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January 16, 2022 7:00 am
Revivals list go to the old part of the book going to Jonah, you'll turn to Matthew just go left little bit you find pretty quick. It's at the end of the Old Testament during my break.
You may be surprised to hear this, but I've only taken half of my 40th anniversary break so you're gone forever.
I felt like I was. I really did, but I've only taken half of it and I don't know how to take the rest of it. To be honest but I'll figure out something anyway.
During that time about three or four messages I would just be my study time to time, and therefore messages came to me and I thought I want to preach that again. And so I came to this text. And I thought, here we go again. What a powerful parallel. There is with Jonas experience.
In our experience, and I powerful proclamation of the truth of God and how he deals with his children. So when Jonah chapter 2 will begin in verse one and go through chapter 3 verse three book of Jonah chapter 2 verse one down through chapter 3 verse three.
Jonah has been thrown overboard. He was running from God.
God said go preach to Nineveh and immediately he rebuilds immediately. He turned his back on God's word God's will board the ship for Tarshish goes down in the bottom of the Shipman I got a get away from this now.
I'll say some about this in a moment been speculation about why did Jonah do that.
Did he just hate the Ninevites so much he would go preach repentance that God might forgive them and spare them, I will. I think it's best to simple there's more than that. I think what you got understand is Jonah is a contemporary of of the Old Testament prophets like Amos and those prophets had made it very clear that God was going to judge Israel using the Mahdi pagan nation of the cereal to do his work and so Jonah knowing that Israel's destruction is at hand is struggling with is rebelling on the basis of how can I go preach for pagan Nineveh to be restored when my own people are about to be judged and destroyed.
Why should they get to repent and be spared when my own Israel is not to be spared the profits of Artie said and with the prophet said about Israel was due to Israel's backslidden condition that she would not repent.
She would not give up her bail worship, she would not give up her idolatries and her paganism that she begun to embrace Brabson. Jonas Mann also was this thought if God will destroy Nineveh for her sin and she has no light to have the commandments law of Moses, the prophets, the ceremonial law. She has none of that light and truth in God's can hold Nineveh accountable, then he will really judge Israel because Israel is wicked and backslidden and she's had all that light and truth from God. So there's a lot going on in Jonah's mind other than I just don't preach the Nineveh okay so God has in his providence. Jonah thrown into the sea. It's a raging stormy sea, and then he swallowed by a great fish is not mythology is not an allegory, it's truth it really happened. So how can somebody be swallowed by fission call for backup. Will it takes God to do that.
But if God is really involved. None of this is far-fetched at all. Jonah 2 verse one then Jonah prayed to the Lord his God from the stomach of the fish in the said are called out of my distress to the Lord and he answered me.
I cried for help from the depth of Sheol and you heard my voice.
I want to notice.
Over and over his his emphasis on going down depth the that the deepness of his war ON terror and and and the judgment he feels verse three for you cast me into the deep into the heart of the seas and the current engulfed me in your breakers and billows passed over me. So I said I have been expelled from your site. Nevertheless, I will look again toward your holy temple. Water encompassed me to the point of death, the great deep engulfed me weeds were wrapped around my head.
I descended to the roots of the mountains, the earth, with its bars was around me forever. You have brought up my life from the pit Lord my God while I was fainting away, I remembered the Lord my prayer came to you, into your holy temple. Those who regard vain idols forsake their faithfulness, but I will sacrifice to you with the voice of thanksgiving that which I have vowed I will pay salvation is from the Lord, you can take these truths to come right up to the New Testament and you see the conviction of sin, and the glorious truth of great salvation. Verse 10 then the Lord commanded the fish and it vomited. Jonah up onto the dry land.
Now the word of the Lord came to Jonah. Don't miss this the second time the second time say, arise, go to Nineveh, the great city and proclaim to it. The proclamation which I'm going to tell you. So Jonah arose and went to Nineveh, according to the word of the Lord that Nineveh was an exceedingly great city, a three days walk.
I call this the God of the second chance the word of the Lord came to Jonah the second time, but that's not fully accurate. He's not the God of the second chance. He's the God of the 13 and the fourth chance in the filth chance and the hundred chance for his children.
