April Bible Study : Jonah, The Cost Of Disobedience

 



Jonah Bible Study Notes

 

Brief Summary: 

Jonah was a prophet of God who was given the task of going to a city called Nineveh to warn the people that God was going to destroy them for their idolatry cruelty not to mention they were an enemy Nation of Israel God's chosen people throughout the Book of Jonah we see God's unlimited unconditional Grace.

Jonah 1

Now the word of the Lord came to Jonah the son of Amittai, saying, “Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and cry out against it; for their wickedness has come up before Me.” But Jonah arose to flee to Tarshish from the presence of the Lord. He went down to Joppa, and found a ship going to Tarshish; so he paid the fare, and went down into it, to go with them to Tarshish from the presence of the Lord.

But the Lord sent out a great wind on the sea, and there was a mighty tempest on the sea, so that the ship was about to be broken up.

Then the mariners were afraid; and every man cried out to his god, and threw the cargo that was in the ship into the sea, to lighten the load. But Jonah had gone down into the lowest parts of the ship, had lain down, and was fast asleep.

And they said to one another, “Come, let us cast lots, that we may know for whose cause this trouble has come upon us.” So they cast lots, and the lot fell on Jonah. Then they said to him, “Please tell us! For whose cause is this trouble upon us? What is your occupation? And where do you come from? What is your country? And of what people are you?”

So he said to them, “I am a Hebrew; and I fear the Lord, the God of heaven, who made the sea and the dry land.

10 Then the men were exceedingly afraid, and said to him, “Why have you done this?” For the men knew that he fled from the presence of the Lord, because he had told them. 11 Then they said to him, “What shall we do to you that the sea may be calm for us?”—for the sea was growing more tempestuous.

12 And he said to them, “Pick me up and throw me into the sea; then the sea will become calm for you. For I know that this great tempest is because of me.”

14 Therefore they cried out to the Lord and said, “We pray, O Lord, please do not let us perish for this man’s life, and do not charge us with innocent blood; for You, O Lord, have done as it pleased You.” 15 So they picked up Jonah and threw him into the sea, and the sea ceased from its raging.

Notes: In chapter 1 when Jonah was unwilling to go and preach to the Ninevites yet and still God graciously delivered him from the storm and from the sea after he was thrown in, God also delivered the Gentile Sailors from the storm themselves. Notice the heart of these sailors who even though they worshiped other gods they knew to first repent for having to throw Jonah off the boat but they also knew to praise Him for the deliverance. The sailors feared God's wrath more than Jonah, imagine that. 

Jonah 2

Then Jonah prayed to the Lord his God from the fish’s belly. And he said:

“I cried out to the Lord because of my affliction,
And He answered me.

“Out of the belly of Sheol I cried,
And You heard my voice.

4 Then I said, ‘I have been cast out of Your sight;
Yet I will look again toward Your holy temple.’

“Those who regard worthless idols
Forsake their own ]Mercy.
But I will sacrifice to You
With the voice of thanksgiving;
I will pay what I have vowed.
Salvation is of the Lord.”

10 So the Lord spoke to the fish, and it vomited Jonah onto dry land.

Notes: In Chapter 2 We see Jonah’s acceptance of God Judgement, his repentance and ultimately God’s deliverance. I want you to notice that God didn’t have the whale drop Jonah off just any place, the whale vomited Jonah off near Nineveh so he could go on ahead and do what God had commanded. This is a lesson for us, when you give your yes to God you have no idea what He may ask of you but once you're committed you're committed and there is no need to worry. God's plan for us is to prosper us and that will look different from one believer to the next. 

Jonah 3

Now the word of the Lord came to Jonah the second time, saying, “Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and preach to it the message that I tell you.” So Jonah arose and went to Nineveh, according to the word of the Lord. Now Nineveh was an exceedingly great city, a three-day journey in extent. And Jonah began to enter the city on the first day’s walk. Then he cried out and said, “Yet forty days, and Nineveh shall be overthrown!”

So the people of Nineveh believed God, proclaimed a fast, and put on sackcloth, from the greatest to the least of them. Then word came to the king of Nineveh; and he arose from his throne and laid aside his robe, covered himself with sackcloth and sat in ashes. And he caused it to be proclaimed and published throughout Nineveh by the decree of the king and his nobles, saying,

Let neither man nor beast, herd nor flock, taste anything; do not let them eat, or drink water. But let man and beast be covered with sackcloth, and cry mightily to God; yes, let everyone turn from his evil way and from the violence that is in his hands. Who can tell if God will turn and relent, and turn away from His fierce anger, so that we may not perish?

10 Then God saw their works, that they turned from their evil way; and God relented from the disaster that He had said He would bring upon them, and He did not do it.

Notes: In chapter 3 we see God pardoning the Gentile nation of Nineveh due to their repentance. This nation who didn’t know The Mist High like the Israelites did, didn’t know his commandments but they had heard about my God and they knew to fear Him, they knew too fast and pray for forgiveness. How many of us are struggling with some form of sin and still refuse to repent, fast and lay that thing at God’s feet for deliverance. 

Jonah 4

But it displeased Jonah exceedingly, and he became angry. So he prayed to the Lord, and said, “Ah, Lord, was not this what I said when I was still in my country? Therefore, I fled previously to Tarshish; for I know that You are a gracious and merciful God, slow to anger and abundant in lovingkindness, one who relents from doing harm. Therefore now, O Lord, please take my life from me, for it is better for me to die than to live!”

Then the Lord said, “Is it right for you to be angry?”

 But the Lord said, “You have had pity on the plant for which you have not labored, nor made it grow, which came up in a night and perished in a night. 11 And should I not pity Nineveh, that great city, in which are more than one hundred and twenty thousand persons who cannot discern between their right hand and their left—and much livestock?”

Notes: In Chapter 4 we see God graciously forgive Jonah for his Disobedience while also correcting him with compassion for his disobedience and anger. So we see that Jonah had already let disobedience in, he had already been influenced by the spirit of disobedience so why not add bitterness and resentment as well. Once you open the door to Satan’s influence in your life then it always leads to more.  

 

Personal Testimony & Takeaway: 

For me personally it was disobedience as well. I started allowing myself to put off the things that I knew God was leading me to do and then my disobedience led to covetousness. I started seeing other people's platforms thriving and that the work of their hands was being blessed and I started to compare what my ministry was doing or not doing to others, that led to Discontentment. I was no longer as enthusiastic about the work that I knew God had called me to do and then ultimately that led me to discouragement. This was a big part of the reason why I stopped doing bible studies, posting and sharing some of the revelations that God had been giving me. This showed me that any of us can potentially be influenced and fall victim to our own sinful nature whether we are babies in the faith or mature Christians. 

Look at Jonah, this wasn’t some unfortunate incident that happened to Him and God didn't cause this to happen to him. Jonah brought this on himself through his disobedience but as always God causes all things to work for our good because Jonah needed to address his disobedience, the anger, bitterness and resentment that had developed in his heart and I needed to address my issues with disobedience, comparison, covetousness and being easily discouraged. God used these events for Jonah's benefit just as he used the issues with my ministry for my benefit. We should learn from Jonah but also be encouraged by his story because through it all God never left Jonah but He did patiently correct him. God will do the same for us. 


If you would like to view the recorded version of the study, its linked here: April Bible Study: Jonah


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