The Jews wanted Jesus to give them a sign to prove He was the Messiah. Jesus answered
(Matthew 12:38-41) that they would be given only the sign of Jonah—that He would spend
three days and nights in the grave as Jonah had in the great fish.
Jesus is far greater than Jonah, however. Jesus is greater in His person, for Jonah was a mere
man. Jesus was greater in His obedience, for Jonah disobeyed God and was chastened.
Jesus actually died, while Jonah’s “grave” was in the belly of the fish. Jesus rose from the
dead under His own power. Jonah ministered only to one city, while Jesus gave His life for
the whole world.
Certainly Jesus was greater in His love, for Jonah did not love the people of Nineveh; he
wanted them to die. Jonah’s message saved Nineveh from judgment; he was a messenger of
the wrath of God.
Jesus’ message was that of grace and salvation. When we trust Christ, we are not only saved
from judgment, but we receive eternal, abundant life.
Verse for today: “For whosoever shall do the will of My Father which is in heaven, the same
is My brother, and sister, and mother” (Matthew 12:50).
Also read: Jonah 2; Luke 24:13-35; Matthew 28:11-15.
Action assignment: God will not forgive the rejection of His Son. The Jewish religious
leaders rejected Jesus and failed to honor Him as God. Think about several ways in which
you honor Jesus as God’s Son. Are there any ways in which you dishonor Him? For instance,
if you hear others take His name in vain, what do you do? Pray about wisdom concerning
more ways to honor Jesus.
WARREN W. WIERSBE