NASHVILLE (BP) — This weekly Bible study appears in Baptist Press in a partnership with LifeWay Christian Resources of the Southern Baptist Convention. Through its Leadership and Adult Publishing team, LifeWay publishes Sunday School curricula and additional resources for all age groups.
This week’s Bible study is adapted from the MasterWork curriculum.
Bible Passage: Psalm 14:2; Hebrews 11:6
If God has revealed Himself to us, why do we need to seek Him?
What are reasons people don’t seek God?
Food for Thought:
God has sought us. He is still seeking us. We must seek Him. Indeed, God’s chief quarrel with us is that we do not seek.
Jesus promised: “Seek and you will find” (Luke 11:9). If we do not seek, we shall never find. Jesus told three stories to illustrate this point. The shepherd searched until he found the lost sheep. The woman hunted until she found her lost coin. The father was constantly on the lookout for his lost son. Why should we expect to do less? God desires to be found, but only by those who seek Him.
We must seek seriously. “Man is as lazy as he dares to be,” as the American writer Ralph Waldo Emerson put it. But what we’re dealing with is so important that we must overcome our natural laziness and apathy and give our minds to the search. God has little patience with those who just trifle with Him; “he rewards those who earnestly seek him” (Heb. 11:6).
We must seek humbly. If apathy is a hindrance to some people, pride is an even greater and more common hindrance to others. We must freely admit that our minds, being finite, cannot possibly discover God by their own efforts. We depend on God to make Himself known. We are not saying that we should suspend rational thinking. We must use our minds; but we must also admit their limitations. Jesus said, “I praise you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and learned, and revealed them to little children” (Matt. 11:25). Children are teachable. They are not proud, self-important, and critical. We need the open, humble and receptive mind of a little child.
We must seek honestly. We must come to God’s revelation of Himself not only without pride, but without prejudice; not only with a humble mind, but with an open mind. Every student knows the dangers of approaching his subject with preconceived ideas. Yet many would-be inquirers come to the Bible with their minds already made up. We need to remember that God’s promise is addressed only to the earnest seeker: “You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart” (Jer. 29:13). So we must lay aside our prejudice and open our minds to the possibility that Christianity may after all be true.
We must seek obediently. This is the hardest condition of all to fulfill. In seeking God we have to be prepared not only to revise our ideas but to reform our lives. We cannot treat God as if He were an object for our detached scrutiny. We cannot fix Him at the end of a telescope or a microscope and say “How interesting!” God is far from being merely interesting. He is deeply upsetting.
MasterWork is an ongoing Bible study curriculum based on works from a variety of renowned authors and offers pertinent, practical messages that adults will find uplifting and enriching. The list of authors and their books to be studied in upcoming months can be found at www.LifeWay.com/Masterwork.
Other ongoing Bible study options for all ages offered by LifeWay can be found at www.LifeWay.com/SundaySchool.