Sermon Snippets’ is an occasional series, taking bitesize chunks from our Sunday sermons. The following excerpt is adapted from a sermon on Jonah 1:1-16, preached by Nathan Burley last Sunday. You can listen to the whole sermon here.
Jonah isn’t the story of a giant fish, but a giant God.
A God who is far bigger than we give Him credit for.
He isn’t just a local, tribal god, only interested in one group of people, even if those people are the Israelites. He is a global God who cares enough about the whole world to send a messenger to the worst of cities to lovingly warn them. He’s bigger than we think.
He’s the kind of God you couldn’t run away from if you tried. He will always find you.
He’s so big that even if we shake our puny fists at the sky and say, “I won’t do what you want!”, He has a funny way of stopping us in our tracks and saying, “Not so fast, sunshine.”
He’s big enough to hurl a storm into the sea, the way you or I might skim a stone. He’s the God of heaven, who made the sea and the dry land.
The one who decides the toss of a coin, so the finger of blame lands on the right man.
As the sailors put it in v14, “You, O LORD, have done as it pleased you.”
There are lots of ways in which we can point the finger at Jonah and say, “What an idiot,” but really we’re all a bit like him. We’ve all said no to God in our own ways and headed off to do our own thing. And from Adam and Eve onwards, we’ve tried to hide from Him.
Let the story of Jonah convince us – we can’t hide from Him!
God is bigger than we think… so we should stop running from Him.