"The sign of the prophet Jonas"

When the Pharisees came to Jesus with the words, "Master, we would see a sign from thee," as recorded in the twelfth chapter of Matthew, one less discerning than our great Teacher might have answered them in a far different manner. Had they not called him "Master," and so, outwardly at least, indicated a respectful and receptive attitude? And was it not possible that, seeing a sign, these people might be converted to the true sense of Christianity, and thus be restrained from their aggressive activities? Might not some simple sign, which Jesus was abundantly able to bestow, have resulted in a great amount of good, far-reaching and restorative in its effects?

These and other arguments might have presented themselves, but Jesus quickly discerned the false motive that prompted the question and, after verbally uncovering the erroneous condition of their thought, added, "There shall no sign be given ... but the sign of the prophet Jonas."

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