Throughout the last five weeks I’ve been reading a book called Man Overboard by Sinclair Ferguson. I borrowed (some may say “stole”) his title for our sermon series on the book of Jonah that ends this morning at LifePoint.
Man Overboard is a short exposition of the book of Jonah. Ferguson does an awesome job of breaking down the various segments of the book, laying out his commentary in eleven skillfully developed chapters. The thing I loved about this book was the wayFerguson managed to get into the mind of Jonah, seeing his motives, moves, and attitude shifts from a really unique point of view. This book was a great resource that I used alongside other commentaries as I preached through Jonah in five weeks.
Ferguson really emphasizes the truth about the sovereignty of God found in Jonah. He says “the best sub-title for Jonah might be Evangelism and the Sovereignty of God.” The book by J.I. Packer that bears that exact title would be a great read alongside Ferguson’s Man Overboard. Although many people wrongly perceive that God’s sovereignty limits the necessity of evangelism, Jonah’s biography teaches about the strong dependence these two things have on each other. Ferguson says, “Jonah was forced to learn in his flight from God that God is sovereign. He rules over all things. He also learned that the pulse-beat of God’s heart has an evangelistic rhythm. He loves men and women and he will pursue them with his love in order to bring them to repentance and faith.”
The major thrust of Packer’s book is that God’s sovereignty is the primary motivator for evangelism, preaching, and prayer. We don’t stop praying when we learn that God is sovereign. God’s sovereignty all the more motivates us to pray, since we know we are addressing the God who rules all things (and by His will and word commands us to pray).
Jonah has been a great journey, to watch any of the sermons in this series click here.