Jonah on the Run
INTRODUCTION: In our message this morning we come to the story of Jonah. Jonah was a prophet to the nation of Israel; but in this account, God had commanded him to go and preach to the Assyrians in the city of Nineveh. According to (4:11), there were 120,000 people who lived in this city. Nineveh was a city filled with violence, witchcraft, immorality, and sin of every kind. In (vs. 2), God said, ''For their wickedness has come up before me.''
Secondly, the Assyrians were the enemies of Israel, and Jonah certainly didn't have any desire to see God deliver them. In (4:2b), he said, ''Therefore I fled before unto Tarshish: for I knew that Thou art a gracious God, and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness.'' In other words, Jonah knew that if the Assyrians would repent, God would forgive them. He didn't want that--Jonah would rather God destroy every last one of them; and so, he turns and goes in the other direction.
Our message this morning doesn't have as much to do with the wickedness of Nineveh, as it has to do with the disobedience of Jonah. And let me say at the outset, when God makes it clear He wants us to do something, the last thing we want to do is disobey and go in another direction.
As we look at our message, Jonah on the Run, let's put down three things about Jonah:
I. He Made a Foolish Mistake
II. He Made a Deliberate Choice
III. He Made a Conscious Decision
I. HE MADE A FOOLISH MISTAKE
In (vs. 2), God said to Jonah, ''Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and cry against it; for their wickedness is come up before me.'' But instead, the Bible says, Jonah rose up to flee unto Tarshish'' (vs. 3a).
Now here is where Jonah could have prevented all the trouble he brought upon himself, simply by obeying God's clear command. But rather than obeying God, he made the foolish mistake in thinking he could run from God, get on a ship and leave town.
A. He refused to o ...
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