It’s our fifth week of online Bible study and we’re reading “Laughing in the Dark: a Bible Study on the Book of Job” by Chonda Pierce and Dale McCleskey. This study is much different from studies we usually lead at the Womens Bible Cafe! We do not have daily lessons and your commitment is less time intense.
This week our lesson is about Job’s misguided friends and how their behavior squeezed Job into a place of dependence upon God. We’re you as shocked as I was to learn that a group of women are called “fat cows” in Amos 4:1 New Living Translation? Ouch! With more than 150 Bible translations, that seems a bit harsh. The Amplified version calls them “well fed and pampered.” The Modern English Version calls them “cows of Bashan.” No adjectives on that translation.
An important flaw in Job was uncovered this week: He trusted his own integrity. If we learn from his mistakes, then we learn not to become dependent upon people, income, health or things. Just God.
Chonda elaborates,”At the beginning of the book Job thought he could handle things on his own. He’d offered up enough sacrifices and had enough integrity.” Can you think of modern religions where these offerings are still practiced?
Through Job’s suffering and perhaps our own, we see beauty as God draws us closer to Him. We suffer and we love. We feel pain and we feel joy. We seek advice and compassion from friends, and when they let us down, we seek God for answers.
We have one more week of the study and then a break before we start Hosea on July 11th! See you in the small groups this week!
ASSIGNMENT FOR THIS WEEK
- Select a small group day and time that fits your schedule http://www.facebook.com/groups/WBCSmallGroups/
- Read WEEK SIX in the Laughing in the Dark Study Book
- Deeper study: Read through the entire Book of Job, a chapter each day or a few chapters on the weekend.
- Share some of your favorite book quotes with your social media friends and hashtag #BibleCafe so we can find them too!
- Register for Hosea Summer Study http://www.womensbiblecafe.com/2016/06/hosea-register/
DISCUSSION QUESTIONS FOR THE WEEK
(You will have the opportunity to share your answers to these questions during your small group time. You may also post them here. Consider also recording your answers in your spiritual journal)
- How do you deal with friends who betray a trust or otherwise prove to be flawed? (page 81)
- Chonda writes, “Healthy friends start at the bottom of and slowly become closer over time. The friendship ladder has lots of applications.” How do you handle a new acquaintance (application) who already wants to become top-of-the-ladder intimate? ( page 82)
- Remember the lesson on “women are like cows” this week? How do you feel about the image of God that herds us into a squeeze chute sometimes because He knows we won’t take our medicine on our own? (page 85)
- How do you think all Job went through, including the abuse by his friends, pushed him down a path to ultimately hear God speak? (page 86)
- Knowing God squeezes you into a path, does that make you trust Him more or cause you to struggle more? (page 88)
Praying for you,