He's the God of grace and forgiveness and mercy. Jonah experience this conversion.
If you will. This being brought back to God because God is the God of the second chance some things I want to point out I. Notice the reach of God's love the reach of his love, and as you look at chapter 2 verses one through TNN. Jonah just calls out over and over about his distress.
The depth the D that deep sea, being engulfed out. He's at the root of the mountains, the bars of the artwork locked over him. He's every graphic way he can describe the deep depth of his rebellion and sinfulness. God found in their disabled pastor you don't know my life. You know how corrupt.
Maybe I've be on our how deeply I've been involved have a conflict my life. I want to tell you, God can reach you.
There God can reach you at the deepest depth of sin. Well, I think, ask God was reaching Jonah when he had them thrown into the sea, God was reaching Jonah. We had the well swallowing God was reaching Jonah through all of these events that are happening in his life.
God was quote getting his attention." Scott ever got your attention told trouble partake despair tried to drink deeply this world and do your own thing your way. Make your own rules.
The captain of your own ship, the master of your own destiny and your life is broken in ruin and heartache and heartbreak is yours.
God's getting your attention just like he is getting Jonah but the thing I want you to notice about the reach of God's love.
First of all, is God's love takes the initiative. God is a self-starter. God does not sit in heaven wringing his hands, hoping that hope somebody turns to me today. God is the initiator he reaches to us in love before we are saved, and he reaches to us in love after our conversion when we have drifted away when you are wallowing in the muck in the mire of seeing and guilt he comes to you when you were dead in trespasses and sins. When you walked in darkness when you are lost in utter darkness and total depravity. When you had no desire to look to him and no ability to come to him when sin was the barrier between you and God. That's when in love. He reached for you. You see, he came to save us when we could not save ourselves like there's an old gospel song that says when I could not come to where he wants. He came to me. He said he came to save us when we just couldn't do anything for ourselves and mercy and grace. He stooped down to us. We were bound by the iron cords of sin and had no strength to look up much less reach up to him noncontrast the wisdom of man is come up with all kinds of ideas that are backwards. Confucianism talks about living a good life and helping society be better. That's the basic meaning of life. Buddhism tells you that if you follow these teachings that if you take the initiative. You do these things and one day you'll be reincarnated until you reach this certain level.
This state of nothingness.
They call it Hinduism basically the same thing you do right, and God will reincarnate you and bring you back into better forms until finally you reach what they call spiritual perfection, but in all of these it's you taking the step you doing the work. What Marcus Jonah going to do at the bottom of the city in the belly of a whale. God didn't reach out to him. He's so done then you have all these religions that have been of the wisdom of man Islam and Catholicism in on and on we could go all the way through to the jungle superstitions of tribal areas. Even Judaism that is incomplete Judaism because complete Judaism is combining the Savior with Judaism, but incomplete Judaism. It just works you take the initiative you perform the work, and then you can reach this new level. You can reach God. That's what they all say that Christianity is the opposite of all of these very simple terms. First John 419.
We didn't come to him. We did love him first know we love because he first loved us first loved us. He took the initiative.
You see, Christianity is right side up all the others are upside down. Mankind is born.
Contrary to God, and opposite of God. So his thinking and his logic is quote so-called wisdom" is not right side up. It's upside down. We have to go to the Bible and aided by the spirit of God that comes in at converse enables us to reprogram our thinking you get things back again right side up and we realize his love is that love which takes the initiative number two not only used as he reached us taking the initiative when we're in this depth of despair in our sin is love is also faithful, even just reach one time he's not fickle about it. You didn't reach and then sample to hold you by tether out here in if you don't do just rot.
I'm going thank you out there and fling you away from me know he's faithful.
Second Timothy 213 tells us if we are faithless, he remains faithful, for he cannot deny himself.
That phrase cannot deny himself is bursting with wondrous truth, the glory of salvation is that you are saved in Christ chosen in Christ predestined in Christ elected in Christ for known and Christ called in Christ paid for you to be cast away when you truly come to know Christ would be Christ casting himself away. I don't know about you best faithfulness. God cannot throw himself away in your one with him to the merits of his son Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ is a pastor. How do I know he will come to me. Then when I grown cold. How do I know he'll take the initiative and reach to me in love when I'm backslidden when I'm in my debts when I'm at the bottom of my C will he's faithful and he's faithful to send the forerunner forerunner you Noda for an is is the word for Harold. It was common in the ancient world and the king would be coming to a town or village in his kingdom. He would have a forerunner Harold to go before him to turn out to the people.
