Summary: A look at how we need to be praying sometimes for God to put a 'whuppin" on someone.
HOW TO PRAY FOR SOMEONE DEEP IN SIN: it’s ok to pray for God to “whup” someone.
- Verse 17a – The Lord prepared the trial and rebuke.
- Verse 17b – Jonah still did not immediately repent.
- Verse 1 – Three days later, Jonah finally prays.
- There are times when harsh prayers are needed, not out of meanness but out of a desire to see change.
- Sometimes only sustained discipline will change a mind.
- Why are we so stubborn sometimes? Why are we willing to let things go so far?
a. I want Jesus as Savior, but chafe at Him as Lord.
b. I don’t like where He’s leading (Jonah 4:2-3).
- God’s primary interest is not our short-term comfort but our long-term obedience.
- Sadly, some of us are so stubborn that we give in to God’s will only as a last resort.
a. C.S. Lewis described himself as "the most dejected and reluctant convert in all of England."
b. My reluctance to become a pastor.
- One big issue here is trust: do I trust His leading?
- Another big issue here is stubbornness: do I want what I want?
WHAT PAUL HAD TO SAY ON THE SUBJECT:
1. It sounds harsh, but Paul sometimes prayed to hand someone over to Satan.
- Look up: 1 Corinthians 5:5.
- Other phrases that we might use in our prayers:
a. “Make him miserable.”
b. “Get his attention.”
c. “Let the consequences hit him and wake him up.”
d. “Withdraw Your protection.”
e. “Open his eyes.”
f. “Break him.”
- Pray for God to get their attention.
- Story: “You can’t know the desire of your heart until you know the heart of your desire.”
- It’s important to know what we’re ultimately praying for and understanding that sometimes a step or two “backward” can be positioning for God moving.
2. The goal of such prayers is repentance, not condemnation.
- Look up: 2 Corinthians 13:10.
THE FIRST STEP: To pray like this, we need to see more clearly how destruction sin is and how important our lives are.
- All of this may strike some of you as overkill. Isn’t that a little too harsh a response to someone sinning? Two things that we need to understand to grasp why Paul acts like that:
a. How destruction sin is.
- We tend to wink at sin or pretend like it’s not anything especially consequential.
- In truth, Romans says that sin is death (Romans 6:23).
b. How important our lives are.
- We don’t treat our lives with the importance that we should. We are Christ’s ambassadors and our poor witness not only hurts our lives but also turns people away from God.
- We matter to the Kingdom of God. God is not going to ignore our sinful direction.
A “FISH" TRUTH: God puts as much planning into breaking as He does blessing.
- Jonah 1:17.
- When you think arranging for a whale to swallow Jonah, that’s a big thing. Now, of course, in the sight of God it was not particularly difficult, but it did take coordination.
- God puts as much planning into breaking as He does blessing.
- There is the non-Christian who doesn’t think about God until things go wrong.
- There is the Christian who is too stubborn to obey so God lets things go wrong.