Are you like Jonah? : LUSENET : A.M.E. Today Discussion : One Thread

Last sunday I preached from the lectionary. Jonah goes to ninevah to tell the people to repent or God would destroy Ninevah. I was discussing the Jonah story with our tuesday congregation and we all could identify with Jonah. As you remember God told Jonah to go to Ninevah an tell the people to repent and Jonah decided he did not want to do ran in the other direction, got on a ship caused havoc by disobeying God, ended up in the whale for 3 days and then got deposited back at Nineveh. Have their been times in your life where you knew God was telling you to do something and you decided not to listen. I think all of us have at some point. Yet God gives us a seconc chance. When have you been like Jonah? What caused your behavior?

-- Anonymous, January 30, 2003


Jonah is one of several "Shakesperean-type" characters in the Old Testament. He is an important figure in Biblical history for symbolizing the worst of our human frailties, e.g., stubbornnes, narrow-mindness and racism. The author of this interesting book appears to be unconvinced that Jonah really understood the parable of God's mercy represented in the withering gourd plant in the concluding chapter. QED

-- Anonymous, January 30, 2003

Have you ever really sat down and considered what a brave man Jonah really was?

Did the prophets not prophecy that it was the people of Nineveh (Assyrians) that was going to destroy Jonah's people?

Jonah ran away because he figured that if they did not get the message to repent God would destroy them and then they would not in turn be able to destroy his people. He was prepared to lay his life on the line in order to save his people!!

Note in prayer in the belly of the fish: I will go to the temple if you save me. God did not want him to go to church, he had to go to Nineveh. Remember there was 40 days left before God took action. Jonah figured if he ran in the other direction, but the time God got a hold of him the time would be expired and Nineveh destroyed

One of the morals of the history is that God saved the people of Nineveh who repented and destroyed Israel who refused to turn from their evil ways.

There is much more to be said on the Jonah inciddent, but this is just to whet your appetite

-- Anonymous, February 06, 2003

I have missed you Rev. Pillay and I pray all is well with you and your family. The story of Jonah is powerful and there is a lot in the story. One of the things I discussed with my congregations are the positive implications of repentence. Jonah was disobedient, he did not do what God told him to do in the first place. How many times have we as humans had a "good excuse" for not obeying God. It is Jonah's human behavior that resonates with the readers of the Bible. But Jonah did repent and was obedient and because of his obedience ninevah was presented with the opportunity to repent, which they did. When we are obedient to God it affects those around us, just as our disobedience harms others. Thanks for your insight Rev. Pillay.

-- Anonymous, February 06, 2003

On Sunday a minister visiting our Church taught from Jonah. His subject was "Don't Have God to Ask You Twice". I learned so much from that sermon. His analogy of Jonah in the belly of the large fish helped me to understand. I can't type his sermon but his points were significant for today's Christian. 1) God Told Jonah to go to Ninevah - Jonah disobeyed God and went as the preacher said "He took a cruise in the opposite direction. I thought that was significant. God speaks into our spirit and He is really clear on His direction for our life but sometime we think "I have a better idea" and our ideas take us further from where God intends for us to go. 2) The storm arose - My God, how many of us have song "Storm keep on raging in my life, sometime it's hard to tell the night from day". In Jonah story, the storm came to get his attention. I can imagine that Jonah thought he had gotten away from the call. How many times have we thought that we have managed to get away from what God has truly called us to do? 3)The men on the boat - Jonah knew he was the cause of the rocking boat - The humor of the minister's message was that the men didn't want to throw him overboard, but after a SHORT prayer, bye,bye Jonah. That was so vivid in my mind. People that we sometime surround ourselves with will through us overboard if the storm tend to hinder their plans. 4) The fish swallows him up - This was revelation for me - the fish was large but it never said he was as big as a whale, we in America have made the great fish a whale. Now a whale is pretty large and Jonah may have had some room there, but if you read his prayer - The weeds entangled him. So let's imagine a fish the size of a man, now that would be considered a great fish to any fisherman. Jonah was laid tight in the belly of this fish, he felt everything that the fish swallowed, it slid past him. He also heard and felt the digestion of the fish. The gas that had to escape the fish, the waste may have even passed through. He was in hell for 3 days. We sometime spend a little more time in our situation than we have to, Jonah then prayed to God. God allowed the fish to vomit him out. Imagine that he was covered with vomit. How gross!!! Now here comes God "Jonah, Go to Ninevah" Don't make God ask you twice

-- Anonymous, February 11, 2003

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