You can't just act like even after you got to get ready.
The Kings about the here and you don't just wear what you normally wear when the king comes, you don't just put yourself in the disposition of everyday life with key business special get ready get the city ready get your family right of kings, John the Baptist. The Bible calls him the Harold of Christ.
He was the forerunner he was telling everyone to repent and get prepared. The king is here.
In that case, the king, who is our Savior and God is faithful to us that he gives us a forerunner who prepares us to meet again with God one that goes before God and prepares us to be reunited with God. What is this forerunner's name is name is guilt. Guilt. The Holy Spirit of God takes the word of God presses upon your heart and soul you feel the guilt.
This is sin I'm wrong I need to repent. I need to be reunited with God. He's the faithful forerunner to prepare you to meet with God again.
And if the Holy Spirit did not bring conviction and bring guilt, you would never be ready for the king you would never be ready to restore the fellowship. Listen. Guilt is a blessed friend. Guilt informed by the truth and used by the spirit is a blessed friend is the medication it brings healing to our relationship with God. But right keep your finger in Jonah and go to some 32 would you do that all of about a three quarters of an inch to the left there in your Bible. Psalm 32 she that's what I have to do present in growing church and learn those songs you know the songs that make you memorize the books of the Bible say how much Miss Martha's help you through the years learn those Bible songs.
Psalm 32. Notice the psalmist words here versus 335 when I About My Sin, My Body Wasted Away through My Groaning All Day Long for Day and Night Your Hand Was Heavy upon Me.
My Vitality Was Drained Away As the Fever Heat of Summer. I Acknowledged My Sin to You, and My Iniquity. I Did Not Hide. I Said I Will Confess the Transgressions Are Really My Current Transgressions to the Lord, and You Forgave the Guilt of My Sin. I Want to Understand Something, Guilt Is More Than Just a Feeling, and an Impression. It Includes That Because All Men Stand As Guilty before God. Whether They Feel It or Not It's a Blessing That You Can Feel the Truth about Guilt That You Stand Apart from God and against God and Away from God, for Payment of the Judgment of God. If You're Not Used To the Jesus Christ and Even As a Christian. Guilt Comes in a Sales You Again Because You've Gotten Away from God Is a Precious Friend Pam Reminds Me There Was a Lady in Our Church Many Years Ago and She Left with A Lot Of the People Were Leaving Our Church and This Lady Was Known to Say.
I'm Tired of Going to Church and Feeling Guilty She Don't Have To. You Can Go to Church and with the Truth of the Word of God Conviction You Repent and You Don't Feel Guilty Any Longer. That's West Coast Work. You Don't Get Away from Guilt You Solve the Guilt with God.
The Psalmist Said You Forgave the Guilt of My Sin That Goes What Now Here's the Thing with the Those of Us Who Are Redeemed but You're Still Packaged in Your Sinful Unredeemed Humanity and You Still Live on This Earth in This Sinful Unredeemed Humanity. She Don't. We Have To Be Repent or's We Walk and What One of the Things You Must Listen to Me. One of the Things You Must Do Is Stay Hypersensitive to the Conviction of the Holy Spirit and That Guilt That He Will Bring You Can Quickly Immediately Repent and Restore As You Live Your Christian Life You Don't Fall into Any Strongholds or Ruts and Patterns of Rebellion against the Lord. But You Know What Is a Christian, How What That I Don't Want to Be Left to Myself. God Don't Let Me Ruin Me. God Save Me from Eight Send Me the Conviction and the Guilt to Draw Back Close to You and Then God in His Divine Providence Allows Things like Our Governments to Go Completely Insane and Begin to Teach, Proclaim and Legislate Things That Are Ungodly and We Start Feel the Pressure and the Threat and the Persecution and All Of A Sudden We Are Quicker at Repenting and Staying Closer to God. All the Sudden We Are More Quick to Be Pure and Genuine in Our Devotion to Christ. Trust Me Brothers and Sisters. This Stuff Is Going on the World Today and Were Seeking in Such a Vivid Way in Canada right now and it has been happening in our country is in the sovereign perfect work of God.
