“My people are destroyed because they have no knowledge. You priests have refused to learn, so I will refuse to let you be priests for me. You have forgotten the law of your God, so I will forget your children” – Hosea 4:6 (NIV).
The Apostle Paul during his missionary journeys often met with contracting reception. Upon arrival in Thessolonica as was his habit he moved to the town centre and began to engage the townsfolk with the Gospel (Acts 17:2). There “Some of the Jews were persuaded and joined Paul and Silas, as did a large number of God-fearing Greeks and quite a few prominent women. But other Jews were jealous; so they rounded up some bad characters from the marketplace, formed a mob and started a riot in the city” (vv 4-5).
Under these circumstances Paul and his entourage was forced out without being given much of a chance. Moving on to the next stop over in Berea there they met a more cooler reception. “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” (vv 11).
The contrast here is that the Bereans were knowledge seekers. Other than merely act on the wind of emotions they were up and ready to engage with these visitors and their new teachings. Unlike the Thessolonians who acted more out of fear for losing what they held on as truth these could entertain any teaching with a certain confidence. In the end; “As a result, many of them believed, as did also a number of prominent Greek women and many Greek men” (12).
The Bereans are referred to as “of noble character” for they were a people who valued knowledge. Their minds were broad, curious and open to receiving new truths. Because of this many received salvation unlike the riotous Thessolonians.
All knowledge starts with God and He desires us to grow in the knowledge of truth. When any people despise knowledge there are prone to being swayed here and there without having a firm foundation. This has increasingly become common nowdays with all kinds of heretical teachings finding their way in church. And yet of course they wouldn’t flower within a knowledgeable church!
Prayer for today: Lord Father God of Abraham, maker of heaven and earth, today I pray that we as your people may desire and not forsake knowledge which starts with knowing you as our Lord and savoir, this I pray in Jesus name!