The Noble Minded: Acts 17:10-12
“10) The brethren immediately sent Paul and Silas away by night to Berea, and when they arrived, they went into the synagogue of the Jews. 11) Now these were more noble-minded than those in Thessalonica, for they received the word with great eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily to see whether these things were so. 12) Therefore many of them believed, along with a number of prominent Greek women and men.” Acts‬ ‭17‬:‭10‬-‭12‬ ‭
Berea was a breath of fresh air for Paul and Silas. They encountered “noble minded” people. They were open, serious and studious. They received the word with great eagerness, and then searched the Scriptures daily to validate everything being taught by Paul and Silas.
The advantage of going to a synagogue was obvious; they had a collection of Old Testament scrolls to study. Synagogues were like the city library. As a result, the “noble minded” were allowed to search the scrolls several hours a day in diligent study.
Can you imagine spending days studying Old Testament scrolls with the Apostle Paul in the Hebrew language? He was an accomplished scholar. His short time there was like a condensed Bible college.
It might be that the “noble minded” in Berea had a mutually positive and refreshing influence on Paul. He may have had them in mind when he wrote 2 Timothy 2:15; “Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a workman who does not need to be ashamed, accurately handling the word of truth.”
As a side note, the early Christians did not own Bibles. It wasn’t until the invention of the printing press that Bibles were made available for personal ownership. This single factor brought an end to the dark ages and led to the reformation. There is a huge historical lesson in this fact. Stop living in a dark age; be “noble minded” and open your Bible!
Oh that Christians were as studious today. The Bereans were great examples of building their faith on the diligent study of Scripture. I don’t care the subject matter; when emotions, bias, traditions, situational ethics and prejudice are set aside and Gods Word is diligently studied, embraced, and applied… then truth can be found and that area of the Christian life will be greatly empowered.
Learn this principle early in your Christian walk and become a good Berian. If you become “noble minded” and diligently study the Word of God, then your relationship with Jesus Christ will be greatly empowered. God will show up with His glory in that “Word based” area of your life. Let me sight a few examples.
Ephesians 6:17 says; “… the sword of the Spirit is the Word of God.” The Holy Spirit does not empower theological bias or religious tradition; He empowers the truth of Gods Word! Embracing theological bias or religious tradition puts you in the sandals of the Pharisees. It kills spiritual vibrancy and life. This explains why so many religious people are so spiritually dead and defeated!
In John 8:31-32, Jesus taught that the distinguishing characteristic of His disciples was that they “abide” My Word. The result was both truth and freedom. In John 15:7-8, Jesus added both answered prayer and fruitfulness to the blessing of abiding in Gods Word. Spending time in Beria was a refreshing blessing for Paul and Silas… until the critics showed up!
There are some religious people who thrive on putting out the fire of the Spirit in others and stifling the work of God. Why? They have an ungodly devotion to some theological bias or church tradition. The only recourse is a personal resolution to build your life and Christian experience on the diligent and unbiased study of Scripture.
Become “noble minded!” Accept the thought that you and your religious traditions might be wrong! Wear out several Bibles! Seek God diligently and search His Word courageously with an open mind. Be eager to learn, grow and change. Invite the Spirit of God to lead and teach you.
Daily Bible Commentary By Terry Baxter: Cofounder of GoServ Global