Jonah 2


וַיְמַן יְהוָה דָּג גָּדוֹל לִבְלֹעַ אֶת־יוֹנָה וַיְהִי יוֹנָה בִּמְעֵי הַדָּג שְׁלֹשָׁה יָמִים וּשְׁלֹשָׁה לֵילוֹת׃   2:1

Jona. 2:1   And the Lord assigned a great fish to swallow up Jonah.  And Jonah was in the belly of the fish three days and three nights.

You may notice that this verse is introductory to the rest of the chapter. From here to the end, we’re given the details of Jonah’s stay in the fish for the three days and three nights.

וַיִּתְפַּלֵּל יוֹנָה אֶל־יְהוָה אֱלֹהָיו מִמְּעֵי הַדָּגָה׃   2:2

Jona. 2:2   And Jonah prayed to the Lord, his God, from the belly of the fish.

וַיֹּאמֶר קָרָאתִי מִצָּרָה לִי אֶל־יְהוָה וַיַּעֲנֵנִי מִבֶּטֶן שְׁאוֹל שִׁוַּעְתִּי שָׁמַעְתָּ קוֹלִי׃   2:3

Jona. 2:3   And he said,

                     “I call out to the Lord because of my distress

                             and He answers me.

                     From the belly of the netherworld

                              I cry out;

                     You hear my voice.”

וַתַּשְׁלִיכֵנִי מְצוּלָה בִּלְבַב יַמִּים וְנָהָר יְסֹבְבֵנִי כָּל־מִשְׁבָּרֶיךָ וְגַלֶּיךָ עָלַי עָבָרוּ׃   2:4

Jona. 2:4   “You cast me to the deep,

                              into the heart of the seas,

                     that a stream would encircle me;

                              all of Your waves and Your billows pass over me.”

וַאֲנִי אָמַרְתִּי נִגְרַשְׁתִּי מִנֶּגֶד עֵינֶיךָ אַךְ אוֹסִיף לְהַבִּיט אֶל־הֵיכַל קָדְשֶׁךָ׃   2:5

Jona. 2:5   “And I say, ‘I am cast away from before Your eyes.

                              Yet I will continue to look toward the Temple of Your holiness.’

אֲפָפוּנִי מַיִם עַד־נֶפֶשׁ תְּהוֹם יְסֹבְבֵנִי סוּף חָבוּשׁ לְרֹאשִׁי׃   2:6

Jona. 2:6   ‘The water encircles me to the soul;

                               the deep surrounds me;

                     a plant binds to my head.’

לְקִצְבֵי הָרִים יָרַדְתִּי הָאָרֶץ בְּרִחֶיהָ בַעֲדִי לְעוֹלָם וַתַּעַל מִשַּׁחַת חַיַּי יְהוָה אֱלֹהָי׃   2:7

Jona. 2:7   ‘I descend to the bases of the mountains;

                               the earth, her bars, are around me forever;

                    but You bring my life up from the pit, Lord, my God.’

בְּהִתְעַטֵּף עָלַי נַפְשִׁי אֶת־יְהוָה זָכָרְתִּי וַתָּבוֹא אֵלֶיךָ תְּפִלָּתִי אֶל־הֵיכַל קָדְשֶׁךָ׃   2:8

Jona. 2:8   ‘As my soul is fainting away from me,

                                I remember the Lord,

                    and my prayer comes to You,

                                to the Temple of Your holiness.’

מְשַׁמְּרִים הַבְלֵי־שָׁוְא חַסְדָּם יַעֲזֹבוּ׃   2:9

Jona. 2:9   ‘Heeders of the vapors of vanity

                                have to forsake their faithfulness,

וַאֲנִי בְּקוֹל תּוֹדָה אֶזְבְּחָה־לָּךְ אֲשֶׁר נָדַרְתִּי אֲשַׁלֵּמָה יְשׁוּעָתָה לַיהוָה׃   2:10

Jona. 2:10   but I will sacrifice to You with a sound of thanksgiving.

                               What I vow, I shall make good;

                       salvation is the Lord's.’”

Fascinating!  Jonah is more than willing to plead for himself in his distress, but he refuses to plead for the residents of Nineveh.

וַיֹּאמֶר יְהוָה לַדָּג וַיָּקֵא אֶת־יוֹנָה אֶל־הַיַּבָּשָׁה׃   2:11

Jona. 2:11   And the Lord spoke to the fish, and it disgorged Jonah to the dry land.

As you may well know, it’s a large fish, not a whale.


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