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I appreciate warnings. But they are positively negative. For example DO NOT microwave an egg without cracking it open. Or how would one know that there are peanuts in peanut M&M’s (or in the regular ones for that matter) without a warning. The sunshield for my car warns me not to drive with it in place – who da thunk it? Clothing will have warnings and directions on how to wash and dry them properly.

When I was young I experimented with new culinary experiences. One day I decided to poach an egg. All one needed do was boil it, right? I took a pot out of the cupboard, put some water in it and brought it to a boil. Then I cracked the egg open and dropped it in. It did not come out like the ones at the diner. The egg whites became all stringing and weird. After I strained the egg remnants out of the water I put them on my plate. It resembled watery boiled spider webs with a hardened yellow yoke blob. A very unappetizing dish indeed. No body warned me it would come out this way.

I think most people appreciate a warning before something awful could happen, yet they fuss about negative messages when the preacher preaches against sin and warns about hell. God uses negative messages to achieve positive results.

Jonah entered deeply into enemy territory and began to preach. The message God had him preach sounds pretty negative. Jonah didn’t give them a way out. But God was at work in their hearts because they knew what to do and believed this stranger delivering a negative message.

“So Jonah arose, and went unto Nineveh, according to the word of the LORD. Now Nineveh was an exceeding great city of three days’ journey. And Jonah began to enter into the city a day’s journey, and he cried, and said, Yet forty days, and Nineveh shall be overthrown.” Jonah 3:3-4.

© copyright Kevin T Boekhoff