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Summary: In this setting, we have a runner. What caused this man to run? Was it the lack of self-confidence? Was it was sin? Its difficult to obey God when practicing sin.

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HE PAID THE FARE

1 Now the word of the LORD came unto Jonah the son of Amittai, saying,

2 Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and cry against it; for their wickedness is come up before me.

3 But Jonah rose up to flee unto Tarshish from the presence of the LORD, and went down to Joppa; and he found a ship going to Tarshish: so he paid the fare thereof, and went down into it, to go with them unto Tarshish from the presence of the LORD.

There is something about the presence of the Lord. People will respond one of two ways in His presence. They will either see the benefit and run to Him or consider the costs and run from Him.

So in our setting this morning, we have a runner.

What caused this man to run?

Was it the lack of self-confidence?

Moses tried this excuse with God’s command to go to Pharaoh.

Elijah tried this excuse with God’s command to go and give a message to Ahab.

Ananias tried this excuse with God’s command to go and pray for Saul of Tarsus/Paul.

So, God will not accept lack of self-confidence as an excuse not to serve and obey Him.

What made him run?

Maybe it was sin. Its difficult to obey God when practicing sin.

Was it an unforgiving spirit? (Maybe he was done dirty by a spouse, family member, or someone in church.)

Was it a habit out of control? (Which he felt disqualified him?)

Was it hypocrisy? (Its hard to tell someone to live for God when you are not faithful.)

So, you run.

Ps 139:7-12 David said;

7 Whither shall I go from thy spirit? or whither shall I flee from thy presence?

8 If I ascend up into heaven, thou art there: if I make my bed in hell, behold, thou art there.

9 If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea;

10 Even there shall thy hand lead me, and thy right hand shall hold me.

11 If I say, Surely the darkness shall cover me; even the night shall be light about me.

12 Yea, the darkness hideth not from thee; but the night shineth as the day: the darkness and the light are both alike to thee.

You can run, but you can’t hide.

3 But Jonah rose up to flee unto Tarshish from the presence of the LORD, and went down to Joppa; and he found a ship going to Tarshish: so he paid the fare thereof, and went down into it, to go with them unto Tarshish from the presence of the LORD.

One downward motion leads to another.

When God calls to a sinner’s heart, and if they will take note, they will usually discover that their life is on a downward slide. Drunkenness, drugs, pornography, marital problems, etc.

And, when you are running from God’s tug on your heart, you are running down hill to destruction.

4 But the LORD sent out a great wind into the sea, and there was a mighty tempest in the sea, so that the ship was like to be broken.

Now God is beginning to work on Jonah’s behalf. God is going to channel his life in the right direction, just as He has ours. God’s a great attention getter.

5 Then the mariners were afraid, and cried every man unto his god, and cast forth the wares that were in the ship into the sea, to lighten it of them. But Jonah was gone down into the sides of the ship; and he lay, and was fast asleep.

6 So the shipmaster came to him, and said unto him, What meanest thou, O sleeper? arise, call upon thy God, if so be that God will think upon us, that we perish not.

7 And they said every one to his fellow, Come, and let us cast lots, that we may know for whose cause this evil is upon us. So they cast lots, and the lot fell upon Jonah.

8 Then said they unto him, Tell us, we pray thee, for whose cause this evil is upon us; What is thine occupation? and whence comest thou? what is thy country? and of what people art thou?

9 And he said unto them, I am an Hebrew; and I fear the LORD, the God of heaven, which hath made the sea and the dry land.

10 Then were the men exceedingly afraid, and said unto him, Why hast thou done this? For the men knew that he fled from the presence of the LORD, because he had told them.

11 Then said they unto him, What shall we do unto thee, that the sea may be calm unto us? for the sea wrought, and was tempestuous.

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