Dr. Oscar T. Moses
Tuesday, June 6, 2016
The Holy Spirit Reasons with Proof and Persuasion
The Holy Spirit meets people where they are and leads them where He needs them to go. In Acts 17 Paul preached in three synagogues; Thessalonica, Berea and Athens. This chapter could be categorized with the following approach:
The Reasoning in Thessalonica
The Holy Spirit empowered Paul and Silas to reason, explain, give evidence and proclaim the Messiahship of Jesus Christ for three Sabbaths in Thessalonica. They were rejected by some in Thessalonica.
The Reasoning in Berea
The Holy Spirit encouraged the Jews in Berea. The Jews in Berea treated them much better than the Jews in Thessalonica. They were excited to get the word of God. They were quite studious. They listened to Paul preach and then went back daily to examine and research to see if what Paul said was true. They were received by most in Berea.
The Reasoning In Athens
The Holy Spirit enlightened the citizens in Athens.
- Epicureans: Epicureans believed that God had no interest in humanity and the main purpose of life was pleasure. They acknowledged gods only in name. They were materialists.
- Stoics: The Stoics believed the goal in life was to raise above all things and show no emotion to either pain or pleasure. They did not deny God but they were pantheists that believed our life is determined by fate. The Stoic said “Endure Life” while the Epicureans said “Enjoy Life”!
- The Areopagus: The Areopagus was the council that had charge of religious and educational matters. It was a court on Mars Hill. They were respected in Athens.
Questions for Chapter 17
- Why did Paul and his companions stop at Thessalonica?
- What did Paul reason from the scriptures?
- Why were some of the staunch Jews jealous?
- What did the staunch Jews do when Paul and Silas won over new converts?
- What were the brawlers doing?
- Whose house was broken into?
- What did the crowd do to Jason and some other Christians?
- What was Jason accused of?
- When did Paul and Silas leave Thessalonica?
- How were the Bereans different from the Thessalonians?
- Why did Paul leave Berea?
- What did Paul discover in Athens?
- Why did the Council of the Areopagus want to hear what Paul had to say?
- Why did the Athenians have an altar dedicated to an “unknown god”?
- How did Paul prove that God was not an idol?
- How did the Greeks respond to Paul?
- Who among Paul’s hearers became believers?
- If you were involved in a small group bible study which would you prefer to be, a teacher or one of the students? Why?
- Name 2 things you can you do to make the Gospel Message heard to your non-Christian friends and co-workers.
- The Church at Berea searched the scriptures daily. What can be done at your church to generate inspiration to study God’s Word?
- Would you say that your church (MHMBC) is a bible teaching church?
- What percentage of MHMBC members would you say are bible knowledgeable?
(Meaning, they have a pretty good understanding of scripture enough to articulate it to others)
None 5% 15% 25% 50% 75%
Dr. Oscar T. Moses – W.A.R. Bible Study 2016