Recognizing Our Need and Seeking After God


“He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the Lord require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?” Micah 6:8

I Kings 3:7b I am but a little child: I know not how to go out or come in.

Jeremiah 10:23 O Lord, I know that the way of man is not in himself: it is not in man that walketh to direct his steps.

II Corinthians 3:5 Not that we are sufficient of ourselves to think any thing as of ourselves; but our sufficiency is of God.

I Corinthians 4:7 For who maketh thee to differ from another? and what hast thou that thou didst not receive? now if thou didst receive it, why dost thou glory, as if thou hadst not received it?

8:2 And if any man think that he knoweth any thing, he knoweth nothing yet as he ought to know.

Revelation 3:17 Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked.

Psalm 10:4a The wicked, through the pride of his countenance, will not seek after God.


MEMORY VERSE: Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me. I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing. —John 15:4-5


CENTRAL THOUGHT: The first step to walking humbly with God is to recognize that without Him, we are nothing and can do nothing, and to seek His presence, enlightenment and direction.




I Kings 3:7 “Go out or to come in”: behavior; conduct; the outward life of man.

II Corinthians 3:5 “Sufficient”: fit; worthy; adequate; from a word meaning “to arrive, to come to, to attain.” Sufficiency”: ability; power; competence.

I Corinthians 4:7 “Glory”: boast; exult proudly; from a root meaning to hold the head up high.

Revelation 3:17 “Wretched”: distressed; miserable. “Miserable”: the one especially to be pitied. “Poor”: beggarly; one who crouches and cowers. “Naked”: stripped of moral clothing; destitute of the righteousness of Christ.

John 15:4 “Abide”: not to depart; not to leave; to continue to be present.




The background of I Kings 3:7 is the beginning of King Solomon’s reign, when, at about age 20, he was visited by God in a dream and asked what he desired from God. His response was that since he was an ignorant and inexperienced young child, he needed most of all Divine wisdom that he might be able to govern. This so pleased God that He granted Solomon—not only that wisdom but also great wealth and supremacy over his enemies.

Jeremiah’s heart cry comes out of the desperate condition of Israel, as the awful report of Nebuchadnezzar’s invasion came true. He knew God was orchestrating the events, even ordering the path of this wicked king and using him as an instrument to chastise His people. Not a man, not a king, not a nation is able to direct its own path.

Paul’s experience as a former Pharisee gave him a burden for those who were being lifted up in themselves or were unwisely lifting up others beyond what was proper.

The church at Laodicea was in a dangerous, lukewarm spiritual condition, boasting that it “had need of nothing.” Jesus’ rebuke called for fervent repentance and seeking for the true riches, the white robe of God’s righteousness, and spiritual eyesight.
The whole 10th chapter of Psalms reveals the motives and secrets of the heart of a proud, self-sufficient, boastful person who does not feel the need of seeking after God.

Our memory verse expresses a universal truth: Without Christ, we can do nothing. Jesus used the illustration of a vine with branches. Only when the branches are connected to the vine can they bear fruit. As Hosea the prophet had already told Israel, “From me is thy fruit found” (Hosea 14:8).

—Sis. Angela Gellenbeck




1. What pleases God: According to the story of Solomon, what quality brought God’s blessing in His life, and what happened when he walked away from that? What other Bible characters illustrate this truth?

2. Acknowledging our need: How can we avoid the pitfall of feeling like we are sufficient; for example, thinking we have lived for God a long time, or had experience in many spiritual battles, etc.?

3. Common dangers: Can wealth, power, and/or leadership positions (among other things) cause a person to become proud? How can we avoid pride and instead manifest the humility with which God is pleased?



In what ways do we demonstrate that we feel self-sufficient? One of the most common human demonstrations of pride is prayerlessness. We reason that we didn’t pray because we were too busy, when in reality, down deep inside we felt that we could make it okay on our own. Pride and lack of trust and dependence on God are co-related. Without humbling ourselves to seek Him diligently, we cannot please Him. We cannot walk with Him.

Another demonstration of self-interest is a hunger for the praise of men. Jesus chided the unbelieving Pharisees, “How can ye believe which receive honor one of another and seek not the honor that cometh from God only?” This hunger can manifest itself in a desire to be beautiful and fashionable, or to always be the authority or have the last word. Again, unbelief and pride go hand in hand. We are not content with the quiet commendation from God and go seeking approval from man. Without that restful, childlike trust in the Heavenly Father, we simply cannot walk with Him.

Yet another indication that we are not humble is when we are impatient. Instead of waiting patiently on God, we run ahead of Him and try to work things out ourselves. We try to control or manipulate situations and people. We lack humble trust in His time and His way. And we find ourselves walking alone, away from Him.

“Can two walk together except they be agreed?” Amos asked the question (Amos 3:3). Jesus was meek and lowly in heart; we cannot walk with Him without humbling ourselves as well.

Humbly acknowledging in our hearts that we can do absolutely nothing without Him is the answer for all self-centered, fruitless endeavors, restless impatience, and epidemic prayerlessness.

—Sis. Angela Gellenbeck




Have you ever wondered why being humble is highlighted so many times in the Bible as being a characteristic which God highly values? Is God just trying to be domineering to get us to subserviently bow at His knees?

As mentioned in the lesson, King Solomon prayed to God in his younger years acknowledging that he was but a little child and did not know not how to go out or come in. Yet, we find Solomon later in life having violated the first commandment of God which was “Thou shalt have no other gods before me.” He turned his heart toward the gods of his wives and as far as we know lost his soul. When we blindly and wretchedly ascend the mountain of pride, failing to recognize our absolute frailty, we leave behind the lowly path of humility, which is where Jesus walks. The echoes of our communion with Him will become more and more distant. Like Solomon, we will be at risk of losing our soul when we, in pride, put other gods before the one true God.

No. God is not trying to control us by requiring humility to “get us where He wants us.” Men do that sometimes, but not God. He loves us compassionately, mercifully, fully, and deeply. When we take the “low road,” and stay hidden behind the cross of Christ, dying to our selfish attitudes and behaviors—this choice of humility will pay dividends beyond our wildest imaginations. God loves to answer our prayers, to help us in our times of trouble, to be a succor and support to us. He WANTS to be our God! He only requires humility to assure the salvation of our eternal souls. Humility also yields the peaceable fruits of righteousness in our homes, in the congregation, and in our personal relationships in this life. Humility is the key to the door of entrance into grace and everlasting bliss.

—Sis. Julie Elwell