Jonah and the Whale of a tale

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Jonah and a Whale of a tale

Jonah Commentary

A Whale of a Tale

By: Robert (Bob) Walker Th.B.

South Lake Worth, Fl

The Bible is a book that contains the mind of God. The modern view of the Bible is that it is merely a book of stories and good morals that cannot possibly be true. The book of Jonah is perhaps the most criticized and unbelievable of all the Bible with the exception of the creation. I for one reject the so-called liberal scholars and their higher
Criticis of the Bible, I call this the lower criticis of the Bible as it is from beneath
And comes from the pit of Hell. I believe you should use the King James Bible for your studies, and if you use another write me and I will be happy to tell you why I believe it.
I will not condemn you if you use another Bible, but I have my reasons why I stick with the old King James Bible. I still love the KJV old English literature style and I believe it.
It is so sad that today the average person who calls himself a Christian has never read the Bible and cannot even name ten of the books contained in it. The TV guide is better known than the Holy Scriptures. Friends, watching Jerry Springer will not get you into Heaven. The Guiding Light is not an afternoon soap opera. Let me tell you who the guiding light is.

Jhn 8:12 Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.

Now let us see what the Bible says:
2Pe 1:21 For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake [as they were] moved by the Holy Ghost.

Let us look at what the bible says about Jonah and a Whale of a tale.

2Ki 14:25 He restored the coast of Israel from the entering of Hamath unto the sea of the plain, according to the word of the LORD God of Israel, which he spake by the hand of his servant Jonah, the son of Amittai, the prophet, which [was] of Gathhepher.

Jonah is mentioned in the Old Testament here as well as in his own book. Jesus also speaks of Jonah as a real prophet of the Lord.

Let us see what Jesus says:
Mat 12:40 For as Jonas was three days and three nights in the whale's belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.
Luk 11:32 The men of Nineve shall rise up in the judgment with this generation, and shall condemn it: for they repented at the preaching of Jonas; and, behold, a greater than Jonas [is] here.

So if you wish to say Jonah was only a fishermans tale well all you must do is deny the words of Jesus and call him a liar. I for one say I agree with the Bible where it says:

Rom 3:4 Let God be true, but every man a liar;

So let us look at the Book of Jonah.

Jon 1:1 Now the word of the LORD came unto Jonah the son of Amittai, saying, Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and cry against it; for their wickedness is come up before me. But Jonah rose up to flee unto Tarshish (Spain?) from the presence of the LORD, and went down to Joppa; and he found a ship going to Tarshish: so he paid the fare thereof, and went down into it, to go with them unto Tarshish from the presence of the LORD.

Jonah was commanded of the Lord to go to Ninevah, the Capitol City of the Assyrian Empire. They were exceedingly cruel, a people who would take fishhooks and put them into the jaws of the captives conquered in honor of their fish god Dagon. They would parade the captives by the hooks down the streets and these were the ones that God told Jonah to preach repentance to. Dagon looked quite a bit like the mermaid characters in Disneys children movie, the little mermaid. Dagon had the tail of a fish from the waist down and from the waist up it was like a man.

I wonder why Disney depicted the heros in the little mermaid to look exactly like a heathen satanic deity condemned in the Holy Bible? Do you think it is a coincidence?
I know better than that, the devils are hard at work on TV and in the movies and in all of society.

2Ki 15:20 And Menahem exacted the money of Israel, [even] of all the mighty men of wealth, of each man fifty shekels of silver, to give to the king of Assyria. So the king of Assyria turned back, and stayed not there in the land.

Israel had to pay tribute to keep peace with the Assyrians and I am sure Jonah was a patriot who loved his country. God told Jonah to go one way and he went the other way. Some believe Jonah was a coward that was afraid to preach to the cruel Assyrians. I believe he was a brave prophet who wanted to see his fellow countrymens enemy destroyed.

Jon 1:4 But the LORD sent out a great wind into the sea, and there was a mighty tempest in the sea, so that the ship was like to be broken. Then the mariners were afraid, and cried every man unto his god, and cast forth the wares that [were] in the ship into the sea, to lighten [it] of them. But Jonah was gone down into the sides of the ship; and he lay, and was fast asleep. So the shipmaster came to him, and said unto him, What meanest thou, O sleeper? arise, call upon thy God, if so be that God will think upon us, that we perish not.

