Teaching with Questions

Linking up today with Five Minute Friday. Today’s writing prompt: QUESTION

Jesus was a question asker! As you read the gospels, it becomes obvious that was one of His favorite ways of interacting with the people around Him. Questions make us think, they force us to make decisions. And without these important steps, we will never grow.

One of my favorite passages where Jesus asks a question is found in John 6, one of the accounts of the feeding of five thousand. A large crowd had been gathered to hear Him teach, and Jesus didn’t want to send the people away hungry. Verse 6 says Jesus already knew what He was going to do, but this was a teaching moment, a time to impart some truth to His disciples, and He began with a question which the text tells us was a test. He addresses His question to Philip,”Where are we to buy bread, so that these people may eat?”

Philip’s response makes makes it clear that his eyes were on their limited resources. His answer was in essence, “If we use all our money to buy bread, it still wouldn’t be enough for each of them to have a bite.” I think it’s easy to see he failed the test!

Andrew was nearby and he responded to Jesus’ question with another question, “There is a boy here who has five barley loaves and two fish, but what are they for so many?” Still not the response Jesus was looking for.

At this point, Jesus moves forward with His plan, involving the disciples in the process. The large crowd not only leaves with satisfied stomachs but they’ve witnessed another miracle, a sign that Jesus truly is the Messiah they had been looking for. The disciples left with twelve baskets filled with the surplus, one for each of them to enjoy. And they also left will a clearer understanding of who Jesus truly was.

As I listened to our pastor’s sermon this past Sunday on John 6, and as I read the entire chapter earlier this week, I learned my own lesson. If Jesus used questions so often in His teaching, what better example is there to follow when I’m teaching? Whether in our small group at church where I’m on the teaching team or in the online posts for a Christian chronic illness support group I help lead, I want to be more alert to using this important teaching method that Jesus so clearly modeled for us.

5 thoughts on “Teaching with Questions

  1. I love that Jesus used open-ended yet simple questions to His followers. And then those He posed to the religious leaders – He knew what to ask who when – even today I feel His questions in my own spirit – helping me to seek the answers in His Word. Never too young or too old to learn something new! And yes, as teachers we need to ask those questions and not always have all the answers 🙂 -DIanna

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Questions are a wonderful way to engage our brain – to get us thinking and to expose our thoughts and thought process. Thankfully, Jesus’ questions were not to belittle…even when thinking was flawed or faith was lacking.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Jesus’ questions came from His love and compassion for the people He was ministering to, so you’re right they weren’t to belittle. At times they were to expose sin or wrong thinking, but never to ut someone down.

    Like

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