1) Jesus says in Matt.12:40 – “Jonas was in the whale’s belly…”.
2) then in Jonah 1:17;2:1 it reads – “Now the LORD had prepared a great fish to swallow up Jonah….Then Jonah prayed unto the LORD his God out of the fish’s belly.”
Yet there are those who wish to argue that neither can be true. Of course, in Jonah, “the LORD” said He “prepared a great fish.” So, it is not outside the realm of possibilities that God “prepared” a special “fish” – just to swallow Jonah. Yet, many times it appears God works “with nature” to bring about most miracles.
A WHALE SHARK’s MOUTH is certainly large enough to accommodate several humans. THEN there is one, Mr. James Bartley, who in February 1891 whalers found still alive in a sperm whale they had caught. He had been there around 48 hours, and his skin was bleached white. Yet, there are those who are skeptical of this story. You may read of this documented account (as well as Marshall Jenkins, a similar story) in the link listed at the bottom of this page.
HOWEVER, armed with this information, we can deduce that Jonah’s fame and MISfortune preceded him, THOUGH it would seem that even back then, people were skeptical of such “tales.” What then would God do, in order to add credibility to Jonah’s testimony, in order to bring about a mass conversion experience, as The Book of Jonah relates?
It was a “3 day journey” toward Nineveh. Jonah’s white skin and white hair gave him a ghostly appearance, and he was filled with the Spirit of God. As he walked wearily on, mile after mile, he resembled a beacon of light on approach into that wicked place. The people were affrighted to see such a ghostly “light” approaching their despicable town, filled with the horror stories of their conquests – the skins of their enemies tacked on the walls within their God-forsaken boundaries. It was then that Jonah became the greatest preacher that ever lived. For this most wicked generation of this most wicked nation, realized that this “tale” was true.
Jonah’s life was a mere reflection of the horrors that Jesus endured, Who is our example. THOUGH, as we compare BOTH Christ’s experience and Jonah’s OWN great conversion (as well as that of an entire nation), we may draw some parallels to the future experiences of the 144,000.
IN ORDER to turn Jonah’s skin and hair that white, there had to be some natural bleaching that took place from the animal’s stomach acid. It is said that living tissue is not digested by this acid. Nevertheless, Jonah had gone through a very tough ordeal. This fright would have also caused Jonah’s hair to become stark white (a scientific reality).
This is true in Jesus’ case, as well. The endurance of God’s wrath in the Garden (sweating great drops of blood) two scourgings that would have killed an ordinary man; and His complete separation from God the Father on the cross, in order that His humanity could die. All this caused a shock to His whole system – his hair was no exception.
We see that, after Jesus’ resurrection, He appeared as a ghostly “spirit” to the apostles in Luke 24:37. AND to Mary Magdalene, Jesus was seen (I imagine) as a distinguished elderly white-haired gardener, tending the tombs in John 20:14-16. John the Revelator saw Jesus with the curly “white like wool” hairs of a wooly lamb in Revelation 1:14.
“And in the midst of the seven candlesticks one like unto the Son of man, clothed with a garment down to the foot, and girt about the paps with a golden girdle. His head and his hairs were white like wool, as white as snow; and his eyes were as a flame of fire; And his feet like unto fine brass, as if they burned in a furnace; and his voice as the sound of many waters. And he had in his right hand seven stars: and out of his mouth went a sharp twoedged sword: and his countenance was as the sun shineth in his strength”
Stress may curl your hair. Yet there are other ways curled hair can be the result – if it is either “sheared” off as in Isaiah 53:7, or “plucked off” as in Isaiah 50:6. Cancer victims sometimes have hair grow back curly, after it has fallen out due to radiation poisoning. Once, when I was around 12, my hair was cut real short and it grew back in very curly. Others may tell you that this is the natural tendency of short hair, if it has a little natural curl to begin with.
Now at the beginning we talked of Jonah and the 144,000. The 144,000 will go through a similar experience as Jesus had, except more in line with the situation, character and feel of Jonah.
God tells us that there is another “great whale” out there, that He has prepared for us in Ezekiel 32:2 and Romans 9:17, as well as Revelation 11:8. Like Jonah the 144,000 will need to have a GREAT conversion experience BEFORE we can do a GREATER work than Jesus did (as He told His apostles in John 14:9-16). This work will indeed be similar to Jonah’s work – in that whole towns (and “nations”) will turn to God.
Because we, like Jonah, will appear as a beacon of light. We may not have the bleached skin, but the very hairs on our head will be white, from the most frightful experience of a lifetime. And like Moses, our head will shine bright with the glory of God (Exodus 34). Afterwards, “a GREAT MULTITUDE” will see with their own eyes that our message is sent from God. We will be seen as the “sign of Jonah.”
“After this I beheld, and, lo, a GREAT multitude, which no man could number, of all NATIONS, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands” (Rev.7:9).
SO WHERE IS THIS “WHALE”?
God says that the ruler of this world will be likened to “Pharaoh” of old, that he sits upon many waters as a “whale” of the sea (Ezekiel 32:2). The plagues that are poured out in the LAST DAYS, are similar to those plagues that were poured out in Egypt (compare Rev.16 to Exodus 12). It is sad to say, but we have become likened unto that of “Sodom & Gomorrah,” as Revelation 11:8 points out, and as Jesus warned, Saying: “which is spiritually called Sodom and Egypt.” God allowed the first great “Pharaoh’s” heart to become hardened, as well He will allow the LAST GREAT “Pharaoh’s heart to do the same (see Romans 11).
