Wednesday, April 1, 2015


Jonah and the Whale by Pieter Lastman
April Fools' Day.

   Posting a story on April Fools' Day is a tradition at the Cortland Contrarian. This year a typical fish story was presented to the staff for consideration. After reading it, the editor asked if the story was better than Jonah and the Whale. A period of silence was followed by a general and lively discussion by staff. The editor and staff came to the conclusion that Jonah and the Whale was the best fish story ever written, though it was actually a story about mammals and was not associated with the traditions of April Fools' Day.
   The Cortland Contrarian decided to cancel the proposed fish story and to post the story of Jonah and the Whale for our readers.

The Story of Jonah
Jonah Chapter 1: 1

14 Wherefore they cried unto the LORD, and said, We beseech thee, O LORD, we beseech thee, let us not perish for this man's life, and lay not upon us innocent blood: for thou, O LORD, hast done as it pleased thee.
From inside the fish Jonah prayed to the Lord his God.
He said:
“In my distress I called to the Lord, and he answered me. From deep in the realm of the dead I called for help, and you listened to my cry.
You hurled me into the depths,  into the very heart of the seas, and the currents swirled about me; all your waves and breakers swept over me.
I said, ‘I have been banished from your sight; yet I will look again toward your holy temple.’
The engulfing waters threatened me, the deep surrounded me; seaweed was wrapped around my head.
To the roots of the mountains I sank down; the earth beneath barred me in forever. But you, Lord my God, brought my life up from the pit.
“When my life was ebbing away, I remembered you, Lord, and my prayer rose to you, to your holy temple.
“Those who cling to worthless idols turn away from God’s love for them.
But I, with shouts of grateful praise, will sacrifice to you. What I have vowed I will make good. I will say, ‘Salvation comes from the Lord.’”
10 And the Lord commanded the fish, and it vomited Jonah onto dry land.


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