Saturday, July 12, 2014

The Asker and the answerers

Δομήνικος Θεοτοκόπουλος, ‘El Greco’ - The Resurrection
Who is this obscuring My designs with his empty-headed words? Brace yourself like a fighter. Now it is My turn to ask questions and yours to inform Me.
Job 38:2 Jerusalem Bible

Who is the Asker, who the answerers?

We always assume that we ask the questions, and God answers them, but in actuality it is He who asks, we who must answer. Yes, must. That’s the one thing in which we do not have free choice,
whether to answer or not.
It is the very price of our being.
Put off answering for a time we may, but not indefinitely.

And what does He ask? Will He ask us a question for which He has not prepared us, of which we had neither inkling nor warning?
No, the question He will ask is one He has already asked.
It has been written down.
We can read it for ourselves before we will hear it from His lips.

What our answer will be is the sole determiner of who we were,
who we are, and who we will forever be. Yes, will, not shall.
We have freedom to answer what we choose,
but not to withhold our answer.
It is His very question that brings us into being,
and it is our very answer that makes our being eternal.

Jesus turned around, saw them following and said, ‘What do you want?’ They answered, ‘Rabbi,’—which means Teacher—‘where do you live?’ ‘Come and see,’ He replied…
John 1:37-39a

When Jesus saw him lying there and knew that he had been in this condition for a long time, He said, ‘Do you want to be well again?’ ‘Sir,’ replied the sick man, ‘I have no one to put me into the pool when the water is disturbed…’
John 5:6-7a

Looking up, Jesus saw the crowds approaching and said to Philip, ‘Where can we buy some bread for these people to eat?’ He only said this to test Philip; He Himself knew exactly what He was going to do. Philip answered, ‘Two hundred denarii would only buy enough to give them a small piece each…’
John 6:5-7

Jesus heard they had driven him away, and when He found him He said to him, ‘Do you believe in the Son of Man?’ ‘Sir,’ the man replied, ‘tell me who He is so that I may believe in Him.’ Jesus said, ‘You are looking at Him…’
John 9:35-37a

Jesus said, ‘I am the resurrection. If anyone believes in Me, even though he dies he will live, and whoever lives and believes in Me will never die. Do you believe this?’ ‘Yes, Lord,’ she said, ‘I believe that You are the Christ, the Son of God, the One who was to come…’
John 11:25-27

His disciples said, ‘Now You are speaking plainly and not using metaphors! Now we see that You know everything, and do not have to wait for questions to be put into words; because of this we believe that You came from God.’ Jesus answered them, ‘Do you believe at last?…’
John 16:29-31

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