1. In today’s Christian culture, there is prevalent belief that if you’re a good Christian, love God with all your heart, and serve Him faithfully, God will bless you and nothing terrible will happen to you and your family. Many of those who preach this theology have Scriptures to back up their beliefs. What is your opinion of this doctrine? Does the Bible contain verses which could be used to prove both sides of this doctrine? How do you rectify the seeming discrepancies in Scripture and in people’s lives?
2. Grace Westcott typifies many Christians in our western culture who were born and raised in a church environment and who know all the right Scriptures and have never committed any obvious major sins. Would you describe yourself in those terms, or have you met other people like this? How do they come across to others, particularly to those who have led a more sinful life? What was Grace’s major flaw? What does the Bible have to say about this particular sin?
3. What was the hero, Rafe’s, main complaint against religion? Why did he turn his back on God? Do you know people like Rafe, who have turned away from God because of the example of certain people? Have you ever met someone whose hypocrisy could have done the same to you?
4. Have you ever met a man who grew up without receiving his father’s approval, his father’s praise and affirmation, or perhaps a man whose father emotionally and verbally abused him? If so, can you describe his emotional state, his goals, his temperament? What sorts of things did he aspire to? What things made him angry, sad? Can you see any of these qualities in Rafe Dubois?
5. Grace’s heart was often in the right place. She loved God and didn’t want anyone to end up in hell. Yet she rarely had any success in her evangelistic efforts. Why?