Topic: Fleeing From God & His Word (Part 5)
(Self Assessment 200)
Background: We can recall from last week’s study that Jonah’s message of repentance moved the entire city of Nineveh, from the king to even the livestock of the members of the society.
This is the desire of every prophet and evangelist; that the hearts of men are turned to God through the message they share. How does Jonah feel about Nineveh’s? Is he excited that his eventual obedience to God has yielded great fruits to the glory of God?
To answer these and more, let’s get straight into our weekly Bible discussion.
Text: Jonah 4: 1- 11
1 But to Jonah this seemed very wrong, and he became angry. 2 He prayed to the Lord, “Isn’t this what I said, Lord, when I was still at home? That is what I tried to forestall by fleeing to Tarshish. I knew that you are a gracious and compassionate God, slow to anger and abounding in love, a God who relents from sending calamity. 3 Now, Lord, take away my life, for it is better for me to die than to live.”
4 But the Lord replied, “Is it right for you to be angry?” 5 Jonah had gone out and sat down at a place east of the city. There he made himself a shelter, sat in its shade and waited to see what would happen to the city. 6 Then the Lord God provided a leafy plant and made it grow up over Jonah to give shade for his head to ease his discomfort, and Jonah was very happy about the plant. 7 But at dawn the next day God provided a worm, which chewed the plant so that it withered. 8 When the sun rose, God provided a scorching east wind, and the sun blazed on Jonah’s head so that he grew faint. He wanted to die, and said, “It would be better for me to die than to live.”
9 But God said to Jonah, “Is it right for you to be angry about the plant?” “It is,” he said. “And I’m so angry I wish I were dead.”
10 But the Lord said, “You have been concerned about this plant, though you did not tend it or make it grow. It sprang up overnight and died overnight. 11 And should I not have concern for the great city of Nineveh, in which there are more than a hundred and twenty thousand people who cannot tell their right hand from their left—and also many animals?” Amen
1. Kindly read verse 1- 2 again. What do you think about Jonah’s reaction as the Lord chose to pardon Nineveh due to their genuine repentance?
2. In your opinion, is Jonah justified in verse 3 for asking the Lord to take away his life? How will you describe such a request from a prophet just because the Lord pardoned the sins of others?
3. What does the Lord’s response to Jonah’s request, as far as verse 4 is concerned, signify?
4. Kindly explain verse 5-9 again. What are some of the lessons for us to learn?
5. Why does Jonah keep wishing for death?
6. Kindly share your thoughts on verses 10- 11.
7. What have you learnt from today’s Bible study?
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