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Summary: Part 2 of a 4-part series on Jonah.

Salvation is from the Lord

Jonah: It’s More Than Just a Fish Story (Part 2 of 4)

(Key points are from Tim Richards’ sermon Jonah Running from God)

Aug. 20, 2006 FBC, Chester Mike Fogerson, Pastor


A Many people miss out on Jonah’s story because they believe it isn’t possible for a man to be swallowed by a big fish (or whale).

1 An average sperm whale can have a mouth 20 feet long, 15 feet high & 9 feet wide. It’s a big animal, the largest mammal on the planet. Whale often swallow squid whole that are larger than a human.

2 In February 1891 the whaling ship Star of the East was fishing off the coast of the Faulkland Islands when a large sperm whale was spotted. Two boats were launched, and in an attempt to harpoon the whale, one boat was overturned.

a One man drowned, and another, James Bartley, could not be found & was assumed drowned.

b Later, the whale was captured and killed, and when the blubber was pulled back & the stomach removed, they found James in the stomach, unconscious but alive.

c James recovered & went back to his job.

I Jonah’s cry to the Lord Then Jonah prayed to the LORD his God from the stomach of the fish, 2 and he said, "I called out of my distress to the LORD, and He answered me. I cried for help from the depth of Sheol; You heard my voice. 3 "For You had cast me into the deep, into the heart of the seas, and the current engulfed me. All Your breakers and billows passed over me. Jonah 2:1-3 (NASB)

A This is the first we see/hear of Jonah praying in the book.

1 We read the prayer he prayed in the belly of the big fish (something he refused to do on the ship).

a The pagan captain encouraged him to...he didn’t

b Probably not the real "first" prayer

aa He probably floundered, gulped water

bb For You had cast me into the deep, into the heart of the seas, and the current engulfed me. All Your breakers and billows passed over me.

cc To Jonah...these words were telling how he was hairs away from death.

2 These 3 days changed Jonah (not perfect...changed)

a He doesn’t have all his theological ducks in a row! Pious/protest

b Jonah turns to God even though he’s not resolved to go to Ninevah.

B Jonah teaches me living as a saved person is not cut & dry.

1 Not pure obedience vs. not pure rebellion

2 I’ll never be as godly (compassionate) as I should be.

a I’m going to fail

b God will discipline me. ...and you have forgotten the exhortation which is addressed to you as sons, "MY SON, DO NOT REGARD LIGHTLY THE DISCIPLINE OF THE LORD, NOR FAINT WHEN YOU ARE REPROVED BY HIM; 6 FOR THOSE WHOM THE LORD LOVES HE DISCIPLINES, AND HE SCOURGES EVERY SON WHOM HE RECEIVES." 7 It is for discipline that you endure; God deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom his father does not discipline? 8 But if you are without discipline, of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate children and not sons. 9 Furthermore, we had earthly fathers to discipline us, and we respected them; shall we not much rather be subject to the Father of spirits, and live? 10 For they disciplined us for a short time as seemed best to them, but He disciplines us for our good, so that we may share His holiness. 11 All discipline for the moment seems not to be joyful, but sorrowful; yet to those who have been trained by it, afterwards it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness. Heb 12:5-11 (NASB) Why?

aa To correct, teach

bb God loves me! (Discipline of a parent)

3 Sometimes God casts us into the sea

II Jonah renewed his faith in the Lord "So I said, ’I have been expelled from Your sight. Nevertheless I will look again toward Your holy temple.’ 5 "Water encompassed me to the point of death. The great deep engulfed me, weeds were wrapped around my head. 6 "I descended to the roots of the mountains. The earth with its bars was around me forever, but You have brought up my life from the pit, O LORD my God. 7 "While I was fainting away, I remembered the LORD, and my prayer came to You, into Your holy temple. 8 "Those who regard vain idols forsake their faithfulness, 9 But I will sacrifice to You with the voice of thanksgiving. That which I have vowed I will pay. Salvation is from the LORD." Jonah 2:4-9 (NASB)

A It was from inside the fish’s belly that God got Jonah’s attention.

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