The treasure of Oak Island. Indiana Jones. Buried pirate gold. Dirk Pitt. Benjamin Franklin Gates. The Lost Dutchman’s Gold Mine. Real life treasure hunters, literary characters, movie heroes, urban legends—they all captivate our attention. We dream of being the one to discover the mother lode. However, the lure of buried treasure does not always result in it being unearthed.
In contrast, we have the promise of Scripture that if we seek God, we will find him. This promise was given to King Asa in 2 Chronicles 15:2, “The Lord is with you when you are with him. If you seek him, he will be found by you, but if you forsake him, he will forsake you.” Asa’s life and reign as king reflect both sides of this promise.
Asa, the great-great-grandson of King David, became the king of Judah in 900 B.C. and he reigned for 39 years. During the first half of his life, he sought God and was blessed by him. However, during the second half of his life, he began to slide. In the final three years of his life, he turned his back on God and deserted him.
As you can see in the chart below, the pattern of God’s promise played out in Asa’s life and kingdom.
If You Seek Him
If You Forsake Him
||Military: Zerah the Ethiopian (14:9)
||Military: Baasha, King of Israel (16:1)
||Health: Disease in his feet (16:12)
||Ben-Hadad, King of Aram (16:2-3)
|Constant war (16:9)
|Response to God
From Asa’s life, we can see five key principles that answer the question, “How can we seek God?”
Obey God’s instructions (15:8, 12). In 15:1-7, Asa was told to be strong and not to give up. He responded by restoring the altar of the Lord (15:8) and renewing the covenant (15:8). Asa reestablished the worship of the nation, and he reaffirmed the importance of the Law. What God commands, we should obey. What God promises, we should believe.
Remove the hindrances (15:8, 16). Asa removed the “detestable idols” of the land (15:8) and even deposed his grandmother from her position as queen mother because she had made a repulsive idol (15:16). What holds you back from following God?
Seek him with others (15:9-15). After Asa’s great victory over Zerah and God’s blessing, five of the tribes of Israel gathered together in Jerusalem. The people of Judah, Benjamin, Ephraim, Manasseh, and Simeon make a sacrifice (15:11), renew the covenant (15:12), made an oath (15:14), and rejoiced (15:15) together. The Christian life was never meant to be lived alone.
Commit yourself wholeheartedly (15:12, 15). The people entered into the covenant with all their heart and soul (15:12) and Asa’s heart was fully committed to the Lord all his life. Since the heart is considered the center of being and personality, it means a whole heart is one which is undivided and focused.
Count the cost and pay the price (15:11, 16). Together, the people slaughtered close to 8,000 livestock and sacrificed them to the Lord. In addition to the financial cost, Asa paid a personal price as he cut off his relationship with his grandmother (15;16). We must be willing to do what it takes to follow Christ.
God desires that we seek him with every fiber of our being. He wants us to want him. He is waiting for us to ask, so that he might share himself with us.
“For the eyes of the Lord move to and fro throughout the earth that he may strongly support those whose heart is completely his” (2 Chronicles 16:9, NASB95). May your heart be fully committed to seeking God.
This is the synopsis of a message preached online to First Central Bible Church on April 26, 2020. Please click on the link to download a copy of the sermon notes.