Why God Sent the Big Fish to the Prophet Jonah

In the famous novel Moby Dick penned by the widely-recognized American writer Herman Melville, the vengeful Captain Ahab tracks down a monstrous white whale to capture and kill it.

His thirst for vengeance did not end well for the beleaguered captain because the whale attacked and destroyed his whaling vessel. The persecuted whale perfectly carries out divine justice on the hunters who had no intention of backing down from their grim task.

The Big Fish That Saved Jonah

Centuries before Moby Dick came into being, the Holy Bible was already talking about a spectacularly huge fish that swallowed the prophet, Jonah, in the middle of a particularly vicious hurricane. The fish came out of nowhere and snatched Jonah from the jaws of certain death. It is worth mentioning that the violent storm and the appearance of the giant fish were all part of God’s grand design. He wanted Jonah to go through the hardship of being near death and being saved in one fell swoop. He needed Jonah to fully own up to the fact that his life was in God’s hands to do with in whatever way He wanted to.

The Significance of the Big Fish

The big fish helped to achieve God’s purpose. The three days and three nights of hiatus that Jonah spent inside the fish’s belly made him more prayerful and completely cleared his mind about his role in God’s scheme of things. We can sum up the fish’s significance as follows:

  1. It was Jonah’s place of judgment. It is not far-fetched to imagine that the insides of the fish would have become Jonah’s final resting place if he had continued to be stubborn in trying to derail God’s plan.
  2. It was designed to make Jonah pray. With nothing to do except reflect on his sins and his close brush with death, Jonah turned to prayer to renew his connection with God.
  3. It was a place of deliverance. When Jonah repented and prayed for forgiveness, God gladly accepted him with open arms.   

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