(read the following together):
Timothy Keller, pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian Church in New York City, suggest that the book of Jonah seems to be about many things (The Prodigal Prophet, pp.1-2):
“Is it about race and nationalism, since Jonah seems to be more concerned over his nation’s military security than over a city of spiritually lost people?”
“Is it about God’s call to mission, since Jonah first flees from the call and later goes but regrets it?”
“Is it about the struggle believers have to obey and trust in God?”
“Yes to all those,” Keller answers, “—and more!”
Begin: Discuss your group members’ exposure to the book of Jonah. Share the following: Have you studied Jonah, or heard it taught before? If so, what do you think it is about?
–>Jot down what you’re hearing from the group (you’ll use it later)
In your time together, read out loud through the book of Jonah together. Have members take a section, or read around a circle.
When you’ve finished, ask each person to jot down 3 personal observations he/she made as the reading was happening.
Share (and collect in a list) the observations
Discuss this question – “If you were the author of this book, what point would you be trying to make in the minds of future readers?”
Finally, summarize what the group members are anticipating God may want to say to them through Jonah.
Take up the following as you pray together
Any personal needs and/or requests you have
For Christ Community Church’s readiness to extend love and relationship with internationals during the upcoming ministry year (Sept 2019-May 2020)
For anyone you know whom you are having a heart for sharing the Gospel with, someone you need to have the Holy Spirit open up a natural and winsome opportunity.
Jonah yields many insights about God’s love for societies and people beyond the community of believers…grasping these insights can make us bridge builders, peacemakers, and agents of reconciliation in the world. Such people are the need of the hour. (Keller, The Prodigal Prophet, p.5)