SUNDAY ( FEBRUARY 21, 2021 )


I’ll be looking at Jonah this morning and seeing why he was so effective in the message he preached to Nineveh and, with so few words.

( Jonah 3:1-2 )

And the word of the Lord came unto Jonah the second time, saying, ( 2 ) Arise, go unto Nineveh, that great city, and preach unto it the preaching that I bid thee.

We see here that God had already told Jonah what to say to the people of Nineveh. The very first time he spoke to him he told him what to say. ( Jonah 1:2 ) Arise, go to Niveveh, that great city, and cry against it; for their wickedness is come up before me.

Everything that Jonah needed; he already had before he faced the things he faced. He had ability, the truth and the hand of God to support him. They only thing he actually lacked was ( will ), a desire to do so. What if we bring this story down to the average Sunday School room in the Average Church today? How can we relate this story to what we see. Within that, let’s look at the average Sunday School teacher as well.

In reality, it seems that Jonah had made a choice to whom he would speak. He was a Hebrew, therefore he spoke to the Hebrew people. Here, we see God directing him to speak to Gentiles, a wicked people, Jonah refused to do so. Are we not guilty of the same things? We go to our perspective Church, Sunday School room and listen to our Sunday School teacher. In more cases than not, that is the extent of our reach! Neither the teacher nr any of his or her students takes the message of God out of that Sunday School room.

We like the way we live. We assume that sinners will watch the way we live and, be drawn to Christ by our actions and, we never share the message that God would have us to share. God, through and by his Holy Spirit is calling us to go out to the sinners of this world. His desire is for us to carry a message of destruction because of a sinful life style.In a little while, I’ll get back to the message that Jonah preached to Nineveh.

( is it possible )! Are we living in the ( Spiritual belly of a great fish )? Is God waiting for his people to humble themselves and submit to teach and preach his words?

In the United States of America, we love inviting people to hear our pastor, to come to our Church, our Sunday. However, that is not the message that ( a wicked nation ) needs to hear from our lips. If we can consider ourselves ( spiritual ) then; that lives and dies within the walls of our Church and, Sunday School rooms in America. ( I believe ) it could be more than one reason for that. I can see how we become afraid we will lose our clout or place of authority within our perspective places if we allow other sinners to come in with the power of the Holy Ghost upon their lives. Therefore, like Jonah, we pick and choose who we share with!

Once God got Jonah’s attention, he became very passionate about speaking God’s truth and, that to exactly the people God told him to speak to. We read in ( Chapter 3 ) where he made a ( three day journey in one day ). Notice what he says when he gets there. ( Yet forty days, and Nineveh shall be overthrown ). He put a timeline on the destruction that was coming!

What will it take for us to realize that every lost sinner has but a short time to prepare to meet God? Not one of us is promised tomorrow! when we ( being born again believers ) shut up and refuse to be a witness to those that are lost in our everyday walk of life we are doing exactly the same thing Jonah was doing in the beginning.We refuse to preach the word, share the destruction coming in the life of a sinner that rejects Christ.

Once Jonah had preached what God bid him to preach, his job we done. He had no control of what the people would do. When believers witness to sinners. When we share the gospel and , the destruction to come by their rejection then, our job is done! Only God can draw conviction on the heart of a sinner. However, the only way the Spirit of God can draw conviction on a sinner is for a believer to share that truth with that sinner.

When Jonah preached, his message was effectual. His message not only reached the people in the village but, it also went all the way to the King of Nineveh. It brought great changes in that whole city.When we as ( born again believers ) realize that it’s a great possibility that the sin curse on a nation is because we are not seeking God’s will, it might just open our spiritual eyes! When we leave our Church buildings, see ourselves in the ( belly of the fish ) awake out of our spiritual termoil, then God will place a passion on each of us that we will not believe! That passion will draw us to our knees and, cause us to speak spiritual things.

Look at this verse: ( Philemon 1:6 )

That the communication of thy faith may become effectual by the acknowledging of every good thing which is in you in Christ Jesus.

