Eight Penetrating Questions

Questions have a way of getting under our skin.  They engage us and stimulate discussion where a statement would simply fall flat.  Writer, speaker, and entrepreneur John Busaker has chosen eight questions that came directly from the mind and mouth of Jesus Christ as recorded in the Gospels, and in Dare to Answer, he challenges his readers to turn the questions’ laser focus toward their own hearts.  The Biblical text serves as the starting point for each chapter, and at the conclusion Busacker has provided Reflect and Respond activities, making the book suitable for Bible study groups, youth meetings, and one-on-one mentoring, as well as individual study.

In his examination of the questions, John Busacker demonstrates that “a superficial answer is as dangerous as no answer at all.”  We must weigh in for ourselves on all eight questions, clarifying our desires, facing our fears, embracing our new identity in Christ, and moving forward into His love.

John’s style is crisp and to-the-point with plenty of bullet points giving Scriptural evidence to support his thinking and with the creative use of dictionary materials for word analysis.  Then, he slows down the pace with narrative accounts of personal experiences or relationships which have impacted his own story.

The chart below is an overview of the questions and the structure of the book:

The Question Biblical Scenario The Essence Clarification
What do you want? John 1:35-38 A Question of Desire Do you have a sense that something deep inside is missing?
Why are you so afraid? Mark 4:35-40 A Question of Fear When God is preparing to accomplish something great through His people, He always calls them to risk.
Do you want to get well? John 5:1-6 A Question about Wholeness Are you ready for a radical redirection in your life? A new state of being?
What is your name? Luke 8:26-30 The Question of Identity We need to hear God call us by our true name, Jesus-follower.
Do you see this woman? Luke 7:36-44 The Question of Forgiveness The spiritual reality is that 100% of us have to file for personal bankruptcy with God.
How many loaves do you have? Mark 6:35-38 A Question about Wealth Money can either be a significant impediment or powerful accelerant to our intimacy with God.
Will you give me a drink? John 4:1-7 The Question of Generosity “Let my heart be broken with the things that break the heart of God.”
Do you truly love me? John 21:15-17 The Question of Love Are we prepared to move from a deep friendship or even a familial love to total devotion to our Creator?

Dare to Answer poked and prodded me into asking myself the penetrating questions Jesus posed during His earthly ministry.  John throws down a challenge at the end of each chapter:  to devote a month to the process of living your way into each of the questions.  I recommend keeping a journal to document this process, recording answers that bubble to the surface during the project, and taking notes on the supplementary Scripture passages.  When I was a teen, my mentor and friend bought two copies of a book, two notebooks in robin’s egg blue, and then challenged me to read, journal, pray, and explore my way through that topic.  The process was life-changing.   Dare to Answer is that kind of book.

This book was provided by Worthy Publishing in exchange for my honest review.

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13 thoughts on “Eight Penetrating Questions”

  1. Sounds like a book I need to read! So many of those questions have been answered in my life. But when I’m asked the same questions, it’s really hard to give a coherent answer. I think this book would be an awesome tool.


  2. This looks like a great resource to going deeper in the Word and growing in faith! I haven’t heard of it before and am going to check it out. Thanks for the great review! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Sounds like a great book! Thanks for sharing and for adding your story to some thought provoking ideas. The question, “What is your name,” hit hard this morning–must have been a reminder I needed to hear.

    Liked by 1 person

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