God once again calls Jonah to Nineveh. This time Jonah heeds the Lord’s command and makes the 500+ mile journey. Once in Nineveh, Jonah proclaims that the city will be destroyed in 40 days. Upon hearing this message all the people repent and turn to the Lord. Seeing their repentance, the Lord relents from disaster. Jonah then sits down and waits for the disaster that never happens. At this Jonah is angry and complains that the Lord has shown Nineveh grace. God’s response is that he cares for these people, which is the reason why he sent Jonah to them.
What we see in Jonah is interesting. Here we see a man of God who hates a group of people so much that he is furious when they repent and turn to God. Jonah was all about the Jews and the nation of Israel. Everyone else could burn in hell for all he cared, at least that’s the idea we get from his actions. That is racism and nationalism at its core. When it comes to the gospel, are we reluctant to share it with certain people because we do not want them to know God? What does that reveal about our own hearts? The lesson here is that the gospel is for everyone. Everyone who hears is given an opportunity to repent and believe. And we, as believers, should not restrict who we share God’s love and grace with.
Have you let personal hatred toward others hinder your ability to share the gospel?