Peter, after healing the lame man at the gate beautiful, spoke to the crowd saying,
19. Repent ye therefore, and turn again, that your sins may be blotted out, so that there may come seasons of refreshing from the presence of the Lord;
20. and that he may send the Christ who hath been appointed for you, even Jesus:
21. whom the heaven must receive until the times of restoration of all things, whereof God spake by the mouth of His holy prophets that have been from of old. (Acts. 3:19-21 ASV).
God is going to restore all things. God is going to restore to his people and to creation what has been lost. Here, Peter says that times of refreshing from God would come, all things would be restored, and Jesus would return. I feel this is a very important scripture, and reveals what God is doing in this hour. He is sending a time of refreshing that He might fully restore to His church the things that have been lost since the time the young church was birthed in such glory and power when Peter spoke these words and later healed sick folk with his shadow.
Peter stood in the temple and spoke to a crowd these words recorded in Acts 3:19-21, prophetically revealing what God is going to do in these last days. However, before those words were spoken, Peter stood up on the day of Pentecost and spoke equally important words as recorded in Acts 2:17-21. Peter quoted from Joel 2:28-32, which described what the crowd was witnessing on the day of Pentecost. However, this passage in Joel speaks not only of what they saw and heard that day, but of the restoration of all things at the end of the age just before Jesus returns for a bride without spot or wrinkle.
We are living in those times of refreshing that Peter spoke of and we are about to see the restoration of all things, for these are the last days, and Christ is about to return. I feel such a rumbling, such a stirring deep within me. It's an inner stirring caused by the Holy Spirit as He reveals to me what He is doing in this hour and what He will be doing soon, and let me tell you, it will be revolutionary! This restoration is going to turn this world upside down, or should I say right side up? This restoration is what all of nature is groaning for in anticipation of the revelation of the sons of God. This restoration is an outpouring of God Himself upon mankind, which will not be done in a corner, but will interrupt the flow of the spirit of the age that is sweeping countless millions to hell and destroying the beautiful creation that the sons of God are meant to husband. It will make the headlines and the nightly news every day of the week. God is going to restore the fortunes of His people, and when He does, all of nature will know it, and so will all of mankind!
Joel 2:23-32 ASV -
23. Be glad then, ye children of Zion, and rejoice in Jehovah your God; for he giveth you the former rain in just measure, and he causeth to come down for you the rain, the former rain and the latter rain, in the first month.
24. And the floors shall be full of wheat, and the vats shall overflow with new wine and oil.
25. And I will restore to you the years that the locust hath eaten, the canker-worm, and the caterpillar, and the palmer-worm, my great army which I sent among you.
26. And ye shall eat in plenty and be satisfied, and shall praise the name of Jehovah your God, that hath dealt wondrously with you; and my people shall never be put to shame.
27. And ye shall know that I am in the midst of Israel, and that I am Jehovah your God, and there is none else; and my people shall never be put to shame.
28. And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my Spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions:
29. and also upon the servants and upon the handmaids in those days will I pour out my Spirit.
30. And I will show wonders in the heavens and in the earth: blood, and fire, and pillars of smoke.
31. The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and terrible day of Jehovah cometh.
32. And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of Jehovah shall be delivered; for in mount Zion and in Jerusalem there shall be those that escape, as Jehovah hath said, and among the remnant those whom Jehovah doth call.
Verse 23 speaks of the spring and autumn rains that will cause the children of Zion to rejoice in Yahweh our God. These rains are not the rains that have fallen at different times throughout history, but are rains that will be the greatest move of God in the history of the world and will prepare His people for His return. These rains will bring forth fruit once again: the type of fruit that the early church displayed. These rains speak of the times of refreshing that precede the restoration of all things. "Be patient therefore, brethren, until the coming of the Lord. Behold, the husbandman waiteth for the precious fruit of the earth, being patient over it, until it receive the early and latter rain" (James 5:7 ASV).
Verse 24 says the "floors shall be full of wheat, and the vats shall overflow with new wine and oil." This is the fruit that the rains will bring. This is the plenty that will be restored to God's people, who have been living in poverty for too long.
In the book of Judges, we see Gideon threshing out a little grain in a winepress because the Midianites and the Amalekites had so impoverished God's people that there were literally no grapes to tread, and no grain to thresh. Wine speaks of the Holy Spirit, and grain speaks of Jesus, the bread of heaven, or the presence of God. All through scripture, full grain floors and full wine vats speak of plenty, but empty grain floors and empty wine vats speak of spiritual poverty.
