Tomorrow morning at LifePoint we will visit Jonah chapter 2. I think Jonah 2:9 can safely be called the “thesis” of this prophet’s short biography. It is the last line that Jonah speaks in the belly of the fish before he is launched back onto the beach. Once Jonah realized “Salvation belongs to the Lord” God released him from his fishy prison.
I think people in our world today are longing for salvation. When I say “salvation,” I don’t mean an isolated experience somewhere at the front of a church building, a “repeat after me” moment, or a warm fuzzy deep in the tummy region that assures me that I really am a “good person.” I mean a real, biblical, Christ-for-my-sin great exchange.
Here’s how Charles Spurgeon spoke about it:
What a great word that word “salvation” is! It includes the cleansing of our
conscience from all past guilt, the delivery of our soul from all those propensities to
evil which now so strongly predominate in us; it takes in, in fact, the undoing of all
that Adam did. Salvation is the total restoration of man from his fallen estate; and
yet it is something more than that, for God’s salvation fixes our standing more secure
than it was before we fell. It finds us broken in pieces by the sin of our first parent,
defiled, stained, accursed: it first heals our wounds, it removes our diseases, it takes
away our curse, it puts our feet upon the rock Christ Jesus, and having thus done, at last it lifts our heads far above all principalities and powers, to be crowned for ever
with Jesus Christ, the king of heaven.
I really believe people in our world today, just like in every age the world has ever known, are longing for THAT.
Jonah learned something about salvation in the belly of that great fish. I believe the lesson he learned is essential for anyone longing for salvation. The questions we want answered when it comes to salvation include “what?” “how?” and “why?” I think all three of those are answered in Jonah’s prayer in Jonah 2:1-9. But the what, how, and why of salvation all depend on the Who. The Who of salvation is the central theme to Jonah’s prayer, and indeed the central theme of the entire Bible. Who is the Who of salvation? I’m sorry, but the Who is not you. Jesus is the Who.
Tune in tomorrow at LPC for the third week of Man Overboard to find out more.