Thinking outside the box: ask questions.

I hear things like this a lot: “Science and the Bible just don’t go together.”

To most people, these things are mutually exclusive. They’re water and oil. You can either believe in one or in the other, but never both, because both is contradictory. The real hot topics tend to center around old-earth versus young-earth creation, and evolution versus creation.

But here’s the thing. People tend to be mostly informed about one side or the other, and then never inform themselves about the other side. They never attempt to question anything. They just pick a side, as if what’s already there is all that can ever be. What if God and science are not mutually exclusive? What if there are many possible (and not unbiblical) interpretations of the book of Genesis and the origins of life? What if evolution isn’t actually unbiblical in and of itself?

What if we are free to follow the evidence where it leads, to discover extrabiblical truth, and to use our amazing cognitive abilities to interpret, and to discover the God of the universe in the context of his Book?

What if we can’t just throw away hundreds of years of research by many, many extraordinarily intelligent and talented people, including Christians, who were given their talents and gifts by God?

There are many questions that we should be asking, rather than making wrong assumptions and then arguing based on our own uninformed thoughts.

Ask questions. About everything.

I feel like, as Christians, we’ve largely lost our curiosity and our desire to discover, and replaced it with easy-to-understand little boxed answers that make us happy, that are easy to argue (but that cannot, in all reality, be argued well or in any sort of convincing way). I see many, many videos claiming to “destory” atheism and evolution and whatever other ideas Christians seem intent on destroying. And for the most part, I agree with what many of them are saying. I agree with their worldview. But all they seem to do, over and over, is to say, “This is what I believe and you have to believe it too or else you’re dumb!” It’s not nice, it leaves no room for discussion, and it ultimately leads to the stereotypical close-minded Christian who knows they’re right about everything without ever questioning anything. It shuts down many relationships that could lead to salvation for the other person before that relationship even begins. It’s okay to think someone is wrong and still be friends with them. It’s okay to not immediately start telling them about why they’re wrong, and it’s okay to let people think something different than what you think.

I once had a conversation with a first-time acquaintance. I said that I believe that the Bible is the inerrant word of God. He immediately assumed that I thought that we should never, ever question it because it is inerrant. And I immediately told him, no, absolutely not. I think that it’s perfectly fine to ask questions. How else do we learn? We learn about God and the Bible early on in our Christian life by asking about it. Why does that have to go away? Why can’t the questions continue to get deeper and more complex, getting at deeper and deeper truths about God? By asking questions, you’re putting trust in the inerrancy of your God and his Word, because if you truly trust in him, then, somewhere that’s maybe deep inside, you believe that your questions will be answered through him and his Word. Because it is inerrant. Makes sense, right?

So why don’t we seem to ask questions anymore?

I think that every single person in the Bible questioned God at some point in their life. Maybe they even questioned (gasp) his existence. But really, if you believe that God is ultimately guiding all believers closer to himself and that he is causing all things to work together for the good of those who love him, then why shouldn’t he use our disbelief, our inborn curiosity, and intellect, and creativity (the same curiosity and intellect and creative drive that was made in the image of his own) to give us truth about himself?

I feel that sometimes there won’t be answers for these questions, and maybe we’ll never know even on the other side of heaven. But I think that people are far too afraid of their faith being rattled. Maybe that would actually strengthen it. Maybe we need to be shaken up in order to see how strong our foundation really is. And if your foundation can be eroded by questioning it, then is your foundation really on the Rock in the first place?

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