Prophet Jonah (Yunus in Arabic) peace be upon him was a Prophet of God who was sent to call out to his people to worship the One and Only God, obey God’s commandments, and to stop their evil doing. His people mocked Prophet Jonah, were stubborn, and rejected his Message, and persisted in their disbelief and wrongdoing. After many attempts to convey the Message of God to his people, Prophet Yunus got frustrated and angry at his people for not believing in his Message from God. Prophet Jonah peace be upon him warned them that punishment was to come to them in three days and then he left his people without the instructions or permission of God.
After Prophet Jonah left his people, a storm came to be from a distance, and his people got together and started to realize what Prophet Jonah was warning them about was starting to become true and that they were going to get destroyed like the previous nations if they did not believe and follow God’s Message. So, they believed in the Message and abandoned their idols. Allah, the Glorious, guided their hearts. They realized their mistakes and asked God for