Page images


about 862.

Jonah is thrown into the sea,


and swallowed by a fish. God, if so be that God will think , sea 11 + wrought, and was tempes- cheos T about 862. upon us, that we perish not.

tuous. 7 And they said every one to

12 And he said unto them, Take

| Or, grea his fellow, Come, and let us cast me up, and cast me forth into the more and lots, that we may know for whose sea; so shall the sea be calm unto luous. cause this evil is upon us. So you: for I know that for my sake + Heb. went. they cast lots, and the lot fell upon this great tempest is upon you. Jonah.

13 Nevertheless the men † rowed + Heb. digged. 8 Then said they unto him, Tell hard to bring it to the land; but they us, we pray thee, for whose cause this could not: for the sea wrought, and evil is upon us; What is thine occu- was tempestuous against them. pation ? and whence comest thou ? 14 Wherefore they cried unto the what is thy country ? and of what Lord, and said, We beseech thee, O people art thou ?

Lord, we beseech thee, let us not 9 And he said unto them, I am perish for this man's life, and lay not an Hebrew; and I fear the Lord, upon us innocent blood : for thou, O the God of heaven, which hath made Lord, hast done as it pleased thee. the sea and the dry land.

15 So they took up Jonah, and + Heb. with

10 Then were the men t exceed- cast him forth into the sea : and the great fear.

ingly afraid, and said unto him, Why sea † ceased from her raging.
hast thou done this?

For the men

16 Then the men feared the LORD knew that he fled from the presence exceedingly, and † offered a sacrifice + Heb. of the Lord, because he had told unto the LORD, and made vows. them.

17 1 Now the Lord had prepared and towed 11 | Then said they unto him, a great fish to swallow up Jonah. OM

What shall we do unto thee, that the And • Jonah was in the + belly of the 40. & 16. 4. les citent from sea + may be calm unto us? for the fish three days and three nights.

+ Heb. stood.

sacrificed a sacrifice tule

b Matt. 12.

+ Heb. may

Luke 11. 30. + Heb, bowels,

of which conveniences, something like the mangers in vows,” or, as the words may be more plainly transstables, might be fixed for the sailors to lie down in. lated, they "offered sacrifices unto the Lord,” that is, Parkhurst.

they made vows” to do it at the first opportunity. W. 7. and the lot fell upon Jonah.] By the special ap- Lowth. pointment of Providence, and in pursuance of His The miracle of preserving Jonah served to spread designs. Dancus.

the knowledge of Jehovah. The whole transaction 9.- I fear the Lord, the God of heaven,] Rather, had this tendency, ver. 16; and it also taught Jonah, Jehovah, the God of heaven: Jehovah being the pecu- and in him the whole prophetical order, God's power liar name by which the true God was distinguished from and determination to enforce His commands. Abp. the gods and lords of the heathens. W. Lowth.

Newcome. 10. Then were the men exceedingly afraid, &c.] Then, 17. Now the Lord had prepared &c.] The second when Jonah had told the men both his nation, and his chapter would have more properly begun here, as it religion, and his profession, and his heinous sin in flee- does in the Oriental versions. Dr. Wells. ing from the charge that God had laid upon him, they Jonah was in the belly of the fish three days and were exceedingly afraid : as being stricken with the three nights.] The Hebrew language has no word to sense both of their own danger and of compassion to express what we call a natural day; what therefore the wards a person of such quality, who had so freely con- Greeks express by a word, which literally rendered fessed himself and his offence. Bp. Hall.

means night-day, they denote by a day and a night." 12. for I know that for my sake &c.] He was con- Therefore the space of time consisting of one whole vinced by the nature of the calamity, and by the lot revolution of twenty-four hours, and part of two others, having pointed him out, (ver. 7,) that all the evil pro- is fitly expressed in that language by“ three days and ceeded from him, and he was impelled by Heaven to three nights.” Such a space of time our Lord lay in make this salutary proposal, that the whole might not the grave: and Jonah, who was an eminent figure of perish. Bryant.