He is clarifying his church. Those who are not his will not handle it they will go with the flow, but his true church will humbly weekly.
Haltingly repenting late will stay with the stuff stay on the truth I told you this before and I'm not a modern I'm not special like the stuff. It weighs a committed Christian wishes to Manoj Christian or non-Christian. You saw, but I hope you are and I hope I am reminding my severed leg things I have been things I enjoy may be gone tomorrow because of my commitment to Jesus Christ and you know what that's okay because I enjoy those things but they're not my joy.
So hold loosely to these wonderful blessings of common grace, we may be okay for another few decades.
I don't know. But tomorrow may start losing some of this stuff to keep our devotion to Christ saying all that in the context of God uses these things to help his people be sanctified and respond more quickly to the blessed Harold, the forerunner guilt because we need to be get back we need to be prepared rather for the king while thirdly in the reach of his love. I can't make this a two-parter. You'll have to listen more quickly. Thirdly, under the reach of his love, his love is full of mercy as you see this despair of Jenna of Jonah. Only the mercy of God is that that come capacity God has to feel deeply a compassion for the most undeserving and unworthy.
That's good news he feels deeply in compassion. For the most undeserving and unworthy ones. I love that God is committed to act on mercy, but it's wonderful to me that my God looks at me and finds nothing, nothing in my natural being attracted to him at all, only offensiveness and it looks at me with a deep compassion for my state. Nestlé looked Jonah boxes God's rich in mercy. One of the things that theologians point out that in the balance of systematic biblical understanding. You see, over and over again is that God is the God who sets conditions on his covenant relationship with his children relisten to make the sets conditions on the covenant relationship he has with those who are years and one of his conditions is that he will hold himself to have mercy on his children could miss what God himself himself accountable if you will go don't really need accountability but to anthropomorphism so we can grasp the truth of it.
God holds himself accountable way off, show compassion to those erected but deserving, unworthy ones. That's the covenant I'm making with my children. This just tears me up. You sit there like a calf, and a new game on preaching my wife told me nobody knows what that means I can't believe now that nobody gives in a calf in the gate is look at it is nothing that is the note bedeviling I got a hurry on the restoration of his love. The second major point Jonah comes back to the course. God put them all before he ran to the bottom of the boat going to Tarshish what to say here in verse one again.
Chapter 3 now the word of the Lord came to Jonah the second time I'll mostly some humor in here. Symbols like gotchas. Okay Jonah thrown in the city down to the bottom of the roots of the mountains, the darkness, the billows swallowed by the whale, the anguish, the terror of the torment of that situation.
Now I've saved you, you been coughed up on the beach. Now let's try this again in us.
Are you listening to me this morning when God calls you back you know is going to say get the book back out what I told you, me and what I told you to do is right here and I'm not changing a sellable highlight in Rome. God tells you how long the problem you repent and get back to enjoying and transferring the truth of my word. Let's try this again. Amen. Young people you get right with God you go back to what the book says young people is both be doing this, try this again husband you get right with God you go back to what the book says husbands are doing heads of households to be doing and you say, let's try this again wives you get right with God you go back to the book. So what does God say lady supposed to be doing gotcha this try this again you look, you don't have to wonder about what am I supposed to do is rent that you exhaust this will go to some maps and here's what your fun, sweet, blessed peace and contentment from the Lord as you realign yourself with his strength.
Use the phrase couple times lately but Tom when you when you walk in harmony with the truth of God's word. It promotes human flourishing, you do better husbands do better wife to be better children do better marriages do better, but check businesses do better is just is just better that you might go to jail but tenements and you won't matter. Even the persecution. This is this is accompanied by abundance of grace when we align with the boat.
This just banner. So what of blessedness that Harold is that guilt that comes in… Get back on track.
