Jonah 4:1 - The Prodigal Cure.

Jonah 4:1 (NLT) This change of plans greatly 
upset Jonah, and he became very angry. 


A Prodigal Prophet
   Sometimes people worry about new 
believers not changing quickly enough, but Im more 
concerned with older converts who have stopped 
   New believers are still figuring out 
their newfound faith. Maybe theyre a little 
rough around the edges. Maybe some profanity slips 
out from time to time, or they havent 
completely gotten rid of some old vices. You think they 
have a little growing to do, and that is 
   Actually, Im pretty patient with that 
sort of thing. However, what concerns me is the 
person who has known the Lord for years and stopped 
changing a long time ago. Whats more, theyve 
become crankier and meaner, yet they quote the 
Bible all the time. 
   Theyre bitter and very critical. Their 
new form of ministry seems to be tearing other 
people down. Theyre using the passion they once 
had for evangelism to critique other 
   What happened to them? How did they end 
up in that state? 
   Theyve stagnated in their walk with 
Christ. Theyre no longer making changes. 
   When we come to the fourth chapter of 
Jonah, that is what we see happening. Jonah was a 
mature believer. He should have known better, but 
he was having a relapse. In effect, Jonah was a 
prodigal prophet. And he was angry and bitter toward 
   People can be used in remarkable ways by 
God, yet they can make big mistakes and commit 
sins afterward. We see this in the lives of 
Abraham, Moses, Samson, David, and Simon Peter. 
   Jonah was waiting for judgment to fall on 
Nineveh, and mercy fell instead. In the same way, 
some Christians are more concerned with their 
comfort than with the souls of lost people. 
   If we dont get excited when a lost 
person comes to Jesus, then we need to ask God to 
change our hearts. [Greg Laurie from Harvest 
Ministries; https://www.harvestdaily.com] 


Making God First in Your Life
   When I was little we used to play church. 
We would get chairs into rows, fight over who 
would be preacher, vigorously lead the hymn 
singing, and generally have a great time.  
   The aggressive kids naturally wanted to 
be up front, directing or preaching. The 
quieter ones were content to sit and be entertained 
by the upfronters.  
   Occasionally we would become mesmerized 
by a true sensationalistic crowd swayer, such 
as the girl who said, "Boo! I'm the Holy 
Ghost!" But in general, if the upfronters were 
pretty good, they could hold their audience quite a 
while. If they weren't so good, eventually the kids 
would drift off to play something else, such as 
jump rope or jacks.  
   Now that generation has grown up, but 
most of them have not changed too much. Every 
Sunday they still play church. They line up in rows 
for the entertainment. If it's pretty good, 
their church may grow. If it's not too hot, 
eventually they will drift off to play something else, 
such as yachting or wife swapping. Anne Ortlund  
   Anne is right. Many people today just 
play church, and it's truly sad because they 
really don't know what they are missing.  
   A minister I know used to say, "Wherever 
you are when it's time for church, you will be 
worshiping your god." If you are at home asleep, then 
sleep is your god. If you are on the golf course, 
then golf is your god. If you are working, then 
work is your god. Or if you are in the assembly 
of the saints and your heart is truly engaged 
in worship, then God really is your God.  
   Aren't you happy that God was not playing 
when he offered us his grace? 
   Forgive me Lord, for the times I fail to 
put you first in my life. I repent of my neglect 
and pray that you will draw me ever closer to 
you. Amen. [The One Year Devotional of Joy and 
Laughter by Mary Hollingsworth] 

Keeping God First in Your Life
   Ephesus was the home of a tremendous 
ministry. Despite harsh persecution, the church 
planted by Paul endured opposition, spread the 
gospel, and was quick to challenge false prophets. 
But 30 years after the apostle left, Johns 
revelation included a stern warning for those 
   Imagine how the words of Revelation 2 
must have struck the Ephesians when they read 
them. After complimenting their service to the 
gospel, Christ said, But I have this against you 
... That phrase was no doubt extremely 
disconcerting. The Lord warned them that they had left 
their first love. In other words, all of their 
work was being done with wrong motives. 
   Christ called the Ephesians to remember 
their love for Him and their delight in His 
salvation. Service is no substitute for an intimate 
relationship, but modern believers continue to fall into 
this subtle trap. The commendable things that we 
do count for nothing unless they stem from a 
vibrant personal connection with God. Our work 
cant be effective or fruitful unless He is in 
   In fact, God is more interested in you 
and your personal relationship with Him than in 
a thousand lifetimes of good works. He desires 
to be the satisfaction and delight of His 
children so that their service is a result of loving 
   There are plenty of wrong reasons to 
labor for the kingdom. However, God is satisfied 
only with service motivated by love for Him. He 
wants those with selfish intentions to return to 
their first love. In that way, hearts and minds 
can be renewed, and service to the Lord will be 
more fruitful. [In Touch Daily Devotional by 
Charles Stanley at www.intouch.org re Rev. 2:1-7] 


Colossians 2:6, 7 - How To Live In Christ.


Revelation 2:4, 5 - The Priority of 


Revelation 2:4, 5 - How Is Your First Love?



If anyone has a paraphrase, commentary or 
testimony on this passage of Scripture, either 
personal or otherwise, I would be interested in 
hearing from you.  Thanks in advance and let's keep 
uplifting Jesus that all might be drawn to Him. Fred 


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