Five Questions Everyone (and Every Religon and Philosophy) Must Answer


Everyone must answer these five questions. Originally it was only four based a teaser for a talk on apologetics hosted by RZIM. I added a fifth.

1. “Where do I come from?” (Origin)

2. “Where am I going?” (Destiny)

3. What am I on earth for? (Meaning/purpose)

4. How I do know right from wrong (Morality)

And the fifth: “What happens when I fail?” (Judgment/Redemption)


When it comes to origin, I am not talking about where babies come from. I am talking about the origins of life. Ultimately, there are only two choices: a) we are products of chance; or, b) we are products of intelligent design. If one decides on choice B, I leave open the issue of the nature of this intelligence. You are free to fill in the blanks.


Closely tied to the issue of origin is the destiny. In other words, what happens when you die? Or more accurately, what happens after you die? If you chose choice A when it comes to origin, then we return to nothing. If you chose choice B, then things get interesting. Now the issue of the nature of the intelligence comes into play. Is it an impersonal force? Or is a capricious deity (or deities)? Or a monotheist, personal God? The plot thickens… or is it the primordial soup?

A secondary question is: how do I get to the after life? Will my soul be weighed? Or is everyone automatically going there?

Meaning and purpose

So I chose two words instead of one. Doesn’t matter. Everyone wants to know the meaning of life. The number one national bestseller on the New York Times is the Bible. The second is called “The Purpose Driven Life” by Rick Warren. Interesting that the two top books are Christian books. Perhaps Christianity has something to offer after all, despite all the criticisms of being archaic. Hmmmm….


What is the basis of morality? Is it the strong imposing their views on the weak? Or was there a social contract? Or perhaps a divine book? Again, I leave the last question open ended. Nevertheless, the issue of morality is tied very closely to the questions of origin and destiny.

Because if one believes we are products of chance, then there is no after life. And if there is no after life, there are no settling of accounts where those who escaped justice on earth are now punished. If Hans the SS concentration camp guard gets to die unrepentantly in his sleep at 98 years old but Johnny dies of leukemia at 8 years old, where is the fairness? In fact, if there is no basis of morality, why be good? The choices of Hans and Johnny are the same, right? Which means atheism cannot tell men to be moral because they have no mechanism for punishing anyone. The logical conclusion of atheism is Auschwitz.

But if men received instruction from a deity (or deity) purported to be wise and good, then there is hope after all. Hans the SS guard will get what’s due to him after all. Those who have done good will be rewarded after all. I leave it open ended what morality based on divine revelation will look like for another discussion.

Judgment and Redemption

Wrapped up in the discussion is judgment and redemption. Everyone has to figure out what it means when they make mistakes. The mistakes in question are based in morality. I’m not talking about career choices or eating food, although that could be relevant. Everyone has told at least one lie, stole something, lusted after someone, wished another person dead, disrespected their parents, or coveted something. Those who deny doing any of those that just told a lie. So what happens next?

Well, some people say: “Try harder next time.” Or, “Make amends or recompense.” “Ask for forgiveness.”

But that’s not enough. The guilt is still there. The shame hasn’t gone away. Consequences could be far reaching. What then?

So Now What?

I guarantee that if you look hard enough, you will find the answers to all five questions. These questions are simple but deep. So now the issue after posing the questions is whether you like the answers. And if you like the answers, what will you do about it?

I also happened to know the answers to all five questions. I also know what I did.

— Romans 10:13.

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