master teacher 2

The goal of the best teachers is to move the student to a deeper understanding of the content. When I taught literature, I didn’t just want my students to read all the words of the book; I wanted them to see the truth in that book. When I taught them grammar, I didn’t just want them to memorize rules and pass a test; I wanted their writing and speech to be clear and accurately convey what they were trying to say.

The Bible contains stories of those that God wanted to teach. His methods varied, but his goal was for them to see truth and be able to tell the story of their relationship with him so others would benefit. Abraham, Noah, Joshua and Gideon got tests; Joseph, David, and Daniel got trials. But sometimes God chose to ask a question…and wait for the answer. Many of the questions God asked in the Old Testament are mirrored in the New Testament. These questions required honesty and a refocused perspective that led the person into deeper faith and more confident trust in God’s power and love. Once the question has been asked, everything changes because of the answer; no matter what the answer is. In each case, God was not looking for information. He already knew the answer. He asked the question to help the person stop wandering aimlessly and identify exactly what direction was right so that he could intentionally move forward.

In order to ask a question, you have to have someone’s attention, either face to face, on phone, or on screen. You don’t question a crowd to learn their answer….you question a crowd to get them to agree with you. “Who’s number one?” or “Who’s with me?” are not asked seeking information. They are asked to encourage agreement. The important questions, the life changing ones, are not asked of a group – they are personal.

There are lots of different kinds of questions, and good teachers know how to ask the right kind of question to direct a student’s learning or help him see boundaries or relationships. God uses questions with his children who have wandered off the path, who are out of fellowship with him or who are at a crossroads…to force them to honestly look at their behavior or to get them to turn their path in a new direction.  His goal is to use that accountability to give them new perspective and a fresh start.

God, the master teacher, wants your attention and your spiritual growth. He wants you to be his star student. The questions he asked in the Bible are still the questions he uses to lead us into deeper understanding of ourselves and of him. I encourage you to consider these biblical questions in your quiet time. Seek God’s truth and your understanding as he reveals the answers to you.

Where are you?  What is this you have done?   (What will you do with your sin?)

Where is your brother?  Who is my neighbor? (How do you treat others whom God loves?)

What is in your hand? How many loaves do you have? (Will you trust me with what you have?)

What is your name?  (How have you defined yourself?)

What are you doing here?  (How do you handle adversity?)

What do you want me to do for you? (What are your priorities?)

Who do you say that I am? (What do you believe about God?)

Why are you so afraid? (Do you trust God with your future?)

Do you love me more than these? (What threatens God’s sovereignty in your life?)