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Jonah: Delayed Doomsday
Old Testament Comments
Written by Wilma Zalabak, M.Div.   
Tuesday, 21 September 2010 11:34

 

Now the word of the Lord came to Jonah, saying, "Arise, go to Nineveh and preach that the world as they know it will soon come to an end."

 

If you know the story of Jonah, you know the story of the great fish that swallowed him because he ran away from what God asked him to do. Do you know the rest of the story?

 

The reason Jonah ran away was a very logical one. He figured, correctly it turned out, that if he preached with all his skill the doomsday still might not come. It so happened that, as more and more people repented, God had mercy and doomsday was averted for several more years.

 

This then was the signal for Jonah, not this time to run away, but instead to dig in his heels, stake his blind, stock his shelves, and wait it out. But his stored food got wormy and the cost of living kept rising so he couldn’t even keep a roof over his head.

 

God said, "Do you well to be angry, Jonah?"

 

Jonah said, "I do very well to be angry. I wish I could die."

 

And God said, "You care about your own provisions. Should I not care about the billions of people on earth? And so I delay their doomsday a little longer."

 

For me, this says that what I do and think during the delay until doomsday matters to God. I can let anger and depression close in over me, or I can relinquish my demands. By relaxing out of depression and control, I can come into line with the mind and goals of God.

 

This way, I can be with God throughout the rest of the story.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 12 February 2013 09:01
 
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