Restoration in the New Testament

Usually, when working textually with the restoration principle, our people start and finish in the OT. I admit not to seeing all the literature, so it’s likely I’ve missed a treatment of it, but the restoration principle is very evident in the NT, though not with the term “restoration,” which is why we may have missed it there.

The restoration principle is seen from an appeal to what is done or to laws and principles given at the beginning.

  • Jesus corrects errors about marriage by an appeal to what God did at the beginning of creation (Matt 19:8-9);
  • Paul corrects errors about the Lord’s supper by the appeal to what had been received from the Lord and how he established the supper (1 Cor 11:23ff);
  • The apostle establishes roles of men and women in the assembly by an appeal to creation and the Fall (1 Tim 2.7-15).

In every case, the normative pattern is established at the beginning and is expected to be followed and restored in practice. This applies to morals (marriage), worship (communion) and organization of the church (men and women).

In the latter instance, one can find scholarly discussion about whether or not there existed a problem of women usurping authority. It seems improbably, however, that Paul would dedicate this extensive discussion to the subject in the absence of a deviation from normative practice.

In all three cases, therefore, we have the restoration principle being appealed to, in the New Testament. And the appeal is to go back to the beginning, where God or Christ have established for all time what should be believed and practiced.

#creation, #lords-supper, #restoration-principle