Jonah’s Prayer. 1But the Lord sent a great fish to swallow Jonah, and he remained in the belly of the fish three days and three nights.#Mt 12:40; 16:4; Lk 11:30; 1 Cor 15:4. 2Jonah prayed to the Lord, his God, from the belly of the fish:
3#These verses, which may have originally been an independent composition, are a typical example of a song of thanksgiving, a common psalm genre (e.g., Ps 116; Is 38:9–20). Such a song is relevant here, since Jonah has not drowned, and the imagery of vv. 4, 6 is appropriate.Out of my distress I called to the Lord,
and he answered me;
From the womb of Sheol#Sheol: cf. note on Ps 6:6. I cried for help,
and you heard my voice.#Ps 18:7; 120:1.
4You cast me into the deep, into the heart of the sea,
and the flood enveloped me;
All your breakers and your billows
passed over me.#Ps 42:8.
5Then I said, “I am banished from your sight!
How will I again look upon your holy temple?”#Ps 31:23; Is 38:11.
6The waters surged around me up to my neck;
the deep enveloped me;
seaweed wrapped around my head.#Ps 18:5; 69:2.
7I went down to the roots of the mountains;
to the land whose bars closed behind me forever,
But you brought my life up from the pit,
O Lord, my God.#Ps 16:10; 30:4.
8When I became faint,
I remembered the Lord;
My prayer came to you
in your holy temple.#Ps 5:8; 18:7; 88:3.
9Those who worship worthless idols
abandon their hope for mercy.#Ps 31:7.
10But I, with thankful voice,
will sacrifice to you;
What I have vowed I will pay:
deliverance is from the Lord.#Ps 50:14.
11Then the Lord commanded the fish to vomit Jonah upon dry land.