4:9–11 The divine intention of the object lessons is now revealed. God’s magnificent compassion for the people and animals He created and sustained (v. 11) is contrasted with Jonah’s petty concern for the plant (v. 10). The reader recalls the compassion of Jesus as He looked upon the multitudes (Matt. 9:36; Mark 6:34; 8:2), and His statement in Matt. 10:29 that not a sparrow will fall to the ground apart from the will of the Father. In its infancy, the largely Jewish New Testament church would again wrestle with this issue of the wideness of God’s mercy, as the Lord opened the hearts of the Gentiles to obey the gospel (Acts 11:18; 15:14; 28:28).