Outline Analysis of the Books of the Bible

By Barnard C. Taylor



1. AUTHOR. — Jonah, who belonged to the tribe of Zebulon.

2. DATE. — During the reign of Jeroboam II., 824–783 B. c.

3. PLACE. — Jonah belonged to the kingdom of Israel; the events narrated occurred in Palestine and at Nineveh.

4. HISTORICAL OCCASION. — At the time that Jonah was commanded to go to Nineveh to announce the destruction of the city for some sin not named, when the wicked ness of the Israelites was most pronounced.

5. LEADING TOPIC — The experience of the prophet on the occasion of his going to Nineveh, his refusal and punishment, and the effect of his message when he be came obedient. The book is mostly narrative in form, yet presents the work of a prophet.

6. CHIEF PURPOSE. — To show that God was ready to forgive the penitent, even those who were not recognized as his people. The lesson of the prophet's career was intended for the Israelites rather than the Ninevites, that they might be led to turn from their sins.


Part I. Command at first refused, Ch. 1, 2.

(a) His flight and punishment, Ch. 1.

(b) His prayer and rescue, Ch. 2.

Part II. Result of his preaching, Ch. 3, 4.

(a) Nineveh repents, Ch. 3.

(b) Jonah angry and reproved, Ch. 4.

8. POINTS OF ESPECIAL INTEREST. — Jonah's disobedience; the ship going to Tarshish; Nineveh a great city; the fast of the Ninevites; the withered gourd.

9. SPECIAL SINS CONDEMNED. — Of Jonah: His disobedience, pride and jealousy. Of the Ninevites: Perhaps immorality gene rally.

10. NATIONAL HOPES PRESENTED. — None directly, but the mission of Jonah to these foreigners implied that through the Israelites the Gentiles were to be turned to Jehovah.

11. MESSIANIC IDEAS. — The miraculous rescue of Jonah is compared by Christ to his Jonah. 97 own deliverance from death. (Matt. 12:40.)

12. RELATION TO OTHER O. T. BOOKS. — This book surpasses others in showing God's readiness to forgive the repenting. Jonah by act teaches what other prophets taught by word, that the Gentiles were objects of God's compassion.

13. TOPICS FOR SPECIAL STUDY. — The city of Nineveh — its dimensions and history; the religion of the Assyrians; extent of the relations between the different nations at the time of Jonah.