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Jonah's Story Was A Central Motif in Jesus's Preaching

“[L]et us consider which is harder, for a man after having been buried to rise again from the earth, or for a man in the belly of a whale…to escape corruption.” 

                                                St. Cyril of Jerusalem, 

                                                Catechetical Lecture 14.18 [1]

 Jonah   Ίωνας

       The Jewish Tanakh, or the Hebrew scriptures of the revelation library that is the Old Testament of the Bible, contains the full writings of all the writing prophets. This includes the entire book of Prophet Jonah (4 chapters). Jonah is also importantly referred to in the New Testament by Jesus himself, as recorded seven times in two of the four gospels: three times in the Gospel of Matthew chapter 12, once in verse 16:4, and three times in the Gospel of Luke chapter 11. In both gospels Jesus is asserting that he himself is greater than both Jonah and Solomon, and that is all the more reason why his audiences should repent. So much so that if they did not, then both the Queen of Sheba and the Ninevites will rise up at the time of the final divine judgment to condemn them. Very strong words. But where did Jesus get off claiming to be greater than both prophet Jonah and King Solomon? Where indeed? Clearly Jesus believed he was the greatest of the prophets, and more than a prophet, the one-and-only Messiah, and rightful King of Israel (even though he never sought political power). If he was not then it

  • 6 October 2022
  • Author: Scott Cherry
  • Number of views: 280
  • Comments: 1
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