Matthew 11: 2-6
Politicians get asked ridiculous questions on TV. They get asked questions they could not possibly answer by simply saying ‘yes’ or ‘no’, by interviewers who demand a ‘yes’ or ‘no’,
Perhaps Joe Public thinks the interviewer is clever, has put the politician on the spot where some hypocrisy may be revealed. In truth it’s nothing of the sort, it’s a linguistic trap.
“Have you stopped beating your wife yet?” cannot be answered with a yes or no, because either answer would give the impression that the person was abusing their wife. It’s a trick. A nasty one too.
Jesus was put in this situation all the time. Questions about the resurrection or some teaching. Questions about the source of his authority. Questions about his identity, whether or not he was the Messiah.
More often than not his defence was to attack in like form, bring into the open what’s really going on. Not clever questions. Nasty people.
I wonder if he ever wanted to blurt out
“Yes, I am the Christ!”,
to be quickly followed by
“And so are you”.
Because 2,000 years later we still struggle with that one.
When John heard in prison what the Messiah was doing, he sent word by his disciples and said to him, “Are you the one who is to come, or are we to wait for another?” Jesus answered them, “Go and tell John what you hear and see: the blind receive their sight, the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, and the poor have good news brought to them. And blessed is anyone who takes no offence at me.” Matthew 11: 2-6