The Book of Jonah
"The Ninevites believed God"
(Jonah 3:5a)

J. Deering,

Quick Links

1. Henrietta C. Mears

2. Charles Caldwell Ryrie

3. The Outline


The Book Of Jonah
The Book of Jonah Outlines and Notes

The Following from:
Henrietta C. Mears,
"What the Bible Is All About," Gospel Light Publications, 1953, p. 300-303

Jonah was a native of Gath-hepher, a town about an hour's distance from Nazareth. Jewish legend tells us that he was the son of the widow of Sarepta whom Elijah brought to life. Whether this is true or not we do not know, but he probably was a disciple of the great Elisha and succeeded him as a prophet.

Jonah lived in the reign of Jeroboam II and aided him in making the northern kingdom of Israel very powerful and prosperous (Kings 14:25). Jonah was a famous statesman.

God Prepared:
A great fish - Jonah 1:17
A gourd - Jonah 4:6
A worm - Jonah 4:7
A vehement east wind - Jonah 4:8

Jesus Christ Himself made the book of Jonah important. When He was asked for a sign to prove His claims, He would give the people only the sign of the prophet Jonah.

Plan of the Book:
The Possibility of such a large heathen city as Nineveh being converted by an obscure foreign missionary in just a few days (see what Jesus said in Matthew 12:41).

Brief Outline:

I. An Obstinate Prophet - Jonah 1+2
II. An Obedient Prophet - Jonah 3+4
...........Obedient but Perplexed - Jonah 4:6 ff

Parallels between Jonah and Israel

Jonah was called to a world mission Israel was called to a world mission
Jonah refused to fulfill his mission Israel refused to fulfill her mission
Jonah was punished by being cast into the sea Israel was punished by being scattered among the nations
Jonah was preserved Israel was preserved
Jonah repented and was cast out of the fish to his mission Israel will be cast out by all the nations to her world mission
Jonah was blessed in the conversion of Nineveh Israel will be blessed in the conversion of the nations

The following from:
Charles Caldwell Ryrie,
"New International Version Ryrie Study Bible", The Moody Bible Institute, Chicago, 1994, p. 1369-70

Jonah, Introduction
Author: Jonah, ("Dove")
Date: 760 B.C.

According to 2 kings 14:25 Jonah was not only a real person but an accredited prophet from Gath Hepher near Nazareth. Further, Jesus Christ treated Jonah's experience in the belly of the fish as factual (Matthew 12:39-41). And, of course, the book reads as a straight forward historical account. The does not rule out the presence of typical lessons illustrated by the historical incidents.

Historically, the plague of 765, the eclipse of the sun in 763, and a second plague in 759 were events of the type regarded by ancients as evidence of divine judgment and could have prepared the people of the Assyrian, soon to be Capital of Nineveh (by 700 B.C.), to receive Jonah's message.

A number of miracles are recorded in the book: the calming of the sea before the crew lost their lives (1:15); the provision of the great fish and the preservation of Jonah in the fish (1:17); the disgorging of Jonah on land (2:10); the preparing of the vine (4:6), the worm (4:7), and the wind (4:8); and the salvation of many Ninevites.

The Outline
I. Jonah Fleeing, 1:1-17

A. The Reason for His Flight, 1:1-2
B. The Route of His Flight, 1:3
C. The Results of His Flight, 1:4-17

1. To the sailors, 1;4-11
2. To Jonah, 1:12-17

II. Jonah Praying, 2;1-10

A. The Characteristics of His Prayer, 2:1-9
B. The Answer to His Prayer, 2:10

III. Jonah Preaching, 3:1-10

A. God's Command to Preach, 3:1-3
B. The Content of Jonah's Preaching, 3:4
C. The Consequences of Jonah's Preaching, 3:5-10

IV. Jonah Learning, 4:1-11

A. Jonah's Complaint to God, 4:1-3
B. God's Curriculum for Jonah, 4:4-11

1:3 - Tarshish - located in the South of Spain near Gibraltar, 2,500 miles West of Palestine, and the opposite direction from Nineveh.
1:16 - The sailors were convinced that Yahweh was the true God; thus they offered a sacrifice to Him.
1:17, 3:3, 4:5-8 (possibly) Occurrences of "Three Days," "The Sign of Jonah"
2:3 - Jonah acknowledges that his punishment comes from God.
4:1-3 - Jonah prefers to die than to be reconciled to the gracious will of God
4:10-11 - God's explanation to Jonah