I was talking with a good friend recently and we got to talking about dead people. We talked about people who were not close to God and when they got sick and ended up dying, it was a bit of a relief that they were not in pain anymore and were with the Lord.
Then we started talking about how others had died, and you couldn’t help but wonder, “Why didn’t God heal them?” These people were close to the Lord and had obvious faith and had even prayed for others to be healed and the Lord healed them, so how come they died of a sickness or an accident?
Why didn’t God heal them?
That’s actually not the right question, and if you ask the wrong question, you will get the wrong answer.
Let me explain more about Question Quality:
First: don’t get mad at questions. Period. People get so touchy about questions themselves, but what they need to be concerned with are the understanding and perspective factors connected to the questions.
For example, babies don’t ask questions. They cry, demanding their needs be met. As they grow, their perspective changes, and they start to ask questions. They get bigger and their perspective changes. They ask questions because they perceive something – they see something – they don’t understand.
Questions are important, but they themselves are nothing to get angry about. Though questions can carry weight, they are not the principal thing. The principal thing is wisdom (Proverbs 4:7), and to get wisdom you need understanding. To gain understanding, you have to ask questions.
Second: there is no such thing as a “dumb question”, just dumb people asking questions. The reason questions can be loaded or presumptuous is because the person asking them has added their intent to the question. These qualities are very different than the qualities I want to talk about, because they are attributes of the person asking the question. I want to talk about the absolute attributes of questions, though. These absolute attributes actually come from God.
“God is Light, and in Him is no darkness at all.” – 1 John 1:5
There are two qualities when it comes to God: Godly, and ungodly. There are only two things something can be at it’s core: God, or not God.
Yes, there are many, many variables. Life can be more gray than black and white at times. No situation is exactly the same as another – I get that. But, everything in existence boils down to one of two things: God, or not God. It’s like computers and binary code. It’s either a 0 or a 1. Fun fact: the 1 and 0 are so that humans can read and write for the computer, but the computer actually perceives it as light: either the light is on or it’s not.
So, what are the two absolute things a question can be, then?
Right. And Wrong.
When someone says, “That’s a good question.” or “Great question!”, they are attempting to say that it is a high quality question, like you should buy into that line of thought because the answer is worth the time spent on its pursuit. But there are not high and low qualities when it comes to questions. There are Right and Wrong qualities when it comes to questions, though. It’s mathematical: if the question is not the Right question, you will never get the Right answer. Without the Right answer you will never understand the Right thing in the Right way.
In the Bible, Jesus answered every single recorded question asked of Him except two (refusing to answer these fulfilled prophecy, which in and of itself was the answer to said questions). Jesus enjoyed answering questions so much that He asked over a third of them Himself. Hebrews tells us that Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever. He embodied the expressed will of God. That means that it is God’s will to answer your questions.
So, then, why doesn’t He answer some questions?
They aren’t the Right questions.
That does not mean your dumb or should be insulted at all, it just means you need to try again.
I’ve asked God so many questions throughout my life and I’ve gotten an answer to every single one…as long as it was the Right question. Not every question I’ve asked was the Right one, but whenever I finally got the Right question answered, it gave me understanding that made the Wrong question I was asking worthless, along with the Wrong thoughts I was thinking because of the Wrong question.
People think that the dissenting thoughts that can come with questions proves that questions shouldn’t be asked, but that’s just not true. The ability to question is so valuable. It is a product of our inherent freedom as human beings and a tool for our human spirits. Don’t stop questioning, because that means you’ve stopped learning. Questions help us grow, and just like growth, questions take up time. You just have to make sure you’re questioning correctly and not wasting time. I’ll help you real quick.
If your question starts with “Why didn’t God…?”, you’re doing it Wrong.
If your question starts with “God, why did You…?”, you’re doing it Wrong.
If your question starts with “Why doesn’t God…?”, or “Why hasn’t God…?”, or “Why won’t God…?”, you are doing it Wrong.
I know you’re thinking “What’s the Right question, then? You don’t even know my situation.”
No, but I do know the Bible. The Bible teaches that God is not completely and totally in control, but we are. This means that those questions that have to do with “Why…God…?” really ought to be directed at yourself. Do that and you’d take care of the vast majority of the Wrong questions you hear.
Another huge portion of Wrong questions could be taken care of by accepting that what you’re asking about is none of your business.
Not to mention the other group of Wrong questions that are Wrong because people want things that are expressly not God’s will.
My friend asked, “Why didn’t God heal so-and-so, or your dad, even?”
“He couldn’t.” I answered, and they looked at me, waiting for an explanation. That wasn’t their question. They didn’t ask “Why couldn’t God?”, but that was the Right question.
“At a certain point, God is not involved.”
God’s limits on this planet are set by man. That’s in regards to humanity as a whole and individual human lives. God can’t heal what He’s already healed. God gave us healing through Jesus thousands of years ago. If we don’t make good on it in time, that’s on us, not Him. God could not heal so-and-so or my dad because He already did His part, and it was not His responsibility anymore. At a certain point, the ball is in our court, and while God is God and He has no time limits, we do. And our time can run out.
Asking the Right question allowed for the Right answer and it shined a light on the doubtful thoughts that came with the Wrong question.
When you think you have a “good question”, remember that does not mean it is a quality question and you should go down that road. It has to be the Right question to be worth while.