March 13 Notes & Questions
Jonah: God’s Mercy on Display
Wk 4, “The Repentant Pagans and the God of Second Chances”
March 13, 2022
Jonah 3 (NASB)
Now the word of the Lord came to Jonah the second time, saying, “Arise, go to Nineveh, the great city, and proclaim to it the proclamation which I am going to tell you.” So Jonah got up and went to Nineveh according to the word of the Lord. Now Nineveh was an exceedingly large city, a three days’ walk. Then Jonah began to go through the city one day’s walk; and he cried out and said, “Forty more days, and Nineveh will be overthrown.” Then the people of Nineveh believed in God; and they called a fast and put on sackcloth, from the greatest to the least of them. When the word reached the king of Nineveh, he got up from his throne, removed his robe from himself, covered himself with sackcloth, and sat on the dust. And he issued a proclamation, and it said, “In Nineveh by the decree of the king and his nobles: No person, animal, herd, or flock is to taste anything. They are not to eat, or drink water. But every person and animal must be covered with sackcloth; and people are to call on God vehemently, and they are to turn, each one from his evil way, and from the violence which is in their hands. Who knows, God may turn and relent, and turn from His burning anger so that we will not perish.” When God saw their deeds, that they turned from their evil way, then God relented of the disaster which He had declared He would bring on them. So He did not do it.
Sackcloth, a garment of black sheep skin or camel hair, is used over 50x in scripture representing either mourning or repentance.
God of Second Chances
King Ahab, possibly the wickedest King ever in Israel. God gives the wicked King a second chance when he repented. (Ref 1 Kings 16:31, 18:4 and 21:25-29)
Future Tribulation Period—God has not given up on His people, Israel, and sends two Witnesses in the middle of the Great Tribulation to witness to them. God is faithful up until the very end when He judges a Christ rejecting world. (Reference Revelation 11:3).
3 Sets of Judgements
- 7 seals (Rev. 6-8)
- White Horse-The Conqueror
- Red Horse-War
- Black Horse-Famine
- Pale Horse-Death
- Martyrs—killed for keeping their testimony
- Terror—Great earthquake, sun darkened, meteors
- 7 trumpets (brief pause before this 144k sent out/sea of tribulation saints. Rev. 7)
- Hail/Fire/Blood—1/3 of the earth burnt
- Fiery mountain thrown into the sea 1/3 of sea life and 1/3 of all ships destroyed
- Meteor/Fallen Star—1/3 of all fresh water ruined (made bitter)
- Sun/Moon/Stars struck—1/3 of each taken out, lessened the daylight.
- Demons/Stinging Locusts with Scorpion Tails from the Abyss (Rev. 9)
- 4 Demons released from the Euphrates/200 million-man army (1/3rd of the world population killed) (Rev. 9:20-21no repentance after this?)
- Two witnesses enter here
- Trumpets—Lightning and thunder precede the 7 trumpets (Rev 8)
- 7 Bowl Judgements—The Wrath of God
- Boils/Sores on those who took the mark
- Blood into the sea—all sea life killed
- Rivers and streams turned into blood
- Fierce Heat/scorched the people (blasphemed God)
- Pain and sores on the antichrist and his followers
- Dried up the Euphrates
- Armageddon assembly of the demonic forces
- Great earthquake & 75-100 pound hailstones—All mountains destroyed
Many will not believe in spite of the coming judgement.
God of Second Chances
The entire city of Nineveh repents!
- Justice—getting what you deserve (punished)
- Mercy—not getting what you deserve (not punished)
- Grace—getting what you don’t deserve (rewarded when you should be punished)
God does not with that ANY should die before they repent!
2 Peter 3:9
The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not willing for any to perish, but for all to come to repentance. (NASB)
Old Testament Repentance
- Don’t eat or drink anything (fast/sacrifice) (verse 7)
- Put on some uncomfortable sackcloth (sacrifice) (verse 8)
- Call on God (Pray) (verse 8)
- Turn from your evil ways (repent)(verse 8)
- Hope God Accepts Your Repentance
We learn what NOT to do from Jonah:
- Don’t Be Stubborn—Repent
- Don’t Be Prejudiced
- Don’t Give Less Than Your All
- Read Jonah 3:1-10, does God always warn of a coming judgement/disaster? Has there been times in your life when God has warned you of a coming disaster but you did not listen to the warning? Were there an repercussions or fallout from not listening?
- Are we called in the New Covenant to put on sackcloth and/or sit in dust to show our repentance? What are some other ways that we may try and punish ourselves because of our guilt?
- Read 1 Kings 16:31, in just considering this passage would you think this would be someone God would reach out to for a second chance? Is it someone you would reach out to? Discuss the differences or the similarities in the two responses.
- Did King Ahab deserve grace? Do we? Have we run into people in our lives who we do not think deserve grace?
- In the future tribulation period, God pours out his wrath on a Christ rejecting world, why would this be considered a righteous judgement? Do you feel most people believe there is a coming judgment (consider both Christians and non-Christians)?
- Discuss the differences between justice, mercy, and grace. Are we able to give each of these the same way Christ does? Why or why not?
- Discuss the differences in the response of the King of Nineveh and the countries repentance vs. what is required to be spared destruction in the New Covenant.
- Are there any sins that Jesus did not pay for on the Cross?
- Is it ever too late for people to come to know Jesus? Are there ever people who are just “too far gone” to be saved?