Are you sitting down? If not, prepare yourself for a shock. I found myself last night thinking of a career politician (that shall remain unnamed) and the harm “he” had done to our children, our families, and our country. He is doubtless in the later years of his life. He is closer to hell than he has ever been. And still I cringed inside thinking that he could trust in Jesus, repent of his sins, and die and go to heaven.
In my mind and heart – it should be too late for him. The children he has killed will never live again. The women he has scarred will never be made whole again. The marriages he threw away and the futures he squandered are never going to be restored. He will never be able to pay for great evil he has brought to our people and our land. Never.
That attitude is precisely why Jonah ended up at Nineveh against his will and by way of a whale of a taxi. Have you ever heard a sermon that empathized with Jonah? I didn’t think so. And have you read his book and thought, “O, poor Jonah.” No. We are very hard on Jonah.
But the truth is: Get the right sinner in my crosshairs and I cry out with Jonah when he looked on that sinful city and literally yelled at God, “I knew You would do this! You would have mercy on them! And if you are going to spare them, what good is it to live? Just kill me now!”
The Divine answer? God never said they were worthy of grace. Because they weren’t. He never said they would be able to provide reparations for their sins. Because they couldn’t. He merely said, “You pity the plant that I gave you for a day. Why don’t you pity these people who are so ignorant they get lost between their right and left hands?”
And that is where the book of Jonah ends. It doesn’t say how Jonah responded – because that doesn’t matter. What matters is our response. Will I let my Jonah heart be broken and remade before the God Who has been so gracious to me?
Come with me as we grow in fellowship with each other and our Savior to whom belongs the Amazing Escape from sin and death and the Amazing Journey into glorious life.