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Jonah 3:5

    Jonah 3:5 Translations

    King James Version (KJV)

    So the people of Nineveh believed God, and proclaimed a fast, and put on sackcloth, from the greatest of them even to the least of them.

    American King James Version (AKJV)

    So the people of Nineveh believed God, and proclaimed a fast, and put on sackcloth, from the greatest of them even to the least of them.

    American Standard Version (ASV)

    And the people of Nineveh believed God; and they proclaimed a fast, and put on sackcloth, from the greatest of them even to the least of them.

    Basic English Translation (BBE)

    And the people of Nineveh had belief in God; and a time was fixed for going without food, and they put on haircloth, from the greatest to the least.

    Webster's Revision

    And the people of Nineveh believed God; and they proclaimed a fast, and put on sackcloth, from the greatest of them even to the least of them.

    World English Bible

    The people of Nineveh believed God; and they proclaimed a fast, and put on sackcloth, from the greatest of them even to the least of them.

    English Revised Version (ERV)

    And the people of Nineveh believed God; and they proclaimed a fast, and put on sackcloth, from the greatest of them even to the least of them.

    Definitions for Jonah 3:5

    Fast - Abstaining from food.

    Clarke's Commentary on Jonah 3:5

    The people of Nineveh believed God - They had no doubt that the threatening would be fulfilled, unless their speedy conversion prevented it; but, though not expressed, they knew that the threatening was conditional. "The promises and threatenings of God, which are merely personal, either to any particular man or number of men, are always conditional, because the wisdom of God hath thought fit to make these depend on the behavior of men." - Dr. S. Clarke's Sermons, vol. i.

    Proclaimed a fast - And never was there one so general, so deep, and so effectual. Men and women, old and young, high and low, and even the cattle themselves, all kept such a fast as the total abstinence from food implies.

    Barnes' Notes on Jonah 3:5

    And the people of Nineveh believed God; - strictly, "believed in God." To "believe in God" expresses more heart-belief, than to "believe God" in itself need convey. To believe God is to believe what God says, to be true; "to believe in" or "on God" expresses not belief only, but that belief resting in God, trusting itself and all its concerns with Him. It combines hope and trust with faith, and love too, since, without love, there cannot be trust. They believed then the preaching of Jonah, and that He, in Whose Name Jonah spake, had all power in heaven and earth. But they believed further in His unknown mercies; they cast themselves upon the goodness of the hitherto "unknown God." Yet they believed in Him, as the Supreme God, "the" object of awe, the God אלהים 'ĕlohı̂ym Jonah 3:5, Jonah 3:8, האלהים ha'ĕlohı̂ym Jonah 3:9, although they knew Him not, as He Is , the Self-Existent One. Jonah does not say how they were thus persuaded.

    God the Holy Spirit relates the wonders of God's Omnipotence as common everyday things. They are no marvels to Him Who performed them. "He commanded and they were done." He spake with power to the hearts which He had made, and they were turned to Him. Any human means are secondary, utterly powerless, except in "His" hands Who Alone doth all things through whomsoever He doth them. Our Lord tells us that "Jonah" himself "was a sign unto the Ninevites" . Whether then the mariners spread the history, or howsoever the Ninevites knew the personal history of Jonah, he, in his own person and in what befell him, was a sign to them. They believed that God, Who avenged "his" disobedience, would avenge their's. They believed perhaps, that God must have some great mercy in store for them, Who not only sent His prophet so far from his own land to "them" who had never owned, never worshiped Him, but had done such mighty wonders to subdue His prophet's resistance and to make him go to them.

    And proclaimed a fast and put on sackcloth - It was not then a repentance in word only, but in deed. A fast was at that time entire abstinence from all food until evening; the haircloth was a harsh garment, irritating and afflictive to the body. They who did so, were (as we may still see from the Assyrian sculptures) men of pampered and luxurious habits, uniting sensuality and fierceness. Yet this they did at once, and as it seems, for the 40 days. They "proclaimed a fast." They did not wait for the supreme authority. Time was urgent, and they would lose none of it. In this imminent peril of God's displeasure, they acted as men would in a conflagration. People do not wait for orders to put out a fire, if they can, or to prevent it from spreading. Whoever they were who proclaimed it, whether those in inferior authority, each in his neighborhood, or whether it spread from man to man, as the tidings spread, it was done at once. It seems to have been done by acclamation, as it were, one common cry out of the one common terror. For it is said of them, as one succession of acts, "the men of Nineveh believed in God, and proclaimed a fast, and put on sackcloth from their great to their little," every age, sex, condition . "Worthy of admiration is that exceeding celerity and diligence in taking counsel, which, although in the same city with the king, perceived that they must provide for the common and imminent calamity, not waiting to ascertain laboriously the king's pleasure." In a city, 60 miles in circumference, some time must needs be lost, before the king could be approached; and we know, in some measure, the forms required in approaching Eastern monarchs of old.

    Wesley's Notes on Jonah 3:5

    3:5 From the greatest - Great and small, rich and poor.