“Scandalous Grace”

This week’s Pastor to Person is written by Pastor Caleb Beller.

[Jon 4:11 ESV] 11 And should not I pity Nineveh, that great city, in which there are more than 120,000 persons who do not know their right hand from their left, and also much cattle?”
Jonah struggled to wrap his mind around this scandalous grace.
A little digging into Nineveh’s history and you might better understand Jonah’s frustration. The birth of the city goes back to Nimrod and Babel. The empire was famous for bloodlust and cruelty. Isis, Nazis, North Korea, Khmer Rouge, the Assyrian empire ranks with the worst of the worst of today.
The most radical lesson we can learn from this book is that YHWH’s invitation of grace through repentance is the most powerful truth in the world. Despite Jonah’s one-sentence warning of the coming destruction; the people of Nineveh responded, and repented and God relented.
This story reveals this important insight into the heart and character of God, God values souls. He speaks of the city the citizens even the cattle! If Jonah could get so emotional over a plant how much more does God care about the souls even in a dark and wicked place like Nineveh?
As we wrestle today with the forces of evil, darkness and wickedness let us be reminded that like Jonah we are called to warn even the worst sinners & cities about the coming judgment. May we do it with the heart of Jesus and the hope Jesus, knowing that even gates of hell cannot prevail against the power of the gospel!

-Pastor Caleb