When our daughters were small children and we were taking a trip, they would ask the proverbial question, “Are we there, yet?” Most of the time we were a long way from our destination, but they were either inquisitive or impatient. I don’t know which. Naturally, we would give them an estimated time of arrival, but, since they had no concept of time, it didn’t mean much to them because they would ask the same question a few minutes later. When children are small I guess it is a part of their learning process to ask questions. One of the most repeated questions asked by children is, “Why?” They will even prolong an explanation by repeatedly asking why to every response. Sometimes a matter can be easily explained and at other times it cannot. But, it is a good question. It seeks for a reason or motivation behind an action.
The word “why” occurs at least 284 times in the Bible. Here are some examples. “Why are you timid, you men of little faith” (Mt. 8:26)? “Why do you call me, ‘Lord, Lord’ and do not do what I say” (Lk. 6:46)? “And now why do you delay” (Acts 22:16)? “Why do you regard your brother with contempt” (Rom. 14:10)? These are just some samplings of this important question from the Bible.
I have a few “why” questions of my own. Why do people who wear the name Christian choose not to worship God on Sunday evening or study his word on Wednesday night? Why do people ruin their lives through needless worry when God has promised never to forsake his children (Heb. 13:5)? Why do people work so hard to get ahead materially when possessions do not really satisfy (Lk. 12:15)? Why do people think they’re going to heaven even though they live ungodly lives (Rev. 21:27)? Why do people who know the truth not obey it? Why do people redeemed by Christ’s blood choose not to serve him? Why do people bring children into this world and, yet, have no intention of properly caring for them or spending much time with them? Instead, they farm them out to day care centers or nannies while they continue to pursue their professional careers. Why do some people spend a lot of money to sit in snow, rain, or heat to watch a ball game, but will not attend worship services where they sit on padded pews in a weather-controlled environment? Why do people make plans for their retirement, but give little or no thought to their eternal destiny? Perhaps we need to pause and give some honest and sincere reflection to these questions.