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A Good Model for an Open Mind

Wisdom for the Heart / Dr. Stephen Davey
The Truth Network Radio
February 1, 2021 12:00 am

A Good Model for an Open Mind

Wisdom for the Heart / Dr. Stephen Davey

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February 1, 2021 12:00 am

Nowadays, virtue is described as accepting all forms of religion, sexuality, and political philosophies as equal and tearing down the dividing walls of right and wrong so as not to alienate anyone. But in Acts 17, true virtue is described as obedience to God and His Word.

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Most them and went on a matter most to us for the Maria's. It wasn't whether or not Paul was likable or interesting to listen to or or novel in his teaching. What mattered was the answer to this question has God spoke to God has spoken. You have to submit confess convert okay so the first principle that is a good open mind is when you place the priority on your examination of scribe as accepting all forms of religion, sexuality and ethical positions is equal. The goal seems to be to tear down the dividing walls of right and wrong so as to not alienate biblically can't approach life that way. There are matters to which God has spoken, and when God speaks, that's the final word.

This is wisdom for the heart with Stephen Devi. Stephen continues through his series from acts 17 with this lesson. A good model for an open read recently. In fact, just this past week about $100 billion initiative that began a few months ago purchase all the news as well. A Russian billionaire donated $100 million to utilize the best of technology capable of listening to radio waves in galaxies far away, and also telescope of magnificent power to search for alien life to basically find out if indeed someone is out there who is listening and watching. I read some of the material of this initiative which is being chaired by Stephen Hawking. I even watch their shorts introductory video which was magnificent pictures by the way the universe lies. I sat there worshiping God course they were going in a different direction. They were depicting a human race that had randomly gone evolving without a creator. They made the rather interesting statement that the universe is infinite. I guess it been able to measure that they say they said it's infinite and then they gave to nature all power nature is all powerful. That nature created life and of course the primary purpose. Not surprisingly, in this new initiative to find out if we are allowed came from this desire to know where were going, and I could just hear that announcer saying several times are we alone. I have an answer were not alive. In fact, there is indeed someone listening and watching and involved who cares. By the way that the stunning truth is that he has communicated to us about our origins and about our future. Genesis chapter 1 all the way to Revelation chapter 21 and then of course chapter 22 where Jesus says these testimonies are true and there's a lot in between. In his recent blog on the growing illiteracy of Americans relative to the Bible, which is still the data bestseller Al Mohler quoted George Gallup and Jim Castelli concluded this and I quote Mohler's blog. Americans revere the Bible but by and large they just don't read it because they don't read it. They become biblically illiterate. So how bad is it all her postures well. Fewer than half of all adults could name the four Gospels. Many Christians Christians now cannot identify the names of more than two or maybe three of the 12 disciples at least 12% of adults Christians believe that Joan of arc was Noah's wife ARC nevermind but a considerable number of respondents affected one poll indicated they believe the sermon on the mount was preached by Billy Graham.

Dr. Moeller then makes the application how can a generation. Be biblically shaped in its understanding of human sexuality when 50% of the respondents think Sodom and Gomorrah are married and individuals who believe there's a verse in the Bible that says quote God helps those who help themselves." Be able to understand salvation by grace through faith alone with us as our world and it's our world in which we have the privilege of introducing God aliens who seated life on the planet is growing in popularity.

The energy of the universe to determine your future. The alignment of the stars sort of determine your fate, the power of nature power of nature to create order and to create beauty from disorder that's true, it was nature would work some magic in my backyard I can get anything beautiful to grow back there. However, if you mention a God who communicated something a God who is disclosed to his and who we are. The values the virtues that he demands the gospel of sin and salvation suddenly that open-mindedness closes and you can hear the shutters on ears slamming shot at and windows of the soul or just sort of lowered and closed and locked it. It strikes me that when you look at the testimony of the gospel.

