Seeking the Lord with All Your Heart (Deuteronomy 4:29)
Deuteronomy 4:29, “But if from thence thou shalt seek the Lord thy God, thou shalt find him, if thou seek him with all thy heart and with all thy soul.”
If a person is to seek the Lord with all their heart, one must prepare themself. Let’s look at the examples of King Rehoboam (II Chronicles 12:14) and King Hezekiah (II Chronicles 30:18-19). II Chronicles 12:14, “And he did evil, because he prepared not his heart to seek the Lord.”
If you desire to seek the Lord and establish a close walk with Him, then you need to prepare yourself to do that. If you fail to do this, then sin tends to take root in your heart. This is what happened to King Reheboam. Those who sought God prepared their hearts to seek Him. King Hezekiah stressed the importance of doing this. II Chronicles 30:18-19, “For a multitude of the people, even many of Ephraim, and Manasseh, Issachar, and Zebulun, had not cleansed themselves, yet did they eat the passover otherwise than it was written. But Hezekiah prayed for them, saying, The good Lord pardon every one 19 That prepareth his heart to seek God, the Lord God of his fathers, though he be not cleansed according to the purification of the sanctuary.”
Ezra was another man of God that prepared his heart to seek the Lord and obey Him. Ezra 7:10, “For Ezra had prepared his heart to seek the law of the Lord, and to do it, and to teach in Israel statutes and judgments.”
In order for a believer to prepare their heart to serve the Lord faithfully, they must decide to follow the Lord and refrain from wandering away. It was Caleb and Joshua who had wholly followed the Lord and David knew that. They only of the generation which came out of Egypt were allowed to enter the promised land. The psalmist made up his mind in Psalm 119:10. Psalm 119:10, “With my whole heart have I sought thee: O let me not wander from thy commandments.” A lack of commitment to Christ will lead to spiritual apathy and to wandering away from God. The word wander means to go astray or to be led astray; to swerve out of control, to be tossed to and fro, and roll back and forth.
The words “whole heart” clearly indicate a wholehearted dedication. David freely and openly cried out with his whole heart seeking after God. David further knew that God had required that he seek Him with the whole heart (Deuteronomy 10:12). He knew that God had promised specific blessing for serving Him with a whole heart (Deuteronomy 11:13). David knew that Joshua had commanded Israel to serve God with all their hearts (Joshua 22:5). The thought here is being led astray from God’s Word. David therefore pled with God to keep him from being so led astray. He was well aware of the distractions and diversions of life which lead to detours from God’s way. The devil knows that if he can replace God as the greatest desire of our hearts—even with something that is not sinful—he has destroyed our effectiveness.
This, unfortunately, describes many unstable believers today. They have no stability in their lives and spiritually they are weak. They make one mistake after another, and also destructive choices, that scar their lives with long term consequences. Spiritual apathy is like cold water on a burning heart on fire for God. Apathy and indifference cool us spiritually and many have adapted a “whatever” attitude in their dedication and service to Christ. This is why we need to seek Him with our whole heart, with a 100% effort. We are to jump in with both feet when it comes to serving and loving Him. Make up your mind and put the Lord first in your life. The same fact holds true with God. God is disgusted with our half-heartedness toward Him. He is not comfortable at all with this kind of attitude. It makes Him sick as He expressed to the apathetic church in Laodicea. Revelation 3:15-16, “I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot. So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth.”
The psalmist’s commitment was to seek God wholeheartedly. He realized that his passion for God’s Word could diminish over time, that he could grow indifferent to spiritual truth. And, because he was fully aware of human nature’s sinful tendencies, he feared straying from the Lord’s commandments. For him, a casual, half-hearted commitment was not enough. If he was going to remain faithful to the Lord and His Word—if he was going to stay pure—he knew that he had to keep the fires of passion burning for God and His Word.
To find God and know Him in His fullness, a person must seek Him with wholehearted devotion (Deuteronomy 6:5; 10:12; 11:13; 13:3; 26:16; 30:6, 10; Philippians 3:8-11). Knowing God and experiencing the power, blessing, and righteousness of His kingdom do not come easily. These will happen only to those who earnestly seek God (Hebrews 11:6) and desire His nearness, the fullness of His Spirit and His gift of eternal life.
Questions to Consider:
· Have you given your whole heart to the Lord?
· Do you hunger for the Lord?
· Do you have an appetite for spiritual matters or are you full of the delicacies that the world offers you?
· Have you lost your appetite for the world?
Points to Ponder:
· The urge to wander from God will be strong if you are in love with this world.
PRAYER: Heavenly Father, may I seek you with all my heart and not wander away. Help me never to grow cold or calloused towards You, Your Word, or others. In Jesus name, Amen.
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Dr. Blackman is passionate about helping others grow in the grace of the Lord. His devotions are centered on how to grow closer to the Lord through a personal relationship.