Jonah was called by God to go to the city of Nineveh to tell the people to repent of their sins. The people were doing evil things that God disapproved of (Jonah 1:1). Jonah ran away from God because he did not want to go. He did not want the people to repent and change (Jonah1:3). Jonah did not have the same mercy for the Ninevites as God did.
God kindly explained to Jonah that there were about one hundred twenty thousand people who do not know right from wrong, and many animals, too (Jonah 4:11). God wanted the people to change and told Jonah to tell them if they continue to sin, He would destroy them (Jonah 3:4). They repented after all, and God spared the people from destruction (Jonah 3:10). This made Jonah angry, and again he ran away from God (Jonah 4:1). Jonah felt so sorry for himself that he asked God to kill him. He would have been happier dying than seeing the Ninevites receive God’s saving grace (Jonah 4:3).
Have you ever felt like Jonah not wanting others to experience God’s mercy like the Ninevites? We are sinful and our hearts are like Jonah’s. In some cases, it is hard for us to be happy for others who have received God’s mercy. The truth is that none of us deserve God’s mercy because we all have sinned and fallen short of His glory (Romans 3:23).
Because of His mercy and kindness, it should lead us to repentance like with the Ninevites. We need to remember God shows mercy to sinners like us every day. God spared us from destruction too by sending Jesus to die on the cross for our sins. Do we have the right to get upset when others have the same hope as us?
Prayer of the day:
Dear heavenly Father,
There are no words to describe Your great mercy. You are merciful to anyone who repents of their sins. You save us from destruction that we deserve. Change our hearts to be like Yours and not like Jonah’s. Help us to show others love and grace. It is hard to show others mercy but with Your help, it is possible. Thank you for sending Jesus to die on the cross for our sins. In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen!