Written By Lesallan

Ohio Christian University

BIB 2015 Old Testament Interpretation (ONLF23)

Professor Mark Godbold

July 27, 2023

Jonah Runs From God

Jonah ran from God’s call because he did not want to go to Nineveh and deliver God’s message of judgment. Jonah reveals that he knew that God is “a gracious God and merciful, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love, and relenting from disaster” (Jonah 4:2, ESV), and he did not want to see the Ninevites repent and be spared from God’s judgment. Jonah’s actions show he was more concerned with his desires than obeying God’s command.

Jonah may have run from the call he received from God because he was afraid. However, the Book of Jonah does not explicitly state that Jonah was in fear of traveling to Nineveh. However, fear may have factored into his decision to flee God’s call. Because Jonah knew that Nineveh was a powerful and potentially hostile city, fear may have affected his decision-making process.

Jonah himself reveals to us in Jonah 4:2 (ESV) that he did not want to see the Ninevites hear God’s message and be given a chance to repent and ultimately be spared from God’s judgment. Because Jonah was human, he may have held personal biases and prejudices against the people of Nineveh. Jonah knew of the history of the City of Nineveh and was well aware of the potential challenges or difficulties that might arise from delivering God’s message.  

The Bible has often portrayed not only the prophets but other figures that have struggled with their mission and callings because it reflects that by nature, we are all human and the reality of human nature. God calls many to fulfill specific missions and purposes, yet they may have fears, doubts, and struggles. These Biblical stories remind us that even the most faithful servants of God are still human and subject to the same weaknesses and challenges as the rest of us. These Biblical stories also show us that despite our struggles, God is always present; he is always with us. It is God who guides us and supports us as we seek to fulfill His will.

Have I ever run from anything? No, I am not the type to back down from a challenge. I have always been a fearless leader, a daring adventurer, and a loyal friend to those deserving. I have faced many trials and tribulations, dark days, and lonely nights without flinching. I never run from what the Holy Spirit puts upon me. Have you ever asked yourself precisely what is God’s calling and your purpose in Life? I often ask myself, “Father, what can I do for You instead of What can You do for me?” No, I have not run nor fled away from anything that the Holy Spirit puts upon my mind. In my world, I do not dream as others may; I have visions of things to be like many others, I am sure. All that God has shown me through the visions and His voice speaking to me has been fulfilled – except for one private vision. God will reward us all for being faithful servants, and yet again, the reward that God has shown me is personal and private. The Hint? A dark-haired child and a wife are what God’s promise was to me.

Blessings to All,

Les Allan