JONAH’S VINE.

by Admin | 16 November 2020 08:46 am11

When God wants to give us a message, he speaks to us through parables or even signs. The parables are meant to help us understand God’s feelings about us or a particular thing. When David sinned against God by taking Uriah’s wife to be his, the Lord did not inflict punishment upon him immediately. He first sent a word to David through Prophet Nathan. And through him God spoke to David through parable. This parable was to help him understand how God was feeling about him for the evil he’d done.

2 Samuel 12:1 “ And the Lord sent Nathan unto David. And he came unto him, and said unto him, There were two men in one city; the one rich, and the other poor.

The rich man had exceeding many flocks and herds:

But the poor man had nothing, save one little ewe lamb, which he had bought and nourished up: and it grew up together with him, and with his children; it did eat of his own meat, and drank of his own cup, and lay in his bosom, and was unto him as a daughter.

And there came a traveller unto the rich man, and he spared to take of his own flock and of his own herd, to dress for the wayfaring man that was come unto him; but took the poor man’s lamb, and dressed it for the man that was come to him.

And David’s anger was greatly kindled against the man; and he said to Nathan, As the Lord liveth, the man that hath done this thing shall surely die:

And he shall restore the lamb fourfold, because he did this thing, and because he had no pity.

And Nathan said to David, Thou art the man. Thus saith the Lord God of Israel, I anointed thee king over Israel, and I delivered thee out of the hand of Saul;

And I gave thee thy master’s house, and thy master’s wives into thy bosom, and gave thee the house of Israel and of Judah; and if that had been too little, I would moreover have given unto thee such and such things.

Wherefore hast thou despised the commandment of the Lord, to do evil in his sight? thou hast killed Uriah the Hittite with the sword, and hast taken his wife to be thy wife, and hast slain him with the sword of the children of Ammon.

10 Now therefore the sword shall never depart from thine house; because thou hast despised me, and hast taken the wife of Uriah the Hittite to be thy wife.

11 Thus saith the Lord, Behold, I will raise up evil against thee out of thine own house, and I will take thy wives before thine eyes, and give them unto thy neighbour, and he shall lie with thy wives in the sight of this sun.

12 For thou didst it secretly: but I will do this thing before all Israel, and before the sun.”

In both the OT and the NT, there are many places in the Bible where God speaks in parables when he wants to pass a message unto his people. God also uses parables to express his feelings toward us. The moment we repent and turn to God, he is filled with pity and compassion. Many people tend to think that God never forgives sin and that he always remember them. Of course we not fully comprehend God’s grace unto men,but we can be confident that he will forgive us if we confess to him. Take time to ponder the parable of the prodigal son told by Jesus in Luke 15:11-32,and you will learn the scope of his mercies and the compassion he has unto us,when we give up our evil ways.

Luke 15:20-24″

20 And he arose, and came to his father. But when he was yet a great way off, his father saw him, and had compassion, and ran, and fell on his neck, and kissed him.

21 And the son said unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and in thy sight, and am no more worthy to be called thy son.

22 But the father said to his servants, Bring forth the best robe, and put it on him; and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet:

23 And bring hither the fatted calf, and kill it; and let us eat, and be merry:

24 For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found. And they began to be merry”.

Apart from parables, God also speaks to his people through signs.(Read Ezekiel chapter 4&5,and also Isaiah 20:3).Looking at the sign of Jonah, we gain a deeper understanding of God’s feelings about us when we turn from our evil ways.

Now if you a good reader of the Bible there’s no doubt that you know full well the story of Jonah:how he ran from the Lord and ended up in the belly of a big fish, where he stayed for three days, and later obeyed the word of the Lord to go to Nineveh. When he had proclaimed God’s message to the people, the Bible says that they believed and turned from their evil ways. Therefore, God had compassion and did not bring upon them the destruction he had threatened. But Jonah became angry at the Lord’s compassion because he wanted the city destroyed. He was troubled of how he’d suffered inside the big fish and waited to see the Lord God destroy Nineveh. Yet God wasn’t feeling the same,and he relented from sending calamity upon them. The Lord spoke to Jonah a second time through another sign.

As Jonah sat a distance away from the city to see God destroy it,the Lord provided a vine and made it grow over Jonah to give shade for his head to ease his discomfort. Jonah was so happy about the vine;he went to sit under its shade, so he could eat of its  fruit ,and be relieved of his troubles.

The more he sat under the shady vine, his anger subsided and he did not remember Nineveh with its destruction.

At dawn the next morning, Jonah saw that the vine had been chewed by a worm and so it withered. Again, he was angry and became furious about the vine. From the incident, God taught him a lesson. Just like Jonah showed concern for the vine which had provided him shade and helped him ease his discomfort, so did God have compassion on the many Ninevites. At first, these people had done evil in God’s eyes and became angry with them. But the moment they heard God’s message and turned from their evil ways, they were like the shady bid which had sprung forth on God’s head. He eventually forgot their evils and did not bring destruction unto them.

If we want our branches to grow and bear fruit, we must not tolerate the little evils that eat away at the roots of our lives. Let’s daily confess those tiny evils to God and keep from sin.in so doing, God is pleased with us and won’t bring our sins against us. But if persist in sin, we invite disaster into our lives.

Our God is compassionate t abounding in love his people. As we daily confess our sins to him and set our hearts to doing what pleases him, good shall come to us. Remember, our actions affect God’s emotions/feelings in a much greater way. Therefore, when our lives honour God, and bring him pleasure, we are sure yo escape his wrath.

God bless you.

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