Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Is the Story of Jonah a Myth?

Some look at the story of Jonah (particularly the part about him being swallowed by a big fish) and think it is too fanciful to be true. It is often hard for us to wrap our minds around some of the amazing feats recorded in Scripture. We must remember that God is “all powerful” and is able to do things that we would regard as miraculous and supernatural.

The greatest evidence for Jonah being a true story is the fact that Jesus references the book on multiple occasions. When Jesus mentions the story of Jonah, He mentions it as being factual, not allegorical or fictional. Notice the following quote of Jesus:
“Then some of the scribes and Pharisees answered him, saying, “Teacher, we wish to see a sign from you.” But he answered them, “An evil and adulterous generation seeks for a sign, but no sign will be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah. For just as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the great fish, so will the Son of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth. The men of Nineveh will rise up at the judgment with this generation and condemn it, for they repented at the preaching of Jonah, and behold, something greater than Jonah is here”. (Matthew 12:38-41).
Jesus regarded the account of Jonah as true. Jesus even used it to prove the necessity of repentance as well as to show the duration of His burial. If He believes it to be true, we should too.

Jesus presented the book of Jonah as factual. If Jonah was a myth, then Jesus was a liar. Jesus was perfect and sinless. Through His perfect teaching He gave His endorsement of the factual nature of the book of Jonah.

By Cliff Sabroe (Quotes from ESV Bible)