Men of the Bible Series: Jonah, the Reluctant Missionary
Jonah, famous for being swallowed by a whale or “great fish” when he tried to run away from God who told him to go to Nineveh to preach salvation to the Assyrians. So he was a missionary to the Ninevites after the fish spit him out.
He must have done a great job explaining the message of God's impending wrath to the hundreds of thousands of Ninevites who repented believing in almighty God.
Most missionaries would be extremely elated by such an overwhelming response to their message. Not Jonah. His attitude of prejudicial hatred toward the Assyrians was still firmly embedded. If the people of Nineveh repented, it meant they would not be judged; and this zealous Israelite was not happy.
When the people of Nineveh repented and were saved it displeased Jonah exceedingly, and he was very angry. He prayed unto the Lord,
"I pray thee, O Lord, was not this my saying, when I was yet in my country? Therefore I fled before unto Tarshish: for I knew that thou art a gracious God, and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness, and repentest thee of the evil.
Therefore now, O Lord, take my life from me; for it is better for me to die than to live." Jonah 4:1-3
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