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The Road to Recovery

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(Mutiny’s End) The Road to Recovery – Jonah 2:1-10

Introduction – Getting a flat tire in Elko and having the warranty on it. All I had to do was get it into the shop to get it fixed. What do we do when we have messed things up with God?

So what do I do now?

Jonah 2:1-10 - Then Jonah prayed to the Lord his God from the stomach of the fish, 2 and he said, “I called out of my distress to the Lord, And He answered me. I cried for help from the depth of Sheol; You heard my voice. 3 “For You had cast me into the deep, Into the heart of the seas, And the current engulfed me. All Your breakers and billows passed over me. 4 “So I said, ‘I have been expelled from Your sight. Nevertheless I will look again toward Your holy temple.’ 5 “Water encompassed me to the point of death. The great deep engulfed me, Weeds were wrapped around my head. 6 “I descended to the roots of the mountains. The earth with its bars was around me forever, But You have brought up my life from the pit, O Lord my God. 7 “While I was fainting away, I remembered the Lord, And my prayer came to You, Into Your holy temple. 8 “Those who regard vain idols Forsake their faithfulness, 9 But I will sacrifice to You With the voice of thanksgiving. That which I have vowed I will pay. Salvation is from the Lord.” 10 Then the Lord commanded the fish, and it vomited Jonah up onto the dry land.

1) Call out to God (1-3) He will hear you.

- Bob Hinely coming back to God.

 Romans 10:13 for “Whoever will call on the name of the Lord will be saved.”

No matter what you have done, no matter how far from God you think you are - God will hear your prayer and save you.

James 4:4-10 - You adulterers! Don’t you realize that friendship with this world makes you an enemy of God? I say it again, that if your aim is to enjoy this world, you can’t be a friend of God. 5 What do you think the Scriptures mean when they say that the Holy Spirit, whom God has placed within us, jealously longs for us to be faithful? 6 He gives us more and more strength to stand against such evil desires. As the Scriptures say, “God sets himself against the proud, but he shows favor to the humble.” 7 So humble yourselves before God. Resist the Devil, and he will flee from you. 8 Draw close to God, and God will draw close to you. Wash your hands, you sinners; purify your hearts, you hypocrites. 9 Let there be tears for the wrong things you have done. Let there be sorrow and deep grief. Let there be sadness instead of laughter, and gloom instead of joy. 10 When you bow down before the Lord and admit your dependence on him, he will lift you up and give you honor. (NLT)

2) Come to his temple (or presence) - Jonah did this in the fish - you can do this anywhere (4-7)

4 “So I said, ‘I have been expelled from Your sight. Nevertheless I will look again toward Your holy temple.’ 5 “Water encompassed me to the point of death. The great deep engulfed me, Weeds were wrapped around my head. 6 “I descended to the roots of the mountains. The earth with its bars was around me forever, But You have brought up my life from the pit, O Lord my God. 7 “While I was fainting away, I remembered the Lord, And my prayer came to You, Into Your holy temple.

Illustration - I have had church in the most interesting places. On a rooftop in China, I had to sing praise songs by mouthing the words. We could not sing out loud for fear of being arrested. I have church in my car all the time.

Illustration – The Prodigal Son.

Luke 15:11-24 - To illustrate the point further, Jesus told them this story: “A man had two sons. 12 The younger son told his father, ‘I want my share of your estate now, instead of waiting until you die.’ So his father agreed to divide his wealth between his sons. 13 “A few days later this younger son packed all his belongings and took a trip to a distant land, and there he wasted all his money on wild living. 14 About the time his money ran out, a great famine swept over the land, and he began to starve. 15 He persuaded a local farmer to hire him to feed his pigs. 16 The boy became so hungry that even the pods he was feeding the pigs looked good to him. But no one gave him anything. 17 “When he finally came to his senses, he said to himself, ‘At home even the hired men have food enough to spare, and here I am, dying of hunger! 18 I will go home to my father and say, “Father, I have sinned against both heaven and you, 19 and I am no longer worthy of being called your son. Please take me on as a hired man.” ’ 20 “So he returned home to his father. And while he was still a long distance away, his father saw him coming. Filled with love and compassion, he ran to his son, embraced him, and kissed him. 21 His son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against both heaven and you, and I am no longer worthy of being called your son.’ 22 “But his father said to the servants, ‘Quick! Bring the finest robe in the house and put it on him. Get a ring for his finger, and sandals for his feet. 23 And kill the calf we have been fattening in the pen. We must celebrate with a feast, 24 for this son of mine was dead and has now returned to life. He was lost, but now he is found.’ So the party began. (NLT)

Through Jesus Christ, we can approach God anywhere and at any time with any need. We become his children. (John 1:12)

Some of you may know Jesus, but it has been a looooong time since you spent time in the presence of the Lord. 

(Better is one day than a thousand elsewhere.)

Find a place where you can get alone with God.

James 4:8-9 8 Draw close to God, and God will draw close to you. Wash your hands, you sinners; purify your hearts, you hypocrites. 9 Let there be tears for the wrong things you have done. Let there be sorrow and deep grief. Let there be sadness instead of laughter, and gloom instead of joy.

Hebrews 10:25 - not forsaking our own assembling together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another; and all the more as you see the day drawing near.

What is it going to take for God to get you back into his presence again? Why not just save him the time, and yourself the heartache, and get right with the Lord tonight?

3) Commit your life to the Lord (9) - I will fulfill my vows.

9 But I will sacrifice to You With the voice of thanksgiving. That which I have vowed I will pay. Salvation is from the Lord.”

A) God love's you John 3:16

B) Our sin separates us from God's will.  Romans 3:23; 6:23

C) Jesus died for our sins. Romans 5:8-9

Jonah spent three days and three nights in the depths of the whale. And just as he did that, there is another person who spent three days and three nights in the grave.

(Matthew 12:38-41)

Then some of the scribes and Pharisees said to Him, “Teacher, we want to see a sign from You.” 39 But He answered and said to them, “An evil and adulterous generation craves for a sign; and yet no sign will be given to it but the sign of Jonah the prophet; 40 for just as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the sea monster, so will the Son of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth. 41 “The men of Nineveh will stand up with this generation at the judgment, and will condemn it because they repented at the preaching of Jonah; and behold, something greater than Jonah is here.

Christ took the wrath for your any my sin.

Illustration - Story of Elijah with a sunburn, and wanting to go outside to play.

Attribute of God - He is Gracious to save.

Salvation comes only from the Lord. Jesus is the only one who can save you because he is Alive!

D) We must receive Christ into our lives. John 1:12

Illustration - Story of an airplane flight to Elko. I had to trust in the plane.

–      Share personal Testimony - Once I became a Christian, I received peace, forgiveness, a reason for living, a readiness for eternity, a Heavenly Father who cares about every intimate detail of my life.

Conclusion – Invitation

Joshua 24:15 But if you are unwilling to serve the Lord, then choose today whom you will serve. Would you prefer the gods your ancestors served beyond the Euphrates? Or will it be the gods of the Amorites in whose land you now live? But as for me and my family, we will serve the Lord.”

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