JONAH AND HIS BOOK
The Prophet Jonah was introduced to us in 2 Kings 14:25. There we are told that he was the “son of Amittai, the prophet from Gath Hepher.” The town of Gath Hepher was located near Nazareth in Galilee. 2 Kings 14 also tells us that Jonah served as a prophet during the reign of Jeroboam II of Israel (793-753 B.C. God called Jonah to a special foreign mission field. He was called to preach to the people of Nineveh, the great capital of Assyria. At first he was an unwilling prophet, but when he finally preached in Nineveh, his God-given message was followed. Nineveh repented. The Book of Jonah clearly shows that God is not only interested in the salvation of the Jews, but of all the people of the earth. He wants all to be saved – including the people of Nineveh. The success of Jonah’s preaching in Nineveh reminds us that mission work is never in vain. Jonah 1:17 provides us with a striking Messianic picture. In Mat. 12:40-41 Jesus tells us that Jonah being swallowed by the fish and staying there for three days and three nights was a picture of Jesus’ own death, burial, and resurrection.
GENERAL OUTLINE OF THE BOOK OF JONAH
- Jonah Flees from the Lord (1)
- Jonah’s Prayer (2)
- Jonah Goes to Nineveh (3)
- Jonah’s Anger at the Lord’s Compassion (4)
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