Job is possibly the oldest book in our Bible, but it reads like the most modern and maybe even the most honest book. The opening of the book of Job poses the question, “how can a loving God allow suffering?” It is an age-old question but it is a current question, as well. The idea of a Good God that allows bad things to happen is what some would even call a theological kryptonite. In the book of Job, the issue of when bad things happen to good people reaches a new level. In this book, the very worst things happen to the very best person. Job’s story shows us the ugly truth that life is painful, life is unfair, and at times God disappoints us.
1. Job was a man of great faith and a man who struggled greatly with God. He had big questions, and took issue with how God was doing things. Why do we often think of great faith as not struggling through painful times in life? Why should that be freeing to us?
2. Have you ever found yourself disappointed with God? Share about that experience. How did you reconcile your disappointment with what the Bible says about God (i.e. He’s good, gracious, kind, loving, with us, for us, etc.)
3. Job lost everything because of what amounted to a bet between God and Satan. The reader of Job is introduced to the why behind all of Job’s trouble from the beginning. Keep in mind that God never disclosed to Job the why behind his suffering. How does that make you feel? Do we overestimate the value of knowing why? Explain.
4. As uncomfortable as the scene between God and Satan may be, it gives us a glimpse into a world we can’t see, and to a reality that says our choices and our faith very much matter to God. Why is it important for us to know that God takes personal interest in our individual faith?
5. After Job’s wife told him to curse God and die, Job asked a profound question based on his faith and understanding of God, “Shall we accept good from God and not trouble?” Job understood that everything comes either from God’s hand or through God’s hand. Why is that an important truth to embrace?
6. What are some of the most striking things about the things Job said about God and why?
7. One of this week's takeaways was, "Don't confuse life with God." What does that mean? How do we do it?
8. Why are we so intimidated to be extremely honest with God about how we feel concerning His activity or lack thereof?
9. What strikes you most out of the story of Job? What is your most important take away?
1. Be honest with God about how you feel.
2. Make this a daily confession: When I can’t see Your hand, when I can’t hear Your voice, and when I can’t feel Your presence, I will trust Your heart.
Job 23:10-12 But he knows the way that I take; when he has tested me, I will come forth as gold. My feet have closely followed his steps; I have kept to his way without turning aside. I have not departed from the commands of his lips; I have treasured the words of his mouth more than my daily bread.
Church Swindle, Great Lives Series: Job, a Man of Heroic Endurance
Phillip Yancey, Disappointment With God