The Book of Jonah-1:4-9-“the World as a ship

The world is is often compared to a ship for a very good reason. Ingenuity of man works with several abilities to which every one can claim in some measure certain flair. So much as every rivet driven to make up a ship stands testimony to man. He is handyman, the mapmaker,  helmsman and a mechanic, all of which requires several abilities.  So a ship as with the world is a combined effort each contribution being absorbed in the whole. Head is not everything, nor are the hands. Intellect without working hands shall be like a ship left dry docked. When a ship is put to sea it must be clear that with so much ingenuity and daring the master shall have no problem reaching the desired port. It has however never shown to be true. Ships flounder like Mary Rose the Tudor warship did. A storm is no respecter of Royal person. Mary Rose, Vasa are all but names stamped with glory of man but perfectly useless when sent out in their business. They were all seaworthy but did not measure up to expectations. How ships weather considering the wear and tear upon their inbuilt weakness none is perfect. Titanic was a wonder but she was no exception. Ships when old they need their parts replaced and refitted and such is the glory of man and it is a transient glory.

When Prophet Jonah wanted to dodge the commission of the Lord God he took passage abroad a ship bound for Tarshish most probably Cyprus or southern Spain. In his day it must have been the farthest place he could have gone. He perhaps imagined that he was escaping the presence of the Lord. “Whither shall I go from thy spirit? or whither shall I flee from thy presence?(Ps.139:7-12)”  Resisting God must have put uncommon stress on his body that he slept in the hold blissfully unaware of the danger he had brought upon the whole vessel. What did God tell Cain who was angry with God for favoring the sacrifice of Abel over his? His remark,”If thou does not well, sin lieth at the door (Ge.4:7) from what happened later was a prophecy. Sin was waiting to get the better of him unless he managed his anger.  Moses had warned, Your sin shall find you out (Nu.32:23).

One of the greatest tragedies of man is that God set him in context of His creation. Being sinful his soul would want them serve his greed instead. Let us look at the first family. God blessed Adam and Eve so it would make them as stewards over all creation as He was over them. Principle of Association would render their service as coming from God himself. A soul as we discussed in an earlier post is expression of God but bearing person’s individual signature. Adam and Eve were co equal and intercessors, When sin entered we find soul of man seeking glory, a trait that made Saul, the first king of Israel think God had become his enemy.  With so many in the world competing with every other what we see is not healthy competition but  dog-eat dog morality overruling natural feelings. The world as a ship is about to be broken up because of sin. Jonah was a dangerous cargo who put lives of everyone in danger.

Am I my brother’s keeper?



But the Lord sent out a great wind into the sea, and there was a mighty tempest in the sea, so that the ship was like to be broken.

Then the mariners were afraid, and cried every man unto his god, and cast forth the wares that were in the ship into the sea, to lighten it of them. But Jonah was gone down into the sides of the ship; and he lay, and was fast asleep.

So the shipmaster came to him, and said unto him, What meanest thou, O sleeper? arise, call upon thy God, if so be that God will think upon us, that we perish not.

And they said every one to his fellow, Come, and let us cast lots, that we may know for whose cause this evil is upon us. So they cast lots, and the lot fell upon Jonah.

Then said they unto him, Tell us, we pray thee, for whose cause this evil is upon us; What is thine occupation? and whence comest thou? what is thy country? and of what people art thou?

And he said unto them, I am an Hebrew; and I fear the Lord, the God of heaven, which hath made the sea and the dry land.

About bennythomas

I am a Dutch citizen. An architect by profession I am married and have six grandchildren. I am still keen on expressing myself and each day is new and an occasion where I might bring out from within something worthwhile.
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