Monday, April 11, 2016

JONAH & THE GREAT FISH

Today’s┬áReading: Jonah 1-4

Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online (then click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion).

 

Jaffa, Israel (ancient Joppa), is one of the world’s oldest harbours still in use today. “He (Jonah) went down to Joppa and found a ship going to Tarshish (Spain); so he paid the fare and went down into it, to go with them to Tarshish from the presence of the Lord” (Jonah 1:3b).

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where the photo was taken, click HERE.

 

Key Verses: Jonah 1:17, 4:11

Now the Lord had prepared a great fish to swallow Jonah. And Jonah was in the belly of the fish three days and three nights….

And should I not pity Nineveh, that great city, in which are more than one hundred and twenty thousand persons who cannot discern between their right hand and their left–and much livestock?

 

Instead of going 500 miles northeast in obedience to God, Jonah disobeys God and sets out for Spain, 2,000 miles west. Jonah lived in the northern kingdom of Israel and had to travel 50 miles southwest to reach the harbour of Joppa, exactly the opposite direction from Nineveh. Read the historical reference to Jonah from 2 Kings 14:23-26. “Gath Hepher,” Jonah’s home village, is the modern village of Mishad, an Arab Muslim community three miles north of Nazareth. Jewish tradition says that Jonah was the son of the widow of Zarephath, whom Elijah had raised from the dead (1Kings 17:8-24).

Jonah knew his Bible. He quoted from four different Psalms while inside “the belly of the fish” (Psalm 3:8, 31:22, 42:7, and 69:1). In fact, he quotes from 14 Bible verses. When he finally confesses, “I will pay what I have vowed. Salvation is of the Lord,” the fish rises to the surface and spits him out onto shore, perhaps the very one in Joppa.

The Apostle Matthew records that Jesus likened his time in the grave to Jonah’s experience inside the great fish (Matthew 12:38-41). Another time Jesus speaks of the “sign of the prophet Jonah” (Matthew 16:2-4).

When Jonah finally reaches Nineveh and preaches a one-sentence sermon, “Yet 40 days and Nineveh shall be overthrown,” we read that the entire city “turned from their evil way.” That’s called repentance! (Jonah 3:10a).

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord God, give me grace to always obey You. I pray that if I should, like Jonah, go in the opposite direction that You desire of me, that You will do whatever it takes to turn me 180 degrees back into the centre of Your perfect will! Lord, You prepared a great fish to turn Jonah around, and I ask You to prepare a circumstance of Your choice which, if necessary, will do the same for me. I pray this in the Name of the One who taught about Himself using the story of Jonah, Jesus Christ (Messiah)! Amen!!!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

There is a tradition that says that Jonah was a student at the “School of the Prophets.” Remember the student who was chopping down a tree to help build a new building at the Bible College when the axehead came loose, sank to the bottom of the river, and became the occasion of one of Elisha’s miracles? The axe head floated to the surface and the student picked it up (2 Kings 6:1-7). Do you think that student could’ve been Jonah who, when the sailors threw him overboard, knew that if God would save an axehead, He would also save him from drowning? Maybe yes maybe no. I like to think about what was going on inside Jonah’s head when he said, “Throw me overboard” (read 2 Kings 6:1-7).

Some say that the story of Jonah is way too unbelievable. The way I look at it is this…I’ve decided for myself that if God decides to do anything, He has the ability to do it. Of course I don’t understand how this could be, but then I certainly don’t understand the nature of the billions of stars and planets in the cosmos either. There’s an old chorus I’m singing under my breath just now, “God can do anything, anything, anything, anything but fail” (I forget some words here, help me out). I’ll try to find it on “Google”…Yes! here is an unusual version of the song. I’m worshipping the Lord along with the singer (click here).

Yours for believing that God can do anything but fail!!!

David

21 thoughts on “Monday, April 11, 2016

  1. issues have arisen in family that have been devasting it is amazing how this song speaks to our prayers I am very short on patience however, I ask for prayers that I am able to forgive other family members and that my family can forgive also and move forward with God’s help! This song is so appropriate!

    • Dear Lord, I am asking for the spirit of forgiveness to manifest in and through Sah’s life, and Sah’s family. In Jesus name, amen.

      • Dear Sah I bring you and your family before The Lord and in agreement with others ask that forgiveness prevail amongst everyone. You are a wonderful ambassador of His love and I pray He will use you mghtily in bringing peace. Blessings

    • Sah, whenever someone I love hurts me and I struggle to forgive them, I remind myself the our Lord died for their sins as well, not just mine. Whatever justice needed for the harm they caused it was dealt with at the cross. Sometimes I just picture everything our Lord went through, getting beaten, whipped, names thrown at him, nails pounded into his flesh, being humiliated, mocked and shamed, then at last death—then I pictured the face of the one who hurt me going through all those things, and then I pictured Jesus–it slowly sinks in there is nothing I can do this person that wasn’t already done to them via the cross–when you get justice has been served it is easier to forgive because there is nothing left to do but to forgive–anyway I hope that helps let go of the anger and that then leaves our Lord room to heal your wounded heart–

      • Thank you sah, for the encouraging words you addressed to me several days ago!
        Again, John 4,19 comes to mind: We love, because He first loved us. Jesus’ blessings on your day!

    • When the enemy comes in like a flood the Spirit of the Lord will raise up a standard against him!!!!! Bless God

      the Lord God will make a way where there seems to be no way!!!

      B.J.

  2. Just as The ALMIGHTY turned Jonah around in the Right direction and pointed him to doing GOD’s will, so The ALMIGHTY turned this former sinner around and pointed him (me) in GOD’S direction and made him a minister along the way (GOD’S WAY, not mine) Bless HIS NAME forever.

    Rev. Terrence (Terry) Felvus – Grassie.

  3. Father God
    I ask that you would help Sah to forgive those in her family that have hurt
    her , and also that you would reconcile and make their relationships better. Give
    her your words to speak to them and the paitience she needs
    in Jesus name
    Amen

  4. Yes, I agree in prayer for Sah and her need to forgive as I have experienced it this morning as well. Jonah has always been one of my favorite books as it has spoken to me many times. Had a wonderful day yesterday as I saw how God miraculously answered prayer as a friend and I helped celebrate another special friend’s 98th birthday! Your song and concluding words,” God can do anything but fail,” David describes it well. Thank you! We serve an awesome God! Am waiting on the Lord for more miracles! Heard the same lady evangelist I mentioned before speak a dynamic message yesterday called, “Get ready” using the parable of the ten virgins and the oil! God is giving us warning before He comes for us. Blessings on the Mainse family and fellow bloggers today!

  5. Hi David
    Here are the words to the chorus you were singing:

    “God can do anything, anything, anything,
    God can do anything but fail.
    He can save, He can keep, He can cleanse,
    And He will!
    God can do anything but fail.
    He’s the Alpha and Omega,
    Beginning and the end,
    The Fairest of ten thousand to my soul”

    Isn’t great that Jonah could offer God thanksgiving in the worst of circumstances.
    Samuel

  6. Wonderful blog today and I am agreeing in prayer for Sah. Our message yesterday was on forgiven, afterwards there was a
    time of prayer for those who wanted to make thinks right with The Lord. I also had an incident last week, were one of my church family wrote me a note to ask me to forgive them. I had called on the Lord and he answered my prayer. I had tears of joy and thanked Him. So having said all that. I know that He will answer your prayers and our for you Sah. God Bless All blogger friends.

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