Have you ever looked down on someone, just because he or she is not a Christian like you? Some of us believers, look at people who are deep in sin as though their sin is beyond cure. We make judgments on them and even expect to see God judge them for what they have done. That was the major problem with Jonah the Prophet. Actually, he had reservation when God sent him to preach to the Ninevites, thus calling off the assignment and running towards Tarshish, with a made up mind of his expectation on the Ninevites. God had no options left but to send him back and in a hard way. What amazes me is his hard hitting message to the Ninevites, with no option for repentance. It’s written “On the day Jonah entered the city, he shouted to the crowds: “Forty days from now Nineveh will be destroyed!” [Johan 3:4]. Unfortunately for him, “the people of Nineveh believed God’s message, and from the greatest to the least, and they declared a fast and put on burlap to show their sorrow. The bible continues to say, “When the king of Nineveh heard what Jonah was saying, he stepped down from his throne and took off his royal robes. He dressed himself in burlap and sat on a heap of ashes. Then the king and his nobles sent this decree throughout the city: “No one, not even the animals from your herds and flocks, may eat or drink anything at all. People and animals alike must wear garments of mourning, and everyone must pray earnestly to God. They must turn from their evil ways and stop all their violence. Who can tell? he said,” Perhaps even yet God will change his mind and hold back his fierce anger from destroying us. [Jonah 3:5-9] .God was watching this humility of the people from heaven and When he saw what they had done and how they had put a stop to their evil ways, he changed his mind and did not carry out the destruction he had threatened.[Jonah 3:10]
What amazes me is this, Johan was aware that God might be merciful on Ninevites. It was hurting to him when God changed his plans and forgave them. This change of plans greatly upset Jonah, and he became very angry. So he complained to the Lord about it: “Didn’t I say before I left home that you would do this, Lord? That is why I ran away to Tarshish! I knew that you are a merciful and compassionate God, slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love. You are eager to turn back from destroying people. Just kill me now, Lord! I’d rather be dead than alive if what I predicted will not happen.”[Jonah 4:5-9]
I keep wondering “Which kind of preacher was this man called Jonah? You would expect a good evangelist with such a heart throbbing message to celebrate but Jonah was Angry. He was not angry with someone like you and me, but WITH GOD! Huh! In verse 4,”The Lord replied, “Is it right for you to be angry about this? ”Yes,” Jonah retorted, “even angry enough to die!”[vs 9]. God then told him that ” Nineveh has more than 120,000 people living in spiritual darkness, not to mention all the animals. Shouldn’t I feel sorry for such a great city?”[[Jonah 4:11]. I believe Paul borrowed his message to the Corinthians from God’s reaction to the Ninevites. He told them ,”If the Good News we preach is hidden behind a veil, it is hidden only from people who are perishing. He then says ,”Satan, who is the god of this world, has blinded the minds of those who don’t believe. They are unable to see the glorious light of the Good News. They don’t understand this message about the glory of Christ, who is the exact likeness of God. [2 Corinthians 4:3-4]
Saint of God, regardless of the sins of your relatives and friends, husband, wife or whoever, but one thing i know, is that God wants them saved. He sent Jonah with a message that delivered the Ninevites from spiritual darkness. Nowander Paul the apostle says, ” it’s Satan who has blinded the minds of unbelievers…Such spiritual blindness could be removed easily, if we prayed for those near and far, who need their eyes opened, for the glory of God.
Today let do this:
Write down the names of your relatives and friends who you know are veiled from the truth by the blinding of Satan.
Pray that God may be merciful to them and the unbelievers around you and in your homes
Use the verses in 2 Corinthians 4:3-4 to pray that God may remove that spiritual blindness surrounding them, and pray they may know him and his son Jesus.
Pray that God may remove Satan hand that has blinded your relatives minds and open their spiritual eyes to see the beauty that is in Jesus name.
Use [2 Corinthians 4:3-4] and [Jonah 4:11] to cry to the Lord on their behalf. Take some time, even if it means 10,20,30 minutes, as the Lord leads you, to take the people you know and love to the Lord’s throne for mercy. Let us not be like Jonah who was pronouncing judgment without mercy, and with a bitter heart, on God’s people, yet God still loved the Ninevites and wanted them saved. From the time of Nineveh, we don’t hear God using Jonah again but his will must be done, wether we do it in pain or with love. It does not matter what people have done to us but free yourself from that evil heart and ask God to be merciful in every thing. He reserves the right of Judgement and mercy and we can’t twist his hand to do our will. His will must be done. He is able to do anything for the glory of his name. Let’s pray.. God bless you
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