Yahweh responds to Jonah (Jon 4:9-4:11)

“But God

Said to Jonah.

‘Is it right

For you

To be angry

About the bush?’

Jonah said.


Angry enough to die.’

Yahweh said.

‘You are concerned

About the bush

For which you did not labor.

You did not grow it.

It came into being

In a night.

It perished

In a night.

Should I not be concerned

About Nineveh,

That great city,

In which there are more

Than a hundred

And twenty thousand persons,

Who do not know

Their right hand

From their left hand.

There are also many animals.”

Thus, the story of Jonah ends with a reprimand for Jonah.  Jonah continued to argue that he had the right to be mad.  At times, he sounded like Job and his complaints.  God, not Yahweh, asked him if he had a right to be angry.  Jonah insisted that he was so angry that he was willing to die.  Then Yahweh asked him about the bush.  It appeared one day and was gone the next day.  Jonah did nothing to make it grow, so why was he so angry about the dead bush.  On the other hand, Yahweh was concerned about the great city of Nineveh with 120,000 people and lots of animals.  Yet, there was a parting shot at the people of Nineveh.  Apparently, they were so dumb that they could not tell their right hand from their left hand.

Yahweh will help against enemies (Isa 41:11-41:13)


All who are incensed against you

Shall be put to shame.

They shall be disgraced.

Those who strive against you

Shall be as nothing.

They shall perish.

You shall seek

Those who contend with you,

But you shall not find them.

Those who war against you

Shall be as nothing at all.


Yahweh your God!

Hold your right hand!

It is I who say to you.

‘Fear not!

I will help you!’”

Once again, Yahweh, using the first person singular in Second Isaiah proclaims that the Israelites should not be afraid since he was going to help them. Anybody against them will be put to shame. They will end up as nothing since their enemies will perish. Anybody who tries to start a war with the Israelites will be as nothing at all. If they try to find people against the Israelites, they will not find any because they will have been reduced to nothing. Yahweh will help them by holding their right hand so that they do not have to be afraid.