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Jonah 3:1-4

Talks for Growing Christians

The Lord Recommissions Jonah to Go to Nineveh

Jonah 3:1-4

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Lesson Number 6

Background Notes

Doctrinal Point(s)

  1. God graciously recommissions His erring servants.
  2. God graciously re-engages His erring creatures.

Practical Application

  1. You can know the Lord as the God of the second chance.

Questions

  1. When God called him, Jonah went in the other direction. God called him a second time, “Arise, go…” How did Jonah respond this time?
  2. Describe the physical grandeur of the ancient city of Nineveh.
  3. Is it because of this grandeur and power that God called the city great?
  4. “Nineveh was an exceedingly great city, a three day’s walk.” Does this mean that it would have taken Jonah three days to walk across or around the ancient city of Nineveh?
  5. Nineveh needed grace to be saved. What did Jonah need?
  6. Is the Book of Jonah a message of judgment or of grace?

Answers

  1. Jonah arose and went according to the word of the Lord.
  2. The buried ruins of ancient Nineveh have been excavated in modern Iraq. Magnificent buildings and sculptures have been found in the ruins. Two massive walls surrounded the city. The huge inner wall was 100’ high and 50’ wide, wide enough for three chariots to ride abreast.
  3. No. God called Nineveh great because of the great number of people who lived there. It is estimated that at least 500,000 people lived in the city itself. He looked at the number of people who needed to be saved.
  4. No. The point is that there were so many people that it would have taken Jonah a three-day journey to preach to all of the people.
  5. Jonah needed grace to serve.
  6. It is a message of grace. God is not willing that any should perish (See 2 Peter 3:9.)

Discuss/Consider

  1. God loves to recommission His servants when they are restored. He did this with Jonah. He did this with Peter, and He did this with John Mark. Has He done this with you?
  2. Sin broke the relationship and communion between God and man. From the moment of the fall, the human race has been alienated from God. But God graciously re-engages His erring creatures because He still loves them. Review how God has reached out, seeking to re-engage His creatures through the ages.

Challenge

  1. You can know the Lord as the God of second chance. Have you failed the Lord in some way? God is a God of second-time grace. Are you a Jonah? A Peter? A John Mark? God has not written you off.

Key Verses

  • “The word of the Lord came to Jonah the second time.” Jonah 3:1
  • “Jonah arose and went, according to the word of the Lord.” Jonah 3:3
  • “Jonah cried, ‘Yet forty days, and Nineveh shall be overthrown.’” Jonah 3:4

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