Jonah: Reluctant, Very Reluctant, Missionary

Douglas VanBronkhorst

Read: Jonah 3:1-3; Matthew 28:16-20

Go therefore and make disciples of all nations. (Matt. 28:19)

I don’t know where I am, but I can feel the bottom . . . and see the shore! I’m not walking too well, but I’ll make it. That sun feels so good. But, Lord, now what?

Yes, I’ll go to Nineveh. It’s a long walk. It’ll be suicide to preach there, but I’m out of options. I know I can’t run from God, plus I don’t want to see the inside of that fish again! So I’ll go, and say what I’m supposed to say. It’s a big city, but I can cover it in three days. Those wicked people won’t get any encouragement from me, nor any enthusiasm or extra effort, either. What does it matter? They’re Israel’s enemy! They’ll probably kill me on sight. Is that the Lord’s plan? Well, whatever happens, Nineveh will be destroyed. At least I can enjoy telling them that.

God, I do not understand what you are doing. Have I not been zealous for your law? These people represent everything contrary to it. Have I not hated your enemies? Nineveh does not belong to your covenant; they are not your people. I am here, I have your message, but why God? I don’t understand. I should be with Israel, not these idol worshippers. —Doug Van Bronkhorst

Prayer: Lord, help me to believe I am blessed to be a blessing to others, and that your salvation is for all people. May I always be willing to joyfully obey your command to tell others this good news. Amen.