What is it that we do not learn from Jonah and what do we learn? We don’t learn to obey God instantly—no questions asked. We do learn that “God does not show favoritism in dealing with people!”
Peter falls into the Jonah Syndrome in a vision of four-footed animals and reptiles of the earth and hears “Get up, Peter, slaughter and eat!” Peter vehemently tells God no and we say “NO???” Instead of being shocked by Peter’s response, we must remember that the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. We too often say the same. God asks us to speak to our neighbor or an office mate and we come up with all kinds of excuses—just like Jonah. But, God is adamant about obedience as Peter will learn when Gentile strangers show up at the door asking for him. We smile to see God’s sense of humor. Hmm, Peter you didn’t get it yet so, I have a real life lesson and it includes you and Gentiles.
But then into this mix are the naysayers, the circumcised “holier than thou” Jewish believers. It is then that he hears and we hear: “how c-o-u-l-d you do that!” But, God has a plan that is as true then as now: “He loves ALL people!” God did that in Nineveh, in the home of Cornelius and now in Jerusalem with these believers.
Be careful of saying “no” to God or you might find yourself in a Jonah situation and have to take a real life lesson walk. You don’t want to miss God at work!