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January 18, 2021 2:00 am
Do you remember playing hide-and-seek as a kid? Can you imagine trying to hide from God? In the message "You Can Run...but God," Skip shares the story of a prophet who found out you can run but you can't hide from God.
This teaching is from the series ...but God.Links:
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The book of Jonah is a story about a man who ran from God and a God who ran after the man is a story of what I call the prodigal profit is really what he was he was a popular job that he was a product of the story of the plot of the propaganda pursuing God. Jonah ran from God's will, he ran from God's calling on his life. He ran from his responsibility before God. But God, God loves you so much. Even when you run from him. He pursues you today on connect with Skip Heitzig Skip looks at the story of a man who ran from his schooling and hope to discover you can confidently embrace God's plans for your life. Choose a resource that will help you know God more intimately so you can experience a richer relationship. The best biographies make you feel like you personally intimately know the person you've read about from Mozart to Mother Teresa Sojourner Truth to Steve Jobs. It's exciting to learn the details of influential people, but one biography stands out above the rest. Biography of God hears the author skip. I think there's nothing more elevating to mankind than the study of God himself. Discover the omnipotence paradox is an mystery central to God's being and remove the limits you may have placed on who God is. I've noticed that almost every problem that a person has in their life stems from an inadequate of God's gifts new book is our thanks when you give $35 or more today to help keep this ministry on the air, call 800-922-1888, or get online securely connectwithskip.com/offer. Okay, let's get into today's teacher will in Genesis chapter as we begin our study with Skip Heitzig.
There was a farmer who had three sons named Jim. John and Sam they really wanted nothing at all to do with God. People share with them share their faith with them, invited them to church was always a disinterested response. They just really had no time at all for God. Until one day one of the boys name Sam got bit by a snake back was a rattlesnake doctor was called in to treat them when the pastor came into sort of assess was going on and appraiser the situation so the pastor looked at what was happening and decided very interesting prayer. He said all wise and righteous father, we thank thee that in my wisdom about it. Send this rattlesnake to bite Sam. He has never been inside the church and its doubtful that he has in all this time ever prayed or even acknowledge my existence. Now we trust that this experience will be a valuable lesson to him and will lead to his genuine repentance and now father will now send another rattlesnake to bite Jim and another to by John, and another really big one to bite the old man. For years we've done everything we know to get them to turn to the but all in vain. It seems therefore that what all of our combined efforts could not do this rattlesnake has done. We thus conclude that the only thing that will do this family any real good is a rattlesnake.
So Lord send us bigger and better rattlesnakes. Amen we have in the book of Jonah is essentially God sending a bigger and better rattlesnake that was a mistake.
It was a great fish and some have gotten in the weeds with this and try their determined that it was a miss deceit whale at kata Don macro sample is all about is really irrelevant to the real story of what's happening with Jonah, but God is getting this prophets attention and work in a series we call it, but God you know that by now.
But God is a phrase that appears 45 times in Scripture 45 times it's a game changing phrase another 60 times. The phrase, but the Lord.org to find in the book of Jonah. So over 100 times is this idea of… About the Lord and what happens is everything after those words in the story is radically different because God inserted himself and the reason this phrase, but God is a game changer. It means that no matter who you are, no matter what you have done no matter how you may have failed, no matter what problems and issues keep dogging your life. The truth is God can make things different for you, from now on, but God. This phrase also points to a greater truth and the truth emerges here in the book of Jonah and is the truth that God is active in the affairs of this world and that's something we tend to forget because enough stuff around is happens that seems rather haphazard. Seems random and without meaning.
We can sort of tend to forget that God can change things for the got is even active and were not atheists were not agnostics but some of us tend toward deism and deism is a belief in an absentee God. There may be a God. He may wound up the world, but he step back from it. He's not really directly involved in the affairs of people. The Bible however portrays a very different view of God. He may be working behind the scenes, but he is working. Nonetheless that the book of Jonah is a story about a man who ran from God and a God who ran after the man is a story of what I call prodigal profit is really what he was. He was a prophet of God, but he was a prodigal profit. So it's a story of the prodigal profit and a pursuing God. Jonah ran from God's will, he ran from God's calling on his life.
He ran from his responsibility before God. But God this last week I had the privilege of being interviewed by Dr. James Dobson for his radio broadcast, and he first asked first question tell me your testimony. How did you get sick and my testimony was pretty easy because it's just like yours.
The first part of our testimonies are identical.
We were running from God.
Whatever the circumstances were that made that running the details is irrelevant, but we were all running from God, then God got a hold of our lives, all we like sheep have what going to say it's her testimony. I know one guy who even said my testimony is easy. Iran got chased.
I did all the running God did all the chasing that God is in a let Jonah go that quickly, without easily God inserts himself into the situation and I Jonah's testimony. If I were to give it to you in three little phrases I would put it this way. Jonah ran from God. Then Jonah ran to God and from that point on. Jonah ran with God. That's a great story that can be our testimony will run from God. But there's a moment that we don't not good.
I'm in a repent and we do and when we come to him from that point on we run with him in our lives take on meaning and purpose like no or you could say God said go Jonah said no.