As we been doing this in in its introduction of God in this world that there is an incident of a good open mind and a secular society that the apostle Paul is going to encounter a group of them Jewish and Gentile sympathizers into this data become a wonderful model of what we hope and pray our world will have as an open mind to the truth because at the end of the day.

Beloved, it is the spirit of God who is at work in their hearts. We don't overlook or forget his invisible work, he must raise the windows and remove the shutters as we deliver the gospel only show you where that happened is the world this particular world is big and produced to God, let's go back to acts chapter 17 let's cut to work through this. And as we do.

I want to frame it. This will give you three characteristics of a good open mind. Having an open mind is necessarily good that we live in a world where there's an open mind is the wrong kind.

So to give you three characteristics of how to model a good open mind is history not only for those to whom you will deliver the gospel and you pray that God will do this in their lives. But this is true for every believer. Every one of us as Christians is the first characteristic of a good model of an open mind and give it to get into the text you received the word eagerly you receive the word eagerly mellows.

Go to verse 10 we left off last time we studied in the brethren immediately sent Paul and Silas away by night to Maria how many of you recognize the name.

The reasons I yes they are still to this day known for this particular incident in which they reflected an open mind and when they arrived they went into the synagogue of the Jews there.

Maria that these were more noble minded than those in Thessalonica, for they received the word with great eagerness… Can you briefly set the stage.

If you are with us in our last study is a contrast taking place apart just for Luke just makes you in our last study we watch Paul and Silas leaving the Thessalonica after a riot begins. The city is in an uproar. Everyone's upset and disturbed because their preaching the gospel regarding a deity. This resurrected Lord, who evidently has a claim to be sovereign King course that Iraq's in this riot and they said Paul and Silas away spare their their lives now after having traveled about 2 1/2 days. They arrive in Berea and you find this remarkable difference. These unbelieving Jews. Now keep that in mind these unbelieving Gentile proselytes respond with eagerness that word for eagerness could be understood with the idea of someone rushing forward. They can weigh they just can't wait to hear to get in your mind a picture of a starving refugee rushing toward a truck as its unloading bags of rice Avenue mind a picture of thirsty children raising their cups for water. I watched a homemade video clip not too long ago of people in an underground church receiving free copies of the Bible is a man open the sack in front of this group of adults is amazing to me and deeply convicting to see them pressing forward and reaching eagerly for their own copy of what I got 20 in my study and an elderly former pastor. I know once preached in the Soviet Union after the collapse of the church building was packed with people sitting in chairs understanding around the walls.

It's cold in the church building. There's no heat hundreds are there packed together listening to every word he preached it after he finished preaching, he sat down and no one moved and the lay leader leaned over and whispered we want more. So we got back up any preached another message after nearly an hour. He sat back down and again no one moved in the lay leader again leaned over and said please and again at the preached again test the idea here telling you when I finish your organization, please. We want to prepare for one sermon in and that's all you're going to get okay but this is this is the spirit of expectancy and eagerness as if there starving reaching for Brad. A couple of water and notice how we began the opening here.

Go back to verse 11, he says here of them. These were more noble minded than those in Thessalonica now. By the way, that doesn't mean there better people doesn't mean that there any less lost in their religious tradition.

It doesn't this mean that there any less lost in the Thessalonica. The idea of noble minded doesn't mean they're more intelligent or better educated. All I know the related to nobility this expression, you might translate it in your margin sibling means they were more open minded. There's a great example of what God is doing in their hearts. They're more receptive to the message that Paul and Silas are delivering now. By the way, you might think what that must mean they're more gullible. You know were ready for a new message which is open to that kind of thing like the Athenians that will look at later on. Now that doesn't mean you're more gullible that not all for going to give it a second characteristic of what it means a model a good open mind and listen to the word eagerly, which they did, but then here's is a critical part you examine the Scriptures carefully you examine the Scriptures carefully look at the middle part of verse 11, they received the word with great eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily to notice the text does not say and they examined Scriptures weekly. They examine the Scriptures for an hour or two in synagogue daily Ninos I read that it struck me know when they've got job they got kids. Therese got goats the herd, but all of a sudden they find themselves here in the presence of something that they are recognizing demands their attention because if it's true, it's going to direct the rest of their lives. If it's true, it's going to determine their eternal destiny why you're so passionate when you deliver to somebody the gospel, you realize how high the stakes are is life or death. Examine the Scriptures daily. That's an important thing because we go back to the Scriptures, the word for examine is very intense. It's a word that the linguists describe as the action of making careful and exact research in a legal process.

