“I don’t know” is a valid answer. When I learned this, I was a court reporter. Lots of times, during depositions or court hearings, an attorney will ask things that seem irrelevant to the matter at hand. What he is doing is seeing what the witness knows or doesn’t know. The witness would invariably be flustered at being asked such a question and would flounder around for an answer. The attorney probably would take “I don’t know” as the answer to his question and move on. Obviously, there were times when “I don’t know” would be just the thing to spark even more animosity in the room.
But an honest “I don’t know” is a legitimate answer. I worked with witnesses in the court system for years. Now that I’m retired, it strikes me that there is another category of witnesses that I have been ignoring – the Christian witness.
One thing that really bothers me is that when I’m sharing what Christ has done for me, I’m afraid someone will ask me something and I won’t know the answer. But, here again, “I don’t know” is okay. I don’t know why bad things happen to good people, I don’t know the whole scope of God’s will for me or anyone else, I don’t know why God set up the sacrificial system for redemption. I do know that he loves me more than I can even conceive of, I do know that Christ is the Son of the Living God, I do know that Christ died for my sins, and I do know that Christ ascended into heaven to take His rightful place with God.
Luke 12:11-12: And when they bring you before the synagogues and the magistrates and the authorities, do not be anxious beforehand how you shall reply in defense or what you are to say. For the Holy Spirit will teach you in that very hour and moment what you ought to say.
Jesus said this to his disciples. Aren't we his disciples, too?