Today were going to outline and overview the book of Jonah as we continue our Through the Bible in Five series. The book of Jonah covers events that took place around 785-760 B.C. during the reign of Jeroboam II.
The Book of Jonah is a historical account of a man of God being given a message of repentance to a hated people, the Assyrians. Rather than obey God and deliver the message, Jonah tries to escape God’s will and boards a ship bound for Tarshish. Out at sea, a massive storm overtakes the ship and the crew attempts to save the ship. When it is discovered that Jonah was disobeying God and thus was the cause of the storm, the crew tosses Jonah overboard. Jonah is then swallowed by a large fish or whale and spends the next three days in the gastric juices of the whales belly. After his three day voyage, the whale vomits Jonah on the shore and Jonah decides he should complete God’s call after all.
Jonah travels to Nineveh and delivers the message that the Lord gave him for them. To Jonah’s chagrin, the Ninevites repent in sackcloth and ashes, turning their hearts to the Lord. Jonah responds by climbing a hill near Nineveh, hoping to see the destruction of Nineveh. The destruction never comes, angering Jonah. The book ends with God reprimanding Jonah about his attitude. God teaches us and Jonah about His character and love for his people.
Outline of the Book of Jonah
- 1:1-3 – Jonah gets his message from the Lord and runs from his call by boarding a ship to Tarshish.
- 1:4-2:10 – Jonah is thrown overboard, gets swallowed by a large fish, and then gets vomited on the shore near Nineveh.
- 3:1-10 – Jonah prophesies to the Ninevites, they repent and God relents.
- 4:1-11 – Jonah waits on a hill above Nineveh to see what will become of the Assyrians. God causes a gourd to grow and shade Jonah, only to cause the plant to die soon thereafter. When Jonah gets mad, God reprimands Jonah and shows Jonah His love for the Assyrians.