Scripture Text:(Click the Scripture text to open the text in a new window.) 1. What is your favorite sport? Your favorite sports team? When have you seen your team trail badly throughout a game, only to rally late and win? What did it feel like to have your team’s “fortune” restored?
2. Have you ever visited a ghost town, ancient ruins or once-famous building, long since abandoned? What was it like, then and now?
3. What desolation will God bring against the cities and land of Philista? How extensive will this destruction be? What will this land be good for, after God finishes with it?
4. In what ways will God’s punishment fall on Moab and Ammon as it did on their ancestor Lot (verse 9; see Genesis 18 and 19)? Will they be as fortunate? What will they get in return for their pride and arrogance? What will happen to the gods they chose to serve?
5. What is God’s verdict against the Cushites (Egyptians & Ethiopians)? Why would this be just, in light of their supposed power?
6. What irony do you see in the way God will ruin impregnable Nineveh (compare verses 15b and 5c, with Isaiah 45:5, 6, 18, 21)? See the books of Jonah and Nahum for how exact and true God’s vengeance against Nineveh would be in 612 B. C. at the hands of the Babylonians.
7. In what ways are your and your nation’s attitudes and actions like and unlike Nineveh, Philistia, Cush, Moab or Ammon? What can be the outcome of overzealous pride in “God and country”?
8. In what sense do you act like “there’s none besides me”? In that case, how does this implementation of the Day of the Lord hit home with you?
9. What inner motives for God’s wrath do you see revealed against these nations?
- wrath is the just reward for sinful pride
- wrath pursues “all the gods” who vie for what is God’s alone
- wrath vindicates God’s chosen people
- wrath is designed to bring “every nation” to worship Him
10. God’s wrath has its flip side – restoration. What quality above all others do you think God wants restored in the nation, church, or individual who worships Him? How could you model that quality?
11. If all nations will end up worshiping God, “every one in its own land” (verse 11), what do you imagine that to be like? Will that include worship of the one true God by various names?