God’s Program of Forgiveness

As Jonah spoke out of his anger, he made some time-tested truths about God.

Jonah was furious. He lost his temper. He yelled at God, “God! I knew it – when I was back home, I knew this was going to happen! That’s why I ran off to Tarshish! I knew You were sheer grace and mercy, not easily angered, rich in love, and ready at the drop of a hat to turn Your plans of punishment into a program of forgiveness!“” Jonah 4:1-2.

Jonah was so confident that God could and would save the people of Nineveh that he schemed to go in the opposite direction that God told him to go. He felt that they did not deserve God’s love for what they had done and been doing.

(This is not the point of this post, but let this be a reminder to us that God can and will use anyone. It is not our place to determine for God who is and isn’t worthy, because none of us are to begin with. God has known what He is doing since before the beginning; those that He has said are chosen we be called with or without our stamp of approval.)

However, this post isn’t about us, it’s about God. God is completely righteous and holy, knows no evil and despises sin eternally. God’s anger towards Nineveh’s way of living ultimately grew to the point where He was going to destroy the city; Jonah declared throughout the city that they would be smashed in forty days.

The people of Nineveh listened and changed their ways, even to the point where the king decreed that all would turn back from evil, in the hope that God would quit being angry with them.

God saw this and changed his plan of punishment into a program of forgiveness. 

Now we have come full circle to the beginning of this post. So, what’s the point?

God sent a messenger to the people of Nineveh so that they could know that they lived a displeasing lifestyle. God sent a Messenger to us to live a pleasing lifestyle in His eyes because we could not.

God sent a warning to the people of Nineveh about how the very foundation of what they had would be destroyed. God sent a Lifeline to us in Whom the very foundation of our hope and peace are built, even though He knew we could have no hand in building it.

God sent His love to the people of Nineveh because He saw that they sought after Him once they opened their eyes to what His messenger told them. God sent His love to us because He first loved us and diligently pursues those Whom He has called and will call.

For our salvation, our eternal safety, God has already completed everything that is needed. Those who believe are already seated with Him, affirming that our hope is true and living.

Run to the Cross, see His sacrifice and gaze upon the love that He has for each and every one of us. He spared no expense so that you and I could be enrolled and live through His program of forgiveness.

He loves you and if you have any questions about that, please feel free to ask.

God bless.

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