The Apologetics of Jesus: Asking Tactful Questions

By Carey Bryant

Jesus was the master of asking questions that cut straight to the heart of a person. Sometimes we apologists can forget that human beings are more than intellectual machines.

That’s why it’s important to ask tactful questions that go beyond the surface of intellectual arguments. Three of Jesus’ questions in particular can be easily adapted to use in apologetic and evangelistic conversations.

“What are you seeking?” (John 1:38)
What are you wanting to get out of this conversation?

You can’t always assume that the person who comes to you with questions is doing so out of pure motives! That’s why it’s good to discern why a person is wanting to speak with you or listen to what you have to say.

This question causes people to stop and think about what they want to get out of the discussion. Are they seeking a fruitful dialogue or a fight to prove you wrong? Are they seeking to embarrass you or genuinely listen to what you have to say? Here are some responses from them that would be ideal:

  1. I want to hear what you have to say and share what I believe.
  2. I want to learn more about Christianity.
  3. I want to know the truth about such important issues.

Now of course, many people might say these things and not mean it. But the sooner we can get people to think through their motives, the sooner we can know how to continue the conversation…

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The Apologetics of Jesus: Asking Tactful Questions