March 12, 2016

Rescued at Sea

Jonah 2

You, Lord my God, brought my life up from the pit. . . . ‘Salvation comes from the Lord.’

—  Jonah 2:6, 9

One of the most dramatic stories in the Bible is that of Jonah. God told Jonah to go to the wicked city of Nineveh and call it to repent. Instead, Jonah ran from the Lord and boarded a ship heading in the opposite direction. God sent a storm that threatened to sink the boat. Jonah told the sailors that if they threw him overboard, the ship would be saved. So they did, and Jonah was also saved when God sent a great fish that swallowed him and eventually spit him up on land.

Imagine praying while inside the belly of a fish! But that’s what Jonah did. Jonah 2 includes a prayer song of praise and thanks to God. Jonah recognized that God saved him from death and gave him a new lease on life. Jonah said, in effect, “I sank to the bottom of the sea, but God, you raised me up.” He ended with this confession: “Salvation comes from the Lord.”

Jonah’s story points to Jesus. Jonah was thrown into the sea so that the sailors would be spared. Jesus gave up his own life so that we can be spared from eternal death. Jesus also sank into the depths of a tomb, but God raised him up on the third day.

Indeed, “salvation comes from the Lord.” Have you made this same confession?

Lord Jesus, as we prepare for worship tomorrow, may we worship in the light of your death and resurrection for us. In your name we pray. Amen.

About the author — Tom Groelsema

Tom Groelsema and his wife, Sheri, have served churches in Minnesota, Michigan, and North Carolina. They have four children and three granddaughters.

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