Jonah Was a Prophet (Minor)

Follows Jonah 4:11 (end of book)


Leland Bryant Ross

Sung by
The Prophet Jonah

’Neath a tree by a river a prophet of God
Cries, “Kill me, so kill me, just kill me!”
Would you say that this prophet’s displeasure was odd?
“Please kill me, Lord, kill me, just kill me!”
He’s been hoping for brimstone to blast them to heck,
But they’ve listened, repented, worn ashes and sack,
And poor Jonah now feels that his life is a wreck:
“Just kill me, yes, kill me, please kill me.”

He beats on his breast as he swears at the skies,
“You Ninny, You Ninny, You Ninny!”
So a worm eats his tree and it withers and dies.
“You Ninny, You Ninny, You Ninny!”
And the Lord from high heaven to Jonah speaks down,
“If you care that this tree once so green is now brown,
Shouldn’t I give a hoot about Nineveh town,
And its people and cattle so many?”

Now I’m sure just as sure as I’m sure that my name
Isn’t Jonah, or Mona, or Guinevere,
That ’twas prejudiced piety made him exclaim
With dismay at the saving of Nineveh.
For the Lord was the sort of compassionate Lord
Who loved mercy and justice, and murder abhorred,
And Who wanted farm implements made from each sword,
And Who gave a rat’s donkey for Nineveh!

Part (following Jonah 4:11) of my "comic worship oratorio" Jonah was a prophet (minor), © 1997 Liland Brajant Ros'

The tune is Tit-Willow (‘On a tree by a river a little tomtit’) by Arthur S. Sullivan, from Gilbert & Sullivan's Mikado.

Posted with MIDI accompaniment on 2000.11.12.

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