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Take two

Explore God's Word Daily
Explore God's Word Daily

Have you ever failed dismally at something, and then been given another chance to try again? The second time around is often no easier than the first--and sometimes even harder. But often it's a relief to be given another go, to be able to get it right this time around!

Second chance

Read Jonah 3v 1-2

Compare God's first call to Jonah (1 v 2) with His second call (3 v 2).

  • - What's the difference? Can you think of why God has changed the exact content?
  • - What does this re-commissioning of Jonah tell us about how God deals with His people?

Chance taken

Read verse 3

Compare Jonah's first response (1 v 3) with his second response (3 v 3).

  • - What's the difference?
  • - Think back over chapters 1 and 2. Why does Jonah respond differently this time, do you think?

When God responds to our sinfulness not by withdrawing His gifts or our life, but by continuing to work in and through us, it's easy to think He doesn't really care when we're disobedient. Jonah reminds us that a second chance is a sign of God's mercy, not of His indifference: a chance for us to get on with obeying God's word.




  • - Are there areas of your life in which you feel God may be giving you a second chance to get it right?
  • - How will you gratefully seize hold of God's grace in giving you another chance to live His way?
  • - Do you give others a second (or third, or fourth) chance when they let you down or hurt you? Read Matthew 18 v 21-22 and reflect on how you're doing in this area.



Finally, after heading in the wrong direction for the entire first half of the book, we get to Nineveh! How will they respond? If God's own prophet is to disobedient, surely these pagans will be even more hardened toward God, won't they?

Read verses 4-5

  • - How do the people respond to Jonah's warning message from God?
  • - Compare the Ninevites' response to God's word with Jonah's response in 1 v 3. Who comes out looking better? Why?




When God's word challenges us, we'll either run away from it, like Jonah--or we'll deal with it humbly, like Nineveh.

  • - Are you hiding from something God says about your life? Will you turn around, listen to Him, and change?
  • - When God reveals some sin, how completely do you turn back to Him?




This devotional is taken from Explore—a daily Bible-reading devotional from The Good Book Company which enables you to engage with Scripture and which will encourage, equip and inspire you to live for Christ. Explore features contributions from pastors such as Dr Timothy Keller, Mike McKinley and Tim Chester.

Click here and enter the code bstexplore60 when you check out to get the next quarter’s Explore for $5.84, a 10% discount.

Click here and enter bstexploresub when you check out to buy a year’s worth at 25% off—just $16.

Keep a record of what God is teaching you with "My Bible" at BibleStudyTools.com


Originally published November 08, 2012.

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