Jonah 2 The Prayer of Jonah  RD v.1-9


We saw in our study last time: God said to Jonah – Go ! when God said to Jonah Go – Jonah said NO

A)He ran : Jonah was running from God. – That is such a stupid thing to do


B) Ever thought How far do you have to go in order to run from God?

1)Tokyo / Australia / Siberia is that far enough away


Psalm 139 The Psalmist answers the question: V :7-10


7 Where can I go from Your Spirit?

Or where can I flee from Your presence?

8 If I ascend into heaven, You are there;

If I make my bed in hell, behold, You are there. 

9 If I take the wings of the morning,

And dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea,

10 Even there Your hand shall lead me,

And Your right hand shall hold me.


C) HE IS EVERYWHERE:  The theological term – He is Omni Present


D) You move to Siberia getting away from God – He is there when you get off the plane.

1) That Saying: Feel far from God? Who moved? Answer is no one – you just feel far from God.

Jonah runs to Joppa God is there – on a boat God is there

A)God is after Jonah Why? He had other guys{ Hosea / Amos/ Isaiah


B)wanting to do a work not just THRU JONAH but IN JONAH


C)So God is not going to let go of Jonah so easily!


Trying to get Jonah’s attention: How?

1) Storm – Big one Sailors were afraid. { Jonah’s asleep – tune out turn off

2) Captain { Arise

3) Cast lots – Falls on Jonah

4) Throw me over board -  Storm stops  God prepares a fish !

               Prepared means appointed called out 


Stop Pastor: I have a problem with this: How could a fish swallow a man!

A)Well the sperm whale and the Shark whale both have stomach’s that are about 7ft wide / 14 ft long – 6 ft high


B) That is big enough for Jonah to have 4 friends over for Pizza and have someone serve them.

1) Found Sperm whales and shark whales – that have had horses in their stomach’s – one Sperm whale swallowed a 15ft shark


C) How could someone survive that? Has that ever happened before? James Bartley

1) Dog in the nasal cavity


D)But here is the other thing you must consider:

1) In order to believe in Jesus you have to believe in the story of Jonah? Really?


Matthew 12:39-41

“ But He answered and said to them, "An evil and adulterous generation seeks after a sign, and no sign will be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah .  For as Jonah  was three days and three nights in the belly of the great fish, so will the Son of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.”


See Jesus quotes the story of Jonah as an historical fact that really happened. So Jesus either is lying or he knows what he is talking about.

A)Believe in Jesus believe the story of Jonah!


B) SO we left off with Jonah in the Belly of the big fish. – 3 days and 3 nights

If God did up a brochure for this trip it might have read


“Club Med 3 day whale watching adventure” - Large spacious room. Guaranteed warm water provided. Listen to waves like they’re lapping right around you. All the seafood you can eat. Seaweed provided for “do it yourself sushi wraps” come share all the fragrance of the ocean.

C) But this was not a Club Med Carnival cruise – but rather a Time out ! – Why?

1) It is time for Jonah to be still!


D) Time for Jonah to deal with his heart!


See God wants Jonah to consider what he is doing. Jonah said God I don’t want your will for my life. RAN!!!!

A)Folks that is such a dumb thing to say: Sure you are the maker & sustainer of the Universe.


All Powerful / All Knowing/ Perfect in your Judgments


B) But God I know better than you what is best for my life.


C) When My kids act that way: After I spanked them I sometimes give them a time out.

1)  I would say something like – Go to your room and think about what you just said


D)Think about your actions / think about your comments / think about your attitude.

1)Almost every time – they eventually come out – saying: I was wrong I am sorry


E) I remember my Dad saying a few times – You might get bigger but you will never be stronger.

1) Now go and think about that.

1) Now go and think about that.

God could have rescued Jonah in any number of ways. He chose this specific way because of the effect it would have on Jonah’s heart.

A)The time out is going to be a timed trial in Jonah’s life that will wake up his heart.


B)Q: How did these terrifying events affect Jonah’s attitude toward God?

From “I don’t need you!” to I need you badly...Help!”


C)Jonah finally cries out to the Lord. Not in the Storm / Captains words

1) Not when the Lot falls on him –

                Finally in the belly of the fish.


E) This is what God wanted.


It is at our greatest weakness & helplessness that we realize our need for God most clearly

A) One of the things that affliction often does is it drives us to the Lord.


B) Often  times that is it’s sole purpose. 

1)When things are going good, we don’t need God, we don’t need to pray / don’t need fellowship / Church


C)We think that we are doing just fine on our own.

1)And so what does God is:  he allows affliction to come into our lives & that drives us back to Him.


D) See God wants us to be in fellowship with Him. 1)He wants us to be close to Him, in communion with Him. That is how we function best.


E) So if we move away from that, God allows affliction to come in to drive us back to Him.

1) God uses affliction to bring us to our senses so that we will realize the hell that life can be without him


See God knows that there is a real place where People go who say: God I don’t want your will. I don’t want anything to do with you.

A) Now if a person says that long enough God will say – Ok – I will let you go to that place


B) With Jonah God gives him a taste of that place. 


C)Notice how Jonah describes his situation


V.2 Describes it as being in the Belly of Sheol – Hell / the grave


C) The Temp in a whale stomach is around 98.6 degrees –hot humid

1) Stinks Rotting fish


D) Hell has some of those same distinctions!

1) really Hot – Burning but don’t burn up

2) Stinks Burning sulfur – Rotten eggs



#2 V.4 Jonah describes himself as being cast out of God’s Presence

A)That really describes the worst part about Hell – Separated from God


B) #3 V.5 He describes the waters as pressing in around his soul- the deep closing in around him.

1) The Description of being pressed.


