EIGHT MESSAGES ON THE BOOK OF JONAH DELIVERED IN 2012 BY ELDER MICHAEL GOWENS.
The Old Testament book of the prophet Jonah is not, technically speaking, a prophecy, but a personal narrative. Reading like a few pages from Jonah’s personal diary, the book records lessons Jonah learned during a single episode in his life and ministry.
Jonah was a Jewish prophet commissioned by Jehovah to carry a message to the heathen Assyrians. Though the majority of Jewish prophets were sent to God’s covenant people, Jonah was one of three Jewish prophets (the others are Obadiah and Nahum) sent to proclaim a message to people who were not true worshipers of the Lord. The theological implications of this exception to the rule are significant. It reminds us that God bears a general relationship to all men as Creator, holding them accountable to his moral law, on top of his special relationship to his covenant people as Redeemer.
The themes of the book are several. This is a book about chastisement, deliverance, restoration, repentance and grace. The book of Jonah contains practical, contemporary lessons for each of us as individuals as well as for our nation. More than that, it forecasts the coming of One who describes himself as a “greater than Jonah,” the Lord Jesus Christ, and of the importance of hearing and heeding the message concerning Him. If the men of Ninevah were impressed by Jonah’s experience to repent, those of us who hear the good news of the resurrected Christ should be swift to hear and respond in repentance to the Savior.
1. Overview of the Book of Jonah
2. The High Cost of Disobedience (Jonah 1)
3. Jonah’s Prayer in Crisis (Jonah 2)
4. What Makes a Preacher? (Jonah 3:1-2)
5. Jonah’s Restoration (Jonah 3:1-2)
6. A Nation Called to Account (Jonah 3)
7. Theological Reflections on Ninevah’s Repentance (Jonah 3)
8. Too Much Grace? (Jonah 4)