I have been on Jonah for days now. In my last post I left you with a sovereignty bomb to the circumstances and backstory behind the sign of Jonah. For sure, this was one of the most extreme signs of God with a huge and deep meaning for us today.
Did the Sign of Jonah Prove His Failure?
Did Jonah’s resistance to God’s call make him a failure? If Jonah was a rebellious failure, then why would Christ have used the “sign of Jonah” in His message to the Pharisees? The sign of Jonah would turn out to be Jesus’ greatest miracle of all. Jesus’ resurrection from the dead would be God’s chief sign that Jesus was Israel’s long-awaited Messiah (Acts 2:23–32) and establish Christ’s claims to deity (Romans 1:3–4). Jesus didn’t say anything about Jonah’s resistance in His address, for Jonah’s resistance was never an issue. God had Jonah right where He wanted him, and God would show Himself strong.
Then some of the scribes and Pharisees answered him, saying, “Teacher, we wish to see a sign from you.” But he answered them, “An evil and adulterous generation seeks for a sign, but no sign will be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah. For just as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the great fish, so will the Son of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth. The men of Nineveh will rise up at the judgment with this generation and condemn it, for they repented at the preaching of Jonah, and behold, something greater than Jonah is here.
The Sign of Jonah and Jesus
Yes, the sign of Jonah is Jesus’ greatest miracle of all. And in Jesus’ resurrection from the dead, so is OUR resurrection as well. “For if we have been joined with Him in the likeness of His death, we will certainly also be in the likeness of His resurrection” (Romans 6:5 HCSB). We don’t have to be confined or defined by our thoughts. “Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God” (Colossians 3:1).
While people argue the minutia and nuances of this sign, I rejoice over the sign of Jonah. It’s some of our best news. For the religious it is a sign of judgment, but for those in Jesus, it is evidence of LIFE. It is a promise that Christ rose from the dead and the Epistles say I, too, was resurrected with Him on that day. The sign of Jonah is proof that I am not limited by this world or its happenings. The evil, the despair, the troubles of this world have been answered by Christ in the sign of Jonah. I have been liberated from my prison of confinement and God is over it all. He is sovereign over the destructive acts of His chastisement, as well as His amazing resurrection of my LIFE in Him.
The Good News: The Sign of Jonah
The sign of Jonah is the proof of my liberty. I, like Jonah, was the persona of my bitterness, resistant to God, and liberated from my whale prison. Jesus came to end my prisoner’s life and separate me from my earthly confinement. Christ was three days and three nights in the heart of the earth, but then rose to everlasting life. And with Him, I rose too. HALLELUJAH—the sign of Jonah! Christ has the power over life and death!
As far as the Law is concerned I may consider that I died on the cross with Christ. And my present life is not that of the old “I”, but the living Christ within me. The bodily life I now live, I live believing in the Son of God, who loved me and sacrificed Himself for me.
Galatians 2:19-20 Phillips