Sometimes, nothing will satisfy some people. We said earlier in the week that Jonah was a grumpy prophet. Nothing seemed to make him happy. God sent him to preach to the enemy of his country. He traveled to the capital city of Nineveh and preached the message God gave him. Hundreds of thousands of people heeded the message Jonah preached. Was he happy? Did he feel a sense of accomplishment? Hardly. He was mad.
Jonah 4:1-3 tells of Jonah’s response to God sparing the city, “But Jonah was greatly displeased and became angry. He prayed to the LORD, ‘O LORD, is this not what I said when I was still at home? That is why I was so quick to flee to Tarshish. I knew that you are a gracious and compassionate God, slow to anger and abounding in love, a God who relents from sending calamity. Now, O LORD, take away my life, for it is better for me to die than to live.’” (NIV)
What a grump! He was mad because God was gracious and compassionate to his hated enemy. Some people are still like that today. They want God to judge and condemn others. Frankly, we should all rejoice that God is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and abounding in love — even when his grace extends to those we hate. Rather than be like Jonah, we should strive to be loving and gracious like God!
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Bumper music “Landing Place” performed by Mark July, used under license from Shutterstock.