All the sailors were afraid and each cried out to his own god. And they threw the cargo into the sea to lighten the ship. But Jonah had gone below deck, where he lay down and fell into a deep sleep. The captain went to him and said, “How can you sleep? Get up and call on your god! Maybe he will take notice of us so that we will not perish.” – Jonah 1:5-6
Continuing from my previous post…
Jonah has closed his ears to the Lord’s voice so much, that he is completely unaware that there is a storm threatening to tear apart the very vessel on which he has found such a comfortable place to rest. Sometimes, we experiences storms to break up the complacency in our lives. We carve neat little niches into our worlds, hoping that the culture around us doesn’t invade our little bubbles too much. However, God did not call Jonah, nor us to comfortable complacency, but to action, and bearing the light of Christ.
His disobedience has not only put himself in grave danger, but also, his companions. One of the great deceptions of sin, is that people think that it only affects themselves. We then justify it, thinking it is a “personal choice” or a “hang-up.”It may have the appearance of not impacting anyone else, but as a members of one Body of Christ, and more widely, members of the human race, we live in community, whether we are aware of it or not. Sin is never isolated in it’s effects. So, at this point. Jonah’s rebellion has affected himself, innocent passengers and sailors on this ship, and potentially, the entire city of Nineveh which had many thousands more people. Still, he can manage to sleep through the storm.
In spite of the captain’s plea to Jonah to “call upon His god.” The Scriptures do not say that Jonah even uttered a word. It wasn’t until they cast lots, that they found out that Jonah was the issue. Judging by Jonah’s suggestions that they throw him into the ocean, he seems pretty content with dying. His judgment is so clouded by his prejudice against the people of Nineveh, he is willing to drown in the ocean, rather than obey God. He did not count on God’s mercy though.
To be continued…