Scripture Text:(click to open in a new window or tab)
1. “When it rains, it pours” – to what scenario in your life might that saying refer?
2. “The devil made me do it” – when have you used or heard that excuse recently?
3. What’s so unusual about the opening set for this drama? How does that set the stage for the rest of the book?
4. How are the major characters in this drama depicted: God? Satan? Job? Messengers?
5. What action takes place “off stage”? What do the four disasters have in common?
6. What does it mean that the Lord, not Satan, initiates the testing of Job? What limits does God place on Satan?
7. What does Satan want to prove? What does it mean to put a “hedge” around Job? Whose integrity is really at stake here: Job’s? Satan’s? God’s?
8. How does Job score on this first test (verses 20 – 22)? How is his faith evident?
9. Had you been Job, how would you have reacted after all these losses?
- If any more messengers come, I’m not home!
- I must have done something to make God really angry.
- There is no God!
- If all can be lost so quickly, I can’t be attached to anything or anyone.
- The Lord gave and has taken away; may His name be praised.
10. How (why) did Satan choose Job?
- Job posed the greatest challenge.
- Job would least expect trouble.
- God put Satan up to it.
- Job had the most to lose.
- God had the most to lose.
11. How did Job view his possessions?
- the fruit of his labor
- the result of an upright life
- gifts from God
- of little real value
- meaningless compared to family
12. How do you react to Job’s response to his misfortune?
13. What exactly did this test mean for Job? (And which question is most pressing for you?)
- do I love anything more than God?
- am I strong in spiritual battle?
- is God my friend or foe?
- do I blame God for my losses?
- do I love God just for the benefits?
14. If you lost everything in one day, what would be your biggest question?
- why me?
- how could I have prevented this?
- what can I learn from this?
- where is God?
- how can I recover?
- what will my insurance cover?
15. What in your life has been”carried off, put to the sword, burned up or blown away?”
16. If no evil can happen apart from God’s tacit permission, what problem does that raise for you ? (For similar “test cases”, compare 1 Chronicles 21:1 with 2 Samuel 24:1; see 1 Samuel 16:14; 2 Samuel 24:16; 1 Corinthians 5:5; 2 Corinthians 12:7)? How is Job’s temptation like and unlike Jesus’ temptation?