June 29-July 5 Jonah


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Our little Church is using a Chronological Bible Reading Schedule by Skip Andrews. It can be found here: http://www.churchofchristduluthga.org/
Each Sunday a lesson is given from some of that week's reading. This lesson covers June 29-July 5.

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June 29-July 5 Jonah

  1. 1. Go To Nineveh Jonah! <ul><li>We are going to talk about Jonah today. Not about Jonah and the fish, but the real lesson contained in the book of Jonah. </li></ul>
  2. 2. Go To Nineveh Jonah! <ul><li>He had every right to run (he thought). Why should he go to that stinking city? He hated the place. Why should he warn the Ninevites about Gods judgment? </li></ul>
  3. 3. Go To Nineveh Jonah! <ul><li>After how they had treated his people, they deserved to be wiped out. The last thing Jonah wanted was for his enemies to receive Gods blessing. </li></ul>
  4. 4. Go To Nineveh Jonah! <ul><li>So he ran ... as fast and as far as he could away from what God wanted him to do. </li></ul><ul><li>But God had other plans. </li></ul><ul><li>You know the story: God stirred up a storm. Jonah bailed out of the boat and ended up in the belly of the fish. </li></ul>
  5. 5. Go To Nineveh Jonah! <ul><li>God gave Jonah time to think over his actions and attitudes. For the first time Jonah didn't complain, he prayed. (Probably the only time anyone ever prayed for a fish-burp.) </li></ul>
  6. 6. Go To Nineveh Jonah! <ul><li>The prayer was answered and Jonah eventually traveled to hated Nineveh. He preached to the people there. Though his odor wasn't appealing, his message was and the Ninevites repented. </li></ul>
  7. 7. Go To Nineveh Jonah! <ul><li>God relented (as Jonah knew he would), and Jonah fumed, furious over the turn of events. He sulked. </li></ul><ul><li>We can be so difficult. </li></ul><ul><li>But God can be so patient. </li></ul>
  8. 8. Go To Nineveh Jonah! <ul><li>The Book of Jonah is more than a fascinating account of one man's futile attempt to run away from God. It is a story of God's love for even the most unlovable, despicable people we can imagine—and of our responsibility to tell them the Good News. </li></ul>
  9. 9. Go To Nineveh Jonah! <ul><li>Situation: God told Jonah to preach to the Assyrians in Nineveh. Jonah knew that if he preached to them, they would have an opportunity to avoid God's wrath. Jonah hoped to see these enemies punished by God, so he ran away. </li></ul>
  10. 10. Go To Nineveh Jonah! <ul><li>Observation: </li></ul><ul><li>Running away from God can't be done. Jonah discovered that. God's dominion extends everywhere. </li></ul>
  11. 11. Go To Nineveh Jonah! <ul><li>Inspiration: How infinitely more difficult it is for us to grasp what Jesus meant when He said: &quot;God is Spirit.&quot; Jesus knew! His mind was not limited as our minds are limited. </li></ul>
  12. 12. Go To Nineveh Jonah! <ul><li>His eyes were not focused on the mud puddle of life. He knew full well the borderless reaches of the Spirit, and He came to try to give us some understanding of its wonders, its comfort, and its peace. </li></ul>
  13. 13. Go To Nineveh Jonah! <ul><li>The spirit is not something bound in a body. The Bible declares that God is a Spirit that He is not limited to body; He is not limited to shape; He is not limited to boundaries or bonds; </li></ul>
  14. 14. Go To Nineveh Jonah! <ul><li>He is absolutely immeasurable and indiscernible by eyes that can see only physical things. The Bible tells us that because He has no such limitations He can be everywhere at once—that He can hear all, see all, and know all. </li></ul>
  15. 15. Go To Nineveh Jonah! <ul><li>He can be everywhere at once, heeding the prayers of all who call out in the name of Christ; performing the mighty miracles that keep the stars in their places and the plants bursting up through the earth and the fish swimming in the sea. </li></ul>
  16. 16. Go To Nineveh Jonah! <ul><li>There is no limit to God. There is no limit to His wisdom. There is no limit to His power. There is no limit to His love. </li></ul>
  17. 17. Go To Nineveh Jonah! <ul><li>If you have been trying to limit God—stop it! You wouldn't try to limit the ocean. You cannot limit the universe. You wouldn't be bold enough to try to change the course of the moon, or to stop the earth as it turns on its axis! </li></ul>
  18. 18. Go To Nineveh Jonah! <ul><li>How everlastingly more foolish it is to try to limit the God who created and controls all these wonders! (From Peace with God by Billy Graham) </li></ul>