LAST DAY PLAGUES are similar in kind, to that of Egypt’s plagues before the great Exodus of The Israelites to The Promise Land, filled with “milk and honey.” We are pilgrims looking to that heavenly Promise Land – but first, like The Israelites of Old, we must survive the plagues here on Earth!
Jesus regarded the experience of Jonah as a prophecy of Himself, in several respects. Jesus recounted one of them in Matthew 12:40 – “For as Jonas was three days and three nights in the whale’s belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.”
Jesus was not only buried “in the heart of the earth” he actually began His suffering, as He clung to “the heart of the earth.” That is, in Gethsemane Jesus was pulled down to the Earth by a force stronger than gravity – it is called, the sins of this world.
It was at that moment that Jesus was thrown into the roiling sea of sin. The weight of the world’s sins had thrown Him overboard. The GREAT whale of sin had swallowed Him. His Father allowed it. In reality, by our sin, we are telling Jesus we do not want Him as Lord over our life. In fact, sin is murder dwelling in our deceitful heart (Jer.17:). If we could see, we would see ourselves as pulling Jesus down off His throne.Gethsemane marks the countdown to the FULL “THREE days and THREE nights in the heart of the earth.” Jesus would have died, if it were not for an angel that came to strengthen Him to then take that long road to its very bitter end (Luke 22:43-44).
Yet, the Spirit of Prophecy, points out that prophecies will have a second fulfillment.
HOW IS THAT?
The 144,000 will be swallowed also by a Great “whale” – “Son of man, take up a lamentation for Pharaoh king of Egypt [USA], and say unto him, Thou art like a young lion [Muslim] of the nations, and thou art as a whale [& dragon] in the seas [of sin – the “waters” of “multitudes”]: and thou camest forth with thy rivers, and troubles the waters with thy feet, and fouls their [pure] rivers [where God’s people drink from]” (Ezekiel 32:2).*
“And I saw three unclean spirits like frogs come out of the mouth of the dragon, and out of the mouth of the beast, and out of the mouth of the false prophet. For they are the spirits of devils, working miracles, which go forth unto the kings of the earth and of the whole world, to gather them to the battle of that great day of God Almighty” (Rev.16:13-14)
•“Lion/Muslim” – the prophecies of Revelation 9 refer to the Muslims, as “lions” – having “the teeth of lions” (vs.8) and “the heads of lions;” and that “out of their mouths issued fire and smoke and brimstone” (vs.17). Does 9-11 come to mind?
•“Whale/dragon” – these are attributes attributed to Egyptian rulers, in Ezekiel 29:3; 32:2 – and pointing to the prophecy in Revelation 11:8.
•“Egypt/USA” – then these 2 become associated, because of the prophecy in Revelation 13:11. “Beast” in this prophecy is a reference to a kingdom. The USA began as a young “lamb with 2 horns” because of its Christian ideals of (1)civil liberty and (2)religious liberty. “Speaks” is a reference to a nation’s laws.
•“Seas/waters” – represents a “multitude” that The Roman Church sits upon in Revelation 17:15, who also has “daughters” (other churches) that have sold themselves to her, as would a “harlot,” as John writes in verse 5.
ADD EVERYTHING UP TOGETHER, and you have a three-fold union of “the dragon [Rome controlled by Satan, speaking thru a man/anti-Christ], the beast [USA, in co-operation with Rome, “speaking” thru her laws], the false prophet [apostate Protestantism who points to Rome, as a “spiritual” Christ on Earth, that has taken the place of the real Christ]” (Rev.16:13-14)
LAST DAY PEOPLE have been thrown into a “sea” of sin, engulfed by the turbulent “waters” of “peoples, and multitudes, and nations, and tongues,” that Rome sits upon (Rev.17:15). They will be swallowed up by a great “whale.” The people of God will “wrestle” as did Jacob, over his sin, his circumstance and his sorrow for the wrongs committed (Gen.32:24-32). They will be turned around from their Jonah like rebellion, and finally vomited out on a worldly shore of wicked inhabitants. They will preach the greatest message ever preached to a dying world. Multitudes converted, as they see the evidences of the sign of God in their “white haired” experience, and their faces will shine as the sun, as the truth is poured out upon a dry and thirsty land – then will we see “The Son of man” coming in the clouds of heaven on horses of white hot fire.
Jesus is coming as our victorious “KING OF KINGS” to take us home, that we may finally “rest” a great “rest” in our heavenly abodes (Rev.19:11-16;Isaiah 66:22-24).
1 link for a modern day “Jonah” (click below for more info)
NOTE: another interesting fact, is that archeological evidence reveals that the Assyrians had at some point began to revere a god called Dagon, who was half fish and half man. “Dagon’s” other name was “Joannes” (a transliteration of Jonah). See link below:
2 Hair becoming white from fright
ANOTHER SITE: reason why hair would grow in white (stress is one cause)
3 NOTE: I ended the asterisked sentence with a preposition. The reason is that Latin rules were imposed upon the English Language, and …that was one of many inane rules imposed upon our beautiful and naturally flowing English language.
4 I know a lady who was told, she looked like Moses coming off the Mount. This was after she had attended a 7 day health seminar, where she had been anointed by the Holy Spirit for a special work (unbeknownst to anyone in attendance at this seminar, even herself). It has taken nearly 30 years for her to finally discover this fact. So this was not a one time only case with Moses (or just a prophecy pointing to Jesus) – this can be a modern phenomenon.