This is what God gave me today in His word
When the crowds were increasing, he began to say, “This generation is an evil generation. It seeks for a sign, but no sign will be given to it except the sign of Jonah. For as Jonah became a sign to the people of Nineveh, so will the Son of Man be to this generation. (Luke 11:29-30)
Jesus knew that they wanted Him to perform; to play the part of the magician, a give them some sign from Heaven. Now, correct marketing technique would’ve demanded that Jesus give them a sign. After all, the crowds were starting to increase! This was surely the perfect time to take advantage, show them a miracle, and then make them all disciples… But Jesus is no marketer. Jesus, unlike several pastors of today, doesn’t preach appeasing messages. Rather, He lovingly calls them an evil generation, and tells them that no sign will be given to them, except for “the sign of Jonah.”
So, now not only is He lovingly bemoaning the state of affairs of the crowd around Him, Jesus is now also throwing Jonah in on top of it all. But, what exactly is this “sign of Jonah” that He’s talking about? Well He clarifies somewhat in the next verse, “For as Jonah became a sign to the people of Nineveh, so will the Son of Man be to this generation.” Jonah lay for three days (and three nights) in the belly of a large fish, before being spit out, alive, on shore, where upon He proceeded to preach life to a doomed people.–The sign of Jonah, is that by one man’s “dying”, many more will live. And this is exactly the sign which He later gave, when He was killed so that we may live.
The point is this: Jesus doesn’t market Himself, and neither should we. We should give the Gospel out, not force it out.–Also, Jesus can use everything to further the spread of the Gospel, including the Old Testament (e.g., This case here with Jonah), so we shouldn’t discount something (i.e. The Old Testament) as not being useful, simply because we don’t see its use right away.
You are Loved!