Jonah & The Whale Large Figures - This is a really nice quality piece. The ship, whale, and Jonah can be moved around as they are separate pieces from the city and water. This is heavy stone resin, measures 14" x 9" x 6". Here is the fascinating biblical story of Jonah:
Jonah was a prophet of God. God used Jonah to tell His people what was going to happen in the future, and to remind them that they must worship only the true God, and not idols.
One day God told Jonah He had a different sort of job for him to do. "Go to the great city of Nineveh," God commanded, "and tell the people here to change their evil ways, for I see the bad things they do every day."
Jonah wasn't happy when he heard God's instruction for him. Nineveh wasn't part of Israel. In fact, Nineveh was an enemy of Israel. Jonah didn't like the people of Nineveh, and he certainly didn't want to preach to them. He feared if he warned them to repent, they might turn to God and live. Jonah wished nothing better for Nineveh than that the people should die in their sins. Jonah was so against going to Nineveh that he tried to run away from God. He went down to the shore of the Great Sea and found a boat about to sail to Tarshish, far away in the west.
No one can hide from God. The Lord saw Jonah on the ship and sent a great storm upon the sea, so that the ship seemed as though it would break in pieces.
To make the ship lighter, the sailors threw overboard everything on the ship. When they could do no more, every man prayed to his god to save the ship and themselves.
Unaware of the storm that threatened their lives, Jonah was lying fast asleep below deck. The ship's captain came to him and said, "What do you mean by sleeping at a time like this? Wake up, ask your God for help. Perhaps He will hear you, and will save our lives."
Jonah and the Whale
The storm continued to rage and toss the ship about. The men began to think that there was a reason for the storm. "There is some man on this ship who has brought this trouble upon us," they decided. "Let's cast lots and find who it is."
When they cast lots the lot fell on Jonah.
"Who are you and where do you come from? What is your business? Why have you brought all this trouble upon us?" they asked.
Then Jonah told them the whole story, how he came from the land of Israel, and that he had ran away from God.
"What shall we do to you, that the storm may cease?" they asked.
"Throw me into the sea," Jonah told them, "then the storm will end and the waters will be calm; for I know that God has caused this great storm because of me."
But the men were kind hearted and didn't want to throw Jonah into the sea. They rowed hard to bring the ship to the land, but they could not.
When they saw that the storm showed no sign of stopping and knew that they were soon going to sink, and everyone would drown, they prayed, "We pray O Lord, let us not die because of this man."
At last, when they could do nothing else to save themselves, they threw Jonah into the sea. At once the storm came to an end, and the waves grew calm. Then the men on the ship feared the Lord greatly, and made promises to serve Him.
God knew that the boat would either sink, or the men would throw Jonah into the water. The water surrounded Jonah and the waves passed over his head. But God did not want Jonah to drown. He had prepared a great fish to swallow Jonah. This was a special fish, and Jonah remained inside the belly of the fish for three days and three nights. Many years later, when Jesus was on the earth, He said that as Jonah was three days inside the fish, so He would be three days in the earth.
The bible doesn't tell us if Jonah was alive for three days and three nights, or if he died and God resurrected him on the third day. We do know that when he was conscious inside the fish Jonah was very sorry he had not obeyed God and gone to Nineveh. The seaweed was wrapped around him and Jonah felt as though we were indeed, in a grave. Unless God saved him, he knew he was going to perish. Jonah prayed to the Lord.
"I cried out to the Lord because of my affliction, and he answered me. Out of the belly of the grave I cried, and You heard my voice. For You cast me into the heart of the seas, and the floods surrounded me; all Your billows and Your waves passed over me. Then I said, ' I have been cast out of Your sight; Yet I will look again toward Your holy temple.' The waters encompassed me, even to my soul; The deep closed around me; Weeds wrapped around my head. I went to the foundations of the mountains; The earth with its bars closed behind me forever; Yet You have brought up my life from the pit, O Lord, my God.
"When my soul fainted within me, I remembered the Lord; And my prayer went up to You, into Your holy temple.
"Those who regard worthless idols forsake their own Mercy. But I will sacrifice to You with the voice of thanksgiving; I will pay what I have vowed. Salvation is of the Lord."
The Lord heard Jonah's prayer, and spoke to the great fish and caused it to spit Jonah out upon dry land.
Jonah had learned that he couldn't run away from God. He knew he must do as the Lord commanded him, even though he didn't want to. When the Lord spoke to Jonah a second time Jonah listened, and obeyed.
"Get up Jonah and go to the great city of Nineveh and preach to it what I command you," God said, and this time Jonah went to the city of Nineveh.
"Within forty days Nineveh will be destroyed," he warned the people.
The people of Nineveh believed that God had sent Jonah to warn them. When the king of Nineveh heard what God's minister was saying he arose from his throne, and laid aside his royal robes, and covered himself with sackcloth and sat in ashes, as a sign of his sorrow. The king sent out a command to his people that they should go without food and water, and pray to the Lord, and stop sinning.
God saw that the people of Nineveh were sorry for their wickedness, and he forgave them, and did not destroy their city. But this upset Jonah. He did not want Nineveh spared, because it was the enemy of his own land; and also he feared that men would call him a false prophet when his word did not come to pass.
Jonah grumbled and complained and grew very angry. "O Lord," he said, "I feared you would spare the city. That is why I tried to run away. I knew You are a gracious God, and are slow to anger, and rich in mercy.
"Now, O Lord, take away my life, for it is better for me to die than to live."
"Why should you be angry?" God asked Jonah.
But Jonah didn't want to listen to God. As the fortieth day dawned Jonah went out of the city and built a little hut on the east side of a hill. There he sat waiting to see if God would listen to him and destroy the city.
The Lord saw Jonah sitting in the hot sun and caused a plant to grow up to shade him from the heat. Jonah was grateful for the plant as he sat under its shadow waiting for the city below him to be destroyed.
All night Jonah stayed on the hillside, hoping God would punish Nineveh. He was disappointed when the sun rose the next morning to reveal Nineveh untouched by God's wrath. He was also displeased to discover that a worm had appeared and so damaged the plant that it had withered, leaving Jonah without the comfort of its shade. Jonah didn't know that God had sent the worm to take away his shade. Nor did he know that it was God who sent a hot east wind; adding to Jonah's discomfort. As the blistering sun shone down upon Jonah and the scorching wind blew over him, Jonah grew faint and felt very sorry for himself. Once more he told God that he wished to die.
God said to Jonah, "Is it right for you to be angry because the plant that shaded you has been destroyed? You were sorry to see the plant die, though you did not make it grow, and though it came up quickly and died quickly.
"Shouldn't I have pity on Nineveh, that great city, where there are more than a hundred thousand little children who don't know right from wrong?"
Thus God used Jonah to foreshadow the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, who was three days and three night in the tomb as Jonah was three days and nights in the belly of the great fish. Through His forgiveness of Nineveh, God also showed that all men, women, and little children, are precious in His sight, and will be spared if they repent of their evil ways.