Summary: Sometimes God allows our backs to be against the wall to bring out the commitment and devotion He desires in our lives.

Jonah – A Study in Stubbornness

Jonah 2:1-10

February 26, 2006

Time to Pray

Jonah 2:1 (NLT)

Then Jonah prayed to the Lord his God from inside the fish.

Time to Reconnect

• Jonah had run from God and deliberately disobeyed

• Jonah could run no further

• Jonah’s life had been spared by God’s grace

Jonah 2:2 (NLT)

He said, "I cried out to the Lord in my great trouble, and he answered me. I called to you from the world of the dead, and Lord, you heard me!

God Hears

• In spite of Jonah’s actions his prayers were still heard

• Even in the belly of the fish Jonah’s prayer was heard

• Jonah knew he had been at death’s door and his life had been spared

Jonah 2:3-4 (NLT)

You threw me into the ocean depths, and I sank down to the heart of the sea. I was buried beneath your wild and stormy waves. [4] Then I said, ’O Lord, you have driven me from your presence. How will I ever again see your holy Temple?’

A Place of Hopelessness

• Without God there was little hope of survival

• Jonah’s separation from God was the greater loss of hope

• Jonah acknowledged God’s hand of discipline upon him

Jonah 2:5-6 (NLT)

"I sank beneath the waves, and death was very near. The waters closed in around me, and seaweed wrapped itself around my head. [6] I sank down to the very roots of the mountains. I was locked out of life and imprisoned in the land of the dead. But you, O Lord my God, have snatched me from the yawning jaws of death!

Unmistakable Grace

• Jonah was powerless to save himself

• Jonah had no avenues of escape

• Jonah acknowledges the very hand of God snatching him from death’s door

Jonah 2:7(NLT)

“When I had lost all hope, I turned my thoughts once more to the Lord. And my earnest prayer went out to you in your holy Temple.

Backed Against the Wall

• Jonah had to lose all hope before he was ready to turn to the Lord once again

• Jonah turned his thoughts towards God

• Jonah began to pray

Jonah 2:8(NLT)

Those who worship false gods turn their backs on all God’s mercies.

Forfeited Grace

• Those who worship false God’s miss out on God’s grace and mercy

• Any idol takes God’s rightful place

Jonah 2:9(NLT)

But I will offer sacrifices to you with songs of praise, and I will fulfill all my vows. For my salvation comes from the Lord alone."

Time to Recommit

• Jonah didn’t bargain with God

• Jonah didn’t try to make excuses

• Jonah renewed his commitment

• Jonah surrendered to the call on his life

Jonah 2:10 (NLT)

Then the Lord ordered the fish to spit up Jonah on the beach, and it did.

God is in Control

• The fish obeyed the Lord’s command

• Jonah was delivered safely on shore

Sometimes it requires dire circumstances to bring out our deepest commitments.

**Powerpoint available on request

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