Summary: God’s desire is that we would be like the Bereans: That we would prepare our heart, receive the Word, and search the Scriptures.
SUPERNATURAL #17: SEARCH THE SCRIPTURES!
INTRO TO TOPIC:
As we come to the end of the year, there is the hope and expectancy that a New Year brings.
What resolutions will you make for 2010? The top 5 resolutions people make last year were:
5. stop smoking
4. make more money
3. improve relationships
2. exercise more
1. lose weight (the number one resolution!)
• Consider the children of Israel in wilderness – it took them 40 years to make an 11 day journey to Promised Land: God said: “You have stayed at this mount long enough. It is time to break camp and move on.” (Deut. 1:6-7).
• Picture a hamster running on a wheel – going in circles, not getting anywhere? Can you relate to that? Are you in the same place spiritually that you were a year ago? Do you want to change?
• As we head into the New Year, I want to challenge you – whatever other resolutions you may make – make a commitment to make God’s Word your number one priority!
“Then the brethren immediately sent Paul and Silas away by night to Berea. When they arrived, they went into the synagogue of the Jews. These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness, and searched the Scriptures daily to find out whether these things were so. Therefore many of them believed, and also not a few of the Greeks, prominent women as well as men.” (Acts 17:10-12).
THE BIG IDEA: God’s desire is that we would be like the Bereans: That we would prepare our heart, receive the Word, and search the Scriptures.
1. PREPARE YOUR HEART:
Luke tells us that the Bereans were more noble than the Thessalonians.
• What were the Thessalonians like? They rejected the Word, and gossiped negatively about the preachers.
• How did the Bereans respond to the Word? They were NOBLE.
• Noble = distinguished, of exalted moral or mental character or excellence.
• Look at the example given to us by the scribe, Ezra:
“For Ezra had prepared his heart to seek the Law of the Lord, and to do it, and to teach statutes and ordinances in Israel.” (Ezra 7:10).
How can we prepare our hearts to seek God’s Word?
• Get a good night’s rest on Saturday night – don’t stay out too late partying!
• I know of people who don’t come to Church Sundays because they were out too late and they miss the Word altogether.
II. RECEIVE THE WORD:
Luke says that the Bereans received the Word with all readiness, or great eagerness (NASB).
• Great eagerness = zeal, inclination, readiness of mind.
• They had an open heart attitude to receive God’s Word from the preacher:
“For this reason we also thank God without ceasing, because when you received the word of God which you heard from us, you welcomed it not as the word of men, but as it is in truth, the word of God, which also effectively works in you who believe.” (1 Thess. 2:13).
• What can we do to receive the Word? Bring your Bibles and a notebook to Church.
• Ephesians 4:11-12 tells us that pastors and teachers are gifts from God.
III. SEARCH THE SCRIPTURES:
Luke tells us that the Bereans searched the Scriptures daily to see if these things were so.
• Search = to investigate or examine.
• Don’t just take my word for it, go to the Scriptures for yourselves and search it out!
“Study to show yourself approved to God, a worker who does not need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.” (2 Tim. 2:15).
QUOTE: “If God has spoken, listen! If God has recorded his words in a Book, search its pages with a believing heart. If you do not accept it as God’s inspired word, I cannot invite you to pay any particular attention to it; but if you regard it as the Book of God, I charge you, as I shall meet you at the judgement seat of Christ, study the Bible daily. Treat not the Eternal God with disrespect, but delight in His Word.” (Charles Spurgeon).
SEVEN REASONS WHY BIBLE STUDY WILL CHANGE YOUR LIFE:
1. You will be blessed! “Blessed (happy, fortunate, to be envied) are the undefiled who walk (order their conduct and conversation) in the law of the Lord.” (Psalm 119:1, Amplified). Quote Psalm 1 & Joshua 1:8.
2. God’s Word will make you pure! “How can a young man cleanse his way? By taking heed according to Your word… Your word I have hidden in my heart, that I might not sin against You.” (Psalm 119:9,11). God’s Word gives us power to resist temptation. That’s how Jesus defeated the devil’s temptations – by quoting the Word!