Just as God's people were impoverished in Gideon's day, the church of today is impoverished as well. Our wine vats are dry and our grain floors are empty. America's churches are full of ritual but void of the presence of God, and we have lost the true Holy Ghost Baptism and settled for tongues and gifts. Our wine vats are dry and our grain floors are empty, but that's about to change. God is about to restore all things. God is about to restore true conversion, true sanctification, and the true full Holy Spirit Baptism. In short, God is about to restore true Christianity. God is about to restore the fortunes of His people, so rejoice oh children of Zion!
Joel 2:25, 26 says that God will restore the years the locusts have eaten and that His people would never be put to shame. God is going to restore full fruit bearing trees and we will never again suffer shame among the heathen because of poverty. Ezekiel 36:30 says, "I will increase the fruit of the trees and the crops of the field, so that you will no longer suffer disgrace among the nations because of famine" (NIV).
Joel 2:27-32 (the section of scripture Peter quoted on the day of Pentecost) tells of God dwelling in His people by the Holy Spirit whom He will pour out on all flesh. God is going to restore something so glorious, so powerful, so awe-inspiring that there is no way we can comprehend it at this time. God is going to restore the true, full Baptism in the Holy Ghost to His people in this last day, and when he does, the world will see "wonders in the heavens and in the earth." The world will see God, for the glory of the Lord will cover the Earth as the waters cover the sea. The whole Earth will be filled with the knowledge of God, and whoever calls upon the name of the Lord will be saved.
Acts 15:16 says, "After these things I will return, And I will build again the tabernacle of David, which is fallen; And I will build again the ruins thereof, And I will set it up:" (ASV). This is a very important scripture as well. Acts 15:16 is a quotation of Amos 9:11, which speaks of the restoration of the tabernacle of David. The tabernacle of David speaks of the restoration of the Glory of God to God's people. In short, it speaks of the restoration of the true Baptism in the Holy Spirit. God is going to restore true Christianity to His people. God is going to restore to His church what the locust, and the canker-worm, and the caterpillar, and the palmer-worm have eaten. God is going to restore to the church all things, and God is going to make His people a dwelling place for the living God.
The church will no longer say, "know the Lord", but we will all know Him from the least to the greatest, for we will be a temple for the living God. We will be "filled with all the fullness of God" (Eph. 3:19), which is what the true full Baptism of the Holy Ghost really is. It is God living in, possessing man, and thereby doing greater works than Jesus did.
There are many truths that have been restored to the church since the reformation. However, what God is going to restore in this last hour is not just truth, but the experience or the substance of those truths that have been restored. God is going to restore to His people the experience of the living God that has been lost since the world was turned upside down by a hundred and twenty people. God is going to restore all things: things that we know in theory only and things that we can't yet see in the scripture because, in our poverty, our level of experience has been too far below that of the scripture to even see such things.
Everything we now take for granted as elementary truths of the word will take on such power and such fullness that the church will look back upon our current condition and wonder at the poverty of a people embracing empty doctrine in spiritual pride. The church will see such a restoration of justification, salvation, righteousness, holiness, and Holy Ghost Baptism that she will scarcely comprehend an impoverished church that once believed she possessed all of these treasures simply because she possessed the truths.
For me personally, the greatest restoration that will take place in this hour will be that of the tent of David. God will finally have a people that are literally the dwelling place of the Glory of God. God is going to restore the Baptism in the Holy Spirit, and man will once again know what it is to be crammed full, packed full to overflowing with the living God. The dwelling of God will be with man and in man. God will come to those who love Him and will make His home with them, and they will do greater works than Jesus did, because He went to the Father.
I've recognized for many years that what I have, and what the church at large has (except for a vestige of men and women throughout history) is only a kind of first fruits of the Spirit - just a sort of sprinkling Baptism along with a few gifts or anointings. For years I've longed and sought for something far beyond what I've known or seen, and now the hour has come. God is preparing His Gideons. God is going to restore the Baptism in the Holy Ghost to His leaders, and they will become restorers that will restore the fortunes of God's people. Once again the vats will overflow with new wine and the threshing floors will be filled with grain. Once again, there will be bread in God's house, for the restoration of all things is come!