God desires to save
Jonah 1:1,2 -
Now the word of the LORD came unto Jonah the son of Amittai, saying, Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and cry against it; for their wickedness is come up before me.
We read in the book of Jonah how the Lord sends Jonah to give the people of Nineveh the message of repentance and how they receive it and are saved. We also read how Jonah who did not desire them to be saved but desired they be punished for they were the most brutal lot of people at that time. Then Jonah is taken there against his wish but later half-heartedly does the job of telling them the warning hoping they would not listen but when they listen to his message and repent, Jonah is disappointed.
We see the Lord sends Jonah on the mission to save the people of Nineveh and we read the Lord had given them a period of 40 days to change.
Let us note what were they people of Nineveh being saved from?
Today's message says the deeds of the people of Nineveh had come before the Lord and the anger of God was going to come on these people but before the anger of God falls on the people God desired to give them another chance so send His messenger Jonah to them.
We all need to note God desires to save people however bad or evil they may seem to the world, yet God does not close the door and tries one more time. But we also need to note God does not wait forever or goes on and on tolerating our evil forever. He sets a time for each one of us and the time is not the same for all. The time is according to our hearts. In that period of time if we fail to turn back or repent from our ways we had it.
Most people think of God as a punching bag, whom they can go on hurting again and again endlessly. They forget God describes Himself as slow to anger. Slow does not mean never angry. It means God waits patiently and for a stipulated period of time and when the time ends He acts on his anger.
Christians do not realize Jesus came not to save us from Satan but from God Himself. God has given mankind a stipulated time to change and come back to Him before He enacts on His anger and consumes all. Satan took us from God and wants to make sure we are consumed by God's wrath because he knows he will be consumed when his period ends. He does not desire we be blessed in the Lord with the things he and his lot lost.
We should realize even though we proclaim 'God is Good' yet the one being we all need to fear is God and no one else. We do not need to fear Satan or anyone else for they are nothing before the anger of God. The Bible says resist Satan and his ways but does not say fear him. As much God loves us that much He also hates evil. He gave His only Son to suffer for us and to save us. He risked His all for us. Then imagine how terrible would His anger be?
To those who repent from their evil ways and believe in Jesus, to them He time and again says 'do not fear'. He does that because in the Garden of Gethsemane Jesus drank the cup of the wrath of God on our behalf. He was forsaken by His Father because of us. He went to Hell because of our sins which were on Him even though He never sinned. It was only because Hell could not keep a righteous person that He rose again (came up - since Hell is spiritually below, not physically). And we who are in Him (who are called righteous not by our doing but by His doings), are also saved from Hell because of Him.
Let us not take Jesus or God for granted. We are given a period of time like the people of Nineveh. Let us repent from our evil ways and turn back to God before the anger of God falls on us.
[ Prayer Starter ]
Lord we pray You save your people from You. That they do not receive of your wrath. That they repent from their evil ways and come to You. That they realize their time is not forever. You are slow to anger but keep record of our every doing when we are not in Christ. We pray they turn away from their evil and take refuge in Christ and be saved...
This prayer we make in Jesus' Name, Amen.
[ Reference ]
28 And when he was come to the other side into the country of the Gergesenes, there met him two possessed with devils, coming out of the tombs, exceeding fierce, so that no man might pass by that way.
29 And, behold, they cried out, saying, What have we to do with thee, Jesus, thou Son of God? art thou come hither to torment us before the time?
6 And the LORD passed by before him, and proclaimed, The LORD, The LORD God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering [slow to anger], and abundant in goodness and truth,
7 Keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, and that will by no means clear the guilty; visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children, and upon the children's children, unto the third and to the fourth generation.
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