Jonah Is Angry at Yahweh’s Compassion
1And this#Hebrew “it” was greatly displeasing#Literally “was displeasing with great displeasure” to Jonah, and he became furious.#Literally “it was hot for him” 2And he prayed to Yahweh and said, “O Yahweh, was this not what I said#Literally “my word” while I was in my homeland? Therefore I originally fled#Literally “I did the first time to flee” to Tarshish, because I knew that you are a gracious and compassionate God, slow to anger and having great steadfast love,#Literally “and great of steadfast love” and one who relents concerning calamity.#That is, calamity sent by God as judgment 3And so then, Yahweh, please take my life from me, because for me death is better than life!” 4And Yahweh said, “Is it right for you to be angry?”#Literally “Rightfully is it hot for you”; some take this to mean “Are you so very angry?” (Targum Jonah 4:4; see also JPS, NEB, NET)
5And Jonah went out from the city and sat down east of the city, and he made for himself a shelter there. And he sat under it in the shade, waiting to see#Literally “until he would see” what would happen with the city. 6And Yahweh God appointed a plant,#Probably a castor oil plant, though some have suggested some type of gourd plant and he made it grow up over Jonah to be a shade over his head, to save him from his discomfort. And Jonah was very glad#Literally “was glad with great joy” about the plant. 7So God appointed a worm at daybreak#Literally “at the coming up of the dawn” the next day, and it attacked the plant, and it withered. 8And when the sun rose,#Literally “and it happened at the rising of the sun” God appointed a scorching east wind, and the sun beat down on Jonah’s head and he grew faint. And he asked that he could die#Literally “and he asked his soul to die” and said, “My death is better than my life!” 9So God said to Jonah, “Is it right for you to be angry#Literally “rightfully is it hot for you”; some take this to mean “Are you so very angry?” (Targum Jonah 4:4; see also JPS, NEB, NET) about the plant?” And he said, “It is right for me to be angry enough to die!”#Literally “Rightfully it is hot for me until death”
10But Yahweh said, “You are troubled about the plant, for which you did not labor nor cause it to grow. It grew up in a night and it perished in a night!#Literally “Which was a son of a night and as a son of a night it perished” 11And should I not be concerned about Nineveh, the great city, in which there are#Literally “which there are in it” more than one hundred and twenty thousand#Literally “than two ten myriad” (12 x 10,000) people who do not know right from left,#“hand” is often supplied, but it is not clear just what deficiency is meant by this expression, which occurs only here in biblical Hebrew plus many animals?”
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