Tag: #nineveh

Preaching and The Response

Preaching and The Response

Preaching and The Response

“Forty days, and Nineveh shall be overthrown!” Jonah 3:4 NKJV

Our prophet was gung-ho and he loudly let the people of Nineveh know the state of their city. Having been through his own ordeal-not that they would believe his fish tale, he stayed focus on his task and on God’s message to the people.  He was doing God’s bidding and speaking, what thus says the Lord. Jonah went up and down streets speaking God’s message full of warnings.

The people responded to Jonah’s message of destruction with concern as they embraced it, hook, line, and sinker. That’s a pretty appropriate term if I do say so myself. The people of Nineveh believed God-not the second, third, or fourth time, but the first time. They responded by proclaiming  a fast, as they all put on sackcloth, from the greatest to the least of them.

The words Jonah had proclaimed came to the king, who along with his people arose from his throne, covered himself with sackcloth, and sat in ashes. Did you know that the concept of sackcloth and ashes was a customary symbol of a public sign of repentance and humility before God? It also could represent disgrace or mourning. Sackcloth is a coarsely woven fabric, usually made of black goat hair, and it was very uncomfortable to wear. Can you say itchy. The ashes signified desolation and ruin. Everyone in that city responded with repentance, fasting, and sackcloth and ashes. It was an outward sign in response to an inside condition.

The king did not stop there friends, he proclaimed a fast and published it throughout Nineveh saying, “Let neither man nor beast, herd nor flock, taste any thing: let them not feed, nor drink water: But let man and beast be covered with sackcloth, and cry mightily unto God: yea let them turn everyone from his evil way, and from the violence that is in their hands. Who can tell if God will turn and repent, and turn away from his fierce anger, that we perish not!” Jonah 3:7-9 KJV

The people of Nineveh took Jonah’s message and its charges seriously. God saw their works, as they turned from their evil ways. Their repentance moved the Lord to extend grace and mercy to them. Jonah doing the Lords bidding had PAID OFF for the people of Nineveh. This was cause for celebration don’t you think? Look at the lives saved, and the pride Jonah should have felt as a servant of God.


Second Time Around

Second Time Around

Second Time Around

“And the word of the Lord came unto Jonah the second time, saying, Arise, go unto Nineveh, that great city, and preach unto it the preaching that I bid thee. So Jonah arose, and went unto Nineveh according to the word of the Lord. Now Nineveh was an exceeding great city of three days’ journey.” Jonah 3:1-3 KJV

Because of the grace and mercy of the Good Lord, Jonah was going to get a second chance to do Gods bidding. And this time when the Word came to Jonah’s ears he arose and went. A now obedient, air breathing, fish free smelling prophet was ready to take up his bed and not just walk but run to duty.

Let’s put a pause on Jonah for a few minutes as we talk about the phrase “take up your bed and walk.”Did you know this term represents a call to action? Let’s look at the story, there was a pool called Bethesda, it was where the blind, lame, and paralyzed would lie. Not just outward infirmities, but inwardly as well. People who were sick in their bodies and mind would lie as close to the pool as possible, waiting to get their chance at healing in the pool. The word states, that at a specific season an angel would come and trouble the water, releasing miraculous healing. 

There was a man, who had been sick a long time, he could never seem to get his chance to get into the water. But look at God, When Jesus learned that he had been in that condition for such a long time. Jesus asked him one question, He said, Do you want to get well?” This makes me so emotional, as I heard the Lord saying to me, “Jannie, my daughter, do you want get well?  The man didn’t know Jesus and went to explaining his dilemma as though he was talking to just some ordinary person. But he was in the presence of the King of Kings, the Lord of Lords, Jesus Christ. He said to Jesus, Sir, I have no one to help me into the pool when the water is stirred, while I am trying to get in, someone else goes down ahead of me.

 Let’s look at the concept of people waiting on an angel to release healing into the water opens up some thought. Here I see two types of power represented here: external and internal. On one hand, the miraculous healing power given to the angel by God, who is the resource to externally complete His will. And On the other hand, we see Jesus who is the source, that is all inclusive, as God on earth. 

Jesus who is both wise and powerful, speaks to the man again, this time he is not asking a question, but instead with commanding power and authority, says to him, “get up! Pick up your bed and walk.” All he had to do was just believe. How did the story end? It ended with the man taking his first step. 

As we move friends to the starting line, we do so with faith and no more excuses. A now motivated Jonah made the three day journey in one. Jonah enters the city of Nineveh.  

Remember friends, we are each other’s keeper and the only time we should be looking down non someone is when we are helping them up.