Him in this particular, was probably no longer in the 14. Wherefore they cried unto the Lord, &c.] They fish's belly. W. Lowth. were convinced, by Jonah's account of himself, that the As the things, which befell the Church at large, hapGod whom he worshipped, ver. 9, had brought this pened to them for ensamples to the whole congregation tempest upon them. So they made their petitions to of Christian people ; so the things, which befell the Him. W. Lowth.

Prophets of old, happened for ensamples of the Saviour lay not upon us innocent blood :] Punish us not Himself: that His character and history, as the true as murderers of an innocent man; for we judge from Son of God who should come into the world, might the whole transaction that we are conforming ourselves be infallibly ascertained and demonstrated by a com; to Thy will. Abp. Newcome.

parison with the various characters of those who had 16. Then the men feared the Lord &c.] They were been most eminent in the Church of old. This conconvinced of the power and greatness of that God, whom sideration will reconcile us to some strange things, Jonah worshipped; which appeared both in raising this which might appear very unreasonable, if they were storm, and in so suddenly laying it: and accordingly considered only in themselves. How monstrous would they “ offered a sacrifice unto the Lord, and made it seem in any other history, that a man should be buried

Before CHRIST about 862.


TLERD Wisno prave of the fish's forsake eye in own merey.

a Ps. 120. 1.
11 Or,
out of mine

Hebr. 13. 15. d Ps. 3. 8.

I Or, the grave.

The prayer of Jonah.

CHAP. II, III. He preacheth to the Ninevites.

7 When my soul fainted within CHAP. II.

me I remembered the Lord: and my about 862.
i The prayer of Jonah. 10 He is delivered prayer came in unto thee, into thine
from the fish.

holy temple.
HEN Jonah prayed unto the $ They that observe lying vanities

9 But I will sacrifice unto thee with
2 And said, I a cried || by reason the voice of ethanksgiving; I will :P's: 50614;

of mine affliction unto the Lord, and pay that that I have vowed. d Salva- llos. 14. 2. affliction.

he heard me; out of the belly of tion is of the Lord.
|| hell cried I, and thou heardest

my 10 | And the Lord spake unto

the fish, and it vomited out Jonah 3 For thou hadst cast me into the

upon the dry land.
+ Heb. heart. deep, in the † midst of the seas; and
the floods compassed me about: all

thy billows and thy waves passed 1 Jonah, sent again, preacheth to the Nine-

vites. 5 Upon their repentance, 10 God
4 Then I said, I am cast out of

repenteth. thy sight; yet I will look again to

ND the word of the Lord came
ward thy holy temple.

unto Jonah the second time, say-
5 The waters compassed me about, ing,
even to the soul: the depth closed me 2 Arise, go unto Nineveh, that
round about, the weeds were wrapped great city, and preach unto it the
about my head.

preaching that I bid thee.
6 I went down to the + bottoms of 3 So Jonah arose, and went unto
the mountains; the earth with her Nineveh, according to the word of

bars was about me for ever: yet hast the LORD. Now Nineveh was an | Or, the pit. thou brought up my life from || cor- t exceeding great city of three days' Heb. of ruption, O Lord my God.


over me.


b Ps. 69. 1.

+ Heb. cutlings of


in the body of a fish, and cast up alive again after three me out of Thy protection ; see ver. 7, and compare Ps. days upon the dry land! But if this strange thing hap- xxxi. 22 : yet upon recollecting myself, I thought it pened, that it might afterwards be compared with the my duty not to despair of Thy mercy, but direct my return of Jesus Christ from the dead for the salvation prayer towards Thy heavenly habitation. See ver. 1. of all mankind, then the preservation of Jonah becomes W. Lowth. fit and reasonable; it being of infinite importance to 6. the bottoms of the mountains ;] The bottom of the world, that the fact of Christ's resurrection, when it the sea, where the foundations of the mountains lie. should happen, should be admitted and believed; and See Ps. xxiv. 2. W. Lowth. so the case was worthy of the Divine interposition. Jo

the earth with her bars was about me for ever :] nah was not preserved by a miracle for his own sake, I thought that the earth had barred me out, and exbut for a sign, to instruct the people of God in the truth cluded me wholly from ever seeing the firm land again. of their salvation, and in the peculiar means or mode Dr. Stokes. of it. Our Saviour Himself hath instructed us to make 8. They that observe lying vanities forsake their own this use of Jonah's history, Matt. xii. 39, 40. Jones of mercy.] 'T'hey that trust in idols, often called by the Nayland.

names of “ vanity” and “ lies,” (see Ps. xxxi. 6; Jer. x.

