The Art of Inquiry


“Don’t you know I have to be about my Father’s business?” “What do you want me to do for you?” “Does this offend you?” “Do you want to get well?” “Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life? “How is it that you do not know how to interpret this present time?” “What is the kingdom of God like?” “Who do you say that I am?”

If anyone was a “Know-It-All,” it was Jesus. And, rightly so as He was God in the flesh. However, interestingly enough, He didn’t choose to flex his omnipotent intellectual muscle at every turn. No, He often took a rather different approach. He broached subjects and even answered many questions, with questions. In doing so, He had a way of sharing with those around Him in the discovery process, exposing alterior motives, probing and provoking others deeper, forcing them to deal with the real heart of the matter. Servant leader, take a lesson from the Master.

As a spiritual leader you have probably received some formal education, acquired certifications and ordinations, and gained much experience over time that has led to a wealthy store of knowledge and insight. These are all worthy pursuits and I trust you are yet seeking to expand your knowledge base. However, could it be that what those under your influence really need is not necessarily another quick, ready answer to their deep and most pressing questions? Could it be that what they really need is to be challenged to seek the answer for themselves in God’s Word and in prayer? Might they be better served to have to “ask, seek and knock” for a while rather than have you run ahead and hold open every door for them? Perhaps when we are too quick to just hand out treasures of truth we rob people of the blessed pain, strain and satisfaction of digging for it themselves? Perhaps its something else, altogether? Maybe we sometimes struggle with pride and can’t stand anyone discovering that we don’t, in fact, know it all?

Jesus was the Master at asking just the right questions at just the right time. Perhaps a study of all that Jesus not only said, but asked would be a worthy pursuit? Become more like Jesus and discover the art of inquiry.

What do you think?


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