Friday, November 16, 2007


Here are a few random thoughts about Jonah, and our similarity to him on occasions.

Jonah, by his own words, would have rather seen God destroy the many thousands of people of Nineveh than to have his reputation as a Prophet of God tarnished. Think of it! Thousands of souls about to be plunged into hell, and Jonah was reluctant to risk his reputation as a Prophet in order to have them saved! Personal esteem ranked higher in his mind than the souls of thousands.

He knew there would be no fine stories to bring back home and tell to the other prophets of how God had brought to pass what he had prophesied.

To come home with a report of how God had shown them mercy would be of no personal value to Jonah. To be rated as a false prophet would be worse than to sit and watch while unwarned people were hurled to their doom. How selfish and carnal can a person be?

But wait a minute before we are too harsh on Jonah. Most of us have done the same thing at some time or other in our lives.

How many times, do you suppose, has there been someone in the congregation who needed a word from the the Lord, and you were anointed of God to give an utterance which might not have made sense to you personally? How often do you refuse to risk your reputation? How many times do you force other people to plod wearily along without the help that your obedience to the Spirit might afford them?

Here is another thought! Everyone knows that a dividing spirit in a congregation is like a rotten apple in a box of good ones.

Spiritual unity is one of the most important things each assembly must maintain, for in its absence Satan can move in and cripple or kill at his own pleasure. Yet it is a glaring fact that many times two or more people in a congregation will come to logger-heads over some trivial thing, and each one refuse to budge even an inch toward reconciliation.

Each one contends in his heart that he is right, and therefore has a reason for standing "pat". It is also true that each one will maintain his position while the rest of the congregation chooses up sides and start fighting over first one thing and then another.

The unity of the congregation has been sacrificed for personal esteem.

Sometimes unity is sacrificed over whether our particular brand of "truth" is being presented--while souls are headed for hell.

Other times unity is sacrificed over our approval, or dis-approval of the format of worship, and souls are lost.

That is all Jonah was planning to do.

--Marion Fretwell

No comments: