My brother, my sister, today, from the life of a reluctant and disobedient prophet, Jonah, let’s learn about four consequences that can result from disobeying God. My brother, my sister, do you really think that disobedience to God can happen without there being consequences? It’s too cheap to think that grace spares you the punishment of God when you disobey Him. After Jonah disobeyed God, many events shows us what happens and mainly how God deals with those who think they can fool Him or imitate Him by fooling man.
1. Disobeying God does not only affect you but others will suffer from your sins:
“All the sailors were afraid and each cried out to his own god. And they threw the cargo into the sea to lighten the ship.” (Jonah1:5)
When you intentionally disobey God and refuse to join Him on His mission because you want to pursue your own ambitions, your decision will not only affect you but also those around you! You see, there were other people on the ship with Jonah and they all were affected by the storm sent by God to stop Jonah. They all were afraid of drowning in the raging sea. One man’s disobedience had a peril affect on the lives of all the people associated with him. The same, when we decide to disobey Christ it will affect our family, our friends and ultimately the people we are to share the Gospel with.
2. Disobedience to God shows your lack of love or concern about others. The Bible says: “But Jonah had gone below deck, where he lay down and fell into a deep sleep. The captain went to him and said, “How can you sleep? Get up and call on your god! Maybe he will take notice of us so that we will not perish.” (Jonah 1:5-6)
My friend, where was Jonah as the storm developed? He was asleep in the bottom of the ship. When the captain of the ship found him he could hardly believe what he saw and in disbelief asked, “How can you sleep?” Yes, the captain was shocked! It appeared to him that Jonah did not care about the situation they were “all” in. Jonah wasn’t concerned that everyone was about to die while he knwe the reason why but selfishly decided to hide it. You see, the issue wasn’t that Jonah didn’t care. The issue was that Jonah knew exactly what was happening and why. When we disobey God we develop a “HARDEN HEART” to God.
3. Disobedience to God will be found out by others anyway! “Then the sailors said to each other, “Come, let us cast lots to find out who is responsible for this calamity.” They cast lots and the lot fell on Jonah. (Jonah 1:7). My friend, God is not a gambler, but through the throwing of dice, He was able to show everyone on the ship that Jonah was the cause of their perilous situation. Yes, God will expose you even using an even that does not look Godly. He made a donkey to speak to expose an evil plan and made Balaam the witch to pray to Him just to stop an evil plan against His children.
My friend, the story of Jonah not only shows that though you can run from God you can’t hide from God but also that you will be exposed by God. Most people love to hide their disobedience and sin to God deep in a closet so no one will know about them but God has a way of exposing them so that they will have to deal with them and iit s usually done in plain view of others.
4. Disobedience to God won’t stop God from pursuing you.
“So, they asked him, ‘Tell us, who is responsible for making all this trouble for us? What kind of work do you do? Where do you come from? What is your country? From what people are you?’ He answered, ‘I am a Hebrew and I worship the Lord, the God of heaven, who made the sea and the dry land.’ This terrified them and they asked, ‘What have you done?’ (They knew he was running away from the Lord, because he had already told them so.) The sea was getting rougher and rougher. So, they asked him, ‘What should we do to you to make the sea calm down for us?’ ‘Pick me up and throw me into the sea,’ he replied, ‘and it will become calm. I know that it is my fault that this great storm has come upon you.’ Instead, the men did their best to row back to land. But they could not, for the sea grew even wilder than before.” (Jonah 1:8-13)
Even after the sailors discovered that Jonah was the cause of the storm and what they needed to do to stop the storm (throwing Jonah overboard) they tried as hard as they could to get the ship to shore but to no avail. They did want to see Jonah die on account of them but even their best efforts were not going to be able to stop God from calling Jonah to account for His disobedience. Once God started dealing with your disobedience, don’t think He will stop until you repent like Jonah did. Every attempt from people to help, support or have compassion will not work… When God says ‘NO’ it is ‘NO’. Your only way therefore is repentance. Why? Because when God has a mission for you to accomplish, He will not stop pursuing you and nothing will prevent Him from getting your attention if you choose to disobey Him. For more than ten years, God kept pursuing me and my life was messy and did not move forward, and it took death to threaten me to stop and listen to what God was trying to tell me and to start doing it. I was disobedient to God and did not want to become serious in my walk with Christ… He pursued me until I almost dies, then I acknowledged His power and I decided to follow and serve Jesus seriously. Stay blessed in Jesus’ name.