In other words, we cannot miss one word that that's that was how you when you met with an attorney in the and you look at those closing documents or that contract. You gotta make sure it's all there. It's all right. So in other words, their their attitude is that we can miss one word. There are legal binding issues between us and God.

Evidently evidently because if God has spoken which Paul is saying this God has communicated he has spoken to find out what to the Scriptures say keep in mind they only had the Old Testament Scriptures go to the book of Romans or first Corinthians. They had the Old Testament Scriptures.

We know that in the synagogue. That was the place where scrolls were Either in Hebrew, often translated into Greek for both members of the Jewish community along with the Jews teacher Jewish teachers had access to these scrolls and they were open and available were not told, but I would imagine just one textbook of the settlement wanted to find in the scrolls. Let's go to the writings of David finds 22nd so Jesus quotes in his dying agony. The first verse of that saw my God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me. Paul would say that that didn't happen to David.never forsook David talking about. Then they can look down a few verses were David writes a band of evildoers has encompassed me. They pierced my hands and my feet. That didn't happen to David is he talking about going on another verse or two.

They divided my garments among them, and for my clothing they cast lots happened to date. I did, I could hear Paul saying as he recounted the eyewitness accounts of the crucifixion, along with the testimony of the Old Testament. David is not talking about himself. He's talking about the son of sign will suffer, and I can hear these meridians saying please. We want more. One final good characteristic of modeling an open mind. You not only receive the word eagerly. You not only examine the Scriptures carefully which is how you present the gospel by the is in your opinion and then as a believer you do the same. Third you adapt to the truth. Personally you adapt to the truth. Personal universe 12. Many of them therefore believe a great many of them therefore believe most of the people back in Thessalonica rioted many of these people believe a number of prominent Greek women and men.

Another period of studying the Scriptures. Most New Testament scholars that explore this and work at the timelines believe that this may have lasted for a couple of months after that period of time or maybe along the way there beginning to believe it would be easy.

By the way for us to forget what that meant to them when it says in the belief were not given the volume of what that would mean, but we can get a taste of it by what happens next. Verse 13 when the Jews of Thessalonica found out that the word of God and proclaimed by Paul and Maria also. They came there. Likewise, agitating and stirring up the crowds. Now the city is stirred up you got another riot about the breakout because of the word of God being reclaimed and I think it's interesting that the Jews came in and they found out that the word of God had been proclaimed. It doesn't say they found out that the word of Paul had been proclaimed, but the word of God, which is to their shame.

Eternal condemnation. They recognize that much but now the city is literally the city is shaking translated with unrest so the Scriptures now that they have been examining and now that they believe is about to change everything in their life.

It's going to divide families is going to tear apart close friendships. It's going to bring division that synagogue will never ever be the same as eventually those who believe will begin to worship the Lord on the Lord's day back step of 20 never be the same never with this controversy that has started, but what matters most to them and went on a matter most to us is for the meridians. It wasn't whether or not Paul was likable or interesting to listen to or or not holiness teaching. What mattered was the answer to this question has God spoke to is God speaking through pool.

Was this really the word from God. Because if God has spoken.

You can't be neutral. If God has spoken.

