Out of the Fish

There is a deep sense in our souls that there’s more to life than what we are experiencing. The busyness of life can tend to crowd it out, but even so, the whisper for meaning, the longing for purpose cuts through the noise of life. You were created to live a life that matters.  And God longs to use you in incredible ways.  Join us for our new series SHIFT, as we study the book of Jonah to discover how to shift to the more we were made for.

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Teaching Notes


Chip Ingram | [email protected]

March 27th, 2022


How do we shift for the more we were made for?


Week 1: When we RUN from God we shift AWAY from the more we were made for.


Week 2: God uses STORMS in our life to shift us BACK to the more we were made for.



And the Lord appointed a great fish to swallow Jonah, and Jonah was in the stomach of the fish three days and three nights.

Jonah’s Prayer

Then Jonah prayed to the Lord his God from the stomach of the fish, and he said,

I called out of my distress to the Lord,
And He answered me.
I cried for help from the depth of Sheol;
You heard my voice.

 “For You had cast me into the deep,
Into the heart of the seas,
And the current engulfed me.
All Your breakers and billows passed over me.

 “So I said, ‘I have been expelled from Your sight.
Nevertheless I will look again toward Your holy temple.’
“Water encompassed me to the point of death.
The great deep engulfed me,
Weeds were wrapped around my head.

 “I descended to the roots of the mountains.
The earth with its bars was around me forever,
But You have brought up my life from the pit, O Lord my God.

 “While I was fainting away,
remembered the Lord,
And my prayer came to You,
Into Your holy temple.
“Those who regard vain idols
Forsake their faithfulness,
But I will sacrifice to You
With the voice of thanksgiving.
That which I have vowed I will pay.
Salvation is from the Lord.”

Then the Lord commanded the fish, and it VOMITED Jonah up onto the dry land.

Jonah 1:17-2:10


God DELIVERS us from storms to revel His MERCY and to position us to FULFILL the more we are made for.


CONTEXTfrom Chapter 1 & 4

  • Jonah’s disobedience and despair were birthed out of FEAR that God’s agenda might be different than His desires.


  • Jonah’s Logic = God is MERCIFUL therefore…
  • Jonah’s Desire = God’s justice for Ninevites
  • Jonah’s Action = Reveals TRIBALISM over Lordship


  • Jonah’s DELIVERANCE was birthed in His FAITH that God is MERCIFUL even to those who willfully reject Him (v. 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, 7, 9)


  • Jonah’s near-death experience = distress
  • Jonah’s prayers, cries for help = deliverance
  • Jonah’s response = a Psalm of thanksgiving


Jonah Chapter 2 Psalm
v. 2 18:4–6; 120:1
v. 3 69:1–2; 42:7
v. 4 5:7
v. 5 69:1–2; 18:5; 116:3
v. 6 30:3
v. 7 18:6
v. 8 31:6
v. 9 3:8; 50:14, 23

(Source: Pg. 81, Jonah by Dr. Mark Yarborough, ©2020)



  • What Do We Learn from Jonah?

  • Positively
    • He knew God’s character and acted accordingly.
    • He knew God’s word and quoted it spontaneously.
    • He ran to God when he felt unworthy.


Principle #1 = The Lord frequently uses moments of great DARKNESS to drive us to the light. (Hebrews 12:11)


  • Negatively 
    • He was thankful, but not repentant.
    • His words were good, but his heart was hard.
    • He wanted relief, not transformation.


Principle #2 = Spiritual growth demands we CONFESS and FORSAKE our sin to experience the more we were made for. (Proverbs 28:13)


  • What Do We Learn About God?

  • He Delights to Show MERCY to Everyone
  • Mercy to sailors who worshiped idols
  • Mercy to Jonah in willful rebellion
  • Mercy to Nineveh most wicked on earth


Principle #3 = Your VIEW of God will determine your life; behavior always follows belief. (Proverbs 23:7)


  • He is Absolutely SOVEREIGN Over EVERYTHING
  • He controls the sea, fish, wind, storms, plants, etc.
  • He controls the “lots cast.”
  • He controls other deities and powers.


Principle #4 = You will not always understand God’s ways, but you can TRUST Him for everything and everyone because His PURPOSES cannot be thwarted.  (Job 42:2)




  • What lesson from Jonah most encourages you?
  • What principle from his life speaks to your heart the most right now? Why?
  • What lessons from who God is and how he responded to Jonah speaks to you? Why?
  • What would a step toward Jesus look like in your life right now?