No pastors have to have love this to you to understand God is with me before he deals with you. You don't spend that option and you did pray that God keep Jeff right so he can be the best preacher so I can keep staying right. It's us together. It's not me against you are in its us together whether restoration of his love, and love. Jonah is restored back to what God originally told him to do is like to been restored.
He's back restored to the office of prophet he's been called to his bat restored to the specific commission to go to Nineveh how God restores all how God restores all Helga Israel was so rebellious so often in one of the plagues and punishments.
God put on Israel was in said that's a big deal back in those that you did have pesticides and so very often the locust would come and devour everything folks in that culture. When the locust came and devoured everything starvation was a very real possibility for everyone. Joel chapter 2 verse 25. Then I will make it to you for the years that the swarming locust heavy. The words when I restore you.
I'm going to make it better than it was before you suffer for a while, but I'm going to make it better. Again, that's our God is the God of restoration well a few things about this number. Article a in the outline under the restoration of his love, Jonah now has a greater master than before. Jonah has a greater master than before and it looks God hadn't changes is a figure of speech, but John essays in hot water is brighter than he ever thought he was before because of having gone through this experience. He's going to the terrors and the horrors in the depths of his rebellion and sin he has faced the terror of God's anguish and anger against him and come back out of that and been restored back to intimacy in God's grace and love God's greater to Jonah than he was before the flood God converts you so you can increasingly see your letter sinful Richard wall and the depth of the wrath and judgment.
You ought to receive and then you begin to see the love and grace and compassion of a faithful God to cleanse you and forgive you of all that you are and all that you've been in God gets bigger than he was before every weight when you said about preaching my hope and prayer is that God's beggar to you when you leave when you came in.
Jonah has a greater master now. He knows this God who is restored in this God has forgiven him is the God of majesty, power and glory. He knows he's the sovereign King of Kings and Lord of lords. He knows he's the only true and righteous judge, and he deals with sin and he is the sovereign God came to to either avenge our sin or forgive our sin. We see this sovereign law given during governor is our judge and realize in guilt that were resisting him and rebelling against him.
We know it is God's right to remit the penalty.
That's against me, and when he does remit it and choose to remix it.
It's a great glory on his part. Jonah knows a greater goddess of a glorious God and you knew before. He has an infinite sovereign authoritative right to rule and dispose of me.
It is his decision and his decision alone to hold me either as condemned or acquitted in his decision is final. There is no appeal. So the Jonah having gone to those steps having repelled and God rescued him out of them and restored him in this loving grace and mercy. God is more glorious and majestic and wondrous to Jonah than ever before. Well Jonah has a greater master. John also is himself a greater man than he was before he is better man that he was before his sanctification is taken a quantitative leap forward. Having gone through this. He has a new and fuller understanding of his own fallenness.
You know I think what God does to you and eyes that any of us who are true believers. Once we've repented and gotten back close to God. Then we glanced back at what we were doing or what we're saying or what we are being and it shocks us to look back on that. Then we go forward with more caution and more confidence in God and less confidence in ourselves. We become more like the psalmist when he says search meal.
God try me see if there be any wicked way in me, I don't. I don't know steps again only get this right quick so close to you.
Member Peter Peter at the Lord's crucifixion denied the Lord. Three times he been cursed so I don't know is not his disciple right after that the Lord is resurrected. He meets with Peter phenomenal is we just Peter is a colossal failure in rebellion Peter to in my lamps, Peter Shepherd, my sheep Peter to in my sheep. Peter thinking oh my goodness, you know. Love the apostles were fair, afraid to see the ascended Lord I read the risen Lord because they were afraid he would judge them immediately for not being faithful at the it could be said that at the moment of Christ's death. He had no disciples. Maybe one thief is converted on the cross beside but after this colossal what's God saying to Peter.
He sank safe. Now you have a better understanding of me and you got a better understanding of what you can do in your own strength, your greater man than you were before Peter is you get some things now. She didn't understand before. Hugh Martin said when the Lord painfully chisels and polishes a living stone is for some special place in the temple and it will be seen to have acquired under his hand a special fitness for its place. I think the ministry God has called grace life church to and anchored in truth ministries to special but I do want to go back to the polishing of had to endure for the last four decades, either. I'd rather do love touchup work along the way men since the deep polishing chiseling humbling God has had to do so.
