July 2018


Jonah was a prophet who lived about the time of king Jeroboam II. (2 Kings 14:25). He occupies a unique place as the first foreign missionary. Jesus attests to Jonah's being in the great fish for three days and nights even as Christ was three days and nights in the grave, and their mutual resurrections. (Matthew 12:38-42) His name means dove, but I will show three other fowl transformations of him.

October 2013

Jonah – Part Four Serve Others

Most of us enjoy being served way more than serving. This is especially true when the people that we are asked to serve are not who we would usually choose to serve. In Jonah’s case not only did Jonah have a dislike for the people but he even had a dislike for the way that God was willing to treat them or, more specifically, not treat them. This lead Jonah to a self-righteous temper tantrum. Jonah took his ball and went home because God wasn’t playing by Jonah’s rules. This man that was once willing to go hundreds of miles out of his way to serve God became a man that wasn’t willing to go one step out of his way to serve others. In chapter 4 God gives Jonah a three-step lesson on how to be a God-honoring servant of others. Let’s listen in.

Jonah – Love Others

Thomas a' Kempis, a late 14th century writer/theologian once wrote, “Whoever loves much, does much.” At the beginning of this account Jonah had an extremely strong desire to not love God. He tried to do his best to hinder God from even thinking of using him in this regard. In the middle of the sea God put him in the stomach of the great fish and did some delicate and powerful spiritual surgery on Jonah’s heart. Jonah walks out of the situation with most likely a rancid smell but a fresh start. Now it is time for Jonah to do what God was and is calling him to do, ‘love the Ninevites’. Let’s see what God has to teach us about loving others by studying the example of Jonah.

Jonah – Serve God

Last time we talked we left Jonah in the stomach of a big fish. As I mentioned before, that situation was unexpected, uncomfortable, and lengthy. You might wonder, considering all this, how could something good ever come out of being trapped in the bowels of a smelly, hot, slim infested fish?! That’s a great question and as we go on in our series you will see that this was a perfect stage for God to do some open-heart surgery on. Jonah might have entered the fish a rebellious denier of God but he came out an obedient servant. Let’s climb into the fish with Jonah for a while and let God work on our hearts.

Jonah – Love God

What does loving God look like? In a world where the definition of love has seemed to be molded under some kind of relativistic structure this is a hard question for many to answer. Here at Manzanita Baptist Church we have adopted a mission statement that says we will “say YES! to loving God, loving others, serving God, and serving others.” Jonah gives us some great insight into all four of these elements. In this sermon we will focus on loving God and through the failure of Jonah in doing this my prayer is that we will be challenged to ask the question, ‘Am I loving God in my life or am I pulling a Jonah?’. What thing(s) do you and I have to stop fighting Him on and start surrendering to Him in?