“By faith Enoch was taken from this life, so that he did not experience death: “He could not be found, because God had taken him away.” For before he was taken, he was commended as one who pleased God. And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.” - Hebrews 11:5-6 NIV
Earnest - Serious and sincere : Not lighthearted or playful. Characterized by or proceeding from an intense and serious state of mind.
The word “EARNESTLY” jumped out at me in today’s passage ~ “he rewards those who earnestly seek him.”
Not that God doesn’t reward those who “merely” seek Him. The Bible tells us that, “if we seek Him, He will be found by us.”
But this seems different, the writer of Hebrews (Paul) seems to be telling us that if we “seriously and sincerely” seek Him, we will be rewarded.
Now, before we start jumping down the wrong path. Reward here does not necessarily mean financial gain. Ours is not a prosperity gospel.
In my mind, reward here is kind of like what we might see in the athletic arena. There are those who work hard and strive for excellence. And they are rewarded with the being able to be on the team. Maybe even playing some. Then there are those who take it seriously. They work hard and then some. They just seem to take it more serious. Those athletes tend to be rewarded with more playing time and opportunities to play at the next level.
Now, let me emphasize here that “work” is not the primary focus here. We cannot work our way into heaven nor do we need to outwork anyone to gain God’s approval. Without faith it is impossible to please God.
The point is this, God rewards those who earnestly seek Him. Enoch sincerely and seriously sought after God. And God called him up to heaven... and he did not experience death.
In my mind, “earnestly seeking” God is akin to hungering after God. It’s seeking Him like we would seek out our lost wallet filled with a recently cashed paycheck. Or lost keys the moments before a big trip or a run to the emergency room. We would be earnestly seeking that lost wallet. We would earnestly be seeking out those missing keys. Unable to rest until we found them. Searching every known place, every nook and cranny. Until that wallet or those keys were found by us.
Maybe that is how we should be seeking God. Earnestly.
Keep the Faith... Carpe Diem