What is the difference between being restored to the Lord and to other believers?

What is the difference between being restored to the Lord and to other believers?

Restoration brings a thing back to its original state. Old houses and old cars are frequently "restored." Our question deals with relationships between a Christian and his Lord or between two Christians. Restoration is necessary when relationships have been damaged. An offense will shatter a relationship. Drifting apart will damage relationships.

David prayed for restoration after his sin with Bathsheba. "Restore unto me the joy of Thy salvation" (Psalm 51:12). Noteworthy in this psalm is David's confession of sin when he sought restoration. In Psalm 23, he wrote of continuing occasions when the Good Shepherd "restoreth my soul" (verse 3). He realized his tendency to stray from the Shepherd.

Christians, too, may drift apart or offend one another. Our Lord gave instruction in Matthew 18:15 for restoring a broken relationship. The two must meet together, seeking to clear up the matter between them. It is likely that, in most cases, mutual repentance, confession and forgiveness will be required. If an offense has caused damage, restitution will also be necessary.

There is no difference in the need for restoration, whether to the Lord or another saint. In both instances, the need must be acknowledged. One cannot be restored to the Lord who has not first been restored to his brother or sister (Matt. 5:23, 24).

J. Slabaugh