1. If you were not able to hear this week’s sermon, consider going to the church’s website and listening to it. What are some main ideas you gathered from the sermon? What, if any, questions did the sermon cause for you or do you desire to have additional clarification?
2. What significance should we associate with the death of Joshua as it relates to Israel? Why do you think the writer included this information at the opening? What difficulties are often associated with a change in leadership?
3. Look through the following verses and describe the significance of Judah: Genesis 29:35; 37:26; 43:8-9; 46:28; 49:8-12; Deuteronomy 33:7; 1 Samuel 17:12; 2 Samuel 2:4; Hebrews 7:14; Revelation 5:5.
4. What does it mean to “inquire” of the Lord? In what ways should we inquire of Him? List some things that God expects us to inquire of Him about. Do you feel you look to the Lord for guidance as you should? Why or why not?
5. Read the following passages and explain why it is important to seek the Lord: Joshua 9:1-15; Isaiah 29:15-30:1; 2 Chronicles 15:1-2; James 1:5-8. What are some common consequences of not seeking the Lord?
6. As you read through Judges, notice that in the first two chapters the writer repeats the idea of “going up,” “lifting up,” and “ascending.” What might be the writer’s purpose for repeating this terminology? What tone and impression does it set for the opening of the book?
7. Do you struggle with the idea that God was the one who turned the Canaanites over to destruction? Does it seem unmerciful, unloving, and unaccepting of God to insist that the Canaanites be driven out of the land? You may want to consider the following passages: Genesis 15:16; Exodus 23:23-30; Deuteronomy 8:2; Judges 3:1. Explain your thoughts.
8. Once captured, the Israelites cut off the big toes and thumbs of Adoni-Bezek. Do you think God endorsed this action or does it simply reflect the actions of ruthless men? What are we to understand from the testimony of Adoni-Bezek himself? Does God “repay” people for their sinful actions? Consider the following passages and share your thoughts: Psalm 51:1-4; Exodus 34:6-8; Nahum 1:3; Ezekiel 18:20-24; Galatians 6:7-8.
9. Think about your life: past, present, and future. In what way would you like to have done more for God? How are you doing now with following Him? What will you strive to do for Him in the future?