Great questions deserve great answers.
This is especially important in our day and age. Often, we ask a question that can be answered quickly. “Are you hungry?” “Did you like the movie?” “Where do you see yourself in five years?” But not all questions are created equal. A question like “Is the Bible Trustworthy?” is almost a trick question. If you answer it simply, you’ve not answered it at all. As I’ve pointed out here, this question can’t be asked without a host of other questions leading up to it, surrounding it, and following after it.
Regardless of what you think of Him, Jesus Christ was an absolute master at asking and answering questions. One author I’ve read points out that – with Jesus – it wasn’t so much Questions & Answers as it was Questions & Questions. Right on!
One question I love is the one asked of Jesus after His resurrection. These two people are walking along – and Jesus joins them – though they don’t recognize Him. Jesus asks them why they are so sad. One of them says to Jesus, “Are you the only visitor to Jerusalem who does not know the things that have happened there in these days?” (Luke 24:18). In its context, there couldn’t be a more ironic, even humorous, question. As it happens, Jesus is the ONLY one who knows exactly what’s going on. Everyone else is still grappling with the death of Jesus, only to be overwhelmingly mystified by the 3-day-later empty tomb.
Here’s Jesus’ response: “O foolish ones, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken! Was it not necessary that the Christ should suffer these things and enter into his glory?” And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he interpreted to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning himself,” Luke 24:25-27.
Besides noticing that Jesus answers with a question – check out how comprehensive his answer actually is. Jesus recognizes the magnitude of their question – and answers with a massive answer because great questions deserve great answers. When it says “he interpreted to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning himself” it means that Jesus walked them through the entire Old Testament. That’s not 1 book….it’s 39 books, hundreds and hundreds of pages that summarize thousands of years of history. Now that’s a great answer!
And look at how the account ends. The disciples Jesus was speaking to didn’t snipe and complain about how “they only like short and simplistic answers” or about how “Jesus’ answers are so complex and hard to understand.” They realized they were asking a great question – and that they received a great answer. They are saying what people sometimes say after a truly wonderful conversation. “They said to each other, ‘Did not our hearts burn within us while he talked to us on the road, while he opened to us the Scriptures?‘ (Luke 24:32).
So, as we continue to work towards answering “Is the Bible trustworthy?” let’s avoid the foolish idea of thinking that only short, simplistic, easy, bumper-sticker, tweet-worthy answers deserve our attention. Let’s remember that great questions deserve great answers.