Recently, we have talked much about the humanity of Jesus. He was misunderstood, rejected, and accused falsely…in other words, “He was despised and rejected by mankind, a man of suffering, and familiar with pain. Like one from whom people hide their faces He was despised, and we held Him in low esteem.” Isaiah 53:3.
There is one particular aspect of His response to these situations that stands out, as Pastor Lauren pointed out Sunday, that He employed to great effect, and that was asking questions of His accusers.
For those of us who are endeavoring to pause in our defensive responses to be more like Jesus, perhaps we are thinking about adopting this as a “technique”. This is so very relevant today, as we see online discourse and chats with family sink into chaos and hurt from which many are finding it difficult to return. Asking questions of others opens up discourse, and reminds us to not assume we know the motivations behind the misperceptions, or even deceptions, of us.
There is another side to asking questions of others though, and that is asking in such a way as to seek to get the other person or catch them in their deceptions. The root of this is pride, and it is safe to say that Jesus was not employing questions in this way. When His accusers were dumbfounded, it was simply the natural result of the wisdom behind His questions. When we seek the “gotcha” moment for itself, that is pride.
In short, to respond as Jesus did to the hurt of false accusations and misunderstandings, we need great wisdom. Wisdom to know that we need to pause, that we are being defensive or prideful, even if we are a victim as Jesus was! And great wisdom is ours to have from the Father who gives generously to those who ask (James 1:5)!
“But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere.” James 3:17