C) The Bible describes Hell as a place of outer darkness – so dark you can feel it – pressing in around you – closed in

1) So dark can’t see your hand.


#4 V.6 The earth with it’s bars or bolts closed behind me forever.

A)Describing a situation in which there is no way out!


B)Jonah here is what happens to people who resist me – they end up in Hell – you want to know what that is like






Add: memory {Every Sermon

Repent or you need to change


For all of eternity


Homework assignment: Big Box – Find a way to Hot -  Lamp shinning down

Rotten eggs – Boom Box – repeat message


Friend: Pain Water muriatic acid – splash on your face.


Now I am not trying to make light of this – but saying says – sometimes a little sugar helps the medicine go down

A)See People around us are going to hell – Maybe this might motivate some of us to get serious about the Lord


B) God uses this in Jonah’s life as a wake up call.



C)V.4 I have been cast out of Your sight: Jonah is thinking did I go too far.


D)Some of you here today: Been wondering the same thing – Have I gone to far?

1) Jonah answers that question for us. V.7 / V.2


7 "When my soul fainted within me,

I remembered the LORD;

And my prayer went up to You,

Into Your holy temple.


V.2 "I cried out to the LORD because of my affliction,

And He answered me.




When did Jonah remember: When did he cry out?

A)Day one / Day 3 – first hour – we are not sure –


B) But when Jonah remembered the Lord and cried out to the Lord the Lord answered Jonah


C)This is what is great about this is that when Jonah did cry out in his affliction, God answered him.

1) When Johan cried out from the belly of hell, God heard his voice.


D)Notice that God didn’t say, now you need my help, well forget you.

1) If you think that I am going to come to your aid after you willfully disobeyed Me and ran from Me, you have got another thing coming”.


E) We might have reacted that way: But with Jonah this is what God was waiting for.

1) Broken & contrite heart he will not despise.


 God is so patient – Mercies are new every morning – can’t exhaust.

A)Jonah contrast that with those who lean on other Gods in v.8

8 "Those who regard worthless idols Forsake their own Mercy.


B)People Cry out to other gods – Money Sex / Cocaine


 C)What Jonah is saying here is that idols never come through with what they promise.

1) When the chips are down, an idol is just something with eyes that can’t see and ears that can’t hear and a mouth that can’t speak.


D)They are forsaking their own mercy – they are forsaking the mercy that is available to us from the Lord


E)His Mercies are new every morning/ can’t exhaust.


Now does that mean we want to sin & keep sinning because grace abounds

A)Paul answered that question in Romans 6:1-4


What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin that grace may abound? 2 Certainly not! How shall we who died to sin live any longer in it?

3 Or do you not know that as many of us as were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death?

4 Therefore we were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.


B) Sooner than later the mercy of God needs to lead us to that place of commitment –

1) Surrender – that place where we decide – God Knows best and I need to trust him. { Follow Him


Jonah comes to that Place: V.9 I will sacrifice to you with the voice of thanksgiving : I will pay or honor my vow

A)Jonah had made a vow as a prophet of the Lord – to do his will – to speak his name.


B) He was running from that – but now he was ready to resume that

1) We made a similar vow – Forsaking the world – follower of Christ


C)Listen you want God to be merciful to you You have to take Personal responsibility for your sin.

1) Broken and contrite heart God will not despise.


D)The moment Jonah prays – God says ok – trial over –    RD V.10

1) God Instructs the whale to vomit Jonah up on the beach.


Time out for a timed trial but there is also a Timed release – Trial is over mission accomplished.

A)Bible doesn’t pull any punches – Whale vomit – doesn’t expedite Jonah like he did Phillip - 


B) Whale the urge to regurge.


C)The Bible doesn’t try to candy coat things { God is working in Jonah


Use for his effectiveness -  Wow quite a site – the people of Nineveh see him – Repent.


Weeping endures for a night but Joy comes in the morning.


One thing that this story teaches us is that we need to learn to pray in the face of failure.

A)Sometimes that is the last thing that we want to do.

      We feel like we have no right to call upon God


B) Condemnation: We feel like God won’t listen. Have you been there?


C)But you see, one of the things the story of Jonah teaches us  is that if an unattractive, unsympathetic, disobedient character like Jonah could pray and be heard in the midst of his failure,


D) then we can pray and be heard in the midst of our failure.

1) That’s the grace of God in action: God giving us what we don’t deserve.


Now Another  thing that is really good to do in our prayers is to remember the pit that God brought us out of. For two reasons

A)First because it reminds you of the progress that God has made in your life.


B) It might not seem like God is doing much in your life

 1) but then you look back and you see how far He has brought you,


2) you see how He has changed your lifestyle and your priorities.


C) You see how he has changed the way you think and the way that you treat other people.

1)You see the way that He has changed the way you are viewing your future. It’s the most amazing thing.


2)And then you realize that He isn’t done yet. { Hope


The 2nd thing this does is that it helps you realize that what God has done for you, He can do for any one.

A)If God can lift you out of the pit that you got yourself in, then God can lift them out of their pit as well.


B)That’s a perspective that we really need.

1) That’s the perspective that gives us faith for those who have no faith.


C)See One of the things that God loves to do is to rescue people out of the pits we get ourselves into.


D)He loves to take us from the place where we are consumed by self and move us to place where we call Him Our Lord and our God.


E) That’s His specialty.


Listen are you in your own little hell today ? Do what Jonah does and Bend the Knee and repent.




Today you will either move towards the Lord, or move away from Him…Q: which was it?


It’s God nature to seek those who run from Him, & to save those who turn to Him.

"for the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost."


If God owned a Tee-shirt I believe on the front it would say “Search” & on the back it would say “Rescue”! (Search & Rescue)