Jesus Didn’t Teach with Answers, He Taught with Questions

Outsiders GuideJesus talked a lot in parables, in little short stories. He also seemed to be more interested in questions then answers. When people asked Jesus a question, often he gave them a question back. In fact, he hardly ever gave a direct answer to anything. Even his big statements about himself such as: ‘I am the bread of life’ required people to go away and work out for themselves what it possibly meant.

Jesus didn’t teach with answers, he taught with questions; he taught in parables that required the hearer to go away and figure out the answer for themselves. I think that is a really significant thing to understand regarding how we learn from God. It’s not about waiting for answers, but, rather, we learn by daring to follow the questions God stirs in our hearts.

From the earliest times of the human experience, religion was steadfast in presenting God to mankind in the form of as an exclamation point; when Christ entered the world, he bent the presentation of God into a question mark. Jesus loved questions. We should, too.

Jesus didn’t try to enforce upon us a doctrinal statement. He didn’t come to indoctrinate us. He came to liberate us. He came to encourage us to ask what we truly think about God. He presented parables to get us to stop and think, to question our own perception of God, to draw us into questioning what our own beliefs about God’s nature and plans are.

Jesus showed us that not only is it okay to question who God is—what his nature is, how he operates, and how he thinks of us—it is actually the only way to truly step out of the prison of Belief-by-Indoctrination that religion binds us to.

This was an excerpt from my forthcoming book, out Aug 26: An Outsider’s Guide to the Gospel.
(Want to help out a little with the book launch? You’re invited to join this facebook group here)