Beneath The Surface: The Bible And Life: Big Questions… Important Answers -- By: Scott Lanser
Beneath The Surface: The Bible And Life: Big Questions… Important Answers
This editorial was written with my good friend Brittany Valentine, a sophomore at Lock Haven University in north-central Pennsylvania. Brittany is studying to be a journalist, and she has been helping ABR with article preparation for our website. As we have talked and discussed the spiritual condition of college students, I asked Brittany to identify a series of key questions that students are asking…questions that go beyond the pragmatic level of survival in the college atmosphere with all its normal, rigorous demands. Here are some of the key questions that Brittany identified:
- Why do bad things happen to good people? Why do some suffer more than others? Is there a reason for their suffering?
- What purpose do we have in life? Are we put here on earth for a specific reason? If so, what will our outcome be if we do not carry out our purpose?
- Sin is everywhere. If we have sinned, is there hope for us? Or can our wrongs be made right?
- How should we look upon other religions? Should we accept our neighbors’ viewpoints, or speak up about our own religious views?
- Is there a right or wrong way to pray? Is there a procedure that we need to follow to pray, and are there limitations on what we can pray about?
- Whenever I go through hardships throughout my life, people tell me to “turn to God.” Exactly how do I turn to God when I am in need?
Please note that such questions are put forth from a post-modern perspective. They are not being articulated in what we might call “church-speak,” that is, with all the clichéd language that Christians often use but the unchurched do not understand. And this is actually very helpful. Theologically, Brittany has captured the essence of the cry of so many students on our college campuses today…a cry that is deep and real, and goes to the very heart of the human struggle.
Each of these questions deserves a careful, well-reasoned answer, not a trite, superficial response. Such answers require focus, thought and prayer. One of our goals at ABR is to point people, regardless of their spiritual background or condition, to the Bible as the source of ultimate truth for questions such as these. It is never enough for us to simply do our archaeological excavations and research projects as ends in themselves. No, our purpose is much deeper: to show people of all ages that God has answers for their lives. God’s Word in Scripture takes on the big questions of our purpose in life, our pain and deep disappointments, and addresses how we can overcome the sin that is not only around us, but in us as well. God does have answers in His book, if one has the courage to read it and search out its truth.
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