No one expected such a big harvest!
Jonah was a disobedient prophet. God asked him to go and preach in the city of Nineveh. But he didn’t want to go there and ran away to the opposite side. Now, in the belly of the fish, Jonah called upon the Lord for deliverance and salvation. God delivered him and the great fish vomited Jonah to a dry land.[bctt tweet=”History has never seen a turn around like this. It is possible today for our cities and people.” username=”sam2017insights”]
Bible says the word of the Lord came to Jonah the second time and God said to him “Arise, go to Nineveh”. Nineveh was an exceedingly great city. He had to walk three days in the city. This time Jonah obeyed the Lord. I am so happy Jonah got a second chance. Bible and the world provide many examples where people didn’t get a second chance from God. The second opportunity is not guaranteed and that is why Bible says in 2 Corinthians 6:2, “I tell you, now is the time of God’s favor, now is the day of salvation.” Hebrews 3:15 also reminds, “Today if you hear the His voice, Do not harden your hearts, as when they provoked Me.”
Jonah began to preach in the city and he cried out and said,”Yet forty days and Nineveh will be overthrown”. A small one sentence preaching. Yes, that is all he preached. Do you know what happened? The whole city – the whole people in the City of Nineveh believed in God. Bible says they called a fast and put on sackcloth from the greatest to the least of them. The word of preaching reached to the King of Nineveh. He arose from his throne, laid aside his robe from him, covered himself with sackcloth, and sat in the ashes. This vividly portrays the repentance of a pagan king. The king issues a royal proclamation and it said, “In Nineveh by the decree of the king and his nobles; do not let man, beast, herd or flock taste a thing. Do not let them eat or drink water. But both man and beast must be covered with sackcloth, and let them call on God earnestly that each may turn from his wicked way and from the violence which is in his hands. Who knows, God may turn and relent, and withdraw His burning anger so that we shall not perish.” The king and the whole people in the city along with their flocks and animals showed the contrite and repentant heart toward God so that they won’t perish by God’s anger.
The history has never seen a great repentance and revival like this so far, I believe. The whole city and everyone repented their sins and wicked actions and turned to God.
Now, why and how did this happen? Not because of the faithfulness and sincerity of Jonah. He didn’t want to go there and preach there. First, he hated the people of Nineveh. He didn’t have any compassion for the lost people in that city. Secondly, he was afraid to preach there. These people are so cruel and wicked and he feared his life is in danger to go and preach there. Thirdly, he didn’t want God to save them because he knew if they turn to God in repentance, God will extend His grace and forgiveness and Jonah hated them so he doesn’t want God to love these people in the city of Nineveh.
The only reason why this happened was due to God’s grace and compassion- no other reason. God said to Jonah in Jonah 3:10-11, “Then the Lord said, “You had compassion on the plant for which you did not work, and which you did not cause to grow, which came up overnight and perished over night.” And then the Lord asked him this question, “And should I not have compassion on Nineveh, the great city in which there are more than 120,000 persons who do not know the difference between their right and left hand, as well as many animals?”
Do you know God has compassion on our cities? The city of Dallas Fortworth, New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, Atlanta, Tokyo, New Delhi, Singapore, Paris, Dubai and so forth.
When you and I obey God and bring God’s word in the Bible to these cities and people around our neighborhood, you never know what God will do in and through you.
The city of Nineveh was ready for repentance. They had their wickedness and evil actions all over them and they were ripe for harvest. How about the cities in the United States of America? For the last several years, this country had far away from God. No prayer in homes and schools and darkness and evil is controlling the minds and heart of people. Our country and the whole world is ripe for repentance due to their sins and rebelliousness to God.
Jonah 3:10 says, “When God saw their deeds, that they turned from their wicked way, then God relented concerning the calamity which He had declared He would bring upon them. And He did not do it.” The beautiful results of repentance and turning to God. God loved it and He spared them from the impending severe calamities and judgment.
What is that it takes to get saved from God’s coming judgment? My friend, just your repentance from your evil ways, seeking God and His face. They didn’t know much – but they responded to God’s call for repentance.
For the city of Nineveh, this is all happened in a matter of few days or few hours. When God bids you and you promptly respond, things start changing suddenly. Are you and our cities ripe for God’s judgment or God’s revival? We don’t know – only God knows. But we have a calling to take the word of the Bible to our cities and neighborhood. God will do the rest miraculous work from His side.