And God said all you'll see that. Let's look at the beginning of the story Jonah chapter 1 verse one. Now the word of the Lord came to Jonah, the son of amortized saying arrives, go to Nineveh, that great city and cry out against it for their wickedness has come up before me, but Jonah arose to flee to Tarshish from the presence of the Lord. He went down to Joppa found a ship going to Tarshish, he paid the fare went down into it to go with them to Tarshish from the presence of the Lord, but the Lord sent out a great wind on the sea and there was a mighty tempest on the sea so that the ship is about to be broken up also a little bit of the story. The soldiers panic. They freak out.
Nothing works to get a hold of Jonah, who are you the interviewing Genesis from the overboard. So eventually they do verse 17 now the Lord had prepared a great fish to swallow Jonah. And Jonah was in the belly of the fish. Where was a kata Don Microsoft was, or whatever the matter, three days and three nights. Chapter 2 verse one. This is funny then Jonah prayed, then Jonah prayed to the Lord is God from the fish's belly.
What's amazing is Jonah does not pray until now. He's a prayerless profit, but now he does. He prays chapter 3, verse one.
Now the word of the Lord came to Jonah the second time, saying arrives, go to Nineveh, that great city and preach to the message that I tell you. So Jonah arose and went to Nineveh, according to the word of the Lord. Now Nineveh was an exceedingly great city, a three day journey and extent without reading all the verses because you're familiar with the story will look at a few more but I want to show you three lessons, three life lessons three basic lessons from this story of the prodigal profit I've written them down in your outline so you can follow along. First is this God. God's call doesn't guarantee our success. God's call does not guarantee our success. No notice in verse one something the word of the Lord came to Jonah was that Mina means God called him.
After all, Jonah is what is a prophet. So God is calling his prophet prophets should speak for God so the commission the college go to Nineveh so is God going hey Jonah this is God, I've got a mission for you to go on, but clearly Jonah resisted God's call verse three. Jonah arose to flee to Tarshish from the presence of the Lord, only fill in a little history. Nineveh was the capital of the Assyrian Empire. The Assyrian Empire was the mortal enemy of the Jews, in fact will take 10 of the tribes captive eventually so they hate each other. Nineveh, the capital happens to be 550 miles east northeast from where Jonah was in his room.
Tarshish is 2500 miles west of worry what it's where the Mediterranean empties into the Atlantic Ocean. It was from Jonah's vantage point. Farthest you could get away from Nineveh. So as I Jonah went outside and got his composition for God wants me to go there, which means I'll go there as far away as I possibly can. Try to avoid God's calling.
Now I had a dog like this once he was a springer spaniel beautiful animal, but neither really dumb or just really stubborn or both, but and I'm not making this up. Whenever I would call him to come. You know what he would do.
He would go here is the owner of the master calling the dog but my calling did not guarantee that dog success is every time I call he go and I got to be dangerous because one day as a car was going around the street. I could see what could happen and he did have a leash on and so I wouldn't thinking. I called them I should've said go. I called him and he went toward the car and I kid you not. My dog ran into the car you heard of cars running over dogs that didn't happen. He did need to have Mike dog ran into the car. He was just stunned.
He was okay but I should just stop right there and renamed that dog Jonah on the spot. I called them my call did not guarantee his success. Which brings me to where I'm going with this.
Has God placed a calling in your life. I can answer absolutely yes God's place some summons some calling, some set of directions on your life you save you, but he saved you for a purpose and that purpose is his purpose, which means every single believer every single Christian has a calling. Thus a Christian without a ministry is a contradiction well called something everyone is a next step step of spiritual growth step toward service or involvement or even mission. So the question of the moment is are you resisting that summons that calling you have a call first Corinthians 1. Pulses you see your calling brother. Ephesians chapter 4 walk worthy of the calling, wherewith he has called you know some of you might be thinking. I never got call me. I never heard God in inaudible voice. It scared course you wouldn't say Skip to you with username wouldn't. But maybe you're expecting sort of a Cecil B deMille experience enough Hollywood God speaking dramatic thing and could it be that the problem is in God speaking to you. The problem is really you, listening for God. Maybe you're going through life as a were with your hands over your ears you've Artie determine where you're going. And so you just go not listening for his voice now what we know happens with Jonah is he eventually does obey and he does see incredible success and I mean incredible the whole city of Nineveh 600,000 live there at the time. All of them turn to God back in one of the most understated verses, perhaps in all of the Bible is chapter 3 verse five verses so the people of Nineveh believed God really you can give me a little more detail on that incredible event than that. Talk about understated all of the people in Nineveh believed in God, so he will eventually go. He will eventually see great success. But here's the point.