Jonah was asleep (spiritually) and the Lord was blocking his path with the great wind
Against the ship.

Jon 1:7 And they said every one to his fellow, Come, and let us cast lots, that we may know for whose cause this evil [is] upon us. So they cast lots, and the lot fell upon Jonah. Then said they unto him, Tell us, we pray thee, for whose cause this evil [is] upon us; What [is] thine occupation? and whence comest thou? what [is] thy country? and of what people [art] thou?

Here the mariners cast lots (drew straws) to find who was at fault and the reason for the storm.

Jon 1:9 And he said unto them, I [am] an Hebrew; and I fear the LORD, the God of heaven, which hath made the sea and the dry [land]. Then were the men exceedingly afraid, and said unto him, Why hast thou done this? For the men knew that he fled from the presence of the LORD, because he had told them.

So the men knew the whole story of Jonah. Where can we go to escape from God?

Jon 1:11 Then said they unto him, What shall we do unto thee, that the sea may be calm unto us? for the sea wrought, and was tempestuous. And he said unto them, Take me up, and cast me forth into the sea; so shall the sea be calm unto you: for I know that for my sake this great tempest [is] upon you.

The sailors did not want to cast Jonah into the sea, yet they would do so. Do these sound like the words of a coward that is afraid to die?

Jon 1:13 Nevertheless the men rowed hard to bring [it] to the land; but they could not: for the sea wrought, and was tempestuous against them. Wherefore they cried unto the LORD, and said, We beseech thee, O LORD, we beseech thee, let us not perish for this man's life, and lay not upon us innocent blood: for thou, O LORD, hast done as it pleased thee. So they took up Jonah, and cast him forth into the sea: and the sea ceased from her raging.

Jon 1:16 Then the men feared the LORD exceedingly, and offered a sacrifice unto the LORD, and made vows. Now the LORD had prepared a great fish to swallow up Jonah. And Jonah was in the belly of the fish three days and three nights.

Jon 2:1 Then Jonah prayed unto the LORD his God out of the fish's belly, And said, I cried by reason of mine affliction unto the LORD, and he heard me; out of the belly of hell cried I, [and] thou heardest my voice. For thou hadst cast me into the deep, in the midst of the seas; and the floods compassed me about: all thy billows and thy waves passed over me. Then I said, I am cast out of thy sight; yet I will look again toward thy holy temple.

Jonah likened the experience to Hell. A whale is a warm-blooded mammal as we are. The body temperature of a whale must be near 100 degrees and Jonah was in this sweltering heat. I can only imagine the utter darkness he must have endured running from the Lord.
I do know how true this is, and it makes for a good story: In 1891 it was recorded that
A whaling ship, the star of the east, was hunting a whale and one of the boats was capsized and the men were believed drowned in the struggle with the whale. The whale was killed and brought along side the ship. As they were to bring the stomach upon the deck they saw movement. Well they cut open the whales stomach and lo and behold, a missing crewmember from the capsized boat had been swallowed. He was in shock and unconscious from his two and a half-day ordeal. His appearance was a white paper from the acids in the gastric secretions of the whale. The sailor was to take about two weeks to recover from his ordeal. He recounted his story as he hit the water and was to slide down the slippery slope that was the throat of the whale.

He realized that he was in utter darkness and that yet he had air to breathe in this place.
He walked to the side and felt what was like a slippery curtain move away from the touch of his hand. He was terrified as he realized he was inside the whale and had no way out. He said the heat was unbearable and he went into shock from fear and not from any harm.
The crew of the ship and the newspapers of his day reported this account.

Jon 2:9 But I will sacrifice unto thee with the voice of thanksgiving; I will pay [that] that I have vowed. Salvation [is] of the LORD. And the LORD spake unto the fish, and it vomited out Jonah upon the dry [land].

Jonah decides to obey the Lord and perform his prophets vow.

Now in the Halleys Bible Handbook it is stated that in the ruins of Assyria there is a picture of a great fish with a man coming out of his mouth. I do not know if this was actual history of Jonah recorded or a prophecy for Dagon their fish god. Either way the Assyrians must have seen this bleached white man, who looked like an angel, get Spit up on the shore by a great fish. I am sure they saw it as a sign from their fish god Dagon. Jonah by his disobedience set the stage for the Assyrians to hear his message.
Can you imagine Jonah is spit upon the beach by a whale in front of a bunch of fishermen? What do you think Jonahs words to them were? Repent! The fish god Dagon had sent a prophet unto Ninevah they must have thought.

