Crossing Over


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Jonah 3
 
Through Jonah’s modest message, the great city of Ninevah enacts corporate repentance before God. The writer brings a sharp contrast between Jonah’s slow response and Ninevah’s rapid response. In Jonah 1, the prophet called himself “Hebrew,” literally “crossed over one.” Jonah uses this term to conceal himself to the sailors. The term in the Hebrew connotes “sin.” Without saying specifically what he did, Jonah admits “in disguise” his own guilt.
 
“This word emerges again in Jonah 3:6 when the king “”took off”” his robe in order to show repentance. Brown says he “”crossed over”” from royalty to penitent.
 
Transformation in our lives looks similar. Instead of concealing ourselves like Jonah, we cross over like the king and the rest of Ninevah.”