Salvation comes from the Lord

The restored 'Creation of Adam' by Michelangelo Buonarroti on the ceiling of the Sistine ChapelFrom inside the fish Jonah prayed to the Lord his God. He said: “In my distress I called to the Lord , and he answered me. From deep in the realm of the dead I called for help, and you listened to my cry. You hurled me into the depths, into the very heart of the seas, and the currents swirled about me; all your waves and breakers swept over me. I said, ‘I have been banished from your sight; yet I will look again toward your holy temple.’ The engulfing waters threatened me, the deep surrounded me; seaweed was wrapped around my head. To the roots of the mountains I sank down; the earth beneath barred me in forever. But you, Lord my God, brought my life up from the pit. “When my life was ebbing away, I remembered you, Lord , and my prayer rose to you, to your holy temple. “Those who cling to worthless idols turn away from God’s love for them. But I, with shouts of grateful praise, will sacrifice to you. What I have vowed I will make good. I will say, ‘Salvation comes from the Lord .’ ” And the Lord commanded the fish, and it vomited Jonah onto dry land. – Jonah 2:1‭-‬10

Happy Easter!  I am writing this the day before Easter so I can enjoy Easter day and reflect on the salvation that comes from the Lord!  I thought yesterday’s post was very timely, but today’s is an even more amazing “reflection of Him“. This passage about Jonah’s “resurrection” falls on the day we celebrate Jesus’ resurrection for Easter – God’s timing is so cool. He can even turn my procrastination into a profound blessing :).

I will not get into a debate about whether Jonah could in fact have been swallowed by “a fish” and survive in its belly for three days and nights. I think to do so would be missing the point here. I am pretty sure that God’s main purpose in providing this prophecy for Jonah is to provide a foreshadowing of Jesus’ sojourn in a cave for three days and nights after being crucified on a cross. In that sense it does not really matter whether Jonah really was in the belly of a whale or not.  Certainly if God wanted to make this happen He could, but I think to make that the main focus of this story is to miss the point.

I think the crux of the story comes toward the end of the passage when Jonah repents and prays. He says “my prayer rose to you, to your holy temple. “Those who cling to worthless idols turn away from God’s love for them. But I, with shouts of grateful praise, will sacrifice to you. What I have vowed I will make good. I will say, ‘Salvation comes from the Lord”.  Wow, what a hidden well here in Jonah.  Jonah, and God, have laid out the path for salvation that will come when Jesus arrives to “calm the storm“.

The path to God, according to this passage, is this: 1) pray to God; 2) reject all the worthless idols in our lives that distract us from God’s love for us; 3) shout praise and sacrifice our lives to God; 4) make good on our vow to God (commitment) by faithfully following God wherever He leads. This is the path that leads to salvation.  It is not complex, it does not require a theology degree, we do not need candle sticks or alter covers, and it depends on no one else but each one of us and God – the source of our salvation.

Once again God “gave me a hug” as I was preparing this post. I was listening to Pandora and a song came on that seemed to speak directly to my heart about this passage. It was “Give me Jesus” by Jeremy Camp.  Here are the lyrics:

In the morning, when I rise
In the morning, when I rise
In the morning, when I rise
Give me Jesus
Give me Jesus
Give me Jesus
You can have all this world
Just give me Jesus
When I am alone
When I am alone
Oh, when I am alone
Give me Jesus
Give me Jesus
Give me Jesus
You can have all this world
Just give me Jesus
Jesus
Give me Jesus
When I come to die
When I come to die
Oh, when I come to die
Give me Jesus
Give me Jesus
 -Written by C.S. Brown and sung by Jeremy Camp

Prayer: God salvation truly comes from You.  Thank You for providing the path for salvation and Your Son to lead us there.

 

 

 

This entry was posted in Christianity, Covenant, Discipleship, Faith, Following God, Free Will, God's Love for Us, Gospel, Jonah, Love for the Lost, Obedience, reconciliation, Redemption, Sharing the Gospel, The Earthly Realm, The Nature of God, The Spiritual Realm, Trusting God and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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