But God Meant it For Good Part 4 “Suffering Q&A”
March 21, 2016 | by: Anthony Orzo | 0 Comments
Posted in: Sermon Questions
PARTICIPANT'S GUIDE FOR COMMUNITY GROUP GATHERINGS
Message: But God Meant it For Good Part 4 “Suffering Q&A” - March 20, 2016
Series: Philippians: Finding Joy in the Circumstances of Life
Speaker: Pastor Anthony Orzo
Sermon Questions Prepared by: Pastor Anthony Orzo
Main Passage: Philippians 1:12-14.
Cross Referenced Passage: Isaiah 43:2
Launching Discussion: For the past month we have talked a great deal about suffering.
- What new insight has God revealed to you through this time about suffering?
- What assumptions, if any, have been challenged in how you previously understood the role of suffering in your life?
“In his book The Reason for God, Tim Keller quotes a philosopher named J.I. Mackie. This philosopher wrote this: ‘If a good and powerful God exists he would not allow pointless evil (suffering) in the world, but because there is so much unjustifiable, pointless evil in the world, the traditional good and powerful God could not exist. Some other god or no god may exist but not the traditional God.’ (Keller p. 23)”
1. Have you ever heard someone deny God because they felt suffering was “pointless”? (See Mackie Quote). If so, share that experience.
2. How does Alvin Plantinga's "St. Bernard/No-see-um analogy” challenge our ability to fully understand what is and isn’t pointless when it comes to suffering?
Take a moment to read and talk about the Farmer Folk Tale Story.
3. What stands out to you in that story? What can we learn from it and apply to the Christian life when it comes to our understanding of life’s events—good, or bad?
4. Have you, or do you know someone who at least considered, or actually did walk away from God when a life trial came? What logic did they use to justify that action?
5. Why is walking away from God when we suffer a futile action (A form of Christian Atheism)?
- Since God so clearly says He can redeem suffering for our good—why do you think some people still walk away from Him?
Although there are many facets of suffering we might never understand—Scripture is clear that God wants to love us, care for us, and walk with us when we suffer.
6. How does this statement affect how you “feel” about suffering?
7. How does the week we remember Jesus’ suffering the Cross on our behalf--give us a concrete hope in our lives that suffering can have a redeemable purpose even if we don’t feel it at the present moment?