Monday: Reluctant Witness
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In Jonah 1, the Lord wants to halt Jonah’s escape and so He stirs up such a severe storm that it threatens shipwreck.

Image © Pacific Press from GoodSalt.com

Image © Pacific Press from GoodSalt.com

The seamen call on their gods for help. Due to the severity of the storm, they feel that someone must have provoked the anger of the gods. They cast lots to decide who will be first to volunteer information about himself that might expose such an offense. For the casting of lots, each individual brings an identifiable stone or wooden marker. The markers are placed in a container that is shaken until one of the markers comes out. The lot falls on Jonah, who now confesses his sins and urges the seamen to throw him into the sea.

This story is remarkable because in it the non-Hebrew seamen act positively, while Jonah is presented in a negative light. Although they worshiped many gods, the seamen show a great respect for the Lord to whom they pray. They are also tenderhearted toward the Lord’s servant Jonah, which is why they go out of their way to try to row back to the land. Finally, they agree with Jonah that he should be thrown overboard. With this done, the storm stops and the seamen sacrifice to the Lord and praise Him.

In verse 9, how does Jonah describe the Lord whom he said he feared? What is significant about the way in which he described the Lord? See also Rev 14:7Isa. 42:5Rev. 10:6.

Jonah’s confession of faith in God as Creator of the sea and land underscores the futility of his attempts to escape from God’s presence. The immediate cessation of the storm after the men threw Jonah into the sea showed them that the Lord, as Creator, had control of the sea. Because of this, the seamen worship the Lord all the more. How long their newfound fear and reverence for the Creator was to last, we are not told. There is no doubt, however, that they did learn something about Him from this experience.

We can barely comprehend many of the wonders of the world around us, much less all that is beyond the reach of our senses and even our imagination. How does the Creator speak to you through that which He has made?

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Monday: Reluctant Witness — 20 Comments

  1. Apsolute control of all created things is at Creators hand. I have peace from that information. Even big fish can serve Creators plans. He can bow every knee!

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  2. What amazing God plan and always plan how to save his creations.even using a fish to witness the unbelievers . We can't hide and say no, he knows everything he do to us the rewards is eternal life. ETERNAL Lives

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    • [Moderator Note: Please use full name when commenting]

      2 Corinthians 6:14 says we should not be yoked with unbelievers. Note how powerful the power of God, that even those who do not believe, are turned. How I understand it, every follower, or believer, needs to have enough of Christ in them, that even those who do not believe, when they part from you, they feel something in their sprit which makes them yearn for more. And this kind of overflow may only be granted by the Holy Spirit. Let us consider these humble words as we pray. Happy Sabbath all.

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  3. We will try to run from our GOD, but we can not hide. May times we try to play Jonah's tricks, but His love always prevail on us. God has alot of His faithful sevants whom He can send, but when His hand touches you it is a blessing. Thank God Job was not destroyed.

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  4. God is mighty and His creatures points and reminds us His power and Supremacy over the creatures. No matter how guilty Jonah was, he still has the boldness to identified who he is and who his God is, so therefore brethren, let us emulate the positive part of Jonah's character and stand firm to and defined the faith we have in any conditions we find ourselves. We have to careful about how we live our life because it may create a negative impart or cause a serious problem to the people around us, just as we see in Jonah's story. Let's examin ourselves thoroughly to ascertain whether we are not the one that hinders the progress of others or standing against the prayers of God's children that makes God not to hear their cry, prayers and petitions; or causes others to go astray and perish. Search yourself and amend your ways, so that things will go well with you. REMEMBER, IN ANY CONDITION WE FIND OURSELVES, GOD IS THERE TO MAKE A WAY FOR US!

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  5. [Please supply full name with comments. Thank you. ]

    He is in the middle of our hardships, even if they're consequence of our own mistakes. There's always an opportunity to repent and go back to Lord's loving arms. But as Jonah did, we need to recognize God as our Creator, Savior and Redeemer first, otherwise we would just trying to trick our God again. And take this into account: Jonah's testimony was public. If we wanna change our lives, our testimony has to reach every person around us. A light shouldn't be put under a pillow, we have to shine!

