Closed Ended Questions

It is my day off—1st one in over 2 weeks!—and I'm sitting here, listening to a seminar from Andrew Marin from the National Youth Workers Convention. He talks about building bridges with the gay community.

In his work, Andrew often gets yes or no questions in relation to his topic. His point about yes or no questions is brilliant and can help us in answering people in many circumstances. He points out that closed ended questions are asked because the inquisitor already knows what they believe and want to peg the answerer into a category based on their response. At that point, there is no further dialogue.

He points out that Jesus was asked 29 closed ended questions in the John the Baptist, by His disciples, and by His enemies. Can you guess how many times Jesus answered with a yes or no?


And those three times were to Pilate...when His ministry was over and the only thing that remained was the cross. Other than that, Jesus didn't answer with a yes or no to closed ended questions.

Answering closed ended questions with a yes or no puts the hearer in a position to fight, stand their ground and close off hearing you. Answering as Jesus often did puts us in a place to continue dialogue.

I'm pretty good at answering those questions with a yes or no. And I hope that I can become more like Jesus

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