Can we as pastors, Sunday School teacher and students learn to communicate our faith? To acknowledge every good thing that is in us in Christ Jesus? When we consider a nation such as the United States of America, a nation that has a Church with the name of Jesus Christ on every corner, a nation where 75% of its people claim to know Jesus Christ; what do we have to assume the problem is? The problem is with our communicating ability or willingness to do so?

As I look at myself as a pastor, a teacher, a born again believer and consider that people will go to a devil’s hell because of my lack of communicating the truth of God’s word to them, that very thought draws tears to my eyes and, conviction on my heart!

Who owns the Church you attend? The very position you hold in that Church, why do you fulfill you duties there? Is it for personal gradification or are you truly seeking to please God. I can see how it was a personal thing to Jonah. I might just be to you, only you can decide. Only you can decide whether you are just going through a mation within a building or, truly seeking God’s will for you life.

Look at the last chapter in Jonah.Jonah is displeased! In the very last verse we see that there were 120,000 people that repented and got right with God, transforming a whole city, even to leadership and, Jonah is displeased? I believe we become satisfied with our Churches ( just as they are ). We don’t mind other members coming in as long as our playhouses are not torn down. We fear people becoming more powerful than we are, being recognized above us!

Our nation is spiritually where it is because our Churches are where they are. When Jonah got on the ship going down to Tarshish, think about this; that ship was floating above destruction. Jonah ; by his actions brought that ship next door to destruction alone. What would happen in our country if our people ever realize that much of what we face is because of people that say they love God; not being obedient to him?

I want you to consider this. There was a place in ( Genesis ) called ( Sodom ). We see in ( Genesis 13:5 ) where Abraham seperated himself from Lot, his brother’s son. We see where Lot made a choice to pick the plains of Jordon. He picked what was ( pleasing to the eyes ). He and his family ended up in Sodom. Now, to help you see this; Lot was seen by God as a ( righteous man ) ( 2 Peter 2:7 ) And delivered just Lot, vexed with the filthy converstaion of the wicked.

I want you to see this; God brought ( Just Lot ), his wife and two daughters out of Sodom before it was destroyed. Lot, being a man that could have taken faith to a whole city, he could have been a witness for God the Father but, he choose to become wicked just like they were. Are our Churches commiting the same sin?

I’m going to share something here that I can’t prove but, I just want you to consider what I’m saying. Here’s a man that knew the faith of God. He went into a city that needed God desperately but, he choose to join them instead of seeking to share his faith with them and, live above sin. If all the people that lived in Sodom died and went to a place called hell; could now look at Lot; what would they say to him?

I can see this as bing a picture of a born again believer but, will not share the gospel with others. Lot, like every born again believer will have to face the judgement seat of Christ but, at least they will be saved. ( I believe ) every born again believe will be standing behind Jesus Christ at ( the Great White Throne of Judgement ). That the place sinneres will be judged. We see that in ( Revelation 20:11 ). As those lost sinners come before Christ; one by one and, Christ judges their unrighteousness, they will be able to see us. We just might hear this statement: they might point their finger at us as a person that could have helped them see truth and say: you could have told me! You could have prayed for me!

It doesn’t matter whether a person will listen to you are not, that’s not your concern. Your concern is sharing the gospel, God will take care of the rest. Can you also see a sinner pointing his finger at you and saying, you tried to tell me, you told me about Jesus, I just wouldn’t listen!

Right now our Church members are in the belly of the fish! Sinners are facing destruction and can’t see it! When we repent and become willing to speak God’s word in truth, no holds barred then will God bless our nation! When that happens it could and will transform our whole government to a righteous people, changing a nation back to ( one nation under God )!

Where do you stand? Do you witness outside the doors of your Church? Do you share the gospel with those that are lost? Be willing to give up all you have for the salvation of one soul, one day you will be glad you did!

Marshall Clayton

2 Timothy 1:7

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