8; xvi. 19;) forsake Him, who alone is able to shew Chap. II. ver. 1. Then Jonah prayed &c.] This prayer them mercy, and protect them in the time of danger. hath much more the appearance of a thanksgiving after W. Lowth. In Ps. cxliv. 2, according to the marginal a deliverance: and indeed could scarce be used before, translation, the Psalmist calls God his mercy," or the whatever change be made in the tenses, unless we sup- Author of mercy to him. See also Ps. lix. 10, 17. Abp. pose it prophetical of the deliverance. Had it not been Newcome. inserted in the history, many things in it would be 10. And the Lord spake unto the fish, &c.] God's understood metaphorically, as in the Psalms. Abp. almighty power is represented in Scripture as bringing Secker. It appears to be the prayer of Jonah, as he things to pass by His bare will and command; see wrote it after he came out of the fish, but as he had Gen. i. 3 ; Rom. iv. 17. W. Lowth. See also the note conceived it before in the fish's belly. Danæus.

on Gen. i. 3. 2. out of the belly of hell] Out of that place of un- The fish obeyeth and delivereth Jonah, that hereby speakable horrour, wherein I was for the time buried, we also may learn to obey God, and to acknowledge as in the belly of a living and moving grave. Bp. Hall

. all things to be subject to His power, and to reverence The word rendered “hell” signifies the state of the dead. and stand in awe of Him, and to worship and fear Him. It may be most properly rendered the “grave” here, as Danaus. in the margin: the belly of the fish was to Jonah as a grave. W. Lowth.

Chap. III. ver. 3. — Now Nineveh was an exceeding 4. Then I said, I am cast out of thy sight ; &c.] My great city of three days' journey.] Diodorus Siculus first apprehensions were, that as I had justly forfeited informs us, that Nineveh was 480 furlongs in compass, Thy favour by my disobedience; so Thou wouldest cast i which makes sixty of our miles : so that it was bigger



+ Heb. great men.

a Matt. 12. 41.

At the Ninevites' repentance


God repenteth of the evil. 4 And Jonah began to enter into | nobles, saying, Let neither man about 862. the city a day's journey, and he cried, nor beast, herd nor flock, taste any about 862,

and said, Yet forty days, and Nineveh thing : let them not feed, nor drink
shall be overthrown.

5 9 So the people of Nineveh a be- 8 But let man and beast be covered
Luke 11. 32. lieved God, and proclaimed a fast, with sackcloth, and cry mightily unto

and put on sackcloth, from the God: yea, let them turn every one
greatest of them even to the least from his evil way, and from the vio-
of them.

lence that is in their hands.
6 For word came unto the king of 9 b Who can tell if God will turn b Joel 2. 14.
Nineveh, and he arose from his throne, and repent, and turn away from his
and he laid his robe from him, and fierce anger, that we perish not?
covered him with sackcloth, and sat 10 | And God saw their works,
in ashes.

that they turned from their evil way; 7 And he caused it to be proclaim- and God repented of the evil, that he + Hleb. said. ed and † published through Nineveh had said that he would do unto them;

by the decree of the king and his and he did it not. than Babylon, which, according to his account, was but poses this prince to have been Pul, the king of Assyria, forty-eight. Diodorus's account agrees with the de- Nineveh being then the capital city of that empire. W. scription the Prophet gives us, that it was “three Lowth. days' journey” in compass. Twenty miles was a day's 7. - neither man nor beast,] Abstaining for some journey in common computation for a foot-traveller. time from our daily food signifies most naturally that we W. Lowth.

