With the invention of modern technology, mankind forgets to look at God’s magnificence through his creation. God created ears and gave a sense of hearing to all the living creatures and man invented the cell phone. Of these two, which one is most popular among man, certainly, the latter. In the course of time, mankind was blinded enough not to reach out to the Creator through His creation but stooped to worship the creation itself because of ignorance and foolishness (Romans 1:20-22).
Why nature rages?
God uses nature to lead, warn and punish people in a unique way. Moses drew closer to God by seeing a burning bush. During the time of Noah, a great flood destroyed the inhabitants of the land. In a dramatic fashion, Pharaoh and his army were drowned in the Red Sea. And when Jonah was trying to get away from the presence of God, he was warned through the raging seas. Jonah used God’s given resources to buy a ticket to Tarshish rather than Nineveh.
Are we using God given resources to flee away from His presence? The God given profession itself may drag us away from God and we may not be able to give time for Him.
At this point, God commands His creation to rage over us. Floods, droughts, earthquakes, famines, debts and family problems warn people when they go astray. Mankind developed a fear over nature looking at its rage and destructive power and instead of obeying God, man tries to calm down nature by way of divination and magical practices.
Nature gives strength to God’s people
Psalmist always calmed down his heart by finding God and His power in His creation.
“You rule the raging of the sea; when its waves rise you still them. You crushed Rahab like a carcass; you scattered your enemies with your mighty arm. The heavens are yours; the earth also is yours; the world and all that is in it, you have founded them”. Psalms 89:9-11
When you are in the sickbed, look through your window and see the skies and the stars and it will remind you of the most powerful arm of God. Today people think more about their diseases rather than God and His power. Traces of fear and hopelessness are seen in the faces of men as they miss out on the peace of God.
“Elijah was a man with, a nature like ours, and he prayed fervently that it might not rain, and for three years and six months, it did not rain on the earth. Then he prayed again, and the heaven gave rain, and the earth bore its fruit.” James 5:17-18
Peace doesn’t come from enjoying a timely monsoon but comes when we fulfill His will.
The similarity between Jonah and Jesus
When Jonah traveled to Tarshish, the Lord hurled a great wind upon the sea, and there was a mighty tempest on the sea, so much so that the ship threatened to break. Mariners identified Jonah as a sinner but hesitated to throw him overboard. At last, they threw him in the sea by saying “lay not on us innocent blood” which was very similar to the words of Pilate when he handed over Jesus to the people’s demand – “I am innocent of this man’s blood”. Jonah stayed in the stomach of a fish for three days and three nights before delivering the Ninevites and Jesus stayed in the tomb before delivering the entire mankind from the clutches of eternal death.
Mariners found Jonah sleeping in the lower deck when the tempest was tossing the ship. Similarly, the disciples also found Jesus sleeping in the lower deck. On both the occasions, the winds were strong and life-threatening. We know the reason for the tempest in Jonah’s case. It is very clear that he was trying to run away from the presence of God. Then what was the reason for the tempest that had tossed the boat in which the son of God, who is always in the presence of His father was sleeping?
“And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. And God saw that the light was good. And God separated the light from the darkness. God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And there was evening and there was morning, the first day.” Genesis 1:3-5
It is a one-time command, that day and night start functioning in cycles. God does not need to repeat His command as far as nature is concerned. God had commanded the sea to flare up and thus divert the route of Jonah while he was running away from His presence. So, nature does flare up when man goes away from the presence of God.
Jesus came in to this world to bear the sin of mankind and to save them. Whenever He healed a sick, He forgave their sins. He started taking their sin on Him and it was accruing gradually, and the sinless Jesus became a sinner to rescue sinners like us.
Seeing a sinner lying in the lower deck, the wind and the sea again flared up like they did with Jonah. When Jonah’s body touched the water, the sea became calm. Over here, Jesus had to tell the nature to not repeat their default actions now by saying peace be still, and the nature had no choice but to obey.
Sometimes the commotion we experience in our lives may not be from God. It may be a repetition of nature by default or it may be from Satan to threaten and deceive us. The only thing we have to do is to call Jesus into the situation.
For this, we have to understand the pain that Jesus had undergone because of our sins. At Gethsemane, he was sweating His blood and pleading to His father to take away the cup. Finally, His connection with His father was broken and He cried out in agony, “Father, Father why have you forsaken me?”
Let us always remember the pain and agony that Jesus underwent so that we may not flee from His presence but from sin, once for all.