Jonah- Part 1?

Neil Simpson has a Bible study blog upon which I have recently stumbled. I picked up the tail end of Mark, and this week he begins Jonah.

I have to confess, I am not sure when the last time was that I read the book of Jonah. Certainly, I knew the story from my sunday school days, but as an adult? Cannot recall, which says that I probably haven't. Perhaps my early familiarity with the story is why, or perhaps (and more likely) sheer arrogance. After all, Jonah is a *children's* story. What can I possibly learn from this?

I did read this morning, and I had to read twice. The first time through, I kept giggling-- thinking about fish-slapping, no doubt. With a more serious mind, I read a second time. I was struck by a few things:

1) Language would seem to indicate that, while Jonah initially fled, he was pretty resigned to the fact that God there were going to be consequences. While he was aboard ship, the crew were panicking at the storm. Not Jonah, though; he was asleep below deck. When awakened, he confessed that he was the cause of the storm, and even volunteered to be thrown overboard.

2) I admire the confidence with which Jonah prays. (Chapter two)

3) Jonah's anger and frustration in chapter four humbles me. I am reminded of times when I was chastened as a girl. I can hear my dad even now, "Young lady, who do you think you are?"
Even now, I can get too big for my britches and forget that, an adult I may be, but I am still a child of God.

I am looking forward to further exploring Jonah through Neil's study. He is well-researched and I enjoy his insights.


R.G. said…
I always feel so bad for Jonah. I can relate to his saying, "No, God, not me! Don't send me there! I can relate to his finally relenting to do God's will, albeit reluctantly. I always wish he would have found a way to put his heart into it! And at the end, poor Jonah seems like he hasn't learned a thing. It's like a story with a triumphant last act, leading to the hero's victory... only to see the hero fall at the last moment. So sad!

I'd love to hear your thoughts as you continue into Jonah.
Neil said…
Kelly, thanks for the plug and for your comments! I hope you and your friends visit often. I really like getting different perspectives. I listened to a sermon series on Jonah, then read my study Bible plus some Bible software. Yet you came up with even more good insights from the book that those resources hadn't addressed.

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