‘As soon as it was night, the believers sent Paul and Silas away to Berea. On arriving there, they went to the Jewish synagogue. Now the Berean Jews were of more noble character than those in Thessalonica, for they received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true. As a result, many of them believed, as did also a number of prominent Greek women and many Greek men.
But when the Jews in Thessalonica learned that Paul was preaching the word of God at Berea, some of them went there too, agitating the crowds and stirring them up. The believers immediately sent Paul to the coast, but Silas and Timothy stayed at Berea. Those who escorted Paul brought him to Athens and then left with instructions for Silas and Timothy to join him as soon as possible’ (Ac 17:10-15)
My husband and I continued to follow in the footsteps of the great Apostle Paul. Today we went to the city of Berea in Greece. Over here it is called Veria or Veroia. We took a local bus and after one hour journey, we arrived at Berea. We went to the site called ‘The Altar of Apostle Paul’. The Christians here have made a special place to remember Apostle Paul. There is a beautiful bronze statue of the Apostle welcoming you. Both my husband and I greeted our spiritual father and mentor. There are three original marble steps taken from a 1st century synagogue where it is believed that Paul preached. There are also two beautiful mosaics there. The one of the left depicts Paul’s vision when a man from Macedonia (present Greece) begged the Apostle to come and preach to the people here. The second, on the right, shows the Apostle Paul preaching in Berea. We took some pictures there.
We trecked from there to an ancient synagogue believed to be the place where Paul preached. We continued walking down the streets of Berea and visited two other ancient churches. We took pictures in all these places. My husband and I held hands and prayed thanking God for the privilege to visit these places that hold so much spiritual value for us the Christians.
Just as we read in the Bible, the people of Berea were more noble and more spiritual than the people in Thessaloniki. It proved to be so even now, after 2000 years since Dr. Luke wrote the Book of Acts. It is amazing how the Word of God is so true! In Berea, two women in particular showed us great respect, kindness and help. They behaved like we are thier family! They could not speak English very well but they went out of their way to teach us the importance of this place, they walked with us along the road to help us find these ancient places. They gave us maps of Berea and cold bottled water free of charge!!!! I do not know their names but and God knows them and will reward them.
Berea is a middle size city, very clean, very nice and with very friendly people. It is about 2500 years old!!! Life is quiet and slow here. There are flowers in front of each shop. In Nigeria where we live people are restless to become rich ‘overnight’. Coming here, seeing these old places, we are reminded that a good life may be simpler than we have imagined in our teenager’s dreams. Peace is more important than money and spirituality is more important than success.
Today is a good day. Thank God for the favor, health, resources and strength He had given us to complete this journey. As Paul left Berea to go to Athens, we too will go home to Nigeria! Dear readers, brethren and friends, may God bless you all! With love from Greece, Tali and Malia!
(In the pictures you see my husband and I at the ‘altar of the Apostle Paul’ in Berea; in front of a first century old synagogue where it is believed that Paul preached, in front and inside a first century church and flowers on the very clean streets of Berea, Greece)