by Dave Gustavsen

This content is part of a series.

Resistance (1 of 4)
Series: Jonah - Relentless Pursuit
Dave Gustavsen
Jonah 1

Alright-we are starting a brand new series today in the book of Jonah. When you think about Jonah, what's the first thing that pops into your mind? A fish! It's about a guy who gets swallowed by a big fish! And my hope is this: that at the end of these few weeks, you will realize that the fish is actually a pretty minor part of this book. In fact, if you have sort of an intellectual, objection, and you say, ''I can't take the book of Jonah seriously because of the big fish thing…'' just put that aside for now. It's really not the main point at all. There is so much more to Jonah than that. Because in a very vivid way, this is a book that shows us what God is like.

So…who was Jonah? He was a prophet living in Israel around 750 BC. And the role of a prophet was to speak for God. So God would give the prophet a message, and sometimes the message was directed at Israel; sometimes it was directed at some other nation. And the book of Jonah is all about a message that God told Jonah the prophet to deliver, and how Jonah responded to that assignment.

So without any further comment, let's read the first chapter of the book. Here we go…

1 The word of the LORD came to Jonah son of Amittai: 2 ''Go to the great city of Nineveh and preach against it, because its wickedness has come up before me.''

3 But Jonah ran away from the LORD and headed for Tarshish. He went down to Joppa, where he found a ship bound for that port. After paying the fare, he went aboard and sailed for Tarshish to flee from the LORD.

4 Then the LORD sent a great wind on the sea, and such a violent storm arose that the ship threatened to break up. 5 All the sailors were afraid and each cried out to his own god. And they threw the cargo into the sea to lighten the ship. But Jonah had gone below deck, where he lay down and fell into a deep sleep. 6 The captain went to him and said, ''How can you sleep? Get up and ...

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