Well being an inveterate melancholic the book of Jonah is one of my favourite books in the Bible. Jonah primarily is about vocation I think, about our limited understanding of God’s plan, especially when we look at our lives through the lens of fear. The only book in the Bible to end with a question.
I love it, first the prophet runs from his vocation to the detriment of himself and everyone around him, then when he thinks his vocation is to be a prophet of doom to a sinful nation God tells him no, the calamity Jonah told everyone would come isn’t going to happen. Jonah having been left in the belly of the fish is now left high and dry and he despairs. Why? because he quite enjoyed being the prophet of doom, whereas God offers forgiveness, new life, resurrection, redemption.
Its had me thinking about prophets of doom, about how often they gleefully look forward to the worst because if it comes it will validate them. The most perfect example of this is the IPCC on that old chestnut; global warming. The science is settled; there has been no measurable global warming for 15 years. But still they plow on with their prophecy of doom. Their dire prognostications have helped create the insanity of the UK’s energy policy which is robbing the poor to give to the rich, has pushed thousands of vulnerable people into fuel poverty and early graves. Its all a travesty of intellectual and moral bankruptcy.
(p.s. remember folks, it was red Ed who was in charge of the department of energy during the previous Labour administration, for which he deserves a thorough shellacking. His electoral policy regarding energy prices is posing a bad solution to a problem he himself caused. I wish I could do that, I’d be a very rich man by now.)
Surely the inhabitants of London in 1666 had a better case for being in the ‘end times’ they had the black death then the great fire and some ominous numerology to boot. As it is God tells us that the end of the world will come like a thief in the night. Jesus said we must be like the corrupt servant, who knowing he is about to be fired, gives away what wasn’t his to buy himself friends. If only we lived our spiritual lives with such fidelity and clarity of purpose as sinners live lives of sin. Our lives are not our own, we were given them by God, surely it is best to give them away before they are taken from us?
It has left me wondering about my role as a Cassandra, I want to be a happy warrior instead. Christianity must not be walking around with signs saying “the end is nigh”. We must be walking around saying “the beginning is nigh”. Today could be the very day that any sinner could repent. Everything could change for the better.