He answered them, “Pick me up and throw me into the sea so it may quiet down for you, for I know that I’m to blame for this violent storm that is against you.”Jonah 1:12 (HCSB)
Once again, parallels to the life of Jesus rise up above the waves of the storm-tossed words of this book. Jonah, seeing the terror of the sailors, tells them to throw him to his death because his running from God is the cause of this wrathful storm. Jonah, a sinner, a man deserving to be executed for mutiny and desertion of post, finally accepts his error and is ready to face the judgement of God. As Christians we should all learn from this that we must follow in the steps of Jonah in repenting our sins.
Each and every time we sin, we declare war against heaven. Each time we turn around and walk into sin—knowingly or unknowingly—we throw down our armour of God, drop our shield of faith, and flee from the battle. Sin is us deserting our post. Sin is our joining the mutiny of Satan. Eventually, we all must face the judge. In this life, criminals may be clever and evade the law, but no one can evade their time in the dock before the White Throne of Judgement. We will all be there exactly when we were always supposed to be—nothing and no one can stall our date with destiny. Yet God gives us a chance to come before him and repent of our mutiny now, in this life, while we still have a chance to devote ourselves to him and turn again to join the battle.
God always accepts a broken and contrite heart. God always forgives those who truly repent and believe in his holy Gospel. The reason why God does this is because of a greater man than Jonah. Jonah told the sailors to cast him into the sea for his crimes against God. Jesus was sinless; his record was clean. Jesus willingly threw himself into the sea of the wrath of God towards sin. Jesus willingly took all of our filthy sin, our guilt and shame, our demonic darkness. Strapping our sin all about him, swallowing and ingesting that bitter poison till it filled him with its putrid and rancid taste, he took our place in the dock before the Judge. He freely, willingly, took our place, took our punishment, purchased with his perfect life our perfect peace from the storm and gale of God’s anger. Let us not forget this wonderful Good News. Let us readily and willingly repent.