The ‘Jonah And The Whale’ story is an inspiring account in the Bible. Its central theme revolves around love and forgiveness. The main character, Jonah, decides to disobey the almighty and runs away, only to end up in a situation that gives him enough time to ponder over his decision. He resumes his task as directed by God, and his life gets back in order. The story reminds people to analyse their lives and reflect upon the path they are on right now or should take, although they know in their conscience what is the right way to go. Now, wait no more and read the ‘Jonah And The Whale’ story in English.
Origin And History Of ‘Jonah And The Whale’
It is a Biblical story that goes back to the time when Israel and Nineveh were still enemies. Nineveh was the capital city of the Assyrian empire and the enemy of Israel. The citizens of Nineveh persecuted and tortured the people of Israel. During this time of unrest, there was a prophet (the person who delivered the message of God to the locals) called Jonah, who lived in Israel. It is believed that God spoke to Jonah and commanded him to speak to the people of Nineveh and ask them to stop their acts of cruelty.
Story Type Of ‘Jonah And The Whale’
This story is from the Bible and is found in the book of Jonah. The Jewish canon includes ‘The Twelve’, which is a collection of writings that consists of ‘Book of Jonah’, often spelt ‘Jonas’, as the fifth of 12 Old Testament volumes that bear the names of the Minor Prophets. Jonah is not a collection of the prophet’s prophecies like other Old Testament prophetic texts; instead, it is a biography of the man.
The story revolves around two main characters, Jonah and God.
‘Jonah And The Whale’ Story For Children
Here is the story with pictures:
God Speaking To Jonah
Jonah was leaving for work one day, and on his path, he suddenly saw a white light with a booming voice coming through. It was the voice of God, and he said, ‘Travel to Nineveh and convince the people to stop the cruelty against the people of Israel. Lead them to the path I have revealed and preach to them to lead a good life.’
Jonah replied, ‘Yes, my lord, I will do as you ask of me.’ Although Jonah accepted the task, he had second thoughts regarding the same, and when he was on his way, he lost the will to continue. He was convinced that the people of Nineveh were not good and would not listen to him.
Jonah Hiding From God
Unable to carry out God’s command, Jonah thought to hide from God and ran away. He started heading opposite Nineveh and reached the city of Joppa. He saw a ship in the port and asked the captain, ‘Where is this ship going?’ The captain replied that it was going to the neighbouring city, and Jonah begged the captain to take him there. He boarded the ship and went to sleep.
God saw Jonah escaping and sent a storm in their way to stop the ship from reaching its destination. The intensity of the storm was unlike anything the sailors had ever experienced. The waves battered the ship, and everyone was terrified. Jonah then came out and confessed that God was angry with him for disobeying his orders. He then requested the crew to throw him into the sea so they could save themselves from God’s wrath.
Having no choice but to save themselves, the sailors picked up Jonah and tossed him into the ocean. The storm immediately subsided, and they sailed on in calm waters.
Jonah Inside A Whale
As Johan struggled in the water, God sent a Whale to swallow him up and save him from drowning. Although he was safe, he couldn’t help but feel terrified of his fate. He spent a whole day in a whale’s stomach and realised it was God’s punishment for his disobedience. While the whale saved him, it was also his prison for the moment, so he could ponder over his actions, thoughts, and choices. Two more days passed, and Jonah started repenting for what he had done and asked for God’s forgiveness.
Jonah prayed to God, saying, ‘Forgive my actions, my Lord; I was a fool to not listen to your command.’ After three days, God commanded the whale to take Jonah to the shore and set him free. He finally came out of the whale, happy to see sunlight again and be alive. At this time, God repeated his command again and instructed Jonah to go to Nineveh and convince the people to mend their ways.
Jonah In Nineveh
Jonah was now fully aware of the wrath of God and was afraid for the people of Nineveh. He walked to the city and started preaching to the people about the immorality of their actions. He said, ‘Your immoral actions have angered God, and he will make you pay for your sins. Apologise to him right away, or in 40 days, you will face his wrath.’
Although the people of Nineveh were sceptical at first, they began to understand the seriousness of what Jonah was saying to them. He also told them that God was merciful towards those who correct themselves and love all equally. People eventually accepted Jonah’s preaching and asked God for forgiveness. They changed their ways, and God spared them of the ill fate that would have befallen otherwise.
Here’s a quick summary of ‘Jonah And The Whale’:
Jonah was a prophet who lived in Isreal. During his time, God was unhappy with the way the people of Nineveh were treating the people from Israel. God commanded Jonah to travel to Nineveh and preach his word to the people and fix their ways. Jonah initially agreed but had a change of heart as he believed the people of Nineveh were evil and would not listen to him.
Jonah then ignored God’s command and ran away from his task. He tried to escape to a different city by boarding a ship. After seeing this, God sent a storm his way, prompting the people on the ship to throw him overboard. God then sent a giant whale to swallow Jonah and held him captive for three days, which gave him an opportunity to reflect on his actions. When Jonah asked for forgiveness, he was able to step out of the whale and go straight to Nineveh to preach to the people.
Moral Of The Story
The story has many moral lessons starting from the love of God. God loves all of his creations equally and gives everyone a chance to change their ways and become better. The second important lesson is that running from God is impossible. If you disobey his commands, you will get punished, but if you comply sooner or later, God will forgive you. You have to work as per his plan, or he will keep sending challenges in your way to make you realise what must be done finally.
How Can Children Apply The Moral Lesson Of The Story To Their Lives?
The short story has much to teach children in terms of moral lessons that they can apply to their lives. The main lesson is to trust the almighty and have faith in him as he has planned everything for everyone, and in the end, everything will be fine. If one fails to do so, it is believed that God sends challenges in their way until they accept His will. For example, if one works hard and stays true to your goal, failures, challenges, or disappointments may come, but they will be able to surpass them and pass with flying colours.
The message can also be interpreted metaphorically as the word of God can be considered as our own conscience. Quite often, we are aware of what is good in our lives, yet we do things against it. Not obeying the conscience to do the right things also brings challenges that make us miserable until we start following our conscience.
‘Jonah And The Whale’ is a Biblical story about God and the prophet Jonah. It has important moral lessons like faith, obedience, repentance, and having the courage to take the righteous path.