PAUL AND SILAS IN BEREA
The believers in Thessalonica sent Paul and Silas to Berea as soon as it was night. When Paul and Silas arrived in Berea, which was about 45 miles from Thessalonica, they went to the Jewish synagogue to share the gospel of Christ. The Berean Jews were of more noble character than those in Thessalonica because they were willing to examine everything they heard with the Scriptures, which refer to the Old Testament of the Bible. The Jewish Berean examined the Scriptures daily to see if what Paul shared was true. As a result, many believed, as did many prominent Greek women and Greek men. But when the Jews in Thessalonica learned that Paul was preaching the Word of God at Berea, some of them went there to cause trouble to Paul and Silas. The believers immediately sent Paul to the coast to guide him to Athens. Silas and Timothy stayed at Berea to continue teaching and encouraging the Berean believers, and Paul instructed them to join him as soon as possible. (Acts 17:10-15). (Second Missionary Journey Map).
We can learn from this event that the Jewish Berean examined the Scriptures daily to see if what Paul was sharing was biblical. Our Bible is always our guide to knowing God and His ways. God will never contradict His Word, the Bible. God gave us the Bible to guide us in His truth and to protect us from false teachers. When we examine or study God on our own, the Spirit of God can help us understand it. One of the biggest excuses people have for not reading the Bible is that they cannot understand it. Many do not understand the Bible because they try to understand it with their own understanding. We need the Spirit of God to help us understand the Bible because our natural mind cannot understand spiritual things. 1 Corinthians 2:12 says, "What we have received is not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, so that we may understand what God has freely given us." So what should we do when we cannot understand the Scripture? The answer is to ask God for wisdom. James 1:5 says, "If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you."
So let us examine or study our Bible daily. Let us take time to read it and ask God to help us understand His Word. Let us ask God to speak to us through His Word to give us instructions and guidance.
Ask yourself these questions for application: (Think through these questions carefully and meditate on them while answering them, and let the Spirit of God speaks to you). Why is it important to base my understanding of God on the Bible? What should I do when I cannot understand the Bible? Am I willing to read God's Word daily to know Him more and grow in my relationship with Him?
Write down all the worries you face today and lift them up to God.
Father in Heaven, thank you for giving me your Word, the Bible. Would you please give me a strong desire to read your Word? And help me understand your Word so I may continue to know your ways and be encouraged by your truth. Please get rid of my spiritual laziness, but grant me eagerness to want to know you through your Word. In your name Jesus, I pray. Amen.