Only after a lot of time is wasted, and only after a lot of pain is endured to notice something with. Look at verse three. A little more closely. Jonah rose to flee from Tarshish from the presence of the Lord. He went down to Joppa found a ship going to Tarshish, so he paid the fare and went down into it later on to say, Jonah went down into the gullet of this creature, three times the text makes reference to Jonah going down, down, down. Now I know that Matt literally was going down from a higher place, but I also see this as a metaphor down spiritual from a worldly perspective he's going up to go Jonah. It's a step toward freedom and liberation of upward mobility asserting yourself well you're doing your thing. Your following your passion, but any step away from God's will is going down. He went down down down look a little more carefully again same verse found a ship going to Tarshish, so we paid the fare to hunting phrase to me. He paid the fare and we know what that means you resend it was a prophet pocket, pulled out some change some money and he paid the money to buy a ticket to go 2500 miles west to the south west coast of Spain.
That's were Tarshish was tough when you want to go any of the money to do it. He paid the fare, I got a question for the ever reach his destination did he ever make it to Spain. He did not. He made it an encounter one of those very common Mediterranean storms that St. Paul ship later on in the New Testament, so he paid the fare, but he never got to his destination. And here's the principle when you go your own way, you never get to your destination but you always end up paying the fair that when you go God's way you always get to the destination and God will pay the fair soon incredible principle Jonah illustrates the first part of that little statement someone else in the Bible illustrates the second Moses for Moses mother named Jock a bed over the story of Moses mother Howie.
She takes little Mo baby Mo and she's missing him no moral Chrissy person moment a little basket rivalry basket little boat and puts it on the Nile River and watches in incredible heartbreak is a little boat loads around the band and she thinks it's over.
Lord I trust them to you. She did by faith.
But somebody picks up a little basket and it was Pharaoh's daughter or the handmaids of the daughter they bring the baby basket to Pharaoh's daughter and she said wow is one of the Hebrews babies well raises baby myself and my palace but she says I want to do all the work.
So go to the Hebrews camp and find a Hebrew mother who can nurse. This child form so the handmaids go over and happen to pick out Moses mother and Pharaoh's daughter says this take this child and nurse him for me and I will give you your wages. Can you imagine some you think I'm in a pay for all the needs for you to raise your baby from childhood to adult. Noah Caceres, a child born in 2015, apart from college just to raise a child. $234,000 to raise a single child in today's culture. So Moses mother gets to raise Moses and the Egyptian government pays for God is arranging the so there goes the principal you go your way, you'll never get to your destination and you'll pay the fair you go God's way you will get to the destination and God will pay their there is a pressing question we have to look why did Jonah run. What is he thinking.
I mean he is a prophet right what the prophets job to speak for God. This is his job description.
He becomes the worst missionary in history. God says go he says no serenity to walk as a few possibilities possibility number one to tough it was too difficult for Jonah and me. Once you pay the money to get into a boat, you're not responsible ship captain is responsible to take you from this point to that point that's easy when you want to Nineveh, 550 Maggio to go to the desert. It's difficult it's hard and then for a Hebrew prophet to speak to Ninevites with a message from an unknown God probably is not going to go over very well anyway so that's just too hard of a task by the way, just a little fun fact.
FYI, you know who founded the city of Nineveh, a guy by the name of Nimrod ever hear that name, Genesis, he was the great-grandson of Noah. He founded the city of Nineveh. The word Nineveh means the residence of new new which is an Akkadian word for fish so Nineveh means Fishtown it's fish down there right on the Tigris River, which is an interesting fact because the guy with the greatest fish story is about to go to Fishtown Tower. They worship a fish God. A couple of them and come up with a message so it's possible he never wants to difficult and I going second possibility was too dangerous to dangerous. Did you know that the Ninevites were famous or infamous for their brutality. Look at what it says in verse two the Lord says their wickedness has come up before me. I am taking notice of how wicked the city is in him to do some about. There is another profit that was sent to the Ninevites by the name of Neha on the prophet who says of Nineveh. It is a bloodied city. A great number of bodies and countless corpses are there. The Ninevites were known for dismembering people, decapitating people, burning people alive. One of their emperors Shabana, Paul, the grandson of sin that would take people's lips and tear them off their bodies while they were alive, their hands and feet off and then killed to go police. Another of their rulers laid his captives alive and then piled up their heads so there were eventually piles of scrolls at the gate of the city of Nineveh severe Jonah and goddesses go to Nineveh you think in no thanks.
I want to get ahead in life. Not at my head to a pile of a bunch of other people, so two possibilities was too difficult.
It was too dangerous.
The truth is none of those were the reason the real reason that Jonah ran from the Lord is and because it was too difficult or dangerous, but because it was too disdainful Skip message from the series but God you Skip to share how you can keep these messages going strong to connect more people to God's truth as believers were called to encourage, teach and share Christ with one another. That's the sole purpose of this radio ministry. We want to connect you and as many people as we can to Jesus through these Bible-based messages in your partnership helps make that possible. Please consider partnering with this ministry today to a generous gift to keep these teachings coming to you and others.
Here's how you can do that they should connectwithskip.com/don't need to give a gift that's connectwithskip.com/donate or call 800-922-1888, 809 two 218. Thank you for your generosity and come back tomorrow. Skip placing shares how God still works in and through you even when you fail to point God is in the business of using the most unlikely of my life verse first one got a shows world double force of inspection choice for this would God has ways of strongly persuade With Skip Presentation of Connection Communications Changing Truth Ever-Changing Time