As a new believer just becoming acquainted with the Scriptures, I remember being fascinated with a new and growing awareness of the riches of God’s wisdom. The more I feasted, the hungrier I became for the banquet of His Word. Not surprisingly, that hunger still grows today, as I’ve learned the feast never ends when Infinite God is your Host.
One truth that never fails to captivate is God’s sovereign choice in salvation from passages like the first chapter of Ephesians. To learn that God chose us before creating the universe is a call to praise that both delights the soul and boggles the mind.
Now, if God has predetermined from the foundation of the world whom He will save, and therefore, every other event which has and will ever happen, it’s easy to imagine God as idly waiting by for His plan to simply unfold. But that is not the portrait His Son paints for us—quite the opposite. When Jesus pulls back the curtain in Luke 15, we find the Father seeking the lost with great care and diligence. The parables of the lost sheep, the lost coin, and the lost son all depict God’s determined pursuit of the sinner, and the joy with which He celebrates upon finding him. So, we can add this to the long list of the rich mysteries of God, that though He foreknows every last detail of your life, including your conversion, He takes neither you, nor your salvation, for granted.
Since God seeks out the sinner with such intensity, it’s a fair question to ask if we are returning Him the favor. Or, are we so assured of our eternal security that we’ve become lethargic in our pursuit of God? If that’s the case, let me encourage you to awaken the pursuit! God delights in us seeking Him out with all devotion, just as a wife delights in her husband's romantic pursuit. We not only glorify Him in our seeking, but we greatly benefit in the process. Hebrews 11:6 makes this plain: “…for he who comes to God must believe that He is and that He is a rewarder of those who seek Him.” And let me assure you, the reward is great.
In Luke 24:13-35, we have an example of the kind of blessing that God pours out on His pursuers. It deals with two disciples travelling home to Emmaus after Jesus’ crucifixion. As they walk along, the resurrected Lord joins them for the seven-mile journey, though they don’t recognize it is Him. Dejected by the death of their Savior, they listen to Jesus who unfolds the full breadth of Scripture to explain why the Messiah had to suffer and die. Now, as they approached their destination, Jesus appeared content to keep walking, but they urged Him instead to stay with them. While it’s possible they were just being hospitable, I think there was more involved, since they later confessed, “were not our hearts burning within us while He was speaking to us on the road, while He was explaining the Scriptures to us?” I think what they got on the road was a taste of His glory; they hungered for more, and urgently asked the Lord to stay lest He pass them by. As their rich reward, they became two of the first people to see and share a meal with the resurrected Christ, and in their uncontained joy, they ran seven miles that same night to share the news with the disciples in Jerusalem.
James 4:2 tells us we do not have because we do not ask. Similarly, if we do not have a vibrant relationship with the Lord, odds are it is because we do not seek. My prayer for us all is that we would seek and find the God that delights to be found.
One thing I have asked from the Lord, that I shall seek: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the Lord and to meditate in His temple. (Psalm 27:4)