You have to submit confess convert okay God is spoken than to disobey. The Scriptures is to disobey God to ignore the Scriptures is to ignore God to argue with these scriptures is to argue with God. Don't overlook the fact that these who believed it would mean isolation and even persecution. But that didn't stop them. Many believe. Can you imagine how important it would be for them and maybe for you as you invite the gospel in your life and with trouble. It comes that you are following the word of God and that what matters God is spoken. So here's a good model for an open mind kind of open mind. It's a good kind of an open mind summarizing the two closing principles one a good open mind is only good when you place the priority upon your examination. Scripture you're exploring everything else that's trouble. What is the Bible say what in the Bible mean to its original audience. What did Paul mean when he said that what do the Old Testament Scriptures say about the Messiah.

What does the New Testament confirm about the Messiah is the Bible commanding us to do something is the church to be led to do something those of the kinds of questions, listen who decides what you believe. Who decides what you believe your peers, your family, your church, your professors, your student body.

Your television, your coworkers you're feeling Bible is one thing on the Bible is nothing to read and memorize it studying so are we anchored to the objective truth of God's word, not the subjective world which is racing in every direction with every speculation based on how they feel. One evangelical author commented recently, one of his books I register few weeks ago he was mentioning a couple bestsellers as it relates to this worldview of subjectivism and and and these books supported that worldview. We refer to one bestseller by noted psychiatrist and radio talkshow host who wrote in my quote in feelings. There is wisdom for the simplest feelings, speaks the greatest truth become comfortable with your feelings because your feelings are your life.

Trust your feelings.

They are the only true guidance you ever seen" this author referred to another bestseller which contains a chapter called trust your feelings not your reason why want these books written when I was a kid growing up I would fit perfectly in this chapter, the author tells the reader don't trust your thinking. It could be warped was true could be, but that's not the point. Pay attention to your emotions and your feelings and emotions have their own logic they are linked to an inner knowledge that you can trust that the classic example of subjective world view and we are presenting an objective gospel based upon proposition. True this I thought you would enjoy this this evangelical author applied it by writing okay. If this is true. Suppose you see someone on a window ledge 40 stories above the street preparing to jump probably clinically depressed deadly emotions. They feel this moment be due to some catastrophic life event or guilt. Maybe even an imbalance of chemical the brain would you tell a person. Trust your feelings, your emotions, speak the greatest truth job and he goes all would you send your teenager out on a date, saying, have a great time at all. Whatever you do don't trust her thinking it could be warped. Trust your feelings of course. What does God's word say about catastrophic event. What does God say about the value of your life is God's word say that. He was God's word say about how you're feeling, was God's word say about guilt you might be carrying. What does God say about where we came from God's word say about were going so the first principle that is a good open mind is when you place the priority on your examination of propositional objective truth you hold in your lap. Secondly, a good open mind is when you commit your life to the application of Scripture and others are committing to live and believe and act upon what God has said, not what others say not what your emotions dictate or your feelings or your personal sense of what you think is right.

But the wisdom of God comes when we pray the wisdom of God is capable of outfitting us. Paul wrote for that journey of life, stock your boats load your wagon. He says the word equips you for life and we constantly force our our thinking and our feeling that word and what we believe, especially for going to communicated to our world about God must come from this book to this inspired book 11 introduces us ultimately to our God who is disclosing himself, disclosing his creative handiwork disclosing his character. He is worth knowing. He is worth following his worth obeying his worth trusting his worth studying and he is definitely worth introducing our introducing God is the name of our current Huron wisdom for the hearts. This is an eight part series that Stephen Davey preached from acts 17. I hope you'll be with us for all of it. One of our desires here at wisdom international is to introduce as many people as possible to the God who offers them hope and life.

I'm excited to let you know that we recently added three more books of the Bible to our collection of mandarin resources were excited that people across China and Mandarin speakers in other parts of the world can hear clear biblical teaching first, second and third John are now complete. Find this content on our website. Wisdom and navigate to the section with our various languages. We also have Arabic, Spanish, Portuguese and Swahili content posted by the way, all of this is possible because of your support of our ministry were completely funded by donations from listeners.

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