Jonah 1:1–4:11

Jonah’s Disobedience

1 The word of the Lord came to aJonah the son of Amittai saying,

2 “Arise, go to aNineveh the great city and bcry against it, for their cwickedness has come up before Me.”

3 But Jonah rose up to flee to aTarshish bfrom the presence of the Lord. So he went down to cJoppa, found a ship which was going to Tarshish, paid the fare and went down into it to go with them to Tarshish from the presence of the Lord.

4 The aLord hurled a great wind on the sea and there was a great storm on the sea so that the ship was about to 1break up.

5 Then the sailors became afraid and every man cried to ahis god, and they bthrew the 1cargo which was in the ship into the sea to lighten it 2for them. But Jonah had gone below into the hold of the ship, lain down and fallen sound asleep.

6 So the captain approached him and said, “How is it that you are sleeping? Get up, acall on your god. Perhaps your bgod will be concerned about us so that we will not perish.”

7 Each man said to his mate, “Come, let us acast lots so we may 1learn on whose account this calamity has struck us.” So they cast lots and the blot fell on Jonah.

8 Then they said to him, “aTell us, now! On whose account has this calamity struck us? What is your boccupation? And where do you come from? What is your country? From what people are you?”

9 He said to them, “I am a aHebrew, and I bfear the Lord cGod of heaven who dmade the sea and the dry land.”

10 Then the men became extremely frightened and they said to him, “1How could you do this?” For the men knew that he was afleeing from the presence of the Lord, because he had told them.

11 So they said to him, “What should we do to you that the sea may become calm 1for us?”—for the sea was becoming increasingly stormy.

12 He said to them, “Pick me up and throw me into the sea. Then the sea will become calm 1for you, for I know that aon account of me this great storm has come upon you.”

13 However, the men 1rowed desperately to return to land but they could not, for the sea was becoming even stormier against them.

14 Then they called on the aLord and said, “We earnestly pray, O Lord, do not let us perish on account of this man’s life and do not put innocent blood on us; for bYou, O Lord, have done as You have pleased.”

15 So they picked up Jonah, threw him into the sea, and the sea astopped its raging.

16 Then the men feared the Lord greatly, and they offered a sacrifice to the Lord and made avows.

17 1And the Lord appointed a great fish to swallow Jonah, and Jonah was in the astomach of the fish three days and three nights.

Chapter 2

Jonah’s Prayer

1 1Then Jonah prayed to the Lord his God afrom the stomach of the fish,

2 and he said,

“I acalled out of my distress to the Lord,

And He answered me.

I cried for help from the 1depth of bSheol;

You heard my voice.

3 “For You had acast me into the deep,

Into the heart of the seas,

And the current 1engulfed me.

All Your bbreakers and billows passed over me.

4 “So I said, ‘I have been aexpelled from 1Your sight.

Nevertheless I will look again btoward Your holy temple.’

5 aWater encompassed me to the 1point of death.

The great bdeep 2engulfed me,

Weeds were wrapped around my head.

6 “I adescended to the roots of the mountains.

The earth with its bbars was around me forever,

But You have cbrought up my life from 1the pit, O Lord my God.

7 “While 1I was afainting away,

I bremembered the Lord,

And my cprayer came to You,

Into dYour holy temple.

8 “Those who aregard 1vain idols

Forsake their faithfulness,

9 But I will asacrifice to You

With the voice of thanksgiving.

That which I have vowed I will bpay.

cSalvation is from the Lord.”

10 Then the Lord commanded the afish, and it vomited Jonah up onto the dry land.

Chapter 3

Nineveh Repents

1 Now the word of the Lord came to Jonah the second time, saying,

2 “Arise, go to aNineveh the great city and bproclaim to it the proclamation which I am going to tell you.”

3 So Jonah arose and went to Nineveh according to the word of the Lord. Now Nineveh was 1an aexceedingly great city, a three days’ walk.

4 Then Jonah began to go through the city one day’s walk; and he acried out and said, “Yet forty days and Nineveh will be overthrown.”

5 Then the people of Nineveh believed in God; and they called a afast and put on sackcloth from the greatest to the least of them.

6 When the word reached the king of Nineveh, he arose from his throne, laid aside his robe from him, acovered himself with sackcloth and sat on the 1ashes.

7 He issued a aproclamation and it said, “In Nineveh by the decree of the king and his nobles: Do not let man, beast, herd, or flock taste a thing. Do not let them eat or drink water.

8 “But both man and beast must be covered with sackcloth; and let 1men acall on God earnestly that each may bturn from his wicked way and from the violence which is in 2his hands.

9 aWho knows, God may turn and relent and withdraw His burning anger so that we will not perish.”

10 When God saw their deeds, that they aturned from their wicked way, then bGod relented concerning the calamity which He had declared He would 1bring upon them. And He did not do it.

Chapter 4

Jonah’s Displeasure Rebuked

1 But it greatly displeased Jonah and he became aangry.

2 He aprayed to the Lord and said, “Please Lord, was not this 1what I said while I was still in my own country? Therefore 2in order to forestall this I bfled to Tarshish, for I knew that You are a cgracious and compassionate God, slow to anger and abundant in lovingkindness, and one who relents concerning calamity.

3 “Therefore now, O Lord, please atake my 1life from me, for death is bbetter to me than life.”

4 The Lord said, “Do you have good reason to be angry?”

5 Then Jonah went out from the city and sat east of 1it. There he made a shelter for himself and asat under it in the shade until he could see what would happen in the city.

6 So the Lord God appointed a 1plant and it grew up over Jonah to be a shade over his head to deliver him from his discomfort. And Jonah was 2extremely happy about the 1plant.

7 But God appointed a worm when dawn came the next day and it attacked the plant and it awithered.

8 When the sun came up God appointed a scorching aeast wind, and the bsun beat down on Jonah’s head so that he became faint and begged with all his soul to die, saying, “cDeath is better to me than life.”

9 Then God said to Jonah, “Do you have good reason to be angry about the plant?” And he said, “I have good reason to be angry, even to death.”

10 Then the Lord said, “You had compassion on the plant for which you did not work and which you did not cause to grow, which 1came up overnight and perished 2overnight.

11 “Should I not ahave compassion on Nineveh, the great city in which there are more than 120,000 persons who do not bknow the difference between their right and left hand, as well as many canimals?”

Read more