Jonah 2

Study the Inner Meaning

English: Webster's Bible         

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1 Then Jonah prayed to the LORD his God out of the fish's belly,

2 And said, I cried by reason of my affliction to the LORD, and he heard me; out of the belly of hell cried I, and thou heardst my voice.

3 For thou hadst cast me into the deep, in the midst of the seas; and the floods encompassed me: all thy billows and thy waves passed over me.

4 Then I said, I am cast out of thy sight; yet I will look again towards thy holy temple.

5 The waters encompassed me, even to the soul: the depth inclosed me on every side, the weeds were wrapped about my head.

6 I went down to the bottoms of the mountains; the earth with her bars was about me for ever: yet hast thou brought up my life from corruption, O LORD my God.

7 When my soul fainted within me I remembered the LORD: and my prayer came to thee, into thy holy temple.

8 They that observe lying vanities forsake their own mercy.

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

10 And the LORD spoke to 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References from Swedenborg's unpublished works: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.

lord
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...

heard
Thanks to modern science, we now understand that hearing actually happens in the brain, not the ears. The ears collect vibrations in the air and...

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

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

Voice
'Voice' signifies what is announced from the Word. 'Voice' often refers and is applied to things that cannot have a voice, as in Exodus 4,...

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,...

sight
The symbolic meaning of "seeing" is "understanding," which is obvious enough that it has become part of common language (think about it; you might see...

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' signify truths in the natural self, and in the opposite sense, falsities. 'Waters' signify particularly the spiritual parts of a person, or the intellectual...

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...

side
'Side' signifies good or spiritual love.

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
'Hills' signify the good of charity.

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

Bars
Bars, as in Lamentations 2:9, signify doctrinals

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...

observe
'To observe' stands for all aspects of the Word in general.

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.

spoke
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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