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Jonah: Chapter 1

Jonah, sent to Nineveh, flees to Tarshish, 1-3. He is exposed by a tempest, 4-10; thrown into the sea, 11-16; and swallowed by a fish, 17.

1 Now the word of the LORD came to Jonah the son of Amittai, saying, 2 "Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and cry against it, for their wickedness has come up before me." 3 But Jonah arose to flee to Tarshish from the presence of the LORD and went down to Joppa, and he found a ship going to Tarshish. So he paid its fare and went down into it to go with them to Tarshish from the presence of the LORD.

4 But the LORD sent out a great wind into the sea, and there was a mighty tempest in the sea, so that the ship was in danger of being broken. 5 Then the mariners were afraid, and every man cried to his god and cast the wares that were in the ship into the sea to lighten it of them. But Jonah had gone down into the sides of the ship, and he lay and was fast asleep. 6 So the ship-master came to him and said to him, "What do you mean, O sleeper? Arise, call upon your God. It may be that God will think upon us so that we do not perish."

7 And they each said to his fellow, "Come, and let us cast lots so that we may know for whose cause this evil is upon us." So they cast lots, and the lot fell upon Jonah. 8 Then they said to him, "Tell us, we pray you, for whose cause this evil is upon us. What is your occupation? And where do you come from? What is your country? And of what people are you?" 9 And he said to them, "I am a Hebrew, and I fear Yahweh, the God of heaven, who has made the sea and the dry land."

10 Then the men were exceedingly afraid and said to him, "Why have you done this?" For the men knew that he fled from the presence of the LORD, because he had told them. 11 Then they said to him, "What shall we do to you so that the sea may be calm for us?" For the sea wrought and was tempestuous. 12 And he said to them, "Take me and cast me into the sea so that the sea shall be calm for you, for I know that for my sake this great tempest is upon you." 13 Nevertheless, the men rowed hard to bring it to the land, but they could not, for the sea wrought and was tempestuous against them. 14 Therefore, they cried to the LORD, and said, "We implore you, O LORD, we implore you, do not let us perish for this man's life and do not lay upon us innocent blood. For you, O LORD, have done as it pleased you."

15 So they took Jonah and cast him into the sea. And the sea ceased from her raging. 16 Then the men feared the LORD exceedingly and offered a sacrifice to the LORD and made vows.

17 Now the LORD had prepared a great fish to swallow up Jonah. And Jonah was in the belly of the fish three days and three nights.