Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Is the USA the Nineveh of Old?

If Jonah were to come to Washington today or your town/city would his voice be heard? Would the heads of state, leaders of the communities and citizens respond like those living in Nineveh?

I just happened to open to the end part of the story, reading in the book of Jonah this morning. He did everything in his power not to go to Nineveh and warn the people like God had instructed him to do!

You know the story. He gets on a ocean liner going the opposite way and God causes a storm to come up on the ship - and to save the ship and crew Jonah tells them to throw him overboard, because God would spare them - that his disobedience was the cause of the the frightening storm. Which they sadly agreed to do and become believer in the true God in the meantime, having been convinced (they'd been pagan idol worshippers before hand).

So, after the "big fish", spits Jonah out on the shoreline closes to Nineveh (I wonder if this is how the idea of submarines came into being!), he goes on to do what God instructed him to do: "… go to Nineveh, that great city, and cry out against it: for their wickedness has come up before Me."

Jonah tells those in the city (it took 3 days to walk the extent of it), "Yet forty days, and Nineveh shall be overthrown!" Those in Nineveh believed him, even the King, who had everyone and living animal to wear sack cloth ("cry mightily to God … turn from his evil way and from the violence that is in his hands.") and fast (no water or food) in hopes that "God will turn and relent, and turn away from His fierce anger, so that we may not perish?"

"Then God saw their works, that they turned from their evil way; and God relented from the disaster that He had said He would bring upon them, and He did not do it." Jonah was upset to see that Grace of God, because he didn't like the Nineveh-ites (because they were ruthless, corrupt, etc.) and he knew that God would forgive them it they turned to him! God tells him "… should I not pity Nineveh …in which are more than 120 thousand persons who cannot discern between their right hand and their left - and much livestock?"

Have each of us gone our own ways, attempting to fulfill the lusts of our flesh, ego's, pride or appetites? If confronted today, are you willing to put aside that which is your idol, God-less life and confess to the Living, True God that you need His forgiveness, even 'desire' His favor? The Nineveh-ites did, forfeiting evilness/wickedness.

Even Jonah learned a lesson from the LORD too. One he didn't like but he learned none the less. The Great Love of God is beyond human's conception and logic. But, God is not a condoner of wickedness. Thankfully, True!

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Thank you for your considerate comment. May we each receive gladly the LORD! and be filled with His Truth, Spirit and Joy of Salvation and Peace, and Trust in His Eternal Grace.