1. On this occasion the Pharisees and the Sadducees approached Jesus. a. Their purpose was to "tempt" [test] the Lord. b. They wanted Jesus to "show them a sign from heaven." c. Later, Jesus warned His disciples about the "leaven" [doctrine] of these people (vs.6, 12). 2. In His response, Jesus mentioned: a. the general formula for determining if the weather will be fair or foul b. "the sign of the prophet Jonah." 3. The Lord indicated that valuable information can be learned from Jonah. a. This evening we plan to examine "the sign of Jonah." b. This morning we are making a more general study of God's dealings with Jonah. c. As we search the Scriptures, "let us learn a lesson from Jonah." Discussion: I. LET US FIRST BE REMINDED OF SOME PRELIMINARY INFORMATION
A. God gave Jonah a mission (Jonah 1:1-2). 1. Nineveh was the capital of Assyria. 2. God was going to use the Assyrians to punish His people in the northern kingdom. B. (Jonah 1:3) Jonah attempted to flee to Tarshish "from the presence of the Lord." C. Jonah was determined to be the cause of a great storm that arose, and he was thrown overboard (Jonah 1:4-16). D. We learn from Jonah 1:17 that God prepared a great fish to swallow Jonah. E. Jonah prayed from the fish's belly, and his prayer of praise and thanksgiving is recorded in Jonah 2:1-9. F. (Jonah 2:10) Jonah returned safely to land. II. (Jonah 3) GOD PROVIDED ANOTHER OPPORTUNITY FOR JONAH TO DO HIS WILL
A. (vs.1-2) God gave Jonah the same mission again. B. (vs.3-4) This time Jonah obeyed God's instructions. C. (vs.5-9) Jonah's message produced great results. 1. (vs.5) The people believed God and repented. 2. (vs.6) Repentance began with the king. 3. (vs.7-9) The king commanded everyone in Nineveh to repent. D. (vs.10) God changed His mind about destroying Nineveh. E. Because God provided another opportunity for Jonah to do His will, He is often called "the God of the second chance." III. LET US EXAMINE OTHER BIBLE CHARACTERS WHO WERE GIVEN ADDITIONAL OPPORTUNITIES TO DO GOD'S WILL
A. Peter was given another opportunity (Matthew 26:31-35, 69-75; Acts 2:14). B. The prodigal son was given another opportunity (Luke 15:20-24). C. Simon was given another opportunity (Acts 8:13, 18-24). D. God will give additional opportunities to His children who repent (1 John 1:9). Conclusion:
1. God's dealings with Jonah teach us a valuable lesson about His nature. 2. David learned the same lesson, and he summed it up in Psalm 145:8, 14.