The main character of the Story of Jonah is God. It is fundamentally a story of God's wide and generous mercy which He shows to all kinds of people throughout the 4 chapters of the story. The key verse of the story is 4:2a - "“I knew that you are a gracious and compassionate God, slow to anger and abounding in love, a God who relents from sending calamity.” It is this characteristic of God which shines through the whole story! In this first chapter we pay attention to God's mercy shown to the sailors on the ship. These sailors have no knowledge or understanding of Yahweh, the God who is the Creator of the sea and the dry land. Even as Jonah is running away from Yahweh, these men are introduced to Him and by the end of the chapter they are offering sacrifices and making vows to Him. We respond to this story by offering praise and worship to God for his persistent and generous mercy and then through obedience as we realize what He has done for us! May we truly learn and respond!
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