Summary: The main points of the message are: 1. God Loves You Too Much to Let Remain In Disobedience. 2. A Believer’s Disobedience Always Involves Others. 3. Disobedience Leaves Us Powerless Before the Storms. 4. You Can Not Live A Disobedient Life and It Not Sho
A Study of Book of Jonah
Sermon # 2
“The Cost and Consequences of Disobedience?”
You will remember that last week we dealt with Jonah’s decision not to do as God had asked. He decided not to go to Nineveh but rather to flee from God. The last verse we examined (1:3) stated, “But Jonah arose to flee to Tarshish from the presence of the LORD. He went down to Joppa, and found a ship going to Tarshish; so he paid the fare, and went down into it, to go with them to Tarshish from the presence of the LORD.”
This evening I want resume our study by examining the cost and consequences of Jonah’s disobedience to God; for there will always be consequences for sin! Tonight I want to draw four principles from Jonah’s experience.
First, God Loves You Too Much to Let You Remain Disobedient (v. 4)
“But the LORD sent out a great wind on the sea, and there was a mighty tempest on the sea, so that the ship was about to be broken up.”
Jonah had chosen the path of disobedience and God would have been within his rights to have said, “Jonah, you have disobeyed me, and as such you have forfeited the right to be called my child. I am letting go!” But he did not do so.
I want us to notice the contrast between the first two words of verse three, (“But Jonah”) and the first three words of verse four, (“Then the Lord”). Jonah expressed his puny rebellion but God loved him too much to let him go. The Bible says that God sent the storm. This was not just an ordinary storm but a storm so “great” the even veteran sailors were afraid.
We know that the LORD can calm the troubled waters of our lives, but have we ever stopped to think that He is the same LORD who can stir them up into a great frenzy. It all depends on whether he is in the boat with you or not. If he is in the boat then we can call out like the disciples when they found themselves in a storm, “Master save us.” But if he is not in the boat and you are running away from Him in disobedience, then what?
I want you to consider that, God took the
call upon Jonah’s life so seriously that He would actually sink the ship on which the disobedient prophet was sailing, if necessary rather than let him continue on the path of disobedience. God is too merciful and too loving to allow His children to drift into open rebellion without disciplining them. The Psalmist David wrote, (Psalm 119:67) “Before I was afflicted I went astray, But now I keep Your word.” (Psalm 119:71) “It is good for me that I have been afflicted, That I may learn Your statutes.”
Some believers seem to think that they can go on and on in unrepented sin without the chastisement of God but that is not what God’s word teaches. The principle concerning the discipline of God is found in Hebrews 12:9-11, “Furthermore, we have had human fathers who corrected us, and we paid them respect. Shall we not much more readily be in subjection to the Father of spirits and live?
(10) For they indeed for a few days chastened us as seemed best to them, but He for our profit, that we may be partakers of His holiness. (11) Now no chastening seems to be joyful for the present, but painful; nevertheless, afterward it yields the peaceable fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.”
God cares so much that he disciplines us. This is what happened to Jonah. In fact if I were outside the will of God and felt no chastisement from him, I would begin to examine myself to see if I was indeed a child of God.
In Jonah’s life the Lord sent a storm. When storms break out in our lives we may blame God, when in reality it is our own disobedience that has led us into the middle of the storm. The Lord may use a storm to bring these things upon so that we will stop our defiance and run back to Him.
God Loves You To Much to Let You Alone AND…
Secondly, A Believer’s Disobedience Always Involves Others. (v. 5a)
“Then the mariners were afraid; and every man cried out to his god, and threw the cargo that was in the ship into the sea, to lighten the load….”
Because of Jonah’s sin, innocent sailors (and I use that term advisedly) are about to die. Of course these men are not innocent in that they are sinners, but it is Jonah’s sin not theirs that put them in this situation.