Old Testament

Wisdom and Poetical Books

What did Jonah think about his prophecy not coming true?

Instead of being happy that the people of Nineveh repented, he was bitter that he did not get to deliver a prophecy that came true. He complained to God, “O LORD! Is not this what I said while I was still in my own country? That is why I fled to Tarshish from the beginning; for I knew that you were a gracious God and merciful, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love, and ready to relent from punishing. And now, O LORD, please take my life from me, for it is better for me to die than to live.” (NRSV, Jonah 4:2–3) Then Jonah pouted. He walked to the outskirts of the city and waited and watched, thinking the city might be destroyed still. While he waited, he sat under a makeshift shelter.


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