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Jonah’s Prayer

[a]Then Jonah prayed to the Lord his God from inside the fish. He said,

“I cried out to the Lord in my great trouble,
    and he answered me.
I called to you from the land of the dead,[b]
    and Lord, you heard me!
You threw me into the ocean depths,
    and I sank down to the heart of the sea.
The mighty waters engulfed me;
    I was buried beneath your wild and stormy waves.
Then I said, ‘O Lord, you have driven me from your presence.
    Yet I will look once more toward your holy Temple.’

“I sank beneath the waves,
    and the waters closed over me.
    Seaweed wrapped itself around my head.
I sank down to the very roots of the mountains.
    I was imprisoned in the earth,
    whose gates lock shut forever.
But you, O Lord my God,
    snatched me from the jaws of death!
As my life was slipping away,
    I remembered the Lord.
And my earnest prayer went out to you
    in your holy Temple.
Those who worship false gods
    turn their backs on all God’s mercies.
But I will offer sacrifices to you with songs of praise,
    and I will fulfill all my vows.
    For my salvation comes from the Lord alone.”

10 Then the Lord ordered the fish to spit Jonah out onto the beach.

Footnotes

  1. 2:1 Verses 2:1-10 are numbered 2:2-11 in Hebrew text.
  2. 2:2 Hebrew from Sheol.

Jonah’s Prayer

Then Jonah prayed to the Lord his God from the stomach of the fish, and said,

“I called out of my trouble and distress to the Lord,
And He answered me;
Out of the belly of Sheol I cried for help,
And You heard my voice.(A)

“For You cast me into the deep,
Into the [deep] heart of the seas,
And the currents surrounded and engulfed me;
All Your breakers and billowing waves passed over me.(B)

“Then I said, ‘I have been cast out of Your sight.
Nevertheless I will look again toward Your holy temple.’(C)

“The waters surrounded me, to the point of death.
The great deep engulfed me,
Seaweed was wrapped around my head.(D)

“I descended to the [very] roots of the mountains.
The earth with its bars closed behind me [bolting me in] forever,
Yet You have brought up my life from the pit (death), O Lord my God.

“When my soul was fainting within me,
I remembered the Lord,
And my prayer came to You,
Into Your holy temple.

“Those who regard and follow worthless idols
[a]Turn away from their [living source of] mercy and lovingkindness.

“But [as for me], I will sacrifice to You
With the voice of thanksgiving;
I shall pay that which I have vowed.
Salvation is from the Lord!”

10 So the Lord commanded the fish, and it vomited Jonah up onto the dry land.

Footnotes

  1. Jonah 2:8 Lit Forsake.

At the Bottom of the Sea

1-9 Then Jonah prayed to his God from the belly of the fish.

He prayed:

“In trouble, deep trouble, I prayed to God.
    He answered me.
From the belly of the grave I cried, ‘Help!’
    You heard my cry.
You threw me into ocean’s depths,
    into a watery grave,
With ocean waves, ocean breakers
    crashing over me.
I said, ‘I’ve been thrown away,
    thrown out, out of your sight.
I’ll never again lay eyes
    on your Holy Temple.’
Ocean gripped me by the throat.
    The ancient Abyss grabbed me and held tight.
My head was all tangled in seaweed
    at the bottom of the sea where the mountains take root.
I was as far down as a body can go,
    and the gates were slamming shut behind me forever—
Yet you pulled me up from that grave alive,
    O God, my God!
When my life was slipping away,
    I remembered God,
And my prayer got through to you,
    made it all the way to your Holy Temple.
Those who worship hollow gods, god-frauds,
    walk away from their only true love.
But I’m worshiping you, God,
    calling out in thanksgiving!
And I’ll do what I promised I’d do!
    Salvation belongs to God!”

10 Then God spoke to the fish, and it vomited up Jonah on the seashore.