are unworthy of it, and can take no comfort in it, whilst 4, 5. And Jonah began to enter &c.] And when Jonah we are under the Divine displeasure. And as anciently had spent one day in his preaching, and had gone every thing of importance was denoted, especially in the through one third part of the city, crying, and saying, Eastern countries, by actions as well as by words, this There are yet but forty days to come, ere Nineveh, was probably the original purpose, for which men used except it repent, shall be destroyed ; the people of fasting. And it was then sometimes extended to chilNineveh believed that word of God, delivered to them dren and cattle in token that the parents and owners of by His Prophet, &c. Bp. Hall.

them had forfeited the dearest blessings and most valuThe fame of the wonderful works, which God had able conveniences of life. See also Joel ii. 16; Judith wrought for the Jews, was spread over the Eastern iv. 10. Abp. Secker. parts of the world. This might make the Ninevites 7.-- taste any thing :] The Eastern mode of fasting hearken to a man of that nation, that came to them as was abstinence from food till the evening, 2 Sam. i. 12. sent by God. And it is likely that he gave them an Abp. Newcome. account of the miraculous circumstances which attended let beast be covered with sackcloth,] In token of his own mission. But without question a sense of publick sorrow and humiliation. W. Louth. their own guilt, and their deserving, whatever punish- - and cry mightily unto God: yea, let them turn ment Heaven could inflict, was a principal reason that &c.] Natural religion instructed them, that their earmoved them to have a regard to the Prophet's mes- nest prayers without true amendment would not avail sage. And by the men of Nineveh's repenting, “ at them before God : nor would their repentance be the preaching of Jonas,” God designed to upbraid the thought sincere, unless they restored to the true owners stubbornness of His own people, and shame them, as what they had gained by violence and injustice. F. it were, into repentance, for fear the men of “ Nineveh Lowth. should rise in judgment with them,” as our Saviour 10. - and God repented of the evil, &c.] See the note speaks of the Israelites in His own time, Matt. xii. 41. on ver. 4. A sincere and effectual repentance will stay W. Lowth.

God's hand, and infallibly turn Him from the fierceness 4. Yet forty days, and Nineveh shall be overthrown.] of His anger : insomuch that after He had fixed and That is, unless it repent. In the whole course of Scrip- determined the very day for the destruction of Nineveh, ture, God's threatenings, and His promises also, have yet as soon as “He saw their works, that they turned ever a condition annexed to them in His purpose : which from their evil way,” He presently “repented of the condition, though it be not ever, indeed but seldom, evil,” &c. In this case God does not stand upon the expressed, yet is it ever included, and so to be under- reputation of His Prophet, by whom He had sent to stood. All God's promises, however absolutely ex- them so peremptory a message ; but His mercy breaks pressed, are made on the condition of obedience; and through all considerations, and rejoiceth against judgall His threatenings, however absolutely expressed, on ment, for He cannot find in His heart to ruin chose, the condition of impenitence. See Jer. xviii. 8 ; Ezek. who by the terrour of His judgments will be brought to xxxiii. 11. When He says, Abimelech shall die for taking repentance. Abp. Tillotson. Sarah, understand it, unless He restore her; see Gen. xx. This is ever God's inanner, when men change their 3, 7: "Forty days, and Nineveh shall be overthrown,” deeds, to change His doom; when they renounce their understand it with this reservation, unless they repent. sins, to recall His sentence ; when they repent of the The Ninevites understood it so; else it had been in vain evil they have done against Him, to “repent of the evil for them to have repented at all, out of an hope of pre- that He had said that He would do unto them.” Search venting the judgment by their repentance, as their the Scriptures ; and say if things run not thus, as in the speeches shew that they did. For “who can tell if God most ordinary course; God commandeth, and man diswill turn and repent, and turn away from His fierce obeyeth; man disobeyeth, and God threateneth ; God anger, that we perish not?” ver. 9. Bp. Sanderson. threateneth, and man repenteth ; man repenteth, and

6. the king of Nineveh,] Archbishop Usher sup- God forbeareth. Nineveh, prepare for desolation ; for


Before CHRIST about 862.

