Jesus Is so Much More by Nicole Unice

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Jesus Is so Much More
Series: The Divine Pursuit - A Study of Jonah
Week 3: Surrender - Day 4
Nicole Unice

“FOR AS JONAH WAS THREE DAYS AND THREE NIGHTS IN THE BELLY OF A HUGE FISH, SO THE SON OF MAN WILL BE THREE DAYS AND THREE NIGHTS IN THE HEART OF THE EARTH.” —MATTHEW 12:40

SPARK

Fast-forward from Jonah 800 or so years. Within walking distance of Jonah’s own

wrestling with God, another man begins to preach. Something is different about this man. He heals the sick, teaches with authority and wisdom, and proclaims forgiveness. It is not long before whispering begins. “Could this be the one who is to come?” For centuries the Jews knew that God had promised them a Messiah—a Savior—who would come to save them from oppression. What they didn’t know was that Jesus would be so much more.

We catch up with Jesus on a healing-spree in Matthew 12. As His touch brings healing, His words bring conviction. He repeatedly asks the teachers of the bible, the Pharisees, if they truly understand what God is all about. And while miracles are happening all around them, they ask for...a sign. A sign? Can you imagine asking for a sign right after Jesus pulled a man who hadn’t walked in years to his feet, and sent him off running?

So Jesus is understandably frustrated by their self-imposed stupidity:

“A wicked and adulterous generation asks for a miraculous sign! But none will be given it except for the sign of the prophet Jonah. For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of a huge fish, so the Son of Man will be three days and nights in the heart of the earth. The men of Nineveh will stand up at the judgment with this generation and condemn it; for they repented at the preaching of Jonah, and now one greater than Jonah is here.” Matthew 12:39-41

Wow. As I get to know Jonah a little better, I am amazed that Jesus decides to draw a parallel between Jonah and Himself. Jesus, sinless, holy, perfect. Jonah, sinful, stubborn, flawed. Something about that is comforting to me. It matters that Jesus wanted to compare Himself, and I want to understand just how Jesus is so much more than Jonah.

Let’s take a closer look at the parallels between the two.

BUILD:

Today we are going to hop around a bit and see how Jonah and Jesus relate. First let’s look at an important literary term that will give us context for our search:

Allusion: An allusion is a reference, within a literary work, to another work of fiction, a film, a piece of art, or even a real event. An allusion serves as a kind of shorthand, drawing on this outside work to provide greater context or meaning to the situation being written about. While allusions can be an economical way of communicating with the reader, they risk alienating readers who do not recognize these references. (www.dictionary. ...


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