Acts 17:11


#1

Acts 17:11
11 These Jews were more receptive than those in Thessalonica, for they welcomed the message very eagerly and examined the scriptures every day to see whether these things were so.

Been reading through some of Tim Staples old blog’s on Justification, Sin, Purgatory etc…and almost everyone of them has someone commenting used Acts 17:11 as there reasoning why he is wrong. Basically they search the scriptures and don’t believe him.

This morning while reading I said to myself “OK but weren’t they searching the Old Testament?” The new Testament wasn’t written yet?

I need some direction on this please:

What is the proper understand of this? Is it that all the Jews were searching in the scriptures was for a confirmation that Paul was speaking the truth when he told them that Jesus is the Messiah?

Also, does anyone know which verses in the Old Testament they would have been reading?

Finally, is it even possible to say this passage could be saying the Jews checked the scriptures to confirm Paul’s teachings on Baptism, the Eucharist, Purgatory, etc…?

As always, thanks for your input.


#2

My 2 cents on this…

Yes, they would only have the O.T. scriptures to search, and they used their study to CONFIRM that they SHOULD believe Paul is what that passage says.

In general, the Scriptures confirmed that Paul preached the truth regarding Jesus as the Christ, but also the more specific details that you reference.


#3

I find it interesting, too, that there are always those who seem to believe that the Bible just appeared one day intact, Old and New Testaments, in the King’s English, and that’s what the people of those days would have been reading. :rolleyes:


#4

Hi!

…do not really follow the first part of your post (re: Tim); as for your queries… yeah, the passage, though it is part of the New Testament, was not part of that reference since the NT had not yet been put to ink; these Scriptures, as in the passage where we find Christ’s demonstrations of Scriptures (St. Luke 24:25-27), were of the Old Testament Writings–incidentally, as Scriptures attest, we cannot know what books/passages they used (both Jesus and St. Paul).

Paul’s teachings would indeed be inclusive of all doctrinal teachings since that was the task at hand; however, since many of terms did not surface till later on, terms such as “the Holy Eucharist” would not have been used; rather, St. Paul would refer to the Body and Blood of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Notably, we find Jews searching Scriptures not to disproof of the teachings but to confirm that what they were being taught was correct and Scriptural.

Maran atha!

Angel


#5

Thanks for the response. Are you saying you also think they were searching the Old Testament to confirm Paul’s teaching on Baptism, confession, Eucharist, etc?

Just trying to think this one through and figure out what those passages where that they would have been reading.


#6

Thanks for the response. Basically for the Tim part, where I find that verse thrown around most often is when reading through Tim Staples Blog’s or Tracts such as these:

catholic.com/blog/tim-staples/justification-process-or-one-time-deal?page=1

His articles are a wealth of information, but also the comments are great because Tim will usually respond to people that have objections to what he says in the article. That’s when the learning begins.

Thanks for the verse in Luke. That’s what I am looking for, what are the passages in the Old Testament that point towards Jesus. In my mind that would have been an integral part of their Evangelistic sermons.

Yes I agree I don’t think St. Paul would have been using any of our technical terms.


#7

Yes, and I think they found that the O.T. proved Paul’s teachings to be true.

Just trying to think this one through and figure out what those passages where that they would have been reading.

I’m working on that part now. I want to double-check my list. :smiley:


#8

Hi!
I scanned through the topic direct by the link… interestingly, I found that Acts 17:11 only once (I scanned through very quickly) but the person that posted it actually missed the whole target since Tim is speaking against once saved always saved and this particular passage speaks of “believing.”

Believing in Christ does not guarantee Salvation. Christ Himself attests to this as He calls us out:

21 “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. (St. Matthew 7:21)

46 “Why do you call me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ and do not do what I say? (St. Luke 6:46)

…and the Apostles Believed and Taught the same; St. James does not only speak of belief/faith/believing but he injects:

19 Thou believest that there is one God. Thou dost well: the devils also believe and tremble. (St. James 2:19)

I concur with you, when we search Scriptures and study them (even opposite interpretations of them) that’s when our learning begins!

Now, here’s another passage where Jesus speaks about Old Testament Scriptures:

56 Your father Abraham rejoiced at the thought of seeing my day; he saw it and was glad.” (St. John 8:56)

Here is an interesting passage because Jesus is alluding to either and actual event (pre-Incarnate Jesus) or a mystical even (a vision in the Holy Spirit); I tend to think that it was an actual event since we do have a passage in Scriptures that points to it:

18 Then Melchizedek king of Salem brought out bread and wine. He was priest of God Most High, 19 and he blessed Abram, saying,
“Blessed be Abram by God Most High,
Creator of heaven and earth.
20 And praise be to God Most High,
who delivered your enemies into your hand.”
Then Abram gave him a tenth of everything. (Genesis 14:18-20)

…and here’s an Old Testament passage that speaks about the Coming of Jesus:

15 The Lord your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among you, from your fellow Israelites. You must listen to him. (Deuteronomy 18:15)

Maran atha!

Angel


#9

Maybe this will help a bit: jimmyakin.com/2012/09/sola-scriptura-the-bereans.html.


#10

Thanks, I look forward to reading the list.


#11

Yep, it usually pops up at least once in most of Tim’s comment sections. A once saved always saved is who I am in a dialogue with from time to time. So I am trying my best to get a better understanding of the verses they tend to use against the Catholic church.

