The Message

Jonah 1

Running Away from God

11-2 One day long ago, God’s Word came to Jonah, Amittai’s son: “Up on your feet and on your way to the big city of Nineveh! Preach to them. They’re in a bad way and I can’t ignore it any longer.”

But Jonah got up and went the other direction to Tarshish, running away from God. He went down to the port of Joppa and found a ship headed for Tarshish. He paid the fare and went on board, joining those going to Tarshish—as far away from God as he could get.

4-6 But God sent a huge storm at sea, the waves towering.

The ship was about to break into pieces. The sailors were terrified. They called out in desperation to their gods. They threw everything they were carrying overboard to lighten the ship. Meanwhile, Jonah had gone down into the hold of the ship to take a nap. He was sound asleep. The captain came to him and said, “What’s this? Sleeping! Get up! Pray to your god! Maybe your god will see we’re in trouble and rescue us.”

Then the sailors said to one another, “Let’s get to the bottom of this. Let’s draw straws to identify the culprit on this ship who’s responsible for this disaster.”

So they drew straws. Jonah got the short straw.

Then they grilled him: “Confess. Why this disaster? What is your work? Where do you come from? What country? What family?”

He told them, “I’m a Hebrew. I worship God, the God of heaven who made sea and land.”

10 At that, the men were frightened, really frightened, and said, “What on earth have you done!” As Jonah talked, the sailors realized that he was running away from God.

11 They said to him, “What are we going to do with you—to get rid of this storm?” By this time the sea was wild, totally out of control.

12 Jonah said, “Throw me overboard, into the sea. Then the storm will stop. It’s all my fault. I’m the cause of the storm. Get rid of me and you’ll get rid of the storm.”

13 But no. The men tried rowing back to shore. They made no headway. The storm only got worse and worse, wild and raging.

14 Then they prayed to God, “O God! Don’t let us drown because of this man’s life, and don’t blame us for his death. You are God. Do what you think is best.”

15 They took Jonah and threw him overboard. Immediately the sea was quieted down.

16 The sailors were impressed, no longer terrified by the sea, but in awe of God. They worshiped God, offered a sacrifice, and made vows.

17 Then God assigned a huge fish to swallow Jonah. Jonah was in the fish’s belly three days and nights.

Chinese Contemporary Bible (Simplified)

约拿书 1

约拿违背耶和华

1耶和华对亚米太的儿子约拿说: “你起来前往尼尼微大城,大声警告那里的居民,因为他们的罪恶滔天,已经达到我面前。” 可是,约拿却起身逃往他施,想躲避耶和华。他到了约帕港,看见一艘要开往他施的船,就付了船费,上了船,想和众人一起去他施,好躲避耶和华。

然而,耶和华使海面起了狂风,滔天巨浪几乎把船打成碎片。 水手们非常害怕,纷纷呼求自己的神,又把船上的货物全都抛进海里,以减轻重量。这时候,约拿已下到底舱,躺在那里呼呼大睡。 船长来到约拿身边对他说:“你这个人,怎么这时候还在睡觉!快起来祈求你的神吧,也许你的神会怜悯我们,饶我们一命。”

后来,船上的人彼此商量说:“来,我们抽签,看看这场灾难是谁惹来的。”于是他们就抽签,结果抽中了约拿。 众人问他:“请告诉我们,这场灾难是谁惹来的?你是做什么的?从哪里来?是哪一国、哪一族的人?” 约拿回答说:“我是希伯来人,我敬畏耶和华,祂是创造海洋陆地、掌管诸天的上帝。” 10 之后,他就把怎样逃避耶和华的事告诉他们。众人知道后,万分恐惧,问他:“你怎么做出这种事?”

11 那时,风浪越来越大,他们便对约拿说:“我们要怎样处置你,才能使风浪平静呢?” 12 约拿对他们说:“我知道这场风暴是因我而起的,你们把我抬起来抛进海里,风浪自然会平静。” 13 然而船上的人还是拚命划船,希望把船划向岸边,可是没有成功,因为风浪实在太大了。 14 他们只好呼求耶和华,说:“耶和华啊,求你不要因这个人的性命而毁灭我们,不要因我们杀害无辜的人而怪罪我们,因为你耶和华按自己的旨意行事。” 15 然后他们把约拿抬起来抛进海里,狂风巨浪立刻平静了。 16 众人都极其敬畏耶和华,向祂献祭,并且许愿。

17 耶和华安排了一条大鱼,把约拿吞下,他在鱼腹里度过三天三夜。