“This generation is an evil generation. It seeks for a sign, but no sign will be given to it except the sign of Jonah.” – Luke 11:29, ESV
This is a very interesting passage in scripture, one that I use to get tripped up on when I was younger in Christ. In order to understand this scripture in its full context, we must first understand the reference Jesus is making to Jonah.
In the context of this scripture, Jesus was speaking to the crowds and declaring to them who he was. Jesus had started his ministry, and people had witnessed him heal, cast out demons, and preach the very insights of God to multitudes.
With this passage of scripture, Jesus was telling the crowds that their generation was evil, and that he was the sign everyone had been looking and waiting for.
But again, to understand Jesus’s reference to Jonah, we must first go back to the story of Jonah:
In the book of Jonah, we are introduced to Jonah the prophet. God used Jonah to prophesy to the people of Nineveh to repent of their sins unto God. But in disobedience to God’s command, Jonah fled to Tarnish to escape the mission God had commissioned him to.
Have you ever walked out on God after he gave you a command you didn’t want to do?
Despite Jonah’s rebellion, God still decided to use him, and Jonah ended up doing what God had commanded him to do, calling the people of Nineveh to repent.
With this story in mind, we can now go back into the passage in Luke chapter 11, and gage a better understanding into Jesus’s frame of reference:
Jonah was a prophet used by God to lead his people into repentance, that they may experience the full joy of God and of his blessings. Jesus, the son of God, was called to God’s people to deliver them from sin and bondage, into a deeper, more intimate relationship with the Father.
See the resemblance?
Jesus continues his speech in Luke by saying,
“For as Jonah became a sign to the people of Nineveh, so will the Son of Man be to this generation.” – Luke 11:30, ESV
Jesus was the sign everyone had been waiting on.
Since the beginning of time, God had a plan for us. He used the fall of man as a way to show us his mercy and grace by restoring man’s rightful place with God, through the death and resurrection of his son, Jesus Christ.
Jesus is the way. He is our sign of hope; our beacon of love and forgiveness. He is the reassurer of God’s grace, love and mercy.
Through Christ, we have received salvation, redemption and a true, intimate relationship with God.
The generation in the text of Luke, Jesus called “evil.” What do you think he would call this generation?
Will we too see the sign of Jesus and refuse to believe in him?
This question I leave to you. Not to misuse the context of this text, but to instruct you to dig deeper into your former understanding of the one we call Jesus.
Jesus came, he died, and was raised up; he will come again.
Grace and peace fam.