The Jonah in Me- Part 3

Jonah 3: 5, “So the people of Nineveh believed God, and proclaimed a fast, and put on sackcloth, from the greatest of them even to the least of them.”

We have seen that Jonah had already judged the people of Nineveh to be unworthy of God’s grace and tried his best to get out of contributing in any way to their repentance. Yet, God had already begun the process of softening and preparing their hearts to do just that before He ever called Jonah: Historical records show that they had endured plagues and famine; there had been celestial signs; God even used the great fish to speak about their false fish-god, Dagon. Jonah’s delivery of God’s word was the final tool God used to bring about their redemption; and Jonah was very angry and displeased about that:

Jonah 4:1, “But it displeased Jonah exceedingly, and he was very angry.” After God asked Jonah if he had good reason to be angry, he replied, “I have good reason to be angry, even to death” (Jonah 4:9). Jonah continued to justify his rebellion. I have discovered a new word to aptly describe Jonah– “recalcitrant”; that is, he was stubbornly rebellious. If I am totally honest, I think I must confess that there have been times when I might have been described as recalcitrant, or at minimum, pouting.

Yet because I am his child, God never left me alone in my resistance to his will. Jonah himself knew that God was, “a gracious and compassionate God, slow to anger and abundant in loving-kindness, and one who relents concerning calamity” (Jonah 4:1). Praise the Lord that when we fail in our humanness, God is unchanging in his character and faithfulness.