Before CHRIST about 862.

B indlj,


joiced with great joy.

Jonah, repining at God's mercy, CHAP. IV. is reproved by the type of a gourd.

might see what would become of the
1 Jonah, repining at God's mercy, 4 is re- city.
proved by the type of a gourd. 6 And the LORD God prepared a

displeased Jonah exceed- 11 † gourd, and made it to come up
ingly, and he was very angry. over Jonah, that it might be a shadow patrebe.
2 And he prayed unto the Lord, over his head, to deliver him from his Kikajon.
and said, I pray thee, O LORD, was grief. So Jonah + was exceeding glad hleb. Per

not this my saying, when I was yet of the gourd. a Chap. 1.3. in my country? Therefore I a Aed 7 But God prepared a worm when

before unto Tarshish: for I knew the morning rose the next day, and it ÞExod.31. 6. that thou art a "gracious God, and smote the gourd that it withered.

merciful, slow to anger, and of great 8 And it came to pass, when the
kindness, and repentest thee of the sun did arise, that God prepared a

|| vehement east wind; and the sun || 0r, silent.
3 Therefore now, O Lord, take, beat upon the head of Jonah, that he
I beseech thee, my life from me; for fainted, and wished in himself to die,
it is better for me to die than to live. and said, It is better for me to die

4 9 Then said the LORD, || Doest than to live. thou well to be angry?

9 And God said to Jonal, || Doest | Or, Art thou 5 So Jonah went out of the city, thou well to be angry for the gourd ? angry": and sat on the east side of the city, And he said, || 1 do well to be angry, poorin am

greally angry, and there made him a booth, and even unto death. sat under it in the shadow, till he 10 Then said the LORD, Thou

Joel 2. 13.

1 Or, Art

thou yreally


now but“ forty days, and Nineveh shall be overthrown :" by it from going to visit the reputed tomb of Jonah on but Nineveh, fasted, and prayed, and repented; and Nin the east side of the Tigris. Harmer. eveh stood after more than twice forty years. Generally, 6, a gourd,] It is not agreed among interpreters God never yet threatened any punishment upon person what particular plant is meant. Dr. Wells. Bochart or place, but, if they repented, 'He either withheld it, or and others suppose the Ricinus or Palma Christi to be deferred it, or abated it, or sweetened it to them; for meant: and the height of that plant, which is the same the most part proportionably to the truth and mea- as that of the olive, the largeness of its leaves, which are sure of their repentance, but always, so far as in His like those of the vine, and the quickness of its growth, infinite wisdom He hath thought good, He hath remitted are said to favour this supposition. We may however somewhat of the threatened severity and rigour. Bp. justly attribute a miraculous growth to the plant which Sanderson.

shaded Jonah. Abp. Newcome.

to deliver him from his grief.] That is, from the Chap. IV. ver. 2.--I knew that thou art a gracious displeasure, which he had conceived, ver. 1: to abate God, &c.] I knew by 'Thy declarations to Moses, (Exod. the heat, and thus to ease his mind by easing his body. xxxiv. 6,) and by several instances of Thy mercy, that Or, to deliver him from his affliction, or distress, on Thou dost not always execute the punishments which account of the heat. Abp. Newcome. Thou threatenest against sinners. W. Lowth.

So Jonah was exceeding glad of the gourd.] Take 3. better for me to die than to live.] Under the impu- we heed, that we place not our felicity in the enjoyment, tation of being a false prophet. W. Lowth.

or please ourselves too much in the confidence, or allow 4. Then said the Lord, Doest thou well to be angry?] ourselves overmuch freedom in the use, of any creature; Dost thou think this is a just cause for thee to be moved lest as Jonah was overjoyed when the gourd sprang up, with anger, for that I have spared the Ninevites ? Bp. and overvexed when it withered, so the loss of what we Hall. Jonah seems to have thought, that his veracity overvalued while we had it, overwhelm us with grief and as a Prophet, and the honour of his office, were affected. impatience, when we must part from it. Bp. Sanderson. His impatience here, and at ver. 8, was highly repre- 8. — a vehement east wind ;] The winds in those hot hensible. Abp. Newcome.

