Readiness of Mind – Acts 17:11

by Pastor John Fredericksen

Print This Article

Throughout our years of ministry, we have seen three basic responses to the teaching of God’s Word rightly divided: rejection, indifference, and eager acceptance. One woman sat through several years of preaching, but regardless how basic the subject, she rolled her eyes and shook her head in disagreement. Another man embraced our doctrines, but attended irregularly. When I urged him to be more faithful, he plainly told me, “I’m just not that interested in church or the Bible.” However, we also had many who were hungry for the Word of God, faithfully attended, asked good questions, took notes, and grew spiritually by leaps and bounds.

When Paul and Silas fled from persecution in Thessalonica, they went to Berea. Once there, they attended the synagogue. There they found Jews who “…were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the Scriptures daily, [to see] whether those things were so” (Acts 17:11). Particularly in those days, people of nobility were born into positions of royalty, wealth, and education. However, the word “noble” is used here in a spiritual sense, describing qualities of great character. This character included a “readiness [or willingness] of mind” to receive the truths of Scripture. We might also describe them as keenly interested, hungry to learn, and teachable. But they were not gullible or tossed to and fro with every wind of doctrine. Though open minded to what they heard from Paul, they “searched the Scriptures daily [to see] whether those things were so.” We should remember that when Paul ministered to Jews in need of salvation through faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, he did so by reasoning “…with them out of the [Old Testament] Scriptures” (Acts 17:2). This included documenting that the prophesied Savior “…must needs have suffered, and risen again from the dead; and that this Jesus, whom I preach unto you, is Christ” (Acts 17:3). It was always upon this foundation that Paul proclaimed the death, burial, and resurrection of our Redeemer “according to the Scriptures” (I Corinthians 15:3-4). Those at Berea were demonstrating a spiritual nobility, or greatness, through their eagerness to learn truth from the Lord, while making the Scriptures their final authority.

How noble are you in your spiritual appetite for God’s Word? How teachable are you in your spirit? How willing are you to confirm what you are taught from the rest of Scripture? It’s time to begin that journey into spiritual nobility.

Free Mail Subscription

Start each day with short, devotional articles taken from the book Daily Transformation by Pastor John Fredericksen. As Pastor Fredericksen writes in the introduction:

"We welcome you, as you journey with us..., to not only learn information, but to benefit from examples of faith and failure, and seek to apply God’s Word to every day life. Together, let’s transition from only studying theories of doctrine, to applying God’s truths in a practical way every day. May God use these studies to help you find daily transformation."