Scriptural Prophecies of the Restoration
Acts 3:18-21

The Prophecy

Acts 3:18-21

18 But those things, which God before had shewed by the mouth of all his prophets, that Christ should suffer, he hath so fulfilled.

19 ¶Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord;

20 And he shall send Jesus Christ, which before was preached unto you:

21 Whom the heaven must receive until the times of restitution of all things, which God hath spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began.

Prophetic Commentary

LeGrand Richards (Quorum of the Twelve)

Search this world over and you cannot find a church that claims a restitution of all things spoken by the mouths of all the holy prophets except The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. We believe Peter was a prophet; and if the world does, then they cannot look for the Savior’s second coming until there is such a restitution of all things. (CR, April 1980, 22)

Mark E. Petersen (Quorum of the Twelve)

These early brethren were also quite explicit in saying that likewise there would be a great restoration of the gospel before the Second Coming should take place. The Lord would not leave us without his truth. He knew by his foreknowledge that there would be this mass apostasy, but he also provided that there should be a restoration of the gospel preparatory to his second coming. And so a great new restorer came to the earth.

You remember what Peter said. He and John had come to the temple and had entered by the gate beautiful, where they saw a man begging who had been crippled from birth. Peter healed the man, attracting a great crowd. Peter, being the great advocate that he was, took advantage of this opportunity, called the people to repentance, and told them that the same Christ whom they had rejected would come again. His second coming, however, would not take place "until the times of restitution of all things, which God hath spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began" (Acts 3:21).

I was interested to look up some of the other Bible translations to see whether the King James was on target there also, and of course it was. The Knox Catholic Bible puts it this way: "Then he will send out Jesus Christ, who has now been made known unto you, but must have his dwelling place in heaven until the time when all is restored anew." Isn't that interesting? "Until all is restored anew."

The Catholic Bible of 1947, to which I first referred, says, "Whom heaven indeed must receive until the times of the restitution of all things which God has spoken by the mouth of his holy prophets from the beginning of the world."

The Revised Version of the Protestant Bible says, "Whom heaven must receive until the time for establishing all that God spoke by the mouth of his Holy Prophets from of old."

The Rotherham Version uses the phrase "the new establishment of all things"; the Twentieth-century Version, "the universal restoration"; the Weymouth Version, "the reconstitution of all things"; and our King James version, which we love best of all, uses the phrase "the times of restitution of all things, which God hath spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began. ("The Great Prologue," BYU Devotional, 29 September 1974)

Bruce R. McConkie (Quorum of the Seventy)

Now let us analyze this prophetic utterance with care. Peter is not inviting our Lord's murderers to be baptized and to join the Church. They are not heirs of salvation. They have already rejected and slain their Messiah. But Peter is holding out some hope to them in a future day, a day named the times of refreshing. This designated period, this times of refreshing, is to take place at the second coming of the Son of Man, in the day when the Lord sends Christ again to earth.

If we are to catch the vision of Peter's prophecy, we must know pointedly and specifically what is meant by the times of refreshing. It is elsewhere spoken of by Jesus as “the regeneration when the Son of man shall sit in the throne of his glory” (Matt. 19:28). It is the day “when the earth shall be transfigured, even according to the pattern which was shown unto mine apostles upon the mount, . . .” the Lord says (D&C 63:21). It is the day when ‘the earth will be renewed and receive its paradisiacal glory’ (A of F 1:10). It is the day of the “new earth” that Isaiah saw (Isa. 65:17), the earth which will prevail when wickedness ceases, when the millennial era is ushered in, when “every corruptible thing, both of man, or of the beasts of the field, or of the fowls of the heavens, or of the fish of the sea, that dwells upon all the face of the earth, shall be consumed” (D&C 101:24). It is the day when men “shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning-hooks” (Isa. 2:4), a day of universal peace and justice, a millennial era when Christ shall reign personally upon the earth. (CR, October 1967, 43).