A recent survey reported that 26 million Americans mostly or completely stopped reading the Bible during COVID. “Currently, only 10 percent of Americans report daily Bible reading.” Don’t let these grim statistics discourage you! Instead, resolve today to make it a priority to read and study God’s Word.
In Acts 17, we meet a group of Christians known for their devoted study of God’s Word. This chapter takes place during Paul’s second missionary journey. After some trouble with jealous Jews and city officials, the believers in Thessalonica helped Paul and Silas slip away by night to Berea, a city about 50 miles away. As was their custom, they went to the local synagogue and found the Jews there to be of “more noble character.” Why? They were eager to study the Old Testament to see if the gospel message was true (v. 11).
In fact, the Bereans “examined the Scriptures every day” and found that Christ was the fulfillment of the Old Testament. As a result, many Jews believed and many Greeks as well (v. 12; see also Rom. 1:16). To study God’s Word is in one sense a work of God. We must be illumined by the Holy Spirit. But at the same time, it’s a skill we grow in. As Paul wrote elsewhere to Timothy: “Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth” (2 Tim. 2:15).
The Thessalonian Jews traveled to Berea to make more trouble for the apostle and the gospel (vv. 13– 15). Since Paul was the main target, the Bereans sent him away to the city of Athens.
>> Are you known as someone committed to the study of God’s Word? If you are, ask God to help you continue this practice. If you are not, consider how you can become more faithful in reading God’s Word. How can you become a better student of the Word?
For those who read Your Word daily, help us read with greater engagement. For those who read sporadically, give us a stronger craving for Scripture. For those who rarely pick up a Bible, give us a curiosity to know Your Word.