Believing in Christ does not guarantee Salvation. Christ Himself attests to this as He calls us out:

…and the Apostles Believed and Taught the same; St. James does not only speak of belief/faith/believing but he injects:

Agreed

I concur with you, when we search Scriptures and study them (even opposite interpretations of them) that’s when our learning begins!

I love reading the articles and the forum posts. So much info so little time.

Now, here’s another passage where Jesus speaks about Old Testament Scriptures:

Here is an interesting passage because Jesus is alluding to either and actual event (pre-Incarnate Jesus) or a mystical even (a vision in the Holy Spirit); I tend to think that it was an actual event since we do have a passage in Scriptures that points to it:

…and here’s an Old Testament passage that speaks about the Coming of Jesus:

Thanks for the verses. I will mark those down to study them further.


#12

THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU…:thumbsup:

I swear, sometimes my brain must be on overload. I should have known Jimmy would have an answer to this. He doesn’t get into what they were looking for in the old testament. However, he says exactly what I was trying to express with the New Testament not being available yet.

The True Attitude of Berean and Thessalonian Christians

If we were to follow the example of the Bereans, we would look at whether the Scriptures we do have support a particular message and, if they do, then be willing to accept further revelation not found in those Scriptures.

We would, ironically, embrace the attitude of those at Thessalonica who did accept the Christian faith, for in 2 Thessalonians 2, St. Paul told them:

2 Thessialonians 2

[15] So then, brethren, stand firm and hold to the traditions which you were taught by us, either by word of mouth or by letter.

In other words, we would recognize the authority of all of the traditions passed on from Christ and the apostles, whether they were written or not.

And this is what the Catholic Church says we should do.

I might have to call into CAL next time he is on and see if he can list a few of the verses the Bereans were reading.


#13

I think Paul’s letters and Acts give us some hints of what passages of the OT were being looked at. It is interesting though that we know from these writings what the type of preaching was without knowing a lot of the detail as to which OT passages were being referenced.

It is interesting that the Gospels, especially Matthew indirectly references so many OT passages in relation to Jesus which fits well with what Paul says the early Church were talking and preaching about.

It might be interesting to read the Gospels and look at the reference footnotes to the OT. This is probably a good way to see which passages were being discussed.

Here are some OT references that the apostle Matthew indirectly references :

catholic-resources.org/Bible/Matthew-OTQuotations.htm


#14

Hi!
It is not just interesting but clear demonstrations; St. John the Baptist was the precursor of the Messiah so when Jesus entered His public life (Ministry) John had to curb his efforts. There would most probably be an issue with his followers if he did not demonstrate openly that Jesus was the One they were to follow… hence, John stated so. But just to make sure that his disciples would not hinder his works and prove to be a schism in the Body he, wisely, sends two of them to Christ:

18 John’s disciples told him about all these things. Calling two of them, 19 he sent them to the Lord to ask, “Are you the one who is to come, or should we expect someone else?” 20 When the men came to Jesus, they said, “John the Baptist sent us to you to ask, ‘Are you the one who is to come, or should we expect someone else?’” 21 At that very time Jesus cured many who had diseases, sicknesses and evil spirits, and gave sight to many who were blind. 22 So he replied to the messengers, “Go back and report to John what you have seen and heard: The blind receive sight, the lame walk, those who have leprosy are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, and the good news is proclaimed to the poor. 23 Blessed is anyone who does not stumble on account of me.” (St. Luke 7:18-23–see: St. Luke 4:14-21; Malachi 3:1-5; Isaiah 58:6; 52:8-10; 52:13-53:12)

Jesus greets John’s disciples with the Promise to Israel… and the world at large!

Maran atha!

Angel


#15

What Acts 17:11 testifies to is the accuracy of the oral preaching tradition. Except for Saint Paul’s preaching, the Bereans would have had no idea that Jesus of Nazareth was the Messiah, even though some of them could possibly have seen Him in the flesh. As to Christ, the scriptures were of no help in identifying the Messiah without Saint Paul’s oral preaching. And, they did not simply consult with the OT itself, as the Messiah is there only by type, not by identity. They searched out the prophesies and were convinced that the Jesus Whom Saint Paul preached was the One.

This was also true in the case of the demon who thrashed the seven sons of Sceva (Acts 19). The demon knew Jesus, and knew Saint Paul, but did not recognize, or fall under the control of Sceva’s sons.

Compare the above with the Prologue to Luke (Luke 1:1-4). Luke wrote his Gospel primarily to confirm the oral teaching that Theophilus had already received. Another written confirmation of the oral tradition.


#16

Hi!
I fully concur with you that the mainly speaks to the cofunction of the Tradition (Oral) and the Written Scriptures.

Though in Acts 19 Scriptures offer of a deeper meaning of the term “know.” This passage is speaking of Authority and Power… Jesus, the Son of God, is fully known to Satan and his minions; the Apostles would, in time, have possession of the authority and power delegated to them by Christ… but, as in the case of Christ’s own Twelve (St. Matthew 17:14-21) Jesus’ Authority and Power does not take full effect on those who are weak in the Faith–Satan and his minions are fully capable of distinguishing who’s who among the Believers.

Maran atha!

Angel


#17

The key thing for Jews of Pauls time were to examine the specific prophecies of the Old Testament and then explain how Christ fulfilled them.
They were pretty much focussed on whether he was the true messiah or not.
If he failed there talking about doctrine was a waste of time.


#18

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