This book contains a very wonderful account of the prophet Jonah, who, being called by God to the prophetical office among the ten tribes or Israel (as may be gathered from 2 Kings
14:25) is sent here in an extraordinary manner, to shame the obstinate Israelites, unto the pagan Ninevites, to prophecy among them how near they were to their imminent destruction. Seeking through human frailty to avoid this, he escapes toward Tarshish. Through God’s incomprehensible Providence he was made a type of our Savior JESUS in that (the tempest being calmed when he was cast into the sea) he was in the belly of the fish for three days and three nights, while saved nevertheless according to soul and body, and thereafter was spewed out on dry land, as such our Lord CHRIST, having appeased the wrath of God, was three days and three nights in the belly of the earth (Mat. 12:40
) and rose again thereafter out of the grave. Jonah
, being thus chastised of God and wonderfully preserved, and being sent the second time, obeys his charge. Yet, seeing the Ninevites’ repentance and God’s gracious forgiveness, he shows his human frailty again by showing his displeasure about it, for which he is reproved, gently instructed and convinced by God.