Self-government? or a ticket to Tarshish?

In the Old Testament story, as soon as Jonah was told by God to travel to Nineveh, he went down to the coast and took passage on the next ship to Tarshish. Tarshish was in the opposite direction from Nineveh. Why did Jonah turn his back on government by God?

Did fear prompt Jonah's disobedience? Was he afraid to carry God's message calling for repentance to the great city of Nineveh? Evidently there was another factor. Jonah said later he had suspected from the first that God might show mercy on the Ninevites and reverse his (Jonah's) prophecy of destruction. Pride as much as fear may have tempted Jonah to head for Tarshish.

Destroying destructiveness
April 11, 1983

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