  19. 19. Go To Nineveh Jonah! <ul><li>Application: </li></ul><ul><li>Did you ever try to run away from your shadow as a child? You can't run from God either. When God tells you to go somewhere, listen and follow. </li></ul>
  20. 20. Go To Nineveh Jonah! <ul><li>Where is God sending you to tell others about him—to your family, next door, your coworkers? Will you run from God's call? </li></ul>
  21. 21. Go To Nineveh Jonah! <ul><li>Exploration: Sovereignty- </li></ul><ul><li>Job 37:23 NET As for the Almighty, we cannot attain to him! He is great in power, but justice and abundant righteousness he does not oppress. </li></ul>
  22. 22. Go To Nineveh Jonah! <ul><li>Job 38:41 NET Who prepares prey for the raven, when its young cry out to God and wander about for lack of food? </li></ul><ul><li>Revelation 19:16 NET He has a name written on his clothing and on his thigh: &quot;King of kings and Lord of lords.&quot; </li></ul>
  23. 23. Jonah Finally Obeyed <ul><li>Situation: </li></ul><ul><li>Jonah finally obeyed God and preached in Nineveh. The people and their king responded immediately, and God had compassion on them. </li></ul>
  24. 24. Jonah Finally Obeyed <ul><li>Observation: </li></ul><ul><li>God's words can have a transforming effect on people, causing them to repent from their sins, </li></ul>
  25. 25. Jonah Finally Obeyed <ul><li>Inspiration: </li></ul><ul><li>Violent strife and conflict have haunted the human race to one degree or another since the day Adam and Eve first chose to rebel against God. </li></ul>
  26. 26. Jonah Finally Obeyed <ul><li>At those times, death rides through every city and town bringing suffering and death. </li></ul><ul><li>But sometimes, just as suddenly, we enter a time of peace and relative calm. </li></ul>
  27. 27. Jonah Finally Obeyed <ul><li>Why? ... because many have listened to His message of warning and turned to Him in repentance and faith. </li></ul>
  28. 28. Jonah Finally Obeyed <ul><li>A good example of this is seen in God's dealings with the people of the ancient Assyrian capital of Nineveh. They were an evil, pagan people who worshiped idols and often fought against God's people. </li></ul>
  29. 29. Jonah Finally Obeyed <ul><li>God sent the prophet Jonah to Nineveh to proclaim His coming judgment to them: &quot;Go to the great city of Nineveh and proclaim to it the message I give you.... Forty more days and Nineveh will be overturned.&quot; </li></ul>
  30. 30. Jonah Finally Obeyed <ul><li>But when the king of Nineveh heard Jonah's message, he repented and ordered the whole people to repent as well. As a result God's judgment was averted. </li></ul>
  31. 31. Jonah Finally Obeyed <ul><li>Only later, when evil increased in the generations after Jonah and the people failed to repent, did God's judgment finally fall on Nineveh. God's judgment is often this way. </li></ul>
  32. 32. Jonah Finally Obeyed <ul><li>Some day it will come in all its fullness and finality, but in the meantime it may be that God's hand of judgment will pause when we repent. (From Storm Warning by Billy Graham) </li></ul>
  33. 33. Jonah Finally Obeyed <ul><li>Application: </li></ul><ul><li>If God tells you to speak to others about their actions, take courage. You might be surprised at how many accept your words and repent. </li></ul>
  34. 34. Jonah Finally Obeyed <ul><li>Exploration: Repentance- </li></ul><ul><li>2 Kings 22:19 NET ‘You displayed a sensitive spirit and humbled yourself before the Lord when you heard how I intended to make this place and its residents into an appalling example of an accursed people. </li></ul>
  35. 35. Jonah Finally Obeyed <ul><li>You tore your clothes and wept before me, and I have heard you,' says the Lord. </li></ul><ul><li>Matthew 3:8 NET Therefore produce fruit that proves your repentance, </li></ul>
  36. 36. Jonah Finally Obeyed <ul><li>Acts 17:30 NET Therefore, although God has overlooked such times of ignorance, he now commands all people everywhere to repent, </li></ul><ul><li>(Max Lucado Devotional Bible) </li></ul>
  37. 37. Upside-Down Values <ul><li>Enmity and hostility have a way of turning otherwise kind and compassionate people into vicious and vindictive people. That is one reason why Scripture cautions us against allowing bitterness and hatred to remain in our hearts. </li></ul>
  38. 38. Upside-Down Values <ul><li>These attitudes can seriously distort our values, turning them upside down so that we care more about things such as our own honor, our material well-being, or our national or ethnic pride, than we do about people. </li></ul>
  39. 39. Upside-Down Values <ul><li>Jonah fell into this trap. God called him to preach repentance to the people of Nineveh, but Jonah resisted because they were bitter enemies of his people, the Israelites. Only after a near-death experience did the unwilling prophet finally comply. </li></ul>
