4 But the Lord hurled a great wind upon the sea, and there was a mighty tempest on the sea, so that the ship threatened to break up. ESV Jonah has a very parochial view of God, His love, dominion and authority He thinks himself beyond God’s reach He sees himself to be beyond communication It is as though the storm pursues THIS ship God’s intentions are never frustrated He will have Jonah go to Nineveh First he will need an attitude adjustment
5 Then the mariners were afraid, and each cried out to his god. And they hurled the cargo that was in the ship into the sea to lighten it for them. But Jonah had gone down into the inner part of the ship and had lain down and was fast asleep. ESV There is nothing like fear to drive a person to their knees Though there was a dearth of knowledge of the True God, there was a general acknowledgement of some god Men will give up everything to save their own flesh The focus of this extremity seems to be unaffected by it – Perhaps Jonah had deprived himself of sleep – The Devil will often bring a sleep upon the disobedient
6 So the captain came and said to him, "What do you mean, you sleeper? Arise, call out to your god! Perhaps the god will give a thought to us, that we may not perish." ESV Had Jonah been in his proper place, he might have been reproving the king of Nineveh Now he is justly reproved by this heathen captain He is told to pray – For his life and theirs – To prepare himself for his own demise The captain understands that should God choose to intervene, it would be mercy Though they do not know it, the Lord is thinking about them all We admire the goodness of the Lord that He sends this lowly messenger to rouse the prophet of God While there is hope there is room for prayer
Jonah 1:7 7 And they said to one another, "Come, let us cast lots, that we may know on whose account this evil has come upon us." So they cast lots, and the lot fell on Jonah. They realize that the situation is extraordinary They perceive that God is avenging a great wrong Each suspected the other None suspected themselves They had a belief in the casting of lots What a great shame that the greatest wrong is done by the one holding the greatest light The Lord is in the casting of the lot The lot falls on the prophet
8 Then they said to him, "Tell us on whose account this evil has come upon us. What is your occupation? And where do you come from? What is your country? And of what people are you?" One has to admire the forbearance of the crew A great wrong has been done and they would know what it was It is a great calamity when the heathen have cause to question the righteousness of believers What is your occupation? What country are you from? Who are your people?
9 And he said to them, "I am a Hebrew, and I fear the Lord, the God of heaven, who made the sea and the dry land." I am a Hebrew – They are searching out evil – How embarrassing that this be found in a Hebrew I fear the Lord – This is his answer as to his occupation – He is, after all, a prophet Jonah is here confessing the foolishness of his own narrow view: – How does one flee the presence of the One who made all things? – Such an One is not limited to a single country or people
10 Then the men were exceedingly afraid and said to him, "What is this that you have done!" For the men knew that he was fleeing from the presence of the Lord, because he had told them. The men perceive that an awful evil has been done to the One who has made this very sea They are justly afraid He has confessed that he is in flight Jonah’s evil has involved others What an embarrassment that the unbeliever has cause to rebuke the believer because he does not live to his calling There is a severe warning here for the child of God who would rebel against The Father