We think this question and its answer is so important, it warranted a special Sunday Good News Letter.
Recently, a gentleman, we’ll call him Tim, was recently blocked from a Gospel Revolution Facebook page. Why would we block someone from one of our platforms when our entire passion is to reach the whole world with this amazing Gospel message? This, especially, in the light of the fact that I have called-out others for blocking me from their pages as being childish.
Is this hypocritical? Is there a difference? Let’s examine this together.
First of all, Tim has been blocked because he was using the GR page only to share his “beliefs”, not to engage in a conversation. He refused to answer any questions posed by several other people.
Learning and growth both come from asking questions, not just hearing a teacher. As we’ve said at least 467 times, questions are the lifeblood of the Gospel Revolution!
When Jesus stayed behind after Passover at about age 13, his parents noticed him missing after about a two days journey. First of all, Mary and Joseph may have flunked “Parenting 101”. Not realizing your kid was gone for two days? But I digress. The story tells us they went back and found their son in the temple. What was the young Messiah doing there? He was both listening and asking them questions! Understanding this story changed my life forever.
Decades ago I began requesting and taking questions at my meetings. This was just not done in Word of Faith circles. In fact, I was instructed to NOT take questions. I had forgotten exactly why I began to defy my religious mentors . However, then I remembered the story. Up until that time, everyone who had mentioned or taught the story to me, said “Jesus was found teaching in the temple”. Imagine my surprise to find that the King of Kings and Lord of Lords was asking questions!
Open dialogue is what has led to humanity’s greatest advancements in the history of civilization. When Greek philosophers would stand espousing their views, they full-well expected questions were to follow. Socrates lost his life because of his commitment to a public forum. Roman democracy was built on the same principle. Teachers teach. Students ask questions. This was done and encouraged openly!
Here is a major problem that has developed in our society over a few decades, and has been exacerbated since the advent of the internet and social media. Everybody wants to teach or preach. However, nobody wants to be questioned.
Again, questions are the lifeblood of the Gospel Revolution!
Academia is now built around “talking heads”. Imagine where we would be if you could not ask questions in medical school or the science lab. Modern medicine would certainly not have developed in the lab if people could not ask questions and expect a respectful response. All progress comes from questions. In a sincere desire to uncover truth, there is no such thing as a stupid question. It is an vitally important part of the process. In fact, most major historical advancements came when people broke away from conventional wisdom and research to begin their own investigation. Why did they break away? Because people could not or were not willing to answer their questions. The Apostle Paul, Galileo, the Wright Brothers, Albert Einstein, Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, Elon Musk…the list has thousands of names on it.
Like religion, today’s educational system is dogma centric. It is built around a “talking head” (aka the teacher or preacher or pastor or priest). They ask the questions they think they know the answer to. Then the student (aka the public or audience or Facebook group) is judged to see if they passed the test by agreeing.
In the end, nobody can say they seek the truth without being open to and subjected to questions. After all, a thesis or theory cannot be proven. It can only be dis-proven.
If one does not like and embrace questions, one does not like, let alone love, truth very much at all.
When the teacher is the only one who truly gets to ask the questions, they are the ones in control of the narrative and the intellectual process. When the pupil is allowed and encouraged to ask the questions, both the pupil AND the teacher learn and grow. What a magical moment that is! Civilizations become more civil. As a result, they grow and expand to the betterment of already righteous humans (which, of course is everyone).
So, just why is Facebook so toxic to educational and intellectual pursuits? Even people who enjoy it agree that it has become rather putrid. But nobody seems to know why.
Sadly, Facebook is simply mirroring our current attitude toward education and intellectual curiosity and our social structures as a whole. It is all talk, little listening and even less willingness to receive questioning. This, my friends is an intellectual and educational cesspool. It is a wasteland of people finding their identities in their religion, political persuasion, sports teams—anything but the truth of our complete righteousness and unity, the finished work of Christ and the accuracy and legitimacy of the Scriptures – the actual Scriptures. A lot more on the importance of understanding that coming your way soon!
Don Keithley, Global Grace Seminary, and many others have blocked me from their platforms for simply offering a thought or a question. One of Global Grace’s graduates wrote to us, “I do not remember Don asking for comments”.
What was your process in school? Did you just answer the questions posed by the teacher at the end of the term just to get a good grade? Maybe, just maybe, you should have questioned the teacher and what was being taught. Everyone involved may have benefited tremendously from that process. But it is the teachers who must remain open to being questioned and desiring dialogue.
So, why did we block Tim? Because he refused to address our questions and only sought to “teach”. His effort to indoctrinate us with his beliefs was wasting our time (and his), That is why. And if there is one thing you learn as you get older, is time is an incredibly valuable commodity. It is in very short supply during our unique sojourn here. We really have no more time to waste. Having written that, we have never, nor will ever, block someone for asking questions in a sincere desire to dialogue and understand.
More now than ever, it is time for a Gospel Revolution! How people effectively learn is directly linked to emotional security which follows consistent, persistent, repetitive (CPR) exposure to the Gospel. It is how we learn who we actually are which allows us to receive and respond to honest and respectful questioning. Or is it the other way around? Does how we learn effect our ability to receive the Gospel and our true identity?