Jon 3:4 And Jonah began to enter into the city a day's journey, and he cried, and said, Yet forty days, and Nineveh shall be overthrown. So the people of Nineveh believed God, and proclaimed a fast, and put on sackcloth, from the greatest of them even to the least of them. For word came unto the king of Nineveh, and he arose from his throne, and he laid his robe from him, and covered [him] with sackcloth, and sat in ashes. And he caused [it] to be proclaimed and published through Nineveh by the decree of the king and his nobles, saying, Let neither man nor beast, herd nor flock, taste any thing: let them not feed, nor drink water: But let man and beast be covered with sackcloth, and cry mightily unto God: yea, let them turn every one from his evil way, and from the violence that [is] in their hands.

The King proclaimed a fast and the people repented of the evil in their hands.
Look at a more modern message that applies to our day and time.

Mat 4:17 From that time Jesus began to preach, and to say, Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand. Repentance is a very important doctrine to the Lord.
Luk 13:5 I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish.

We are to repent and turn away from sin. The Lord does not repent as we do. He will often times delay judgment as grace to let us change our evil ways and find salvation.

Jon 3:9 Who can tell [if] God will turn and repent, and turn away from his fierce anger, that we perish not? And God saw their works, that they turned from their evil way; and God repented of the evil, that he had said that he would do unto them; and he did [it] not.

Jon 4:1 But it displeased Jonah exceedingly, and he was very angry. And he prayed unto the LORD, and said, I pray thee, O LORD, [was] not this my saying, when I was yet in my country? Therefore I fled before unto Tarshish: for I knew that thou [art] a gracious God, and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness, and repentest thee of the evil.

Jonah was angry due to the fact that God spared Assyria and they were being used as a rod of correction to punish Israel for her evil. Jonah wanted God to destroy Assyria and to spare his people, yet he says God is a gracious God and is merciful of great kindness.

Jon 4:3 Therefore now, O LORD, take, I beseech thee, my life from me; for [it is] better for me to die than to live. Then said the LORD, Doest thou well to be angry?

Jonah wanted to die and the Lord questioned him as to his anger.

Jon 4:5 So Jonah went out of the city, and sat on the east side of the city, and there made him a booth, and sat under it in the shadow, till he might see what would become of the city. And the LORD God prepared a gourd, and made [it] to come up over Jonah, that it might be a shadow over his head, to deliver him from his grief. So Jonah was exceeding glad of the gourd.

Here we have Jonah waiting to see if the Lord will destroy the city, wishful thinking on his part. The Lord allowed a gourd plant to cover Jonah as to shade him from the fierce desert sun.

Jon 4:7 But God prepared a worm when the morning rose the next day, and it smote the gourd that it withered. And it came to pass, when the sun did arise, that God prepared a vehement east wind; and the sun beat upon the head of Jonah, that he fainted, and wished in himself to die, and said, [It is] better for me to die than to live.

Now the worm had withered the gourd and the desert sun beat upon Jonahs head and he wanted to die as he had failed to prevent the city from repenting and perishing.

Jon 4:9 And God said to Jonah, Doest thou well to be angry for the gourd? And he said, I do well to be angry, [even] unto death. Then said the LORD, Thou hast had pity on the gourd, for the which thou hast not laboured, neither madest it grow; which came up in a night, and perished in a night. And should not I spare Nineveh, that great city, wherein are more than sixscore thousand persons that cannot discern between their right hand and their left hand; and [also] much cattle?

Here the Lord asks Jonah what is more important a plant or the people of the city?

The modern day ecologists and animal rights people are more worried about baby seals and trees than 9 month old children being born at abortion clinics and having their skulls cut open and having their brains sucked out in what is called partial birth abortion.
The Brains of the babies are sold to a computer chip manufacturer to make what is called protein memory chips. Experiments that would have made the nazis proud are being done with the leftover parts of the aborted children

Animal rights people do not worry about this happening to the 9 month term babies and
Ecologists agree with Jonah that the plant is more important, yet to God the people are his concern. Repent and believe the Gospel says Jesus.

Dagon...The Assyrian Fish god...looks alot like the little mermaid of Disney fame...

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