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>>Messengers (Prophets)
Yunus A (Jonah)


Yunus A (Jonah) was a Rasul (Messenger) of Allah (God). He was from the town of Nineveh, now in Iraq.

The inhabitants of the town of Nineveh were idol worshippers and indulged in shameful deeds.

Allah (God) sent Yunus A (Jonah) to teach them to live their lives according to the way Allah (God) likes and worship the Sole Creator and Sustainer of the universe. People of Nineveh did not like his preaching and took that as an uninvited intrusion in their private lives and in their way of worship.

They argued with him that how could they be wrong because they and their forefathers have been worshiping these gods for a long time and those gods have taken good care of them.

People of Nineveh made fun of the preaching of Yunus A (Jonah) and completely ignored his calls to come to the straight path. He warned them that if they did not come to the straight path, Allah (God) will punish them severely. They told Yunus A (Jonah) that they were not afraid of his hollow threats and their gods will save them from any torment.

Angry and disappointed, Yunus A (Jonah) left Nineveh, fearing that the anger of Allah (God) would soon descend upon them.  

 

And (remember) Dhan-Nun (Jonah), when he went off in anger, and imagined that We shall not punish him (i.e. the calamites which had befallen him)! But he cried through the darkness (saying): La ilaha illa Anta [none has the right to be worshipped but You (O Allah)], Glorified (and Exalted) are You [above all that (evil) they associate with You]. Truly, I have been of the wrong-doers.

Surah (Chapter) Al-Ambiyyah (The Prophets) The Qur-an 21:87                

 

When Yunus A (Jonah) left Nineveh, sky turned colors as if it was on fire. The people of Nineveh filled with fear by this sight. They remembered the destruction of the people of 'Ad, Thamud and Nuh A (Noah). They thought that they might meet the same fate. In fear, they all gathered on a mountain and asked Allah (God) for forgiveness. They cried their hearts out in sincere remorse and repentance.

Allah (God) forgave them and lifted that dangerous storm. People of Nineveh thanked Allah (God) and prayed for the return of Yunus A (Jonah) so that he could guide them.

In order to get away from his people, Yunus A (Jonah) boarded a small ship to sail away from his native place. They had good sailing all day long in calm waters with sails of the ship getting a helping wind. In the night, the sea suddenly turned hostile. A strong storm began tossing the ship over waves.

The crewmen said that the sea gods had become angry and they needed to be pleased. They threw their merchandize and baggage in the sea, but the storm continued. They decided among themselves that they have some one on board that had brought this calamity on them. They had to remove that person from the ship in order to save every one else.  They made lots with all of the travelers' names according to the traditions of the seamen and the one whose name was drawn would be thrown into the sea to please the gods of the sea.

The lot was drawn and the name of Yunus A (Jonah) was picked up. Crew of the ship knew him to be an honorable man among them; they did not wish to throw him into the angry sea. They decided to draw a second lot. Again the name of Yunus A (Jonah) was drawn. They gave him a final chance and drew a third lot. Unfortunately for Yunus A (Jonah), his name came up again.

Yunus A (Jonah) realized that Allah (God) was doing it to him, because he had abandoned his mission without His consent.

It was decided that Yunus A (Jonah) should be thrown into the dark sea. Yunus A (Jonah) remembered Allah (God) as he was thrown into the raging sea.

A whale that was following the ship swallowed him.

Yunus A (Jonah) could hardly comprehend the situation he was in. He knew that he was alive but he also knew that there was hardly any way out of that ultimate darkness. He begged for the Mercy of Allah (God).

 

And (remember) Dhan-Nun (Jonah), when he went off in anger, and imagined that We shall not punish him (i.e. the calamites which had befallen him)! But he cried through the darkness (saying): La ilaha illa Anta [none has the right to be worshipped but You (O Allah)], Glorified (and Exalted) are You [above all that (evil) they associate with You]. Truly, I have been of the wrong-doers.

Surah (Chapter) Al-Ambiyyah (The Prophets) The Qur-an 21:87

 

Yunus A (Jonah) continued praying to Allah (God). Allah (God) saw the sincere repentance of Yunus A (Jonah) and heard his Dua in the whale's stomach. Allah (God) commanded the whale to surface and to eject Yunus A (Jonah) onto land. The whale swam to the farthest side of the ocean. The whale ejected Yunus A (Jonah) onto a remote peace of land. His skin had burnt because of the acids inside the whale's stomach. He was severely ill, and when the sun rose, its rays burned his body. He could not bear the pain and was screaming due to pain. However, he went on repeating his Dua to Allah (God). Allah (God) caused a vine to grow next to where he was. That wine covered Yunus A (Jonah) completely and provided him shade from the harsh sun. Yunus A (Jonah) praised and thanked Allah (God). Allah (God) forgave Yunus A (Jonah) and made him recover completely. Yunus A (Jonah) is also known as Dhan-Nun (Man of the Fish) because of this incident.

Allah (God) mentions in the Qur-an:

 

 

And, verily, Yunus (Jonah) was one of the Messengers.

 

When he ran to the laden ship,

 

He (agreed to) cast lots, and he was among the losers,

 

Then a (big) fish swallowed him and he had done an act worthy of blame.

 

Had he not been of them who glorify Allah,

 

He would have indeed remained inside its belly (the fish) till the Day of Resurrection.

 

But We cast him forth on the naked shore while he was sick,

 

And We caused a plant of gourd to grow over him.

 

And We sent him to a hundred thousand (people) or even more.

 

And they believed; so We gave them enjoyment for a while.

Surah (Chapter) As-Saffat (Those Ranged in Ranks) The Qur-an 37:139-148

 

Yunus A (Jonah) regained his strength and somehow reached his hometown, Nineveh. He was pleasantly surprised to notice the change in his people. The entire population of Nineveh came to welcome him. They told him that they are now faithful to Allah (God).

 

Allah (God) mentioned in the Holy Qur-an that the people of Yunus A (Jonah) were the luckiest people on the earth that were saved from Allah (God)s torment because of him.


Was there any town (community) that believed (after seeing the punishment), and its Faith (at that moment) saved it (from the punishment)? (The answer is none,) - except the people of Yunus (Jonah); when they believed, We removed from them the torment of disgrace in the life of the (present) world, and permitted them to enjoy for a while.

Surah (Chapter) Yunus (Jonah) Qur-an 10:98

 

Ibn Abbas R narrated: "The Prophet Muhammad S said: 'One should not say I am better than Yunus Ibn Matta.'" (Sahih Bukhari).

 
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