From the belly of the great fish, Jonah declares “Salvation belongs to the Lord (Jonah 2:9).” Jonah has experienced this truth. When Jonah was tossed overboard, he was likely floundering at sea, drowning; facing certain death. He understood the truth that Paul would teach the Roman church years later, “The wages of sin is death (Rom. 6:23).” He was tossed overboard to die, and he knew this. Then God sent an unlikely deliverer, a big fish, to rescue him. So from the belly of the big fish, Jonah sings a psalm of praise, and he concludes with these words, “Salvation belongs to the Lord!”
Think about your own salvation. Do you actually believe that salvation belongs to the Lord? How do you tell people you were saved? Think through the details. Do you tell them about the prayer you prayed? Do you tell them about walking an aisle? Do you tell them about the preacher that was preaching, or who prayed with you? It's very easy to turn our salvation into something that we did. It’s very easy to focus on the conscious decision that you made to trust Christ, and there is no doubt that you certainly made a decision and commitment, but only after God had graciously recreated your heart and given you the faith to believe!
It’s the age old question: which came first, the chicken or the egg? Only, we’re asking: which came first, faith or a regenerated heart? Did your faith cause God to save you and give you a new heart? Or did God save you, give you a new heart, and give you the faith to believe? The correct answer is the latter.