Jonah 2

Study the Inner Meaning

English: American Standard Version         

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1 Then Jonah prayed unto Jehovah his God out of the fish's belly.

2 And he said, I called by reason of mine affliction unto Jehovah, And he answered me; Out of the belly of Sheol cried I, [And] thou heardest my voice.

3 For thou didst cast me into the depth, in the heart of the seas, And the flood was round about me; All thy waves and thy billows passed over me.

4 And I said, I am cast out from before thine eyes; Yet I will look again toward thy holy temple.

5 The waters compassed me about, even to the soul; The deep was round about me; The weeds were wrapped about my head.

6 I went down to the bottoms of the mountains; The earth with its bars [closed] upon me for ever: Yet hast thou brought up my life from the pit, O Jehovah my God.

7 When my soul fainted within me, I remembered Jehovah; And my prayer came in unto thee, into thy holy temple.

8 They that regard lying vanities Forsake their own mercy.

9 But I will sacrifice unto thee with the voice of thanksgiving; I will pay that which I have vowed. Salvation is of Jehovah.

10 And Jehovah spake unto the fish, and it vomited out Jonah upon the dry land.

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   Study the Inner Meaning
From Swedenborg's Works

Main explanations:

The Inner Meaning of the Prophets and Psalms 212


Other references to this chapter:

Arcana Coelestia 247, 756, 1691, 3880, 4728, 6726, 8278, ...

Apocalypse Revealed 191


References from Swedenborg's unpublished works:

Apocalypse Explained 220, 518, 538, 622, 750

Other New Christian Commentary

  Stories and their meanings:



Hop to Similar Bible Verses

1 Samuel 12:21

1 Kings 17:4

2 Chronicles 33:12

Psalms 5:8, 22:26, 42:8, 69:2, 14, 88:6, 7, 116:1, 2, 120:1, 142:4

Isaiah 38:17, 20, 43:11

Lamentations 3:54, 55

Hosea 13:4, 14:3

Micah 1:2

Matthew 12:40

Acts of the Apostles 14:15

Hebrews 13:15

Word/Phrase Explanations

jonah
'Jonah' represents the Jewish nation.

Jehovah
The Lord, in the simplest terms, is love itself expressed as wisdom itself. In philosophic terms, love is the Lord's substance and wisdom is His...

god
The Lord is love itself, expressed in the form of wisdom itself. Love, then, is His essence, His inmost. Wisdom - the loving understanding of...

said
As with many common verbs, the meaning of “to say” in the Bible is highly dependent on context. Who is speaking? Who is hearing? What...

called
'To proclaim' signifies exploration from influx of the Lord.

answered
To "answer" generally indicates a state of spiritual receptivity. Ultimately this means being receptive to the Lord, who is constantly trying to pour true ideas...

belly
The belly (Psalms 16:4) signifies the interior understanding.

sheol
'Hell,' as mentioned in Jonah 2:3, signifies the earth below.

voice
In Genesis 27:22, 'voice' relates to truth, and 'hand,' to good.

depth
The deeps mentioned in Psalms 148:7 signify the ultimate heavens, in which the spiritual natural angels are ; also divine truths in abundance, and arcana...

seas
Water generally represents what Swedenborg calls “natural truth,” or true concepts about day-to-day matters and physical things. Since all water ultimately flows into the seas,...

flood
A flood signifies truths in abundance. The flood, as in Genesis 7, not only signifies the temptations which the man of the church called Noah...

waves
'The sea and the waves roaring' means heresy and controversies in the church and individual.

eyes
'Pairs of hands, eyes, etc.' relate to the will and understanding, or to good and truth. The right side to the will or good, and...

holy
'Sanctuary' signifies the truth of heaven and the church. 'Sanctuary,' as in Ezekiel 24:21, signifies the Word.

Temple
'A temple' represents heaven and the church. The sacred place where the ark was, represents the inmost, or third heaven, and the church among people...

waters
'Waters,' 'rivers,' and 'depths,' as in Psalm 78:15-16, signify truths from the Lord.

soul
The nature of the soul is a deep and complicated topic, but it can be summarized as "spiritual life," who we are in terms of...

head
The head is the part of us that is highest, which means in a representative sense that it is what is closest to the Lord....

down
"Down" is used many different ways in natural language, and its spiritual meaning in the Bible is highly dependent on context. Phrases like "bowing down,"...

mountains
In Isaiah 40:12 'to weigh the mountains in a balance, and the hills in scales,' signifies that the celestial aspects of love and charity are...

earth
'Lands' of different nations are used in the Word to signify the different kinds of love prevalent in the inhabitants.

bars
In Lamentations 2:8-9, 'wall,' 'rampart,' 'gates,' and 'bars' signify doctrines.

pit
In Job 9:30, 'waters of snow' denotes truths which are or appear genuine. 'Lye' denotes the good which purifies, and 'the ditch' denotes falsity.

came
As with common verbs in general, the meaning of “come” in the Bible is highly dependent on context – its meaning is determined largely by...

vanities
'Vanity' signifies evil and the falsity of evil. 'Vanities of strangers' signifies falsities of religion.

own
In many cases, the spiritual meaning of "own," both as a verb and as an adjective, is relatively literal. When people are described as the...

mercy
In regular language, "mercy" means being caring and compassionate toward those who are in poor states. That's a position we are all in relative to...

vowed
In Genesis 28:20, 'he vowed a vow' denotes, in the internal sense, willing that the Lord will provide. In the highest sense, where the Lord...

salvation
'Salvation, to the Lord our God,' as in Revelation 19:1, signifies an acknowledgment and confession that salvation is from the Lord.

spake
Like "say," the word "speak" refers to thoughts and feelings moving from our more internal spiritual levels to our more external ones – and ultimately...

vomited
'Vomit' relates to the falsification of divine truth.

Resources for parents and teachers

The items listed here are provided courtesy of our friends at the General Church of the New Jerusalem. You can search/browse their whole library at the New Church Vineyard website.


 How the Lord Saved Jonah
A retelling of the story for young children with beautiful color illustrations. 
Story | Ages 4 - 6

 Jonah
Lesson outline provides teaching ideas with questions for discussion, projects, and activities.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 7 - 10

 Jonah and the Great Fish
A New Church Bible story explanation for teaching Sunday school. Includes lesson materials for Primary (3-8 years), Junior (9-11 years), Intermediate (12-14 years), Senior (15-17 years) and Adults.
Teaching Support | Ages over 3

 Jonah and the Great Fish
A lesson for younger children with discussion ideas and a project.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 4 - 6

 Jonah and the Great Fish (3-5 years)
Project | Ages 4 - 6

 Jonah and the Great Fish (6-8 years)
Project | Ages 7 - 10

 Jonah and the Great Fish (9-11 years)
Project | Ages 11 - 14

 Jonah Disobeys the Lord
Worship Talk | Ages 7 - 14

 Jonah in the Great Fish
Coloring Page | Ages 7 - 14

 Jonah Swallowed by a Fish
Another way to make a 3 dimensional fish that can swallow Noah. 
Project | Ages up to 6

 Quotes: Divine Providence and Evil
Teaching Support | Ages over 15

 The Prophet Jonah
This article shows how the Lord tried to teach Jonah to be merciful and kind when Jonah disobeyed the Lord because of his hatred toward the Assyrians. 
Worship Talk | Ages 7 - 14


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