(Sermon notes by John Coekin, preached on
As we leave chapter 2 we are faced with the same question we had at the end of chap.1 What IS going to happen now? Is the expedition to
1. GOD’S MESSAGE IS PROCLAIMED
Jonah no doubt took a long time to recover from his ordeal but this time he obeys God‘s call - although not altogether wholeheartedly, if we take note of 4:1,2. He is still upset that God could offer His grace and mercy to such wicked gentiles. Moreover,
2. THE NINEVITES REPENT
The message spread like wild-fire! Vs.4b,5. The Ninevites were pagans, no doubt with many gods, but they took this message very seriously. What happened is not to say that they became mono-theists overnight nor that they now embraced the covenant faith of
The news reached the king v.6 resulting in his own repentance and a royal proclamation v.7 - with an admission of guilt v.8 end. Interestingly in v.9 the king acknowledges God’s sovereign freedom, as did also the ship’s captain in 1:6 and the sailors in . This is a sophisticated understanding of God, basic to OT theology, but it is an irony that it is found on the lips of heathen, while Jonah, representing
3. GOD CHANGES HIS MIND!
Read v.10. What does it mean ‘God changed His mind‘? Isn’t God unchanging? In 1 Sam.15:29 it says ‘the Glory of Israel will not recant or change his mind; for he is not a mortal that he will change his mind.’ The OT does not flinch from teaching both that He is unchanging AND that He is responsive to His creatures, as here in Jonah 3:10. God’s warning of judgment is conditional on them continuing in wickedness. But He is consistent! He responds to wickedness with judgement but with grace and mercy to repentance.
The Ninevites had trembled at God’s word: their response to one man’s preaching in such a place as