Today Joy and I have continued our reading of Jonah (visit Joy’s blog to check out her thoughts). God’s word in Jonah for me today is in Jonah 3:9, which says:
9 “Who knows? God may yet relent and with compassion turn from his fierce anger so that we will not perish.”
This time Jonah did go to Ninevah once he was removed from the belly of the whale. And in verse 9 we see how the King of Ninevah has optimism that God might be compassionate and turn His fierce anger away. All of Ninevah mourned and put on Sackcloth, neither the people nor the animals ate or drank as they hoped that the Lord would be merciful.
God was merciful and compassionate to the people of Ninevah, and He turned His wrath away from them. However, if you are to think about your own sins and the fact that you have not (I assume) put on sackcloth and fasted, you might become afraid that the Lord’s wrath was upon you. And you are correct, which is why God (in His mercy and compassion) provided a way out for us humans. He provided a sacrifice, one that would take care of all sins from past and future, this sacrifice only needed to die once to atone for sins. This sacrifice was worth more than anything on earth; this sacrifice is the son of God who is Jesus.
Jesus came down from heaven and atoned for our sins. We might have said “Who knows, maybe the Lord will be compassion and turn His wrath off of us”, and He did take it off of us and onto Jesus. The Lord did turn His wrath away from us, and now we are saved. However, we will see how some people do not think others deserve to have God’s compassion. We will see Jonah as a picture of people like this tomorrow in our next passage in Jonah.
Grace and truth, Charity Cleveland