Rev. Julia L. Brown
I've also been looking forward to reading this book because of its author. Jared Byas is a co-host of the podcast "The Bible For Normal People," on which he and Pete Enns (one my favorite Biblical scholars!) explore the library of ancient texts in a way that helps normal people - those of us who aren't super smart and don't have time to dive all the way into the depths of biblical studies - understand what our Bible actually is and how it works. They manage to do that with a good amount of humor, too!
So, if you're not into hefty academic biblical studies, but want to know more about this ever-so-human prophet and the whale he supposedly lived in for three days, I can recommend this book! Here is Amazon's summary:
Jonah’s encounter with a big fish is one of the most widely recognized—and misunderstood—stories in the Bible. In this highly accessible guide to the book of Jonah, Jared Byas invites modern-day readers to explore the context behind the story, and consider the questions Jonah’s early audience faced: questions about the relationship between justice and mercy, what it means to be a worshipper of Yahweh (and who gets to be one), and what happens when God doesn’t act how we would like.
Through explorations of genre, language, history, themes and theology, Byas skillfully guides us on a journey with Jonah into the depths of the unknown . . . and finds many of these questions are still relevant today.
Let me know your thoughts!
- Pastor J