Discussion Guide for August 12-13

August 15, 2017


What Is This?

For use individually or in small groups, this is a brief guide to provide additional talking points for anyone who wants more. Its purpose it to provide a chance to talk about the content of worship, a chance to dive deeper into the issues raised, and to provide more opportunities to share with others what stimulated you to further growth. You might consider this an invitation to explore the depths of a biblical story in order to hear how the Bible connects with life.


 Revisit and Review The Text

Genesis 37: 1-4, 12-28


Big Ideas Raised

Joseph encounters the wrath of his brothers who conspire against him.

  • Joseph was the youngest of 12 brothers, yet he was the stated favorite of his parents and drew the ire of his older brothers

  • The brothers threw him into a pit (an underground dry cistern to store water in the desert) while they debated whether to kill him or not. As a form of "passive murder" they sold him to slave traders who were passing by. 

  • The arc of his life narrative was immediately altered when he was sold into slavery. The slender threads of how life can alter your life is sometimes called "God's will" or fate or even whimsy. How else do you explain how your life can be redirected through these events?

  • Aristotle claimed stories have a beginning, a middle, and an end. This story is the middle, unresolved as yet...to be continued next week.

Questions Meant to "Dig Deeper"

  • Joseph was the youngest son and was considered his father's favorite. Being the youngest and the favorite was as difficult as you might imagine. Can you get inside the heads of the older brothers? Can you get into the heart and mind of Joseph to consider what that might have been like?

  • Joseph came close to death at the hands of his brothers...how would you describe Joseph's experience of terror and despair?

  • How do you see God at work in your life? Are you able to see the larger hand of God working in and through the events you are facing?

  • Can God be in both the small and the big events? How is God involved in your life?

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