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  6. Jonah was a disobedient person. He did not go where God sent him. He forgot that he couldn't hide from God because God made everything. We should try not to be like Jonah and do what God tells us to do.

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  7. I know & I confirm 2 my Christian family that if we turn a deaf ear to Gods instruction He loves us so much He can not let go. We will experience storms in our lives until we do what is right. This book is so broad coz we are covered here, we run 4 life & pretend to be one with the world & then what , we get exposed to confess & witness. Jona had to witness in the boat that he believes & worship a Creator a different God, pity him there was no way out but to adhere to instruction. Oh how I relate with this losing all because of not listening now my daughter is faced with huge challenge brothers & sisters let us do right to save us & our loved ones. Maranatha

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  8. Tough times are not to destroy us, as when God sent the fish during the storm, but to make us stronger.

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  9. Out of fear Jonah refused to go to where God had sent him. He decided to run away but God who is everywhere saw him and called him. Jonah went down and down with the hope of not being seen but imagine when trouble came he was brought back to book. To our own application does the example of Jonah have a reference or is just story in the Bible?

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  10. I believe that God has truly called me on many ocassions, and like Jonah I have been running away from the fear of being a false prophet due to my sinful ways. It is a scary thought to fail God when you are in a position to influence others. I ask that those that are reading this to pray for me to have the strengh to overcome my fears and do my fahters work. Amen

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    • Stop looking at yourself Jean and apprehend Jesus' righteousness. The devil is a liar, like Isaiah asks God to purify your lips, your whole being, and answer to the affirmative to Isaiah 6:8. It is not about you...It is all about our Marvelous Savior!

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  11. What was the reason behind Jonah's disobedience?
    He was in fear of delivering the message of salvation to those perceived as undeserving. Why? He forgot that God can also strengthen him concerning his mission. Our question as well should be what seemingly difficult task did God call us to perform in times past? My past experience was performing service in the role of maintainance for a 101 apartment building, but as the only maintenance man on site. The task was challenging, but it was the best maintenance job I've ever had.

    I also wonder what other reminder Jonah could have received as a result of his disobedience because in Prophets and Kings pg. 266, Ellen White says that "had the prophet obeyed unquestioningly, he would have been blessed abundantly."

    When we make mistakes, there are consequences that follow. Though God forgives, are we totally off the hook for everyting? I remember an comic book type story about Jonah a long time ago showing him scarred from being partially digested by the great fish. Though this is not recorded, I picture that as a reminder that even though experience is a good teacher, wisdom is the best because through proper application we can avoid needless suffering.

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  12. for sure,sometimes God allows stormy situations in our lives to mould us spiritually.

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  13. It's pathetic especially when we examine ourselves and see where we came from and who we are today because of someone who died for us. Why do we see ourseleves smarter than others? At least Jonah was able to repent. Are we in a postion to immitate what Jonah did? Yes our God is a God of forgiveness, compassion and abundant love but let's not forget that disobedience has its own consequences on our life, God will forgive but the consequences remain. May God help us.

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  14. In case anyone would like a little more history/instruction on Jonah, Pastor Doug Batchelor wrote booklet. It is available, for free, online or you can request that Amazing Facts send you a copy.
    Webpage: http://www.amazingfacts.org/media-library/book/e/75/t/the-sign-of-jonah.aspx
    This really helped me understand more deeply this very important story.

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  15. Jonah might have wanted to do some things against the Lord, but he was reminded that he does not have control over what God requires him to do. The lesson is "Let's not only look at Jonah as a disobedient prophet, but his character and the good part of it, that's why God looks at what we are to become after sin, not the sin". Jonah recognized the love of God and confessed. What we learn on Monday is fulfillment of God's plan does not change and He controls His creation. He can use different avenues to communicate to us when we go astray. Glory be to his name.

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