Scripture Text:(click to open in a new window)
1. Are you a “detail person” or a “big picture thinker”? What evidence do you have to support this claim?
2. Do you like books or documentaries on nature? What part of nature interests you the most?
3. How closely does this psalm follow the creation sequence of Genesis 1? What segments correspond to which “days” of creation?
4. What’s the psalmist’s picture of the heavens (see Isaiah 40:22)? What are the “upper chambers” (see Amos 9:6)? How are they held up? What’s the purpose of the clouds, wind and fire (verses 3 and 4)?
5. What holds up the flat, table-like earth (verse 5; see Psalm 75:3)? What waters “stood above the mountains” (verse 6; see Genesis 1:6 – 9)? How did God harness the waters (verses 7 – 9; see Job 38:8 – 11)?
6. For what four things does water set the stage (verses 10 – 14)? What are three fruits of the earth (verse 15)? How have these become enduring religious symbols?
7. Does God seemed concerned about the small things? How does this give confidence in God’s ability to sustain creation?
8. Why do you think the sun and moon are created on the “fourth day” (verses 19 – 23; see Genesis 1:16 – 19)? How does God’s wise control of space and time affect the world? How are man and beast able to coexist?
9. Why is “in wisdom you made them all” a pivotal phrase (verse 24; see Proverbs 3:19)? What other part of nature displays God’s handiwork (verses 25 and 26)?
10. What do all creatures have in common (verses 27 – 30)? How does God provide? How total is God’s care (verses 29 and 30)?
11. What is the ultimate purpose of creation and the writing of this psalm (verse 31)?
12. What does God’s wise creation inspire the psalmist to do (verses 33 and 34)? What commitment does it arouse? What motivates the strong statement in verse 35?
13. What do you make of this psalm’s elaboration on the creation story? Does it sound primitive and simplistic? Grand and holy? Has science added or subtracted from the wonder of the natural order?
14. What is the ultimate purpose of nature? What is humanity’s role? Should Christians take on a special role in preserving creation? How so?
15. What does the infinite variety of creation say about God?
16. How does God provide for you physically? Spiritually? Emotionally? Is it enough or are you left wanting more? Why?
17. When has God’s provision come at just the right time? In the nick of time? Have you thought God was tardy? Could your watch have been running a few minutes fast?
18. Is dependence on God a happy state? Is it frightening to be distant from God? Is it possible to benefit from God’s care without a total dependence on His provisions? What does “total dependence” mean? How does it relate to self-reliance or reliance upon others?