Jonah - Chapter 2

1Hashem provided a huge fish to swallow Yona; and Yona remained in the fish's belly three days and three nights.

אוַיְמַן יְהֹוָה דָּג גָּדוֹל לִבְלֹעַ אֶת־יוֹנָה וַיְהִי יוֹנָה בִּמְעֵי הַדָּג שְׁלֹשָׁה יָמִים וּשְׁלֹשָׁה לֵילוֹת׃

2Yona prayed to Hashem his God from the belly of the fish.

בוַיִּתְפַּלֵּל יוֹנָה אֶל־יְהֹוָה אֱלֹהָיו מִמְּעֵי הַדָּגָה׃

3He said: In my trouble I called to Hashem, And He answered me; From the belly of Sheol I cried out, And You heard my voice.

גוַיֹּאמֶר קָרָאתִי מִצָּרָה לִי אֶל־יְהֹוָה וַיַּעֲנֵנִי מִבֶּטֶן שְׁאוֹל שִׁוַּעְתִּי שָׁמַעְתָּ קוֹלִי׃

4You cast me into the depths, Into the heart of the sea, The floods engulfed me; Al Your breakers and billows Swept over me.

דוַתַּשְׁלִיכֵנִי מְצוּלָה בִּלְבַב יַמִּים וְנָהָר יְסֹבְבֵנִי כָּל־מִשְׁבָּרֶיךָ וְגַלֶּיךָ עָלַי עָבָרוּ׃

5I thought I was driven away Out of Your sight: Would I ever gaze again Upon Your holy Temple?

הוַאֲנִי אָמַרְתִּי נִגְרַשְׁתִּי מִנֶּגֶד עֵינֶיךָ אַךְ אוֹסִיף לְהַבִּיט אֶל־הֵיכַל קָדְשֶׁךָ׃

6The waters closed in over me, The deep engulfed me. Weeds twined around my head.

ואֲפָפוּנִי מַיִם עַד־נֶפֶשׁ תְּהוֹם יְסֹבְבֵנִי סוּף חָבוּשׁ לְרֹאשִׁי׃

7I sank to the base of the mountains; The bars of the earth closed upon me forever. Yet You brought my life up from the pit, Hashem my God!

זלְקִצְבֵי הָרִים יָרַדְתִּי הָאָרֶץ בְּרִחֶיהָ בַעֲדִי לְעוֹלָם וַתַּעַל מִשַּׁחַת חַיַּי יְהֹוָה אֱלֹהָי׃

8When my life was ebbing away, I called Hashem to mind; And my prayer came before You, Into Your holy Temple.

b'-hit-a-TAYF a-LAI naf-SHEE et a-do-NAI za-KHAR-tee va-ta-VO ay-LE-kha t'-fi-la-TEE el hay-KHAL kod-SHE-kha

חבְּהִתְעַטֵּף עָלַי נַפְשִׁי אֶת־יְהֹוָה זָכָרְתִּי וַתָּבוֹא אֵלֶיךָ תְּפִלָּתִי אֶל־הֵיכַל קָדְשֶׁךָ׃

2:8  And my prayer came before You, into Your holy Temple

Such is the heart of a true prophet. Trapped inside the belly of the large fish, with no hope of escape, Yona does not despair. Instead, he pours out his prayer to God. Though he has run away from Hashem and His mission, Yona hopes that he will not only survive, but once again become worthy to stand before God in his Holy Temple in Yerushalayim, to bring offerings and to pray (verse 10). This prayer anticipates the lesson that Hashem later imparts to Yona. Though man may stumble in sin, he can always pick himself up and recover, as it is written, “Seven times the righteous man falls and gets up, while the wicked are tripped by one misfortune” (Proverbs 24:16). Even after our biggest failures, God lovingly awaits our return, if only we have the will to do so.

9They who cling to empty folly Forsake their own welfare,

טמְשַׁמְּרִים הַבְלֵי־שָׁוְא חַסְדָּם יַעֲזֹבוּ׃

10But I, with loud thanksgiving, Will sacrifice to You; What I have vowed I will perform. Deliverance is Hashem's!

יוַאֲנִי בְּקוֹל תּוֹדָה אֶזְבְּחָה־לָּךְ אֲשֶׁר נָדַרְתִּי אֲשַׁלֵּמָה יְשׁוּעָתָה לַיהֹוָה׃

11Hashem commanded the fish, and it spewed Yona out upon dry land.

יאוַיֹּאמֶר יְהֹוָה לַדָּג וַיָּקֵא אֶת־יוֹנָה אֶל־הַיַּבָּשָׁה׃