Examining the Scriptures – Acts 17:11

Now the Berean Jews were of more noble character than those in Thessalonica, for they received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true. – Acts 17:11 NIV

I remember as a young Christian reading several books about end times and found them very convincing. But then I made the mistake (not really) of reading the Bible with (I hope) an open mind. And when I did, I found that what I had read and found so convincing did not line up with what I was finding in the Bible. That caused a bit of a crisis and recalibration. There are many who twist and distort the truth, sometimes unknowingly, but other times for their own gain. So how do you know if what you hear from the pulpit, in your Bible study group, or in a popular and recommended book is true?

The example of the Berean Jews shows us how to limit the danger of false teachers. They listened to what Paul had to say to them. But they did not just accept or reject his message. Instead, they compared what Paul was saying against what the Scriptures had to say. And in this case they apparently found Paul’s message to be in accord with the Scripture and then accepted it and believed.

For the Berean Jews, what we call the Old Testament was their authority, at least in spiritual matters. And they choose to measure everything against that authority to see how well it measured up. Do you know your Bible well enough to use it as a measuring rod? Will you take the time to examine the Scriptures to see if what you have heard or read is true? Or do you need to get better acquainted with your Bible so that you can use it effectively?


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