Tuesday, 6th October 2015 --- 25 Tute 1732
Day 25 of the Blessed Coptic Month of Tute, may God make it always received, year after year, with reassurance and tranquility, while our sins after forgiven by the tender mercies of our God my fathers and brothers.
The Twenty-Fifth Day of the Blessed Month of Tute
Departure of Jonah the Great Prophet
this day departed the great prophet Jonah, the son of Amittai. It was said
that he was the son of the widon of Zarephatah whom Elijah the prophet
had raised from the dead. Jonah followed Elijah and served him and gained
the grace of prophesying. God, blessed and exalted, told him to go to the
city of Nineveh to admonish its people and to tell them that after forty
days the city shall be overthrown. Jonah pondered in his heart saying,
"If God wished to destroy them He would not warn them. I am afraid if I
go to them and preach this warning to them, they might repent and He would
not destroy them and I shall be a liar and no one will listen to me and
maybe I will get killed becuase I conveyed to them a false message from
God. I will arise and flee."
What did this prophet
think of ? How could anyone flee from the face of God ? By escaping, he
wanted to get away from the city of Nineveh because he did not want to
admonish them knowing that God is gracious and merciful, slow to anger
and repentent of the evil. He thought that by staying away from Nineveh
the Lord would send another prophet to preach to this city. The escape
of Jonah the prophet and his having been cast into the city are to make
manifest the miracle of his remaining in the belly of the whale for three
days and the coming out safely. It is a symbol of, and evidence for, the
resurrection of our Savior from the sepulchre, unchanged, after three days.
Jonah rose up to flee from the presence of the Lord and went down to Joppa;
he found a ship going to Tarshish and sailed on it. The Lord sent out a
great wind and there was a mighty tempest in the sea, so that the ship
was about to be broken. The people were all afraid, and cried every man
to his god. They said everyone to his fellow, "Come and let us cast lots,
that we may know because of whom this evil has befallen us." And when they
had cast lots, it fell upon Jonah. They said to him, "What have you done
that brought such an affliction on us ?" He replied, "Cast me in the sea
and you shall be saved." They begged the Lord's pardon. Then they cast
him into the sea, and a great whale swallowed him. He remained in its belly
for three days and three nights and then he was cast out on the seashore.
He rose up straightaway and came into Nineveh. He preached to its people
and they all repented: The King, the nobles, and the poor, the old and
the young. They all cried to God with fasting and everyone turned from
their way, and the Lord accepted their repentance and had mercy upon them.
rose up and returned to the land of Israel and died there. He was more
than 900 years before the advent of the Lord Christ. He prophesied in the
days of Amos and his son Hosea. He lived nearly 100 years, out of which
he prophesied more than 70 years.
May his prayers and blessings be with us all, and Glory be to God
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