“Seek the Kingdom of God above all else…” (Matthew 6:33a NLT)
In 2 Chronicles 34:3 (NLT) the Bible says: “During the eighth year of his reign, while he was still young, Josiah began to seek the God of his ancestor David.”
Josiah was only eight years old when he became King of Judah, so in his eighth year as king he was still only sixteen. That’s when he began to do an earnest and extensive investigation of the God of his ancestor David. “Seek” in this context means “to ask for, require, demand.” This wasn’t a casual glance at the past, it was a serious digging into how king David followed God. It means “to practice, study, follow, seek with application, care and care for.”
Jesus used a similar word in Matthew 6:33 (NLT): “Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and He will give you everything you need.” What does it mean to “Seek the Kingdom of God?”
In the Amplified Translation it says: “But seek (aim at and strive after) first of all His Kingdom and His righteousness (His way of doing and being right), and all these things taken together will be given you besides.”
Have you ever lost something that, to you, was really valuable? How did you feel? How earnestly did you “seek” to find it? Did it suddenly move to the top of your priority list? Strong’s Concordance defines “seek” as: “(seek) by thinking, meditating, reasoning, to enquire into, to crave, demand something from someone.” So, what can we conclude?
Over the next few days, we’ll look more closely at what Jesus’ words in Matthew 6:33 mean for us. We’ll do that by looking at four “P’s.”
It intrigues me the way Detectives research all avenues of information related to whatever crime they’re seeking to solve. They leave no stone unturned in their efforts to identify and arrest the person who has committed a crime. In a similar way, we should investigate and use every available tool to research what Jesus means when He says to SEEK His Kingdom.
Realizing we’re not pursuing an ethereal idea, but a Person – “HIS Kingdom and HIS righteousness,” – heightens the urgency to make a serious pursuit of who Jesus is and what it means to follow Him. Perhaps an example would help.
When I first met my wife, I pursued her passionately! She was all I could think about. I wanted to spend every waking moment with her. I loved everything about her (still do 😊). The first several dates I literally couldn’t stop shaking. It was embarrassing, but I simply couldn’t stop. Why? Because she was wayyyyyy out of my league. I was amazed that she would speak to me, let alone go on a date with me. Now, after nearly thirty years of being together, she’s even more amazing than I’d originally believed.
What if, when we got married, I’d said to her, this woman I loved with my whole being: “Listen, honey, this is how it’s going to be. I’ll come by once a week for an hour, maybe an hour and a half. We can talk occasionally during the week, but if something really important comes up, you’ll be my first call.” How long do you think the marriage would last? Yet, don’t we too often tend to “seek” God like that?
We’ll pick this up in tomorrow’s Post.
Blessings, Ed 😊