He who comes to God must believe that He is and that He is a rewarder of those who seek Him.
Epicurus was a Greek philosopher who lived before Jesus, and he believed that our chief goal in life should be pleasure. Now, he was not the “eat, drink, and be merry” type of hedonist. His philosophy was that you should decide what to do based on what will give you the most long-term satisfaction–even if that means forgoing short-term pleasure or experiencing short-term pain. What will make you happiest in the long run?
That is actually a good test. What will provide the most long-term satisfaction in your life? The answer is obedience to God. But you will never consistently obey God until you are convinced that God will reward you–maybe not in the short term, but in the long term. Hebrews 11:6 says, “He who comes to God must believe that He is and that He is a rewarder of those who seek Him.”
Noah is a great example of someone who believed that God rewards those who seek Him. Remember the story of Noah? The world had become so evil that God decided to destroy it with a great flood, but “Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord” (Genesis 6:8). So God told Noah to build an ark, and Noah obeyed. Look at Hebrews 11:7: “By faith Noah, being warned by God about things not yet seen, in reverence prepared an ark for the salvation of his household.”
Here is what is interesting about Noah’s obedience: he obeyed God “being warned . . . about things not yet seen.” You see, up to that point it had never rained on the earth, according to Genesis 2:5. So when God said to Noah, “It’s going to rain for forty days and forty nights,” He might as well have been saying, “It’s going to supercalifragilisticexpialidocious for forty days and forty nights.” Noah did not know what rain was. But he believed what God said, and he acted accordingly by building that ark. And the result was not only the temporary salvation of himself and his family, but he “became an heir of the righteousness which is according to faith” (Hebrews 11:7).
Noah was declared righteous. Why? Because he believed what God said. He believed in a God of grace. He received that grace through faith, and one day his salvation was paid for by the blood of Jesus Christ. Like all the men and women in Hebrews 11, Noah died without fully seeing the promises of God realized; nevertheless, he kept on obeying God. What gave Noah the ability to follow God even when he was not immediately rewarded? It was faith. He believed that God “is a rewarder of those who seek Him” (v. 6). Do you believe that?
Today’s devotion is excerpted from “The Necessary Ingredient” by Dr. Robert Jeffress, 2020.
Scripture quotations taken from the (NASB®) New American Standard Bible®, Copyright © 1960, 1971, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission. All rights reserved. www.lockman.org