READINESS OF MIND
“These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.” Acts 17:11
Paul and company came to Berea after facing serious opposition in Thessalonica. The Scripture describes how attentive the Bereans were to the teaching and preaching of the Word of God. They “received the word with all readiness of mind.” Herein lies one of the most important factors contributing to our spiritual learning and growing in the grace of God. How receptive are we to God’s truth? Those in Berea were eager and willing to receive the message of God. Does this describe our attitude toward truth? We need to discipline our minds in anticipation of hearing God speak through the Scripture.
Numerous factors can influence our attention to the Word of God. Desire will definitely have a bearing on how sincerely we listen to truth. If we have a hunger and a thirst for knowing God and learning of Him, our minds will be more ready to hear. We see much apathy in our day toward the Scripture, even among some who claim to be believers. They sometimes search for churches where the worship services are more entertaining because there is little appetite for truth-filled preaching or teaching.
Another thing that can negatively affect the reception of Bible doctrine is an unwillingness to accept truth that conflicts with previously held beliefs. We have known many who were not willing to hear what the Bible teaches about some particular matter because they had their minds made up about what they believed, even though their belief may not have been supported by Scripture. The Pharisees were guilty of rejecting the message of Christ because they were committed to holding on to their non-biblical traditions. Pre-conceived notions will definitely hinder a “readiness of mind.”
Others fail to receive the truth because they do not comprehend or respect the author of the message. God’s Word is not the message of men, but the revelation of God. These Bereans were not prejudiced against God’s truth, but “searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.” When we are willing to learn and obey the Word of God, and not resist the message, there will be spiritual growth and understanding. God wants to reveal truth to us, but we must be willing to listen and receive it.