countries, when they blow from the sandy deserts, are 5. So Jonah went out of the city,] Rather, Now Jonah often more suffocating than the heat of the sun, and had gone out of the city : for the particulars related in make the sunbeams give a more intense heat. The the foregoing verses happened after his departing out of word, translated “vehement," signifies also “ silent,” the city, and sitting somewhere in view of it, expecting as it is rendered in the margin. In that sense it denotes some extraordinary judgment should come upon it: but such a wind, as causes a small motion in the air, and being disappointed, he broke out into that expostula- makes it sultry hot. W. Lowth. tion with God already mentioned. W. Lowth.

9. — And he said, I do well to be angry, even unto a booth,] The original word signifies an artificial death.] And he said, in much weakness and rash pascovert, as a tent or booth ; and also a natural one, as sion, I have just cause to be angry, even to such a in Jer. xxv. 38 ; Job xxxviii. 40. Abp. Newcome. degree as to wish myself dead. T'he Prophet here

The words, " the Lord prepared a gourd,” may sig- records his own impatience, as Moses and other holy nify that He had prepared one. It is probable, that this writers have done, without concealing any circumstance gourd was the booth, under which Jonah sheltered of it. Bp. Hall, W. Lowth. himself from the heat ; the perishing of which must of 10, 11. Then said the Lord, Thou hast had pity &c.] course have given him great pain, especially when we Then said the Lord, I have done this purposely to shew consider the intolerable heat of the country: which is thee thine own errour and weakness : thou hadst pity so excessive, that Thevenot informs us he was prevented on a sorry plant, which cost thee no labour, which Vol. II.

2 X

Jonah is reproved


by the type of a gourd. hast || had pity on the gourd, for the that great city, wherein are more which thou hast not laboured, nei-than sixscore thousand persons that about 862. ther madest it grow; which t came up cannot discern between their right in a night, and perished in a night: hand and their left hand; and also

11 And should not I spare Nineveh, much cattle?

Before CHRIST about 862.


|| Or, spared, + Heb. was the son of the night.

received no life from thee, which suddenly came up, and A great consideration with God, in His sending suddenly vanished. And should not I spare Nineveh, of publick calamities, is the multitude of the sufthat great city, wherein are sixscore thousand infants, ferers ; and that not only the guilty, but the innothat have not lived to offend, and much cattle, which are cent also, without a special and miraculous Prorinot capable of offence? How much are these better dence, must be involved in a common calamity. Abp. than the senseless plants of the earth! And these are Tillotson. the work of My hands, and have cost Me much care and - and also much cattle ?] In the large circuit of regard, and such as require time and leisure for their Nineveh, as in that of Babylon, space was probably left perfection; bethink thyself therefore, how just reason I for cattle to feed. Abp. Newcome. God's providence have to be angry at thy unmercifulness, which art an- extends its care to beasts as well as inen; see Ps. gry at My forbearance of Nineveh. Bp. Hall.

xxxvi. 6 ; civ. 27, 28 : so that He is willing to spare l'hou hast had pity on the gourd,] Jonah seems them, as well as the more noble parts of creation. 11. to have been grieved that so extraordinary and beautiful | Lowth. In this declaration of God's unwillingness to a plant perished ; as well as for the loss of its shelter. destroy Nineveh, that compassion of the Creator, Abp. Newcome.

which extends to the meanest rank of His creatures, il.—sixscore thousand persons that cannot discern is expressed with wonderful tenderness : and from between their right hand and their left] That is, infants, this, in common with other considerations, it is not who “have no knowledge between good and evil," as extravagant to imagine, that mankind are no less in it is expressed, Deut. i. 39 ; Isai. vii

. 15, 16. If we proportion accountable for the ill use of their domicompute these at a fifth part of the inhabitants, the city nion over creatures of the lower rank of beings, than will have contained six hundred thousand persons. for the exercise of tyranny over their own species. W. Lowth. Abp. Newcome.


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