Name means Dove. Aside from what we know about him from 2Kings and the Gospels, this book is all we know about him.
Jonah is a book about how gentle but firm God can be. It takes place in Bible history at just the point where Assyria has become a significant threat to the Northern Kingdom. Jonah would rather see his enemies destroyed than converted; God would rather see them converted than destroyed. And rather than destroy Jonah, he provides experiences to teach him to be like God at heart, a lesson that Jonah does not seem to learn.
Target: Mostly Assyria, but it reflects on Israel, the Northern Kingdom
- Contemporary of Isaiah, Micah, Hosea and Amos.
- The book takes place during the reign of Jeroboam II.
Famous verses and fragments: None
- How do we know approximately when the Book of Jonah was written?
- How do we know that it is not a parable?
- Why could you call Jonah a book of questions?
- What did the following parties care about? Mariners, Ninevites, Jonah, God.
- Why does Jonah not want to preach at Nineveh?
- Can you think of anyone else who fell asleep in a boat in a storm?
- Why are the mariners exceedingly afraid in 1:10?
- Did the mariners sin in throwing Jonah overboard? In what ways did the mariners’ knowledge of God grow?
- Of what psalms does Chapter 2 remind you? What themes get developed? Does Jonah repent?
- Should the miraculous nature of Jonah surviving in the big fish give us any problems?
- What did the Ninevites do to show earnestness in repentance?
- How well do the Ninevites and their King compare to the Northern Kingdom?
- Why does Jonah want to die?
- Does God answer Jonah directly in chapter 4?
- How do the mariners and the Ninevites compare to Jonah in righteousness?
- Did Jonah understand God well?
- What is God’s lesson to Jonah? (and us)