What Happens When You Run from God?

February 24, 2024   /   Brian T. Anderson   /   Vineyard Church North Phoenix

An Unexpected Hero
What Happens When You Run from God?

I. Introduction

A. Jonah 1:1-2 (NLT) 1The LORD gave this message to Jonah son of Amittai: 2“Get up and go to the great city of Nineveh. Announce my judgment against it because I have seen how wicked its people are.”

1. Israel always had a lot of priests—but they usually only had at a time—because that was all Israel could stand!

2. The Israelites Assyria—and especially Nineveh, its capital!

3. Nineveh is the place that God calls you to that you want to go!

B. Jonah 1:3a (NLT) But Jonah got up and went in the opposite direction to get away from the LORD.

1. One of the things about disobedience—one of the things about sin—is it requires the illusion that I won’t get .

2. Whenever you and I do something sinful—it always involves from God.

C. Jonah 1:3b (NLT) He went down to the port of Joppa, where he found a ship leaving for Tarshish. He bought a ticket and went on board, hoping to escape from the LORD by sailing to Tarshish.

1. Jonah had enough money to buy passage for a long voyage—out of his !

2. The phrase, “a ship leaving for Tarshish” became a symbol of in the ancient world.

3. Maybe the only safe place there is, is to be in the will of for your life!

D. Jonah 1:4 (NLT) But the LORD hurled a powerful wind over the sea, causing a violent storm that threatened to break the ship apart.

E. Jonah 1:5 (NLT) Fearing for their lives, the desperate sailors shouted to their gods for help and threw the cargo overboard to lighten the ship. But all this time Jonah was sound asleep down in the hold.

1. Outside of Israel, the ancient world did not generally have the idea of .

F. Jonah 1:6 (NLT) So the captain went down after him. “How can you sleep at a time like this?” he shouted. “Get up and pray to your god! Maybe he will pay attention to us and spare our lives.”

G. Jonah 1:7-10 (NLT) 7Then the crew cast lots to see which of them had offended the gods and caused the terrible storm. When they did this, the lots identified Jonah as the culprit. 8“Why has this awful storm come down on us?” they demanded. “Who are you? What is your line of work? What country are you from? What is your nationality?” 9Jonah answered, “I am a Hebrew, and I worship the LORD, the God of heaven, who made the sea and the land.” 10The sailors were terrified when they heard this, for he had already told them he was running away from the LORD. “Oh, why did you do it?” they groaned.

1. Elohim – –

2. Adonai – – or master


4. The Bible is not a story about a plan!

H. Jonah 1:11-12 (NLT) 11And since the storm was getting worse all the time, they asked him, “What should we do to you to stop this storm?” 12“Throw me into the sea,” Jonah said, “and it will become calm again. I know that this terrible storm is all my fault.”

I. Jonah 1:13 (NLT) Instead, the sailors rowed even harder to get the ship to the land. But the stormy sea was too violent for them, and they couldn’t make it.

1. These pagan sailors have more on this Hebrew prophet than the Hebrew prophet had on the people of Nineveh!

J. Jonah 1:14 (NLT) Then they cried out to the LORD, Jonah’s God. “O LORD,” they pleaded, “don’t make us die for this man’s sin. And don’t hold us responsible for his death. O LORD, you have sent this storm upon him for your own good reasons.”

K. Jonah 1:15 (NLT) Then the sailors picked Jonah up and threw him into the raging sea, and the storm stopped at once!

1. Whenever we run from God, eventually we’ll always face a .

2. is all over this Book!

L. Jonah 1:16 (NLT) The sailors were awestruck by the LORD’s great power, and they offered him a sacrifice and vowed to serve him.

1. A pagan boat becomes a place of !

2. It turns out that God’s story is so big—that it includes !

3. It’s never too to quit running from God!

4. to !

II. Conclusion


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