The right question
Acts 24:8 “By examining him yourself you will be able to learn the truth about all these charges we are bringing against him.”
Tertullus ends his prosecution. He hasn’t brought any witnesses. He hasn’t brought any proof, he just sounds convincing or at least convinced that Paul is guilty. Now he tells Felix to examine himself. Was he hoping Paul would trip himself up under examination? However what he says is a lesson for us today:
Examine for yourself.
Don’t believe everything people say.
Learn what is true.
The key to this is not to focus on the right answer but the right question.
The right question does more than unearth the answer but it brings to the surface a greater understanding for everybody, even the one answering the question.
The master of this was our Master, Jesus. I am not sure how many questions he asked, I am sure some Bible search engine has that number recorded, however, we only marvel at how skilled he was. These questions are for every generation as well. When you see a few I have listed below, how would you answer?
If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? (Matthew 5:46)
Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life? (Matthew 6:27)
Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? (Matthew 7:3)
Why are you so afraid? (Matthew 8:26)
Salt is good, but if it loses its saltiness, how can you make it salty again? (Mark 9:50)
Why are you trying to trap me? (Mark 12:15)
Are you asleep? (Mark 14:37)
Could you not keep watch for one hour? (Mark 14:37)
Why do you call me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ and do not do what I say? (Luke 6:46)
Or suppose a king is about to go to war against another king. Will he not first sit down and consider whether he is able with ten thousand men to oppose the one coming against him with twenty thousand? (Luke 14:31)
Suppose one of you has a hundred sheep and loses one of them. Does he not leave the ninety-nine in the open country and go after the lost sheep until he finds it? (Luke 15:4)
For who is greater, the one who is at the table or the one who serves? (Luke 22:27)
Why are you crying? Who is it you are looking for? (John 20:15)
Friends, haven’t you any fish? (John 21:5)
Do you love me? (John 21:17)
What is that to you? (John 21:22)
So today find the right question, examine yourself, bring in to the light the truth and understanding that everyone needs.