Running from God

Scripture: Jonah 1:1-3


Get up and Go! Arise and go

Shocking call for Hebrew prophet to go to Gentile city

Surprising choice to send Jonah – He supported Jeroboam’s aggressive military expansion. He was seen as an extremely patriotic nationalist.


Preach against the evil they are doing. Repent!

More shocking that the God of Israel would warn Nineveh of coming judgment.


Jonah got up and ran! Says he arose and fled from God’s presence. He didn’t like the place he was called to go and he definitely didn’t like the message he was told to deliver.

Instead of going east he went west as far as he could!

Take Aways

What do we learn about our amazing God in these first three verses?

No one can run or hide from God. God saw the Assyrians wickedness and knew they needed to be rescued from their self-destructive sin. Jonah tried to run from God’s presence, but we will see how God intervenes.

God cares enough for sinners that he will send them a message of hope, love and grace.

God calls people to bring that message all over the world.

People need to hear the Gospel – call to repentance

Are you running from God?

Some of you are running from the Holy Spirit’s conviction of your sin. You don’t want to give up the things you are doing. You don’t believe submitting to God and obeying His word could possibly be enjoyable. Maybe you know a lot of unhappy, grumpy people who say they are Christians and you don’t want anything to do with them.

Your sin cuts you off from God. It messes up your relationships with others in your life. It may be physically dangerous to your health. But eventually it will spiritually kill you.

Romans 6:23
For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
God is offering you a free gift of eternal life. Just like He wanted to offer the people of Nineveh. When Jesus, the Son of God, died on the cross, he payed your wages, your punishment for sin. Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ and be saved. Come talk to me.

Or maybe you have been a church goer, a rule follower. You’re doing your best to live a good life, to follow the ten commandments and you hope God will accept your best. In Isaiah 64:6 God says we are all unclean and all our good works are filthy rags and our sins take us away from Him. We can’t measure up to God’s standard of goodness and our sins separate us from Him.

Ephesians 2:8 says we are saved by faith in Jesus Christ, not our good deeds so no one can boast or claim they saved themselves.

Jonah thought he was a good guy who deserved God’s forgiveness, but those awful Assyrians definitely deserved nothing but judgment. He tried to run from God’s call and message, but God wouldn’t let him get away that easily. Next sermon in Jonah we will see how God intervened.

If you are tired of running and you’re ready to come to God on His terms, come up front after the service. Someone will be here to pray with you.