation toward us to cease.”  Psalm 85:4.

“5 And now says the Lord, who formed Me from the womb to be His Servant,
To bring Jacob back to Him, so that Israel might be gathered to Him
(For I am honored in the sight of the Lord,
And My God is My strength),
6 He says, “It is too small a thing that You should be My Servant
To raise up the tribes of Jacob and to restore the preserved ones of Israel;
I will also make You a light of the nations
So that My salvation may reach to the end of the earth.”
7 Thus says the Lord, the Redeemer of Israel and its Holy One,
To the despised One,
To the One abhorred by the nation,
To the Servant of rulers,
“Kings will see and arise,
Princes will also bow down,
Because of the Lord who is faithful, the Holy One of Israel who has chosen You.”

8 Thus says the Lord,
“In a favorable time I have answered You,
And in a day of salvation I have helped You;
And I will keep You and give You for a covenant of the people,
To restore the land, to make them inherit the desolate heritages;
9 Saying to those who are bound, ‘Go forth,’
To those who are in darkness, ‘Show yourselves.’
Along the roads they will feed,
And their pasture will be on all bare heights.
10 “They will not hunger or thirst,
Nor will the scorching heat or sun strike them down;
For He who has compassion on them will lead them
And will guide them to springs of water.
11 “I will make all My mountains a road,
And My highways will be raised up.
12 “Behold, these will come from afar;
And lo, these will come from the north and from the west,
And these from the land of Sinim.”
13 Shout for joy, O heavens!  And rejoice, O earth!
Break forth into joyful shouting, O mountains!
For the Lord has comforted His people
And will have compassion on His afflicted.”  Isaiah 49:5-13.


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