Jonah (Part 2)

Chapter 1 vs. 1-3. A. Jonah was clearly called to cry against Nineveh. v. 2. 1. cry: To entreat, beg, beseech, implore, in a loud and emoved or excited voice. 2. Rebuking prophets were to “Cry aloud, spare not, lift up thy voice like a trumpet...” (ISA 58:1). 3. N.T. ministers are similarly called to rebuke sinners. 2TI 4:2. a. rebuke: To beat down or force back; to repress or check (a person); to repulse. 2. To reprove, reprimand, chide severely. b. chide: To give loud or impassioned utterance to anger, displeasure, disapprobation, reproof. 4. Sin and impending wrath must be authoritatively addressed. ACT 13:46. 5. Mind that the Ninevites' wickedness had come up before the LORD. a. Funny how idolaters' wickedness never came up before their idol gods. b. If anything, their idol gods sanctioned and demanded wickedness. DEU 12:31. B. Having received his commission, Jonah elected to avoid it. His reaction was not exactly, “...Here am I; send me” (ISA 6:8). 1. His reluctance was at least partially based on what he perceived to be the dissatisfying and contradictory nature of his mission. JON 4:2. 2. He would look foolish, prophesying of wrath which wouldn't come. But willingness to be a potential spectacle is the lot of God's messengers. 1CO 4:9-10. 3. If Jonah's flight was based on fear, his fear was misplaced. MAT 10:27-28. C. Hiding from God, even at sea, is futile. PSA 139:7-12. 1. The LORD is not a geographically limited God like the pagans' gods. 1KI 20:23. 2. To turn from God is to be turned over to delusions. 2TH 2:11. D. Jonah intended to flee to Tarshish. 1. That he found a ship going to Tarshish is NOT because God was blessing him. Beware of being governed by coincidences or circumstances! ACT 28:3-4. 2. Tarshish was a maritime city noted for commerce. 1KI 10:22; EZE 27:12. 3. Jonah fell prey to what many ministers of God have fallen prey to: the allure of a place of worldly advantage when duty was calling to something else. 2TI 4:10. 4. This is the lot in general of the thorny-ground hearer of the word. MAT 13:22. 5. The power of the call of commerce and prosperity played a significant role in the Jews' resistance to Messiah. MAT 22:2-7 c/w HEB 10:34-35. 6. NOTE: If a person is bent on being someplace where God is not, a place or a people who are sold out to materialism is probably as good as any other. E. Ministers who reject known duty are usually poor choices for further work. ACT 15:37-38. vs. 4-10. A. No ship is safe when amongst its boarders are those who defy God, not even the Titanic. 1. Mind that these verses present a man of God who was asleep to the imminent peril to which unbelievers were awake. LUK 16:8. 2. Such are the delusions of sin: they numb us to things that even the brute creation accounts for. PRO 6:6-11. Jonah 9-7-13 Page 2 B. See how the LORD is God over all things, including the elements, which He uses to accomplish His purposes. JOB 38:22-23; PSA 148:8. C. The tempest was sent for Jonah's sake, not for the mariners. Yet they were imperiled by it. 1. Judgment begins with those closest to God to whom much has been given. 1PE 4:17; JAM 3:1. 2. Should we be shocked if the comrades or culture of deserting disciples are put to peril? 3. See here a picture of corporate church judgment: the group falls under judgment for the sin of one. JOS 7:1, 12-13; REV 2:14-16. D. There is a mixture of wisdom and folly in the way the mariners processed their situation. 1. They cried every man unto his god. v. 5. a. They were a marvelously diverse religious crowd, using the shotgun approach. Their uniting principle was ignorance. b. They did not cry to the LORD though vs. 9-10 imply that they were familiar with Him. Many prefer gods and “truths” of their own choosing to the disregard of the God and the truth---and God will accommodate them. JOS 24:15; MAT 7:13-14. c. When their efforts proved fruitless, they awakened Jonah to call on his God (v. 6). This implied that their gods were no gods, indifferent gods, deaf gods or powerless gods. Idolatry is truly stupid. ISA 44:19-20. 