Revelations from the Word

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Jesus and the Tikun Olam

by Jean-Louis Coraboeuf

"Peter, beginning to speak, said to Him: Behold we have left everything, and w have followed you; what will that mean for us? Jesus answered them: I tell you the truth, when the Son of Man, at the restoration [palligenesia] of all things, is seated on the throne of His glory, you who have followed Me, you will in the same way be seated on twelve thrones, and you will judge the twelve tribes of Israel. And whoever has left, for My name's sake, his brothers, or his sisters, or his father, or his mother, or his wife or his children, or his lands, or his houses, will receive a hundredfold, and will inherit eternal life. Several of the first will be last, and several of the last will be first" (Matthew 19:27-30).

The Tikun Olam is a Hebrew expression which means, "Repair of the world". It is an important concept in Judaism used in the Mishna of which the objective is to perfect the world and avoid all the negative, social consequences. It is an interpretation of the passage in Isaiah, "…The wolf will live with the sheep (lamb)… In the same time, the Lord will extend His hand a second time, to redeem the remnant of His people" (Isaiah 11:1-12). But Jesus didn't interpret this passage in the same way. He came the first time as 'Messiah son of Joseph' and he will come back a second time as 'Messiah Son of David' for the restoration of all things and the re-establishment of the Kingdom of God.

The return of Jesus Christ will be characterised by:

  • The 'Restoration of all things, which is the translation of the Greek word palligenesia meaning literally 'second genesis'. "He has saved us… by the washing of regeneration [palligenesia] and the renewing of the Holy Spirit" (Titus 3:5). When Jesus saves us, we are regenerated in our spirit, and our relationship with God is re-established because our sins are blotted out. It is man's second genesis.

  • The 'Re-establishment of all things', which is the translation of the Greek word apocatastasis meaning the restoration to the perfect state of the time before the Fall, "And that He might send you the One who has been destined for you, Jesus Christ, whom heaven must receive until the time of re-establishment [apocatastasis] of all things" (Acts 3:20-21). But Jesus Christ is for the moment with the Father until the appointed time.

  • The 'Re-establishment of the Kingdom of Israel', which is the translation of the Greek word apocathistemi meaning to restore to the initial (original) state, to heal. After His resurrection and after having been taught about the Kingdom of God for forty days, the disciples asked Jesus, "Lord, is it at this time that you will restore [apocathistemi] the kingdom of Israel?" (Acts 1:6). We fully grasp the sense of this word with the healing of the withered hand when Jesus said to the man, "Stretch forth your hand. He stretched it out and it became whole [apocathistemi] like the other one" (Matthew 12:13). The hand was therefore restored to its original state, it became exactly like the other one.

Only Jesus Christ can fulfil the prophetic words of Isaiah 11; man will be regenerated, the earth and those who inhabit it will be regenerated and the Kingdom of God will be re-established. At the fullness of kairos times (Ephesians 1:10), all heavenly things and earthly things are united in Christ (Revelation 21:2-4).