An engineer I work with likes to say, “Bad requests yield bad data.”
Asking wrong questions can lead us in wrong directions.
I ran a series of posts about a year ago trying to answer the question, “What makes a church a church?” A Pastor? A Church building? A certain number of people? A religous service?
Then I realized I AM the church, and my original question didn’t make sense. A better question might have been, “What makes a meeting of the church a church meeting?” And I might answer that with: An official service surrounding the Lords Supper (the Eucharest). The New Testament tells us to “do this in remembrance of Him,” but it never tells us to have Sunday School, Youth Group, or Stand-Up Lectures.
We ask, “Why is there so much evil in the world?” when perhaps a better question is, “Why is there so much good in the world?”
We ask, “How can I know more about the Bible or theology?” instead of, “How can I know more about God?”
We ask, “What is God’s will for my life?” but don’t bother with, “What is God’s will for me right now?”
We ask, “Who should I marry,” before first asking, “What is my purpose in life?” Answering the latter could shed light on the former.
We ask, “How can we reconcile the teachings of Jesus and Paul?” when they never were UNreconciled in the first place (Jesus vs Paul, by Scot McKnight – from the December 2010 issue of Christianity Today)
We ask, “Why am I the only one who seems to have the absolute corner on truth?” when a more interesting question is, “Why do we all think we’re right?” (Jason Boyett on humility in handling truth – in context with the Rob Bell controversy)
We ask, “Why can’t I hear God?” rather than, “Why am I not listening?” (John 10:27 / Seth Barnes on listening prayer)
So we ask and we ask and we ask. My question is this, “Are we asking the right questions?”