Those who cling to worthless idols forsake His loving devotion.
1. Vanities. Vanities are vain things - things that deceive. Such are idols. All things are idols that men trust out of God. Jonah had his idol - it was his false love for his country. How many idols! - ambition, pride, strength, wealth, influence, self, self-will. And men observe them as gods. But they are all "lying." They deceive. Their promises fail. One only is "faithful who has promised" us happiness.
2. The consequence of observing these lying vanities. Men who observe them "forsake their own mercy." How much they leave! Mercy! It is to all; but not to all alike. "Their own." In turning to any idol, men forsake God, "whose property is always to have mercy." - G.T.C.
lying vanities, — promising to do what they never can do, and ever leading their votaries, as on a fool's errand, in quest of that which they are foredoomed never to discover. When once ,man has surrendered his sense to the solicitations of the flesh, you can almost predict with certainty how he will act under certain circumstances. We have but little freedom left when once we have begun to observe — to give our minds to — lying vanities. Our freedom consists rather in our power to decide whether of the two classes of objects we will observe, whether we will yield our hearts to the Spirit of truth, who reveals to us the things that are above — the things of God; or whether we will yield our hearts to the spirit .of lies, who spreads out before us earthly things, and endeavours to invest them in our eyes with fictitious qualities and characteristics.
I. THE FOOLISH PRACTICE OF OBSERVING LYING VANITIES. Lying vanities may comprehend all kinds of sin whereby men are deceived and led away from the paths of truth and righteousness into error and iniquity. The Hebrew words express the deceitful nature of the vanities here intended. That which is rendered vanity signifies falsehood, rashness, or deceit. That translated lying denotes light, trivial, or airy.
They that observe lying vanities forsake their own mercy.Jeremiah 2:13). There the Lord complains of His chosen people, who had gone astray after wicked superstitions. Hence when men wander beyond the Word of God, they in a manner renounce God, or say adieu to Him, and thus they deprive themselves of all good things; for without God there is no salvation, and no help to be found.
( John Calvin.)
1. Those who follow the delusive practice of sin. Sinful objects and pursuits are all unprofitable and vain, and can never do us any real good. Those who worship and serve strange gods, or pretend to serve the living God in any other way than He hath appointed, follow after lying vanities. By sinful practices you may increase in riches, but your profit will not countervail your loss. By sinning against God you can have no real, lasting advantage.
2. Those who greedily pursue the deceitful enjoyments of this world. The most valued worldly enjoyments cannot so much as alleviate personal distress; how, then, shall they deliver out of spiritual trouble? Need not vilify the things of this world. We speak of present enjoyments, separate from the love and favour of God, when the heart is supremely fixed upon them, and chiefly solicitous to acquire and preserve them. To those who choose them for their portion they prove lying vanities.
3. Those who entertain vain hopes of salvation upon insufficient grounds. We need not speak in disparagement of good works; but they must not be the foundation of our hope. They are the blessed fruits of redemption and renovation,
4. Those who leave the paths of righteousness to walk in their own devices. There are various ways by which men come under this description. Sometimes laying aside a sense of the Divine presence and authority, men impose upon themselves by the most foolish pretexts. Sometimes men desert from their duty on account of the difficulties with which the discharge of it may be attended. Some neglect their duty through wrong apprehensions of Divine dispensations.
II. THE PERNICIOUS TENDENCY OF SUCH CONDUCT. They "forsake their own mercy." The words suppose that the tender mercy of Jehovah is communicated to sinners of mankind in various ways, suited to relieve their necessities; and that to this abundant mercy which they obtain from God they may acquire such a covenant right and title, through the Lord Jesus Christ, by closely adhering to God and their duty, as that it may be considered as their own privilege and portion. What mercy, what spiritual benefit or comfort, can a man enjoy in sinning against God, whereby he dishonours his Maker, wounds his own conscience, and destroys his own soul? Nothing is to be acquired by sinful practices that is worth the having. Application. Every one should be deeply humbled in the sight of God, on account of our having followed lying vanities and forsaken our own mercy. A little serious reflection may furnish each of us with many instances of this sort, with which we justly stand chargeable. How many erroneous doctrines and false principles are propagated and supported among us! How many deceitful, ensnaring practices are indulged and followed among us!
(W. Hay Aitken, M. A.)
LinksJonah 2:8 NIV
Jonah 2:8 NLT
Jonah 2:8 ESV
Jonah 2:8 NASB
Jonah 2:8 KJV
Jonah 2:8 Bible Apps
Jonah 2:8 Parallel
Jonah 2:8 Biblia Paralela
Jonah 2:8 Chinese Bible
Jonah 2:8 French Bible
Jonah 2:8 German Bible
Jonah 2:8 Commentaries