In the Depths? Help from Jonah

“In the Old Testament, the word salvation refers to both physical and spiritual deliverance. But as we read the Bible in its entirety, we soon come to see that all physical deliverance is simply an illustration of the great spiritual deliverance that God offers in his son Jesus. In the depths, as Christians, we must never forget that it is in Christ alone our hope is found—for there alone is sin dealt with.” 

(Davy Ellison – For the Church) A single image, from my first few visits to London, is impressed on my mind: the view from the top of an escalator in the larger Underground Tube stations. I remember standing looking at this enormous moving stairway, tilted at a frightening angle, inching slowly but steadily into the depths of London’s underground. Imagine gazing at hundreds of people on this downward trajectory into the belly of London.

This image of downward motion is one which is created by the book of Jonah in the first two chapters. Initially, Jonah goes down to the port of Joppa (1:3). Once aboard a ship, Jonah goes down to the inner part and lies down (1:5). Jonah is then thrown from the deck down into the raging sea (1:15). In chapter 2 Jonah then recalls being thrown down into the sea (2:3), where he then sinks down (2:3, 5)—finally sinking down to the sea floor (2:6).

For two entire chapters Jonah has been moving downward. In chapter 2, we therefore find him in the depths. But from those depths Jonah shares four truths that might encourage those of us who are likewise in the depths. View article →



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