The prophet Jonah was stripped of honor, power and influence. He became destitute of all pleasures, human
comforts and worldly possessions. He was thrown overboard and left to die. God prepared a tomb for Jonah, but
not the one he deserved. It was a tomb of life for him and for the people of Nineveh.
It is ironic that most Christians teach their children about Jonah in the belly of the whale, and even include the
disgusting part, when he is regurgitated onto the beach, but they say little or nothing about the life and work of
the "resurrected" Jonah. There is a glorification of the gory and objection to God's objective in all this. Jesus
brings it back into proper perspective when he speaks of the men of Nineveh standing in judgment of this present
generation of religious leaders.
All Christians view the resurrection as an important part of the gospel, but few give much thought to God's purpose
and objective in the death and resurrection. The disciples got it! They went everywhere preaching the "good news",
calling on sinners to repent, to believe and obey Christ. The prayer of Jesus in John 17 was on his heart and lips
when he "was about his Father's business" at twelve, and when he used his last breath to witness to the criminals
crucified with him. And it was all he talked to his disciples about after his resurrection and until his ascension
In Revelation 2, the church in Ephesus is said to have lost its first love. Newly wedded couples love each other
with little or no expectation of reciprocal attention. The partners simply delight in pleasing one another. When
that first love wanes, the partners begin to expect some sort of acknowledgment or a sign of appreciation. Later
on, they begin to expect reciprocal action as repayment. Soon love becomes a duty or obligation. The partners may
remain faithful and the marriage is still intact, but it is getting shaky. The next step is when one partner loses
the desire to love yet still expects to be loved.
Jesus never fails – and although we can get very selfish and unlovable, he never stops loving us!
Ralph V Harvey