This month we are learning about God, God’s son Jesus and Jesus’ earthly family.
Today’s story is about a prophet named Jonah. You can read about him in the Bible in the book called Jonah and our complete lesson can be found here. Below is a shortened account.
Jonah was a prophet (that means he talked to God and told the people what God wanted them to know.)
One day God asked Jonah to go tell the people of Ninevah to STOP IT! They made a lot of bad choices and if they didn’t stop, God would destroy the whole city.
But Jonah didn’t want to go there…he was too scared because those people were BAD.
SO instead, he got on a boat going the other way. But you can’t hide from God and Jonah ended up getting swallowed by a big fish. He lived in the fish’s belly for 3 days where he prayed to God and asked God to forgive him for disobeying. Jonah promised if God would get him out of the fish, that he WOULD go to Ninevah and take the people God’s message.
So the fish spit Jonah up onto the beach and Jonah went to Ninevah. He told the people to stop making bad choices and you know what?! THEY DID! They started being nice and they followed God…so everyone should have been happy!
But Jonah wasn’t. He wanted God to destroy the city! But God said, “I forgave you! Why should I forgive them?” You see, God loves ALL people…not just the Israelites, and He wants to forgive all people. We all sin and make bad choices sometimes and that keeps us apart from God. But God wants to live in PEACE with us. That means together, not fighting. Jonah couldn’t understand why God would forgive such awful people…but he forgot that we ALL need God’s forgiveness and peace.
God is peace. (Judges 6:24, Is 9:6) He wants all of us to obey Him and live in peace with Him. But God won’t make anybody obey Him. We have to choose whether we will follow God or not. Our sin keeps us away from God, but God wants us to be WITH Him…so He sent His son Jesus to come to earth, not to punish us, but to die FOR us because He loves us. (John 3:16).
When the angels came to the shepherds in the field, they said “Glory to God in the highest, peace on earth, goodwill to men.” God did not send Jesus to punish us, but to bring peace…to bring us back to God.
Bible story: Jonah
Attribute of God: Peace
Jesus’ birth story: The angels announce peace
Side one of our ornament today is a big fish.
Our text reads: Jonah learned about God’s forgiveness and peace. Jonah
Side two of our ornament is a dove with white feathers glued on.
Our text reads: Jesus brought peace to all men. Judges 6:24, Luke 2
Thanks for joining us! Love to you all!