The Second Time
And the word of the LORD came unto Jonah the second time, saying, ~Jonah 3:1
“The second time” is an opportunity for us to prove that we are capable of doing what we did not or could not do the first time. It is the opportunity for us to show that we can do what is expected of us. Jonah tried to escape God’s calling to preach at Nineveh. God caught up with him, and through an excruciating process, Jonah realized that it does not pay to disobey God’s calling on our life. Let us see the second time in the life of Jonah.
We see the directive.
“Arise, go unto Nineveh, that great city, and preach unto it the preaching that I bid thee.” Jonah received the same command that God had given him before. Sometimes, we don’t get it right the first time when it comes to being obedient. God might have to put us in a difficult situation so that we will obey His Word without hesitation the second time. When it comes to His commands, God never changes His Word to fit us, but instead, changes us so that we conform to His Word. Without delay, Jonah rose up and went to Nineveh. Let us be careful to obey the Lord the first time that we are given a command.
We see the delivery.
“And Jonah began to enter into the city a day's journey, and he cried, and said, Yet forty days, and Nineveh shall be overthrown.” I believe that Jonah still had inward reluctance about preaching to the people of Nineveh. Deep inside of him, he despised how cruel and merciless Nineveh was to every city and people that it conquered. He delivered his blunt message outside of its entry. It was concise but convicting. He spoke the word that God told him to speak. He spoke the word without delay and without compromise.
We see the decision.
“But let man and beast be covered with sackcloth, and cry mightily unto God: yea, let them turn every one from his evil way, and from the violence that is in their hands. Who can tell if God will turn and repent, and turn away from his fierce anger, that we perish not?” The king heard the message and was deeply convicted. He led everyone in the city to repent of their sin and turn to God. Jonah watched in amazement as his one, short message was used of God to affect a wide-sweeping change. God uses us to impact the lives of other people for salvation and sanctification. What we say or do moves people to either live for God or stay from God. Jonah accomplished the second time what he could have seen done the first time.
We see the demonstration.
First, we see God’s mercies and longsuffering at work. Jonah was the right man for the job. God did not cast him aside for his disobedience, but He gave him a second time. We also see God's patience towards Nineveh. He could have destroyed them, but He gave the people of this city the opportunity to turn to Him. Second, we see that God had full faith in Jonah. One of the most gripping thoughts I have every day is the confidence and faith that God has in me! He gives me room to grow. He gives me a second time to get it right. God does not function as a businessman who hires and fires. Once God has selected us for an endeavor, He is more than desirous to help us to get it done. "It is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure."
Are you at the place of a second time in your life? Have faith in God’s plan for you and obey Him completely. If God trusts in you, you can most definitely trust in God!
Have an obedient God Morning!
Bible Reading Schedule: Job 11-13