Harry Whittaker

9) Jonah — Jesus

The obvious authority for seeing Jonah as a divinely-provided prototype of Jesus is, of course, in the words of Jesus himself: “As Jonas was three days and three nights in the whale’s belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth” (Mt. 12: 40).

Reasons have already been advanced for seeing both of these periods as meaning “on the third day”. Other details of like significance are these:

Gath-hepher, Jonah’s home, was in the immediate vicinity of

The name Jonah ( = Dove) suggests the Holy Spirit, and the beginning of a New Creation (Gen. 8: 8).

Jonah was willing to die to save his fellows from certain death.

He died, and revived in the tomb, and emerged to life again.

Thereafter he offered sacrifice in the presence of God.

Those whom he saved vowed (and fulfilled) a self-dedication to God.

There followed a mission to Gentiles, crowned with remarkable success.

Forty years, and Jerusalem shall be overthrown.

The details of the storm at sea were very closely recapitulated in the storm on Galilee (Mt. 8: 24-27).

  1. Jesus led the way on board ship.
  2. He slept whilst
  3. A great tempest raged.
  4. The sailors were terribly afraid.
  5. There was an impassioned appeal for help.
  6. A great calm and stillness followed.
All this seems to be intended as typical anticipation of the saving work of Christ, thus:

Corresponding to his sleep in the ship, there is his apparent absence from his disciples.

The final storm will be such as to rock the faith of all those who consider themselves to be his disciples.

When strong effort is made to ‘waken’, him, he will rebuke little faith.

And then with a word he will still the wind and the sea.

Other significant details in these incidents are:

  1. “like to be broken” is, in LXX, s.w. as in Lk. 8: 23: in jeopardy.
  2. “The sea wrought and was “tempestuous” (1:11) has the same word, in LXX, as Lk. 21: 25, “the sea and the waves roaring
  3. “Lay not upon us innocent blood” (1: 18) has the same phrase as was used about Jesus (Mt. 27: 4). A chapter in “Gospels”, H.A.W., p.747, shows how these words occur in a variety of prophetic and typical Scriptures.

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