Monday, November 4, 2019

GOD does not sin: Jonah Chapter 3

Similar to my last post the following problem is found in the 3rd chapter of Jonah. I am blaming the Greek translators for this one, because it fits with their ridiculous idea that GOD is capricious.

Here we have the king of Nineveh's decree to his wicked city, their repentance, and GOD's reaction.

King James Jonah Chapter 3: 9-10

Who can tell if God will turn and repent,

and turn away from his fierce anger,
that we perish not?

And God saw their works 

that they turned from their evil way
and God repented the evil, 
that he had said he would do unto them;
and he did it not.

The repentance of Nineveh brings about the repentance of God?

I do not think so.

Joseph Smith Translation, Jonah Chapter 3:9-10

Who can tell if we will repent,

and turn unto God,
but he will turn away from us his fierce anger,
that we perish not?

And God saw their works

that they turned from their evil way and repented;
and God turned away the evil 
that he said he would bring upon them.

Even if Jonah was not excited by this result, the hosts of Heaven were.

Jonah (eventually) did his job, but at the end of the book he still has work to do.
Jonah is like the older brother in the parable of the prodigal son. His heart has not been broken and his spirit is obviously not contrite.

He was sinning less than the people of Nineveh, so he arrogantly thought that  they should be destroyed because they were sinning more. We all need to get rid of this idea that there is some magic cut-off line for those heading to hell, and that we are somehow on the good side of that line. Instead it might be better to think we are all on a spectrum of progress, and there are many people ahead of us, and a few behind us.

In the book of Jonah, GOD stays his hand against one of the most violent cities in world history, so He is probably not going to take out your annoying neighbor. Forgive your neighbor, and you will be forgiven, and you can hopefully both avoid Hell. There is no quota on the number of saved beings.