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December 8, 2002 PM


Jonah 4:1-3

INTRO: I think that the last chapter of Jonah has been the most perplexing section of the book for me. The success of Jonahs ministry in the word was unquestioned and perhaps unparalleled. People were repenting and turning to God by the hundreds. And Jonahs reaction to all of this was great anger over the great things happening in Nineveh. The proper response would have been to join God in rejoicing over the great things happening in Nineveh. But not so for our complex prophet and preacher, Jonah. Tonight I want us to consider together The Angry Prophet or Preacher.


A. Cause seems to have been rooted in discrimination

1. in v. 2 some emphasis is upon my country

2. his own people were Jews fiercely national, exclusive, proud

3. and the Gentiles were really considered dogs by the Jews Jonah resented his being there, his success added fuel

B. Yet, cause may have been, too, in frustration

1. his own people were in a period of degeneracy, sin

2. no doubt he had tried with no success - to change the course of Israel

3. now, wicked Nineveh repents, turns to God, is spared could not the heart of Jonah have been filled with frustration

C. And God is apparently the object of Jonahs anger

1. it was Gods sparing Nineveh which provoked Jonah!

2. so Jonah remonstrates with God .. almost as if to say, I told you so, God

3. at least, though, he is not running hes talking with God ... and hes being honest


A. Much of our anger is unreasonable

1. Jonahs anger just really didnt make sense (comment)

2. Mt 5:22 angry ... without a cause

3. under careful examination, wed likely find that much of our own anger really is far from justified (Eccl 7:9)

B. Much of our anger threatens our relationships

1. Jonahs anger certainly placed a strain in relating with God note, too, Acts 15:36-40

2. in anger we say/do things that tend to hurt others

3. in anger we withhold ourselves from others - in either case the manifestation of anger places great stress upon the relationship

C. Much of our anger is truly selfish

1. truth is that Jonah couldnt have his way (pride?)

2. rather than to accept graciously a circumstance with which he could do nothing which wasnt his business, he became very angry

3, note Num 20:10 must we Moses had, momentarily, become very self-centered ... was feeling sorry for himself and not for God!

D. Much of our anger is destructive

1. Jonahs anger had him striking out at everyone soured him

2. Prov 29:22 - there isnt much positive in anger

3. anger destroys marriages, families, aspirations ... the saddest thing about anger is that it is really self destructive (remember Moses fate after striking the rock?) - Prov 19:19

E. Much of our anger reaches illogical conclusions

1. in his anger Jonah wasnt thinking straight (4:3)

2. in v.2 we can see that he knew the nature of God and that what had happened was totally consistent with Gods nature ... but Jonah was mad ... concludes he is worthless

3. Prov 14:17 a quick tempered man does foolish things (N.I.V.)

F. Much of our anger could be avoided

1. anger is so often the symptom of a person out of control

2. listen to wise words: Prov 19:11 discretion ... deferreth

3. with Gods help - through prayer, His word - we can be controlled people ... whose lives are lovely, profitable for others

CLOSE: Jonah could not even claim righteous indignation. He was hurt; he was mad. And it was his own fault. There are great lessons in this for those of us wise enough to see and apply them!

Cecil A. Hutson

08 December 2002

God's Plan of Salvation

You must hear the gospel and then understand and recognize that you are lost without Jesus Christ no matter who you are and no matter what your background is. The Bible tells us that “all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.” (Romans 3:23) Before you can be saved, you must understand that you are lost and that the only way to be saved is by obedience to the gospel of Jesus Christ. (2 Thessalonians 1:8) Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” (John 14:6) “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.” (Acts 4:12)

You must believe and have faith in God because “without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.” (Hebrews 11:6) But neither belief alone nor faith alone is sufficient to save. (James 2:19; James 2:24; Matthew 7:21)

You must repent of your sins. (Acts 3:19) But repentance alone is not enough. The so-called “Sinner’s Prayer” that you hear so much about today from denominational preachers does not appear anywhere in the Bible. Indeed, nowhere in the Bible was anyone ever told to pray the “Sinner’s Prayer” to be saved. By contrast, there are numerous examples showing that prayer alone does not save. Saul, for example, prayed following his meeting with Jesus on the road to Damascus (Acts 9:11), but Saul was still in his sins when Ananias met him three days later (Acts 22:16). Cornelius prayed to God always, and yet there was something else he needed to do to be saved (Acts 10:2, 6, 33, 48). If prayer alone did not save Saul or Cornelius, prayer alone will not save you. You must obey the gospel. (2 Thess. 1:8)

You must confess that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. (Romans 10:9-10) Note that you do NOT need to make Jesus “Lord of your life.” Why? Because Jesus is already Lord of your life whether or not you have obeyed his gospel. Indeed, we obey him, not to make him Lord, but because he already is Lord. (Acts 2:36) Also, no one in the Bible was ever told to just “accept Jesus as your personal savior.” We must confess that Jesus is the Son of God, but, as with faith and repentance, confession alone does not save. (Matthew 7:21)

Having believed, repented, and confessed that Jesus is the Son of God, you must be baptized for the remission of your sins. (Acts 2:38) It is at this point (and not before) that your sins are forgiven. (Acts 22:16) It is impossible to proclaim the gospel of Jesus Christ without teaching the absolute necessity of baptism for salvation. (Acts 8:35-36; Romans 6:3-4; 1 Peter 3:21) Anyone who responds to the question in Acts 2:37 with an answer that contradicts Acts 2:38 is NOT proclaiming the gospel of Jesus Christ!

Once you are saved, God adds you to his church and writes your name in the Book of Life. (Acts 2:47; Philippians 4:3) To continue in God’s grace, you must continue to serve God faithfully until death. Unless they remain faithful, those who are in God’s grace will fall from grace, and those whose names are in the Book of Life will have their names blotted out of that book. (Revelation 2:10; Revelation 3:5; Galatians 5:4)