The near-death experience of Jonah (Jon 2:4-2:6)

“Then I said.

‘I am driven away

From your sight.

How shall I look again

Upon your holy Temple?

The waters closed in

Over me.

The deep surrounded me.

Weeds were wrapped

Around my head.

At the roots

Of the mountains,

I went down

To the land.

The bars closed

Upon me forever.

Yet you brought up

My life

From the Pit.

O Yahweh!

My God!’”

The experience of drowning or nearly drowning is like a near-death experience. Jonah had been driven away from the sight of Yahweh because he had decided to run away from the task that Yahweh had asked him to do. He would never again look at the holy Temple in Jerusalem. As the sea waters closed in on him on every side, sea weeds were wrapped around his head. He actually felt like he was buried at the bottom of a mountain with the bars closed in on forever. He had gone down to the sea. like in Davy Jones locker. However, Yahweh, his God, brought him to life. He saved him from the Pit, the shadow like afterlife.

Give thanks to Yahweh (Ps 138:1-138:3)

A Psalm of David

“Yahweh!

I give you thanks

With my whole heart.

Before the gods,

I sing your praise.

I bow down toward your holy temple.

I give thanks to your name.

Because of your steadfast love.

I give thanks to your name.

Because of your faithfulness.

You have exalted your name

Above everything.

You have exalted your word

Above everything.

On the day I called,

You did answer me.

You increased my strength of soul.”

Psalm 138 is a thanksgiving psalm of David as indicated in the title. David gives thanks to Yahweh from his whole heart. He sings his praises in his holy Temple. Yahweh is greater than any of the other gods or angels. He gave thanks to his holy name for his steadfast love and faithfulness. His name and word were to be exalted above everything. On the day that David called, Yahweh answered him. There was no delay here. Thus this strengthened his soul.