Berea, Beroea

BEREA, BEROEA (bêr-ē'a, Gr. Beroia). A city in SW Macedeonia (Acts.17.10-Acts.17.15; Acts.20.4). Lying at the foot of Mount Bermius, situated on a tributary of the Haliacmon, its origins appear lost in the mists of time. The Berea mentioned by Thucydides in all likelihood refers to another place. It is, however, twice mentioned by Polybius (xxvii:8, xxviii:8). Following the battle of Pynda in 168 b.c., it surrendered to the Romans and was counted in the third of the four divisions of the empire of Alexander the Great. In the NT, Paul and his party visited Berea on the second missionary journey. Here they found some open-minded people who were willing to study the teachings of Paul in the light of the Scripture. This happy situation was disrupted, however, when Jews from Thessalonica arrived, turning the Bereans against the message and forcing Paul to flee to Athens. Silas and Timothy remained there briefly instructing the true believers.