by Jason C. Dukes: Martin B. Copenhaver wrote a book called Jesus Is the Question. The premise of this book is simply that Jesus asked questions approximately 10 times more often than He gave answers. His disciple-making efforts were not about having information and answers—although He could have given more than enough answers to all the questions in the whole world—but about asking questions that caused His followers to reconsider their beliefs. What if we became disciples of Jesus who make disciples with Him by valuing tough questions more than having great answers?
Please consider this issue carefully because it is crucial to our engagement with the younger generations who are becoming more and more honest with their deepest questions. I fear that our evangelism efforts in recent years have focused too much on having the right answers and not enough on the actual questions people have. Moreover, I suggest that we have even missed the actual questions we ourselves wrestle with in our own heads and hearts. This is a serious issue that we must change.
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Questions—at least the ones that relate to spiritual seeking—are linked to people’s insecurities and emotions. This is true of those who already believe the Gospel of Jesus, as well as those who have yet to believe. We all have questions. Relational disciple making welcomes those questions. Informational discipleship merely addresses those questions intellectually at best and ignores them at worst.
In his recent book, This Is Our Time, Trevin Wax suggests that people nowadays interpret truth through their insecurities and emotions. In our efforts to deliver the Good News to the new generations around us, we have not presented the Gospel in ways that acknowledge and respect insecurities and emotions. We have also tended to not create relational presence—enough to even discern a friend’s insecurities and emotional dilemmas. As a result, we have not addressed the questions people are actually asking…