Is seeking God truly the whole duty of man?
According to Paul, it is.
The Apostle Paul has a way of simplifying things. In Acts 17, Paul addresses the most prestigious of all of his audiences, the epicureans and stoics. Right in Mars Hill where the philosophers
gathered to, “Tell and to hear some new thing,” Paul is called upon in a once in a lifetime occasion to reveal the purpose of God for mankind.
If given the opportunity, I’m not sure what I would have said to this crowd of highly intellectual philosophers. No doubt, most would conjure up their best arguments for Christianity or compose their finest oracular masterpiece. But Paul begins by accusing them of being superstitious in their ignorant worship of the unknown God (Acts 17:22-23). In an even dogmatic fashion, Paul goes on to tell them that God, who created everything and gives life to all things, put all men on the Earth for one purpose: “That they should seek the Lord” (Acts 17:27). Isn’t that a funny statement, “seek the Lord?” Can such a thing really be the whole purpose of God’s framing of the worlds, the creation of humanity, the saga of unfolding events from Adam in the garden, to the antichrist, and the end of all things?
Is seeking God really the quintessential issue that divides humanity into two groups? Is seeking the Lord the means by which man discovers his purpose for being and finds the fulfillment of his existence? Yes is the simple answer, if his seeking leads him to the truth of God as revealed in the Person of Jesus Christ.
Deep in the human heart there is a battle waged for possession of the will. The will of man must be relinquished to the Creator if he is to be saved. It is the duty of man to present his body as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, for this is merely his, “Reasonable service” (Rom 12:1). Man however, does not come to this conclusion quickly or easily. His carnal nature resists this truth to its bitter end. Only by seeking God with the whole heart can one fully know the requirement God has put forth. There will be every opportunity for the seeker to stop short of finding God and settle for a false hope such as religion, deception, or man’s approval. These false hopes do not bring any fulfillment, but simply mask a person’s need for truth and liberty. Those who are truly seeking God do not stop short in their seeking until they come into the blessed liberty and truth only provided in Jesus Christ.
It was Jesus Christ who commanded His first followers to “Seek FIRST the kingdom of God, and His righteousness.” So seeking God and His righteousness must be the supreme cry of the heart of man. If man’s seeking is suppressed by either demonic influence or human interference, he will come up short of God’s purpose and its fulfillment. However, if we seek God as God, we will find God, but if we seek God with another agenda or do not seek Him at all, we shall die in our sins and go to the place of all those who have rebelled against their Maker.
May God grant us grace as we seek Him with the whole heart.