Updated: Apr 26, 2021
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I. Jonah’s name means “Dove.”
II. “Jonah was a contemporary of Jeroboam II of Israel (782–753 B.C.) who ministered after the time of Elisha and just before the time of Amos and Hosea. ... Assyria, a nation which had achieved a near-legendary reputation for cruelty, was in a mild decline during these years, but it remained a threat. The repentance of Nineveh probably occurred in the reign of Ashurdan III (773–755 B.C.). Two plagues (765 and 759 B.C.) and a solar eclipse (763 B.C.) may have prepared the people for Jonah’s message of judgment.” (Nelson’s Complete Book of Bible Maps and Charts, pg. 255).
III. Message of the book: God’s concern for the heathen nations and that Jehovah is the universal God over all the earth.
IV. What we can learn from Jonah:
A. “The Scriptures reveal to us no way in which God brings men to repentance, except in connection with preaching.” (J.W. McGarvey, Jesus and Jonah, pg. 44).
B. “Jonah learned, and through his valuable experience millions have learned, that when God enjoins a disagreeable duty, it is far easier to go and do it than to run away from it.” (McGarvey, pg. 54).
C. Jonah is the only Old Testament prophet that Jesus directly compared Himself to (Matt. 12:38–41).