For most of my adult life I believed that God’s reuniting with man would take place in heaven after we die. I no longer believe we have to wait that long!
When Peter spoke of the “restoration of all things” (Acts 3:22), he was promising his live audience that God was about to fulfill their long-anticipated hope—when Jesus returned (in their generation). Further, when the Hebrews writer said that the Law was a shadow of the impending good things, and not the very image (Heb. 10:1), it cannot be that what was about to be restored was the Temple and its system. Jesus warned that generation that it was about to endure the “sentence of Gehenna,” which He showed would include justice for even the blood of Abel (Matt. 23:32–36). He posited judgment against them to include injustices all the way back to the Garden!
Since all this is true, we must look for the restoration of all things to reach back beyond Solomon, or even Moses, all the way back to the Garden. In the Garden God had unsullied fellowship with man. It was pure. It was pristine. It was special place: to be with His children. But it was spoiled by the sin and man was expelled from the Garden, cherubim guarding against his reentry.
Still, God desired this fellowship and relationship. So He set His plan in motion to regain it, a plan so perfect that Peter called it the “Restoration of All Things!”
The Garden was the ideal of this relationship. It was on earth: restoration must also be on earth. This is one of the topics I will explore in this year’s PPW (2013). I propose that both the Tabernacle in the wilderness and the Temple on the Land carried motifs of the Garden and pointed to the “greater and more perfect” Tabernacle (Heb. 9:11), the Paradise of God; the Garden restored.
This year’s Theme—The Tabernacle of God is With Man—excites me. You should come and drink deeply! This year admission is free. If you can’t make it, be sure to purchase the CDs or DVDs from Don. You will be blessed.