Jonah in gratitude is now heat heat sink testing on the human side of the 10 Commandments and the 10 Commandments are are are are surrounded by this fiery smoking terror on the mountain. The people saying Moses will talk to you but don't let us talk to him God's too fierce and the tariff it was too bright. Well Jonah was moved by the deep terrors of the Lord in the deep in the belly of the well.
But that's not his true motivation anymore.
The true motivation is the love and the grace that God has shown me so grateful. The salvation and the restoration. Now he wants to be faithful to the Lord even carried out this right.
By the way, we know from the rest of the book this point he sign and back up for duty and Paul said in second Corinthians 514 and 15. I'll just keel that phrase for the love of Christ controls us. Here's what Paul means that word literally can made me used in a criminal, a context of being apprehended kidnapped he's not been kidnapped, been apprehended by the love of Christ. Have you got a tide because as I learned about the love of Christ for this rich. I can't help but tie up in my small group because as I learned about the love of Christ for me so unworthy. That's the least I can do this for Joni's Jonah's like call me sold out. If you've been where I've been been brought out of that servant to it's a love motivation now. John is a greater man than he used to be God to Jonah's a greater God that he used to be. And then thirdly I'm leaving a lot out okay. Thirdly, see you in a greater message than he had before in a greater message, reread the has a greater message that he had before.
You see, in the belly of the well in the depths of the sea. Jonah tasted the terrors of the Lord, he could say with the Psalmist psalmist. The Lord has chastened me sore, but is not given me over to death. Jonah knows that no divisive man can prosper against the strong hand of the most high.
He has no fear of the Ninevites.
He'll go right up to the king, looking straight to face and so you're gonna be roasted back God we don't reprint when you been where he's been anything knows the power of God and man. Man can't bother you when you know the fear of God men a bunch of little crickets and mice compared to facing God's releasing the terror of the Lord. So men don't intimidate him anymore. So now he can preach with a new confidence and he can preach with a new experiential knowledge of both the terror of the Lord in the goodness of the Lord in forgiveness. When you have loved her.
Jonah Frakes know we have the message. 40 days if you don't repent you to perish, but that doesn't mean there wasn't I a body of truth.
With that main thesis of this message. I've loved of heard passion and then sought the conviction of this Jonah having gone through what he went through. If God puts you through a lot. He's want to use you to do a lot have a bigger impact for his glory.
He understands the terror of the Lord wonderfully balanced with the goodness of the Lord in grace and mercy toward him and that balance is so essential to this profit, your pastor, Amish priest preach against sin.
I must preach righteousness. I must preach judgment and, as your pastor, I can't do what Jonah did. I can't give you 4030 days or you perish.
I can't give you for days or you perish. I can't give you four hours. If you don't repent you going to perish. I can give you four seconds.
If you do not repent, you will perish, but yet for you and I for me as a gospel minister. I have a greater revelation this out of Calvary of the terror of the Lord in the grace and love of the Lord, and even Jonah see in the Lord's crucifixions. We understand some things Jonah could not see yet we see the terror of the Lord in the cross thought the cross illustrates the terror of the Lord like nothing else that CN is of such a black and woe. CN is of such a violent nature to this holy God sent his search in a secluded offense to this holiness of God that God crushed and ravish the son of God when he became sin in our place. You cannot contemplate the son of God didn't torment the holy Prince 11 destroyed by the father became sin in our place. A friend that teaches you the terror of the Lord like nothing, but also it teaches us the goodness love mercy, and the faithfulness of the Lord to his own.
It's as if God said I told you my word. I have loved you with an everlasting love is never been a time in eternity past, when I did know you and when I didn't love you and I told you I would be faithful to bring you home to me.
If it takes the ravishing and brutalizing of my son on the cross to get you back to me, that's what I'll do. So we see something of the terror of the Lord in the goodness and love and mercy and grace of the Lord luck. Even Jonah could not say in a wonderful part of that great goodness is that he is the God of the second chance and the third chance in the fourth chance in the hundreds chance, so why don't you and I this morning we restored him one more time with the new resolve a new conviction on the new intimacy and enjoying him