About the Book of Jonah
This book tells us about what happened to a prophet called Jonah. Jonah lived in Israel, at the east end of the Mediterranean Sea. We also read about Jonah in 2 Kings 14:25.
Nineveh was the capital city of Assyria, to the north east of Israel. It was in the country that is called Iraq today. The Assyrian people were enemies of God's people in Israel. They were cruel people.
When God told Jonah to go to Nineveh, Jonah was not happy. He knew that God was kind. He thought that God might forgive the people there when they heard his message. Jonah did not want God to forgive Israel's enemies. So Jonah tried to run away from God. He got on a ship to go far away from Nineveh. In the end, Jonah had to obey God and go to Nineveh. The Assyrian people obeyed God's message that Jonah spoke to them. Jonah was not happy when God decided that he would not destroy Nineveh.
This book shows us that God rules over everything. He uses a storm, a big fish, a plant and a worm to teach Jonah what is right. We learn that God wants to forgive people if they turn away from their sins. He shows his love to everyone, not only to his people, the Israelites.