Summary: Disobedience causes us to run from God our God is a God of second chances. When we call out to Him, He answers us.
God of the second chances
Jonah chanter 3”1-3:10
Last week we looked at the prophet Jonah and his disobedience to what God had told him to do.
God told him to go to Nineveh and Jonah headed to Joppa which is in the opposite direction.
He went as far away from God as he could to avoid doing what God had told him to do.
That did not go well for Jonah, it never works out well when you are disobedient to God because He does not stop trying to build a relationship with us.
We can run but we cannot hide.
There is absolutely no place to hide that God cannot find you. He will always try to draw you close to Himself.
“Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him who we must give account.”
The reason Jonah ran from God is he did not life what God wanted him to do.
He wanted this prophet of God to go to Nineveh and tell that awful, sinful, ungrateful people that they needed to repent and God would forgive them.
Jonah, instead of God showing compassion on the people, wanted God to show judgment on them.
He wanted those awful people to pay for their sins.
At the end of chapter one and where we left off last week Jonah in running is on a ship far from God and he has a time of repentance, a time of remorse for his disobedience.
He allows the crew to throw him overboard in a rough seas and hard storm because he is the problem for all their problems.
He was willing to pay for his sins.
Hence, the great children’s story of all time, Jonah and the large fish as Jonah is thrown overboard, the fish swallows him and he spends 3 days and 3 nights in his belly before he is thrown up on dry land and spared.
A lot happens during that time he was fish food.
Chapter 2:1- “From inside the fish Jonah prayed to the Lord his God.”
Jonah’s prayer had become a prayer of thanksgiving for deliverance from death. He calls for help as he was sinking into the depths of the sea. His gratitude is heightened because he knows that he deserves death but God has shown him extraordinary mercy.
“In my distress I called to the Lord and He answered me.”
What an example of the love of Christ reaching out to each one of us so he can deliver us from death unto life. Each one of us dying in our sins needs a savior to redeem us.
Jonah did not throw himself in the water, he told the crew to “throw him in and live”
The sailors refuse to hear the message at first and try to save themselves from the storm. (Sound familiar?)
The lost often try to atone for their sins or work their way to heaven.
Jonah was guilty of everything he was accused of, the parallel is Jesus was innocent and became our sacrifice by choice.
Many have questioned the authenticity of the book of Jonah, especially Jonah and the big fish. They range from fictional short story to allegories.
I want you to know that this preacher believes in a big God who can use a talking donkey, a fish with a coin in his mouth, animals that go two by two into a boat and don’t eat each other or other people- because my God is bigger than my way of thinking.