Summary: God gives us a second chance meaning another and another and another chance.
1. I once saw a car, it looked a little like my truck, it’s paint was peeling off, it had a gash on the side of it, a window was missing with a piece of cardboard flapping in the wind, and a piece of wire keeping the door from opening.
But what got my attention was the bumper sticker on it. It said in big letters: This is NOT an Abandoned car!
2. Jonah is beginning to look like that car – a little beat up, bruised, and bleeding. But he is not an abandoned prophet!
3. The Second Chance Received.
Trans: We have seen that the Second Chance was Required because of Jonah’s rebellion, now we see that it was Received because of God’s grace. 1:17-3:10
II. SECOND CHANCE RECEIVED. 1:17-3:10
A. First, we have the Conveyance. 1:17
1. Jehovah’s deliverance of Jonah. 17a
17 And the LORD appointed a great fish to swallow Jonah – not exactly a room in the Hilton, but it did beat drowning.
Chuck Swindoll has a way with words:
“Pitch black. Splashing gastric juices all over you, burning skin, eyes, throat, and nostrils. Oxygen is scarce and each frantic gulp of air is saturated with salt water. The rancid smell of digested food causes you to throw up repeatedly until you have only dry heaves left. Everything you touch has the slimy feel of the mucous membranes that line the stomach. You feel claustrophobic. With every turn and dive of the great fish, you slip and slide in the cesspool of digestive fluid. There are no footholds. No blankets to keep you warm from the cold, clammy depths of the sea.”
Such was Jonah’s deliverance, I am sure he would have preferred a life preserver thrown from a passing yacht – but you do the crime you pay the time! Rebellion is never a trip to Disneyland.
God will deliver us, but He does it His way! I was doing a revival in Cominto, AR, the Pastor and I were visiting a Vietnam girl who had come to Christ. She had an amazing testimony, she came to America on a little boat, being without food for days. At that time she was going through a financial storm and Bro. Tom had given her a check to help out – but she refused to cash it. As we talked we discovered that she had received checks from various churches where she gave her testimony, but had thrown them all away. She wanted deliverance but her way.
PS: This is where you get to use all of those Jonah and the whale jokes we have been saving:
• A Children’s Church teacher asked her class, “What do we learn from the story of Jonah?” An eight-year-old boy put up his hand. “Travel by air,” he said.
• JONAH’S MOTHER: “That’s a nice story. Now tell me where you’ve really been for the last three days.”
• Pastor: “Just think of it, Jonah spent three days in the belly of a large fish.” Member: “That’s nothing, my husband spent longer than that in the belly of an alligator.” Pastor: “Well, I declare ... just how long was he in there?” Member: “It’s almost four years, now.”
• QUESTION: Why could Jonah be swallowed by the big fish in one gulp? ANSWER: Jonah was one of the “minor prophets”!
• After reading the story of Jonah and the whale to her Children’s Church class, Miss Martha decided to give them a little quiz. “What,” she asked, “is the moral of this story?” For the answer she called on little Katya. Katya thought for a minute and then replied, “People make whales throw up.”
Another PS: This was a supernatural deliverance from God, but it is interesting that there have been cases where people were swallowed by a whale and survived the ordeal. The following account is taken from the Princeton Theological Review, Vol. 25, 1927, p. 636:
In February 1891, the whaling ship Star of the East was in the vicinity of the Falkland Islands and the lookout sighted a large sperm whale three miles away. Two boats were launched and in a short time one of the harpooners was enabled to spear the fish. The second boat attacked the whale, but was upset by a lash of its tail and the men thrown into the sea, one man being drowned, and another, James Bartley, having disappeared, could not be found. The whale was killed and in a few hours was lying by the ship's side and the crew were busy with axes and spades removing the blubber. They worked all day and part of the night. Next morning, they attached some tackle to the stomach which was hoisted on the deck. The sailors were startled by something in it which gave spasmodic signs of life, and inside was found the missing sailor doubled up and unconscious. He was laid on the deck and treated to a bath of sea water which soon revived him.... He remained two weeks a raving lunatic.... At the end of the third week he had entirely recovered from the shock and resumed his duties.