It’s Okay to Ask. Should We Question the "Facts"?
Acts 17:11 “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.”
Some fifth grade students took a class trip to the museum. Before their visit the teacher told them to be sure to ask any questions they wished of the tour guide because they were trained professionals who should know their subject matter well.
The first museum hall the children entered showed the ascent of man from ape to upright walking people. The guide pointed out the painting that began with a hunched over ape and eventually picture by picture the ape slowly stood up until the last picture was a fully formed man. Then the guide told the children this happened about five million years ago.
Jason raised his hand, “How do you know that’s true?”
“Well,” answered the guide, “I’ve studied these things and I know it is a well-known fact that humans began about five million years ago.”
“But how do you know that?” asked Jason.
“I know that because many intelligent scientists have determined that to be true.”
Jason argued, “But how do they know it’s true?”
“Listen, young man,” was her answer, “I don’t really know. I just work here! Okay?”
Sometimes kids ask too many questions. Two-year-olds are known for their constant “why” questions. “I like sunny days.” “Why?” “Because the sun is warm and it makes me warm.” “Why?” “Because God made the sun that way.’ “Why?” “Because that’s what God wanted to do.” “Why?” “Because!”
As we grow older we often ask fewer questions, and we tend to trust those who are giving us the facts. But sometimes it is good to question those “facts.” People pf the Bible asked a lot of questions. John the Baptist asked Jesus if He was the one the people were waiting for. Thomas asked Jesus how he was supposed to follow Jesus if he didn’t know where Jesus was going. Peter asked who the disciples should follow. Nathaniel asked how Jesus knew him. Mary asked how she would have a baby since she was still a virgin. Zachariah asked how old people like them could have a baby. Moses asked why the Lord picked him to lead the Israelites.
Just as it was alright for the people of the Bible to ask questions, so it is alright for us to ask questions too. Often people who seem to be very intelligent will try to get us to believe their ideas. They might even tell us they have the facts to back them up. In Science, these are often people who do not want to believe God’s Word. That’s when we should begin to ask two great questions. First, where did you get your information? If someone tells us fossils are billions of years old, ask where they got their information. Second, how do you know that’s true? When someone tells us they believe in the Big Bang, ask them how they know that is true. That is as if to ask why we should believe them. If they say because science says so, ask again, how do you know that that is true?
It is good to question those who want us to believe what they are telling us. Our teachers and pastors welcome our questions. And we can ask them the two great questions too. The Apostle Paul tells us about the people in the town of Berea. They asked a lot of questions. Acts 17:11 says, “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.” Good for them! We can be Bereans too!
GUEST ARTICLE written by Pastor John Moldenhauer and Reynold Kremer, classroom devotions and gathering service meditations.