These studies do not tell you what the Bible says. The scriptures given direct you to specific topics. The questions are intended to help you focus on the study. No answers are given. You have to read and search the scriptures for the answers. We encourage you to use Bible helps such as concordances and commentaries. However, scholars and theologians often disagree on interpretation and application. The best study help comes from God. Pray. Allow yourself to be honest with your reactions, but don't jump to conclusions. It takes time to read and meditate on all the Bible says on various topics. Feel free to ask questions in your prayers. You will be amazed to discover that God does answer the sincere seeker. You will also be surprised that the Bible may not say what you might think it does on many subjects. Keep a notebook. A loose leaf one would make it possible to add thoughts and additional information as you learn more about different subjects. Welcome to an exciting search.

Print out version.  (This is 6 pages long, without the introduction and with space for answering questions.)


Bible Study Guide: 
Hagar and Grace 
Grace in Suffering

By Scarlett Stough

To prepare for this Bible study, please read the Women in Christ commentary, Hagar and Grace, Genesis Chapters 16 and 21.

Part I Hagarís Example

1. Genesis 16:1-4 How would you feel if you were in the same situation as Hagar? What are some of the possible reasons that Hagar despised Sarah?

2. Genesis 16:6 Sarah chose to try to force Hagar to change her attitude. What could she have done instead? Describe ways these two women might have made peace with each other?

3. Genesis 16: 7-8 Did Hagar have a destination in mind? If God had not intervened, do you think she had a chance of surviving, let alone making her situation better? Explain.

4. Genesis 16:8 Do you have a plan to make your situation better? How would you answer the questions: ďWhere have you come from?Ē and ďWhere are you going?Ē

5. Genesis 16:9-12 Did God have a plan? What was it?

6. Genesis 16:13-16 Why do you think Hagar accepted Godís plan?

7. Genesis 21:1-8 What provoked Sarah into demanding the expulsion of Hagar and Ishmael? How did they each contribute to the otherís suffering?

8. Genesis 21:9-13; Galatians 4:30 How did God intend to turn this bad situation into blessings?

9. Genesis 21:14-16 Describe Hagarís desperate situation?

10. Genesis 21:17-21; Genesis 25:12-18; Genesis 12:3; Galatians 3:6-9 How did God keep his promise?

11. Romans 10:10-15; Isaiah 65:1; Joel 2:32 In what way does Godís dealing with Hagar illustrate his promise to offer grace and blessings to all. 

Part II The God Who Sees And Hears

1. Genesis 16:13 What name did Hagar give the Lord? Why would this be important to her?

2. Genesis 16:11; Genesis 17:20 Why did God help Hagar?

3. Genesis 29:31-32; Exodus 3:7, 17; 4:29-31; Deuteronomy 26:6-8; Matthew 10:29-31; Isaiah 59:1, 15 How concerned is God about our personal misery? How does the extent and intensity of suffering in this world affect your perception of God?

4. Isaiah 59:16-21; 53:1-12; Hebrews 4:14-15; Psalm 78:39; 103:13-14; Isaiah 63:9; Matthew 23:37-39; Philippians 2:6-8 What is Godís response to our misery?

5. Genesis 41:50-52; Psalm 107:13; Psalm 119:50; Romans 8:18-30; Romans 8:31-39 What is God doing? Is he powerless, absent, indifferent, or unjust? Why would Jesus volunteer to experience human pain? Does this affect your perception of God?

Part III Grace to Help Us

1. Romans 8:26-27; Hebrews 4:16; James 5:13-18; Matthew 7:7-12; II Corinthians 12:7-10; Hebrews 11 How does trust in and dependence on God (faith) affect the way a person copes with suffering, hardship, or difficulties of various kinds?

2. James 1:2-4; I Peter 1:6-9; 4:1, 12-19 What response are Christians encouraged to have to their own suffering? How is this possible?

3. James 1:27; 2:14-16; I John 3:16-18; Matthew 25:31-46; Isaiah 58:6-10; Deuteronomy 15:7-8; 24:19-22; 26:12; Luke 10:25-37 What responsibility does humanity have (especially Christians) in relieving suffering in this world?

4. Jeremiah 9:24; Micah 6:8; Matthew 5:1-12; II Peter 1:4-9; Galatians 5:22-23 What is Godís character? What is the divine nature God wants to share with us? What effect can this godly nature have on how we respond to suffering?

5. I Peter 5:6-12 What is the true grace of God and how can you stand fast in it? (v. 12)