Jonah: Repentance and Renewal

Date: 9/18/2011
More audio from All Saints Church
Type: Sunday Sermon
Topic: Jonah
Organization: All Saints
Price: FREE

Jonah: Repentance and Renewal
1.) We must understand that sin always leads down to death. Jonah is commanded by YWHW to “rise and go to Nineveh, and call out against it.” And Jonah did rise, but in order to disobey YHWH and flee from him. Immediately after his fleeing Jonah begins his descent into death. He descends to Joppa, then descends into the ship. He then descends into the inner part of the ship. He was thrown down into the sea. He was then swallowed by the fish. In in 2:2 Jonah begins his song from the belly of Sheol, and in this song he continues his descent until the bars of earth have cut him out (2:6). Our continuous fleeing from God and his word will always result in our death. God is the giver of life, and to flee from God is indeed to descend into death.

2.) We must know that our God grants repentance. Jonah is vomited up onto the dry land. He is resurrected from the belly of Sheol and commanded again to go to Nineveh and call out against it. This time Jonah obeys God. He goes through the city giving a prophetic word of doom. On account of this, the Lord granted repentance unto the people of Nineveh. It has always been God’s intention for Israel to be a light to the nations. Israel has refused her mission, just as Jonah has refused his. But the Lord’s plans were not thwarted: In Jonah’s rebellion, not only did Nineveh repent, but the pagan sailors as well (vrs 1:16).

3.) We must believe that salvation belongs to the Lord. After the repentance of Nineveh, Jonah was angry with God because of his graciousness. He fled from God, knowing that “you are a gracious God, and merciful, slow to anger and abounding in faithfulness.” God indeed is gracious, for he sent his son, the greater Jonah (Luke 11:32). Just as Jonah’s sin took him to the grave, so our sins took Christ to his grave. But as Jonah was vomited back to the land, so also the grave could not contain our Lord. Jesus has been resurrected and is calling all the nations to himself. Salvation belongs to the LORD!

Jared Micah McNabb Jared McNabb (M.Div. Westminster Theological Seminary; B.A. Lancaster Bible College) is the pastor of Christ Church of Morgantown, (CREC) in Morganton, WV. He previously pastored St. Paul's Church (Millers, MD) and has served as a Pastoral Intern at All Saints Church (CREC) in Lancaster PA.