Saturday, September 15, 2007

The Belly of a whale

This month I am preaching call stories. The first week I preached Moses (full of excuses), last week I did a pulpit swap, so I didn't stick with the theme. This week I am preaching Jonah (the yellow-bellied man who tried again and again to get out of his call). I am only beginning the exegesis but something struck me as I read the Spanish version of the text. 1:17 of the NIV reads "But the Lord provided a great fish to swallow Jonah, and Jonah was inside the fish three days and three nights." But the Spanish NVI reads: "El Senor, por su parte, dispuso un enorme pez para que se tragara a Jonas, quien paso tres dias y tres noches en su vientre." Vientre is the word that struck me. The translations are varied--belly, stomach, and womb. More often than not vientre is used as womb while estomago is used for stomach and panza is used for belly. So I am wondering, what if Jonah was returned to a womb for his disobedience, that when he was expelled 3 days later he was actually reborn...??? Like I said, this train of thought has only just begun, so I may go a little farther and discover it is WAY off course and completely unhelpful. But for the moment I am curious about the implications of the need to be reborn before we will be obedient to God and follow our calling....

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