2. They cast forth the wares (merchandise, goods, commodities to sell). v. 5. a. Would that believers would be so wise. MAT 16:26. b. Those that insist on being materially rich at all costs are prone to drowning. 1TI 6:9. 3. They assumed that their troubles were divine punishment. a. Troubles should urge us to examine our lives since sometimes they are the chastening stripes of God. PSA 119:67; HOS 5:13-15. b. But it is superstitious folly to automatically assume that troubles or dangers are the direct result of crime or sin. JOH 9:1-3; ACT 28:4; 2CO 11:26. 4. They cast lots in superstitious inquisition for justice. v. 7. a. This folly was based upon the faulty premise that troubles or dangers are always because of crime or sin. One error begat another. b. The lot fell on Jonah because God rules over the lot. PRO 16:33. c. Their superstition appears to continue in v. 8 as if they want to be able to guard against a repetition of their present distress by shipping with cursed men. 5. Note the mariners' frightened response when they found out that Jonah was a Hebrew, a vs. 11-16. servant of the LORD. vs. 8-10. a. God had said that He would use Pharaoh to make His name known throughout the earth. EXO 9:16. b. For centuries, the nations knew of and feared the LORD God Who had His way in the sea. JOS 2:10. c. Sadly, the man who had been sent as a reprover to the heathen ended up being reproved by heathen (v. 10). It is a bitter pill to swallow when unbelievers justifiably reprove a believer for the inconsistency of his profession. A. Note that after Jonah was discovered, the sea still raged. Knowledge of the offender is not what abates the wrath of God; it is the execution of justice. B. Jonah never bothered to pray. Such would be futile; his sin was essentially a sin unto death. 1JO 5:16. Jonah 9-7-13 Page 3 1. This resignation is typical of those who have abandoned hope in hiding their sin from God. 2. They reckon their damnation is just and justify God. MAT 21:31-32 c/w LUK 7:29. 3. Their only hope is mercy. LUK 18:13. C. God's justice caught up with Jonah for his own sins but caught up with Christ for our sins. D. The scene in vs. 12-13 bears similarity to Christ's disciples' reluctance to accept His account as to how justice must be satisfied. MAT 16:21-22; 17:22-23. 1. The mariners tried to avoid the necessary solution but wrath can only be abated by the means which God has ordained. NUM 35:33. 2. They typify all who would seek favor with God other than through Christ and His sacrifice for sin. GAL 6:14-15. E. Curiously, this situation produced a conversion of sorts in these heathen. vs. 14-16. 1. Jonah's disobedience facilitated a conversion in these heathen before his obedience facilitated conversion in the Ninevites! 2. God may be known by both the judgments which He does not execute and by those He does. ROM 15:9; ACT 19:13-17. 3. The wicked and the troubled sea have much in common. ISA 57:20. a. Thus Jonah “...made his grave with the wicked...” (v. 15). c/w ISA 53:9. b. But he could not promise any there with him that they would be with him that day in paradise. LUK 23:43. 4. Note how peace came for the mariners. Through the judgment of sin in the depths of the sea, the wrath of God subsided. MIC 7:19; COL 1:20; ROM 5:9. v. 17. A. God prepared a great fish to receive Jonah, even as He later prepared a grave for Christ. JOH 19:41. 1. 2. 3. B. This is 1. MAT 12:39-40; 1PE 1:3-4; ROM 4:25. Jesus called it a whale. MAT 12:40. Worry not over the subjective scientific distinctions between fish and mammals; it was a big marine creature such as was created on fifth day. GEN 1:20-23. If God equates a whale with a fish, so be it! ROM 3:4; MAT 11:19. the first of four things which God prepared for Jonah. JON 4:6-8. The Holy Spirit also revealed many heavenly things which God has prepared for us in Christ. 1CO 2:9-10; JOH 14:2; MAT 25:34; HEB 11:16. Others pertain to this life and they are not all gourds to shade us. PRO 19:29; HEB 12:6. 2. C. Jonah's burial and resurrection typify Christ's burial and resurrection to save us. Jonah 9-7-13 Page 4
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