Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Chris Craig and Questions

Looking through my journal this morning, I saw that in 2002, I heard a thought-provoking message by Chris Craig. It was based on the book of Jonah, the rebellious guy who was swallowed by a whale in his efforts to get away from God, who told him to go warn Ninevah that they had better turn to him.

Jonah boarded a ship, hoping it would take him far away from God, but God caused a ferocious storm. The men who formed the crew of the ship were disturbed, of course, as they tried to save themselves. They decided it must be Jonah’s fault, and they asked him some questions:

"How can you sleep? Get up and call on your god! Maybe he will take notice of us, and we will not perish."

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.

So they asked him, "Tell us, who is responsible for making all this trouble for us? What 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 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?"

(Eventually, they threw him into the sea where a giant fish swallowed him. Jonah was, of course, in deep despair, sure he would die. He realized that he could not go anywhere to escape God. He prayed in repentance; after three days, the fish cast him up on the shore, and he went to Ninevah to do God’s bidding.)

Chris asked whether unbelievers today (the sailors) have the right to ask Christians these questions:

“Why don’t you pray?”

“Why don’t you shine?” (Why has evil come upon us?)

“Why don’t you serve?” (And whom do you serve?)

“Why don’t you testify?” (Tell us.)

“Why have you departed from God?”

“What shall we do with you that we might have peace?”

The answer is yes, they do have the right to ask believers these questions. Providing answers is one of the responsibilities of a Christian. Thank God, Chris added, for not giving up on us.

The picture is found at this site:


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