An Emotional Trip with Jonah

Posted by Major Dave on 9:45 AM in ,

Too bad Jonah never had a chance to learn Emotional Intelligence.

Fear generates either FIGHT or FLIGHT. In the case of Jonah there is panic and flight.

  • Decisions made in “fear mode” are:
  • Precipitous, costly, wrong, selfish,
  • have serious consequences for self and others

Jonah becomes disengaged and uncaring (sleeping during the storm).

1:12 ff
Confession, although somewhat forced leads to release and courage to act. Can it be at this point that love for his fellow man has returned? “Perfect love casts out fear!”

1:12 ff
With being discovered and ultimately cast overboard would there necessarily have been feelings of rejection and a certain amount of “self-loathing”?

Jonah’s prayer:

  • v.4 – distress à hope
  • v.9 – thankfulness

What emotions was Jonah experiencing in 3:4 when he finally began preaching judgement upon Nineveh? Pride? Self-Righteousness? More anger?

Jonah becomes ANGRY again.
He expresses disappointment and depression (sadness in the extreme), “Take my life!”

Extreme happiness over a relatively little event, the growth of a plant for shade.

The happiness is short-lived and gives way to depression and anger.
There is “self-justification” of his angry state.
Sadly the story of Jonah ends with lack of compassion where there should be great joy!

If you have some insight or thoughts on Jonah's emotional life, why not leave a comment? Click the comment link below.



Anonymous says:

Note that Jonah’s ‘sermon’ has no content. He tells the sailors enough - he’s forced - that they can end up praying to and offering sacrifice to YHWH.
The Ninevites have no such opportunity. He speaks of the city's destruction. There is no word about God at all. They repent and the city is spared. They turn to God ... or is it really gods ... the Hebrew elohim is a plural used as a singular most of the time, but it is also the normal word for gods.
A very intriguing story.
Have fun with it.
How can you help but do so ...?
Major Bruce

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