  40. 40. Plant Teaches Jonah About People <ul><li>However, his values were still upside-down. When he complained about the repentance of the Ninevites, God taught him a lesson using a shade plant. </li></ul>
  41. 41. Plant Teaches Jonah About People <ul><li>The Lord exposed the prophet's distorted attitudes by showing that he cared more for the loss of the plant than for the plight of an entire people whom God was determined to save. </li></ul>
  42. 42. Plant Teaches Jonah About People <ul><li>Jonah 4:5 NET Jonah left the city and sat down east of it. He made a shelter for himself there and sat down under it in the shade to see what would happen to the city. </li></ul>
  43. 43. Plant Teaches Jonah About People <ul><li>6 The LORD God appointed a little plant and caused it to grow up over Jonah to be a shade over his head to rescue him from his misery. Now Jonah was very delighted about the little plant. </li></ul>
  44. 44. Plant Teaches Jonah About People <ul><li>7 So God sent a worm at dawn the next day, and it attacked the little plant so that it dried up. 8 When the sun began to shine, God sent a hot east wind. </li></ul>
  45. 45. Plant Teaches Jonah About People <ul><li>So the sun beat down on Jonah's head, and he grew faint. So he despaired of life, and said, &quot;I would rather die than live!&quot; 9 God said to Jonah, &quot;Are you really so very angry about the little plant?&quot; </li></ul>
  46. 46. Plant Teaches Jonah About People <ul><li>And he said, &quot;I am as angry as I could possibly be!&quot; 10 The LORD said, &quot;You were upset about this little plant, something for which you have not worked nor did you do anything to make it grow. It grew up overnight and died the next day. </li></ul>
  47. 47. Plant Teaches Jonah About People <ul><li>11 Should I not be even more concerned about Nineveh, this enormous city? There are more than one hundred twenty thousand people in it who do not know right from wrong, as well as many animals!&quot; </li></ul>
  48. 48. Plant Teaches Jonah About People <ul><li>Can we see this picture? Jonah has picked a spot to watch the destruction of Nineveh. He has made himself comfortable with a soda in one hand and a burger in the other. He wants to see fire & brimstone but instead he’s taught a lesson from a plant. </li></ul>
  49. 49. Plant Teaches Jonah About People <ul><li>Jonah and the plant </li></ul><ul><li>Jonah cared for a plant </li></ul><ul><li>God and the people of Nineveh </li></ul><ul><li>God cared for the people of Nineveh </li></ul>
  50. 50. Plant Teaches Jonah About People <ul><li>Jonah and the plant </li></ul><ul><li>Jonah was concerned for himself </li></ul><ul><li>God and the people of Nineveh </li></ul><ul><li>God was concerned for the welfare of others. </li></ul>
  51. 51. Plant Teaches Jonah About People <ul><li>Jonah and the plant </li></ul><ul><li>Jonah did not create the plant. </li></ul><ul><li>God and the people of Nineveh </li></ul><ul><li>God created all the people and animals in Nineveh. </li></ul>
  52. 52. Plant Teaches Jonah About People <ul><li>Jonah and the plant </li></ul><ul><li>Jonah did nothing for the plant. </li></ul><ul><li>God and the people of Nineveh </li></ul><ul><li>God took care of Nineveh. </li></ul>
  53. 53. Plant Teaches Jonah About People <ul><li>Jonah and the plant </li></ul><ul><li>The plant had temporal value. </li></ul><ul><li>God and the people of Nineveh </li></ul><ul><li>The people of Nineveh had both temporal and eternal value. </li></ul>
  54. 54. Plant Teaches Jonah About People <ul><li>Jonah and the plant </li></ul><ul><li>Jonah’s primary concern was for his own personal comfort. </li></ul><ul><li>God and the people of Nineveh </li></ul><ul><li>Gods primary concern was for human life—and spiritual sensitivity toward Him. </li></ul>
  55. 55. Plant Teaches Jonah About People <ul><li>Jonah and the plant </li></ul><ul><li>Jonah’s values displayed selfishness and an upside-down perspective on life. </li></ul><ul><li>God and the people of Nineveh </li></ul><ul><li>Gods values displayed His love and a proper perspective on life. </li></ul>
  56. 56. Plant Teaches Jonah About People <ul><li>What do your attitudes toward others—especially your enemies—reveal about your values? Have you allowed yourself to become &quot;upside-down&quot; in your concern for people? </li></ul>
  57. 57. Plant Teaches Jonah About People <ul><li>If so, why not step back and take a long, hard look at what matters to God. Then take steps to reorient your life so that it honors what the Lord value's. (Word In Life Study Bible) </li></ul>