Lloyd E. Ellis
“Ask and it shall be given unto you; see, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you; for everyone that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened” (Matt. 7:7-8).
It is good for men to be seekers. The arm and brain used will become strong, but when they are unused they atrophy. These truths are evident to all who desire to observe.
No one should be stagnant, and in reality there can be no such state. One is either going forward or he is receding. There must be growth or there will be decay.
Perhaps few will question that men ought to seek the right things, but they differ widely on just what is the right thing to seek.
Men Seek Many Things
In the first place, men are particularly seeking for worldly things. Most of the time of most men is taken up with the acquisition of the necessities of life such as food, shelter, and clothing, and other things which they consider to be necessities. As one goes through life, these certainly must not be forgotten. Not only are Christians to be employed usefully in order that they may have enough to provide for the needs of themselves, but they are also required to assist others in these things.
Then again, many are employed in a mad pursuit of pleasure. Their sole aim in life seems to be to go from one “thrill” to another. They become surfeited with one thing and then go to any length in order to find that elusive thing—pleasure. A certain amount of recreation is necessary and desirable in order that one may be able to do his best, but a life filled with “one round of pleasure” is not a commendable life.
Others seek physical satisfaction, sometimes sensual and evil and sometimes sensual pleasure of various other sorts. God gave the physical for us to use and enjoy, but not to misuse as the reason for our existence.
Contrasted with this sort of seeking, we find those who are seeking a peace of mind that is not reached simply in worldly pursuits. Wholesome recreation, congenial work, and physical peace assist one in living a stable life, but that is still not enough. Men are seeking a solution to life. When men turn from the furrow and the shop, from the office and the daily task, they are asking, “Why?” “Why and what is man, and why is he here, and where is he going?”
A mind that is active, questioning and seeking will not be satisfied by stopping at the conclusion of the present needs. His peace of mind will not come until he has looked in the matter and found something that will let him rest in sweet assurance of a divine hope.
Men of righteous mind desire peace of mind within themselves, peace with their fellows and—above all—peace with God.
Men Should Seek God Above All Other Things
When men have sought and learned that God is the Creator of all things, that He is the Everlasting and Transcendent One, All-Wise, and All Good, then they will have learned also that He is the giver of all good. Both the evil and the righteous enjoy the blessings of earthly life, and He has not forgotten them.
God desires men to seek Him that He may cleanse them from all that may be amiss in their lives. ”The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is long suffering to usward, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance” (2 Pet. 3:9).
Even though it is the desire of the Lord that all will turn to Him, not all do so, for their minds are centered on other things. Still Jesus says that if they will only seek Him they may find Him. And He is not far away, as the apostle told the philosophers on Mars Hill: ”That they should seek God, if haply they might feel after Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us” (Acts 17:27). The Lord knows where we are at all times, but many times we do not know where He is. Nor do we know where we stand in His sight, for we neglect to study and learn His will and the things we ought to do. We do not find because we do not seek.
Those Who Seek Find
The text we quoted at the beginning assures reward upon seeking. This is not only true of the one who rightly seeks God, but it is true in every walk of life. If we look for faults and failures, we shall surely see many around us. If we look for good in others, we shall not fail to find something commendable.
The story is told of a man who once found a few pieces of money on the ground, and ever afterward kept his eyes on the ground looking for money. He found a few dimes and pennies and thousands of pins and buttons, but he missed the sunshine and the beauties of the sky and hills through the years.
Truly we find when we seek, but we may be seeking the wrong thing, or the right thing in the wrong way. Those who seek God should seek for Him in the right place and in the right way. They must look for Him where He has revealed Himself. John clearly shows that Jesus has revealed the Father (John 1:18). It then follows that to find God, we must look into the revelation that was made through Christ. That revelation is the Bible. This then is the reason we admonish men to study that Book—to read it, meditate upon it, and make it a part of their own being.
Friend, if you are not seeking God, you are missing one of the greatest quests of which one is capable, and you are missing the satisfaction and peace of mind which comes from the assuring hope found in His word. If you have not been seeking Him in the right way, turn now and leave all other doctrines and learn what He has said to us in His word.
To be truly happy, you must look for God where He is revealed—in His word—and there you will find the right way to come to Him.
Sin has separated us all from God, but He has provided a way back to Him through the blood of Christ. That blood cleanses us when we obey the gospel, and that is a simple thing to do. Understand that we have all sinned and stand condemned before God, but that Christ died on Calvary to pay the price for our sins which we could not pay. God gave His Son, Christ gave His life and the Holy Spirit gave the revelation of the New Testament to teach us what to do to seek God in the right way.
In order to find peace with God, we must believe that Christ is His Son and our Saviour (John 8:24), repent of our sins and determine to walk in them no more (Luke 13:3; Acts 2:38), confess our faith in Christ as God’s Son (Acts 8:37), and be baptized into Christ for the remission of all our sins (Mark 16:16; Acts 2:38; 22:16).