Was Jonah's prophecy about niveah's destruction a "false prophecy"?

by booker-t 8 Replies latest jw friends

  • booker-t
  • booker-t

    I am totally confused by Jonah 3 and 4 with the prophecy concerning Niveah's destruction(sorry for the spelling error)

    but an elder just kept telling me that Jonah really thought Jehovah was going to punish the people and that is

    why Jonah prayed to Jehovah in anger. The elder insist JW's are basically in the same position as Jonah and

    that biblical prophets sometimes made errors in their predictions but Jehovah still uses them when they humble

    themselves and correct the problem. What do you feel posters is this elder right?

  • Lillith26

    In my opinion a prophet is some who speads gossip! If God spoke to me- then I relayed that message to you it would be... HEARSAY! Does this sounds like a reasonable statement to make??? As a deist I do 100% believe in a creator, and I believe that if god had a message for mankind, it would be a direct message, one that all of god's creations would be able to understand- a universal language so to speak.

    In answer to your question- YOUR ELDER IS FULL OF CRAP!!! not only was the first message that was written down (book of Jonah) hearsay, but it has been re-written, then translated from a language your elder doesn't speak into one he does and then hes trying to explain/interpret the "original message" to you..... but the original message was hearsay in the first place..... Hmmmnnnn???????????????? It's GOSSIP!!! and if I remember my training correctly- gossip is something that Jehovah Hates!

  • trebor

    Here is another view to consider:

    Some people claim that the account of Jonah is proof that God has shown in the past that He had sent forth a prophet who prophesized falsely. Some may interpret it as one thing was decreed to occur by God, but later proved not to be the case. Others may claim the account of Jonah is proof of God changing his mind on a matter. In light of all of this what does the account of Jonah actually state.

    We can start by reading Jonah 1:1, 2. Using the New World Translation it reads: 1 And the word of Jehovah began to occur to Jo´nah the son of A·mit´tai, saying: 2 “Get up, go to Nin´e·veh the great city, and proclaim against her that their badness has come up before me.” These scriptures only indicate that Jonah is commissioned by God to go to Ninevah and relate to the people that God is upset with them because they have been bad. It was a warning message. God is loving and merciful and does not want anyone to die, so he sends Jonah to warn them.

    Some may claim that Jonah’s assignment was to deliver a message telling the people they are definitely going to be destroyed, rather than it being a warning message that they would be destroyed if they did not change their ways and repent. Consider this, if Jonah's message to the Ninevites was not a warning message to the people, what was the point? God could have just killed them at any time He wanted to do so.

    Did God just send Jonah to the Ninevites to tell them that he was going to destroy them? Was Jonah’s assignment by God to heartlessly go around the city telling the inhabitants that they were going to be killed without giving them a chance? The truth is God was giving the Ninevites a chance to repent from their bad ways and avoid destruction. Additionally to add to the commission first laid out in Jonah 1:1, 2, God also provided a timeline for the people of 40 days until their destruction if they did not repent (
    Jonah 3:4 )

    The end results of the warning message provided though Jonah was the Ninevites believed and repented (Jonah 3:5). Even the King of Ninevah stopped doing the bad things (
    Jonah 3: 6-9). Therefore, the end result was no destruction (Jonah 3:10). Afterward, the scriptures indicate that Jonah was upset over the outcome as he felt in his heart from the beginning that God would not destroy the people (Jonah 4: 1, 2).

    Why else was Jonah angered and upset over the results is not explicitly provided. Perhaps he felt too self righteous and could not accept that God spared the city because they repented. Maybe Jonah felt he knew it all, and since from the outset thought God would not destroy the city, he felt his life was being wasted by God and it was not worth living. A better outlook by Jonah would have been that God threatened Nineveh with destruction, knowing that it would cause Nineveh to repent.

  • isaacaustin

    No, it is not a false prophecy. Impicit in all God's warnings is an out- repentance. Ninvevah repented- each and every one of them. Joanh propecied what would happen had they not repented- he did not prophecy that they would not repent.

  • isaacaustin

    Jonah 4

    1 But Jonah was greatly displeased and became angry. 2 He prayed to the LORD, "O LORD, is this not what I said when I was still at home? That is why I was so quick to flee to Tarshish. I knew that you are a gracious and compassionate God, slow to anger and abounding in love, a God who relents from sending calamity. 3 Now, O LORD, take away my life, for it is better for me to die than to live."

    So Jonah himself says that he did not want to declare this warning of what would happen because he himself knew that god relents from acting on his warning IF the party/parties repent. Kind of like the desolation warned about for the nations under Babylonian rule- if that nation did submit as a vassal nation to babylon they would not be removed, or desolated.

  • Leolaia

    Please read my analysis of the book as satire in this thread:


    The way the "prophecy" is stated and delivered is part and parcel of the book's depiction of Jonah as the worst prophet ever, the model of how a prophet should not be. His actions are comically out of line of how hardworking prophets like Isaiah, Jeremiah, and Ezekiel acted.

  • mindmelda

    Jonah is a good example of a bad prophet. He wants God to rain down fire and destruction on Nineveh, but God is too merciful for Jonah, who would have gotten a self righteous satisfaction from seeing the Ninevites burn. I think he's in there to show us what self righteous fools look like.

    Even the name Jonah is kind of a joke. It means "dove" and the dove was always to be a messenger of peace between God and man, not of destruction.

  • Mad Dawg
    Mad Dawg

    Ninevah was the capital of Assyria, which was an enemy of Israel. They hated each other. Jonah was angry with God for offering Ninevah the chance to repent and to come to God. Jonah wanted the Assyrians to get what they deserved.

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