Jonah has set out to flee from God’s call. So he boards a ship that is destined for Tarshish.
As I said before, thank God that He does not just let us go about our lives when we chose to turn our backs on Him. God brings a great storm on the ship and the sailors pray to their own gods and do everything within their power to keep the ship on its course.
Ever stop to think about how your choices can bring calamity to those around you?
I mean Jonah made this choice all by himself, but the consequences of his decision threatened the lives of others. Luckily God is merciful and He doesn’t always use such measures to get our attention, but it obviously can’t be ruled out.
Where is Jonah when this is all happening? He is asleep in the bottom of the boat.
Have you ever been so stressed out that you just seem to collapse? This is another clue as to the inner turmoil Jonah had to be going through. He knew what he was doing was wrong, and he probably was none too happy about his decisions. But, despite all this he still refuses to repent for his sins.
The ship’s captain calls on Jonah to pray to his God, but Jonah either refused or just went through the motions. Jonah won’t even confess to the men on the ship until God calls him out with the casting of the lots.
Jonah confesses to the sailors who he is and why this is all happening. He says he knows this is why the storm has come and all they have to do is through him overboard. Then the waters will calm and they will be allowed to go on their way.
This is Jonah’s first hint that he would rather be dead than do what God wants him to do.
Jonah did not know that a fish would come get him. I don’t think that he had any idea that he could swim back to dry land. Jonah wasn’t even trying to avoid a death at the hands of his enemies. At this point, God was his enemy.
This whole time the storm is getting worse and worse. The sailors cannot believe that Jonah would do such a thing, but yet they have a very interesting response to Jonah’s confession.
Next time we will begin with a look at how the sailors react to Jonah’s situation.