|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
1:8-12 Jonah gave an account of his religion, for that was his business. We may hope that he told with sorrow and shame, justifying God, condemning himself, and explaining to the mariners what a great God Jehovah is. They said to him, Why hast thou done this? If thou fearest the God that made the sea and the dry land, why wast thou such a fool as to think thou couldst flee from his presence? If the professors of religion do wrong, they will hear it from those who make no such profession. When sin has raised a storm, and laid us under the tokens of God's displeasure, we must consider what is to be done to the sin that raised the storm. Jonah uses the language of true penitents, who desire that none but themselves may fare the worse for their sins and follies. Jonah sees this to be the punishment of his iniquity, he accepts it, and justifies God in it. When conscience is awakened, and a storm raised, nothing will turn it into a calm but parting with the sin that caused the disturbance. Parting with our money will not pacify the conscience, the Jonah must be thrown overboard.
Verses 11-16. - § 3. On hearing. Jonah's confession, the sailors appeal to him, as a worshipper of Jehovah, to tell them what to do to him that the storm may cease. He bids them cast him into the sea, which, after some demur and after renewed efforts to escape, they proceed to do. Upon this the storm immediately abates. Verse 11. - What shall we do unto thee? They recognize that the tempest was sent as a judgment on account of Jonah's sin; at the same time, believing him to be a prophet of Jehovah, under whose wrath they were suffering, they ask his advice in this emergency; if it was a crime to receive him, what shall they do to him to expiate the offence and to appease the anger of God? That the sea may be calm unto us; literally, may be silent from upon us, so as no longer to bear down upon us (comp. Mark 4:39). Wrought, and was tempestuous; literally, was going and was tempestuous; Septuagint, Ἐπορεύετο καὶ ἐξήγειρε μᾶλλον κλύδωνα, "The sea was moving and lifting the surge still more;" Vulgate, ibat et intumescebat. That is, according to the Hebrew idiom, "grew more and more tempestuous" (comp. Exodus 19:19; Proverbs 4:18).
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
Then said they unto him, what shall we do unto thee,.... Though, both by the lot and his own confession, they knew he was the guilty person; for whose sake this storm was; yet were unwilling to do anything to him without his will and consent, his counsel and advice; perceiving that he was a prophet of the God of the Hebrews, whom he had offended, and knew the mind and will of his God, and the nature of his offence against him, and what only would appease him they desire him to tell what they ought to do; fearing that, though they had found out the man, they should make a mistake in their manner of dealing with him, and so continue the distress they were in, or increase it; their great concern being to be rid of the storm:
that the sea may be calm unto us? or "silent" (h)? for the waves thereof made a hideous roaring, and lifted up themselves so high, as was terrible to behold; and dashed with such vehemence against the ship, as threatened it every moment with destruction:
(for the sea wrought, and was tempestuous); or, "it went and swelled" (i); it was agitated to and fro, and was in a great ferment, and grew more and more stormy and tempestuous. Jonah's confession of his sin, and true repentance for it, were not sufficient; more must be one to appease an angry God; and what that was the sailors desired to know. These words are inserted in a parenthesis with us, as if put by the writer of the book, pointing out the reason of the men's request; but, according to Kimchi: they are their own words, giving a reason why they were so pressing upon him to know what they should do with him, "seeing the sea was going and stormy" (k); or more and more stormy; which seems right.
(h) "ut sileat", Pagninus, Vatablus, Mercerus, Drusius; "et silebit", Montanus; "ut conticeseat", Junius & Tremellius, Piscator, Burkius. (i) "ibat et intumescebat", Pagninus, Vatablus, Drusius. (k) "Vadeus et turbinans", Montanus; "magis ac magis procellosum erat", Junius & Tremellius, Piscator; "inhorrescebat", Cocceius.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
11. What shall we do unto thee?—They ask this, as Jonah himself must best know how his God is to be appeased. "We would gladly save thee, if we can do so, and yet be saved ourselves" (Jon 1:13, 14).
Jonah 1:11 Parallel Commentaries
Jonah 1:11 NIV
Jonah 1:11 NLT
Jonah 1:11 ESV
Jonah 1:11 NASB
Jonah 1:11 KJV
Bible Hub: Online Parallel Bible