Jonah, the whale, and James Bartley

Discussion in 'Free-For-All Archives' started by carajou, Oct 19, 2003.

  1. carajou

    carajou
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    Jonah was told by God to go to Ninevah and preach His word. Jonah didn't like that order, went the opposite direction, got on a boat, went out to sea. A storm came up, the crew felt jinxed, tossed Jonah over the side...and then that fish came along...

    Allegedly, in a modern-day illustration of Jonah, a New England whaler named James Bartley was part of the crew of the whale ship "Star of the East", (Captain John B. Killam, commanding) about 1891, when his whaleboat was split in two by an enraged whale. One man was killed, and Bartley disappeared, only to turn up inside the stomach of the freshly-killed whale the next day, alive.

    Here's the problem with the Bartley story: it didn't happen. Here's what I think as to why:

    1. The "Star of the East" was not a commercial whaler. It was part of a fleet of Cape Horn windjammers (bulk cargo carriers under acres of sail) which were bought and converted to process and can fish under the San Francisco-based Alaska Packers Association. Out of about twenty vessels, the only survivor is the "Star of India", homeported at this time in San Diego.

    2. A check of the logs for the "Star of the East" reveals no one named Bartley at that time, and no one having lost his life at any time while under Killam's command.

    3. A check of a London hospital where Bartley was alledgedly treated for skin problems caused by the whale's gastric juices reveals no records related to the incident. Since it was a copy of Jonah, Bartley would have been photgraphed. Just a few short years before, Joseph Merrick, the Elephant Man, was photgraphed when his condition caused a sensation in a London hospital.

    4. And since it was a copy of Jonah, it would have caused a sensation in the newspapers of the time around the world. Bartley would have been in demand as a public speaker. Again, it did not happen. In contrast, the sole survivor of the Mt. Pelee eruption of 1902, August Ciparis, a prisoner, burned over 30% of his body, made a living out of the event.

    This is not to say that it didn't happen to Jonah (it did...God has a wonderful way of making someone do what he doesn't want to do!), but to make up modern stories just to illustrate the Bible and say they're true when they're not is something else altogether.
     
  2. MEE

    MEE
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    Jonah ended up inside of a whale? :eek:

    MEE [​IMG]
     
  3. carajou

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    Does it really matter if Jonah was swallowed by a fish or a whale? One species of whale is capable of doing it, as well as several species of fish.

    What matters is that God taught Jonah two lessons: 1) God expects his Word to be preached to everyone, even if it's a people that Jonah despised, and 2) when God gives an order, you better carry it out and not brush him off.
     
  4. BobRyan

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    God said He made "IN SIX days the LORD made the Heavens and the earth and ALL that is in them and rested the seventh day" -- and He REALLY did.

    God sais that He flooded the entire earth - covered the highest mountains with water and destroyed all air breathing life forms on land - except those in the ark - by a world-wide flood. And He really did.

    God said that He appointed a fish to swallow Jonah - and He really did.

    God said that He caused the Messiah to be born of a virgin by divine act of God The Sone of God became The Son of MAN - and He really Did!

    It is that easy!

    In Christ,

    Bob
     
  5. carajou

    carajou
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    Exactly Bob!

    But my point was about the James Bartley story being a non-story, and not about the fish-or-whale problem that some people have in Jonah.

    But I will add this: when Jonah got swallowed, he prayed very mightily for deliverence. If anyone gets in Jonah's position and gets swallowed alive by whatever animal runs or swims on God's planet earth, the last thing he's going to do is to get out an animal book and look up what species he's inside of!
     
  6. trying2understand

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    And when Jesus said, "Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life", He really meant it.

    And when Jesus said of the bread. "This is my Body", He really meant it.

    And when Jesus said, "Whose sins you forgive are forgiven them" He really meant it.

    And yes, it really is that easy. [​IMG]
     
  7. BobRyan

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    And when Jesus said, "Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life", He really meant it.

    And when Jesus said of the bread. "This is my Body", He really meant it.

    And when Jesus said, "Whose sins you forgive are forgiven them" He really meant it.

    And yes, it really is that easy. [​IMG]
    </font>[/QUOTE]And when Christ AFFIRMED the FaithFUL disciples in John 6 that did NOT bite Him - He was "Correct".

    And when the FaithLESS disciples took the RC view of Christ's words in terms of cannibalism and left they were "incorrect".

    And when Christ gave HIS OWN summary "The LITERAL FLESH is WORTHLESS My WORDS are spirit and are life" - He was giving the meaning that the FaithFUL disciples would hear - after the faithLESS ones (who took Him literally) had left.

    And When Christ rebuked the disciples in Matt 16 for taking Him TOO literally with the symbol of bread and leaven - He really was SHOWING them the meaning of the symbols - being the SAME meaning in John 6 --- "teaching" the WORD".

    It really IS that easy.

    In Christ,

    Bob
     
  8. carajou

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    Mee asked "so Jonah ended up inside a whale?"

    I stated earlier that it doesn't really matter...nobody in Jonah's position is going to care who's stomach they're in as long as someone can hear the calls for help! But, in answer to her question...

    (Gen 1:21) And God created great whales, and every living creature that moveth, which the waters brought forth abundantly, after their kind, and every winged fowl after his kind: and God saw that it was good. (KJV)

    The word "whales" in the Hebrew is pronounced "tan-neem" or "tan-neen", and it it used interchangably for whales or sea monsters. Strong's Concordance has this keyed to number 8577, if you need to see the actual Hebrew word.

    (Jon 1:17) Now the LORD had prepared a great fish to swallow up Jonah. And Jonah was in the belly of the fish three days and three nights (KJV).

    The Hebrew word for fish is pronounced "dag" or "dagah" (Strong's Heb. 1709). I did see the Greek word "kay-tos" in the LXX (Septuagint), which means "whale" (this was a downloaded version of LXX, so it may be incorrect)

    (Mat 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" (KJV).

    "Kay-tos" is used in this verse, as well as the greek versions of the New Testament (Strong's Grk 2785). The word "cetacea" is based upon it, and is denotes the animal phylum of the whales, dolphins, porpoises.

    The second word is "great", as in the great fish from Jonah 1:17 (Strong's Heb 1419). In the Hebrew, it is pronounced "gaw-dole'", and it literally means "exceeding, mighty, proud" and similar words, so the term "great fish" would have to represent a very large species, if a fish, or one of the whales, assuming that the ancients called whales "great fish".
     
  9. A_Christian

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    The very same "people" who have trouble with the story of Jonah ARE the very same ones who have a problem with the Creation story, the Flood epic, the journey of Moses, etc... They believe only what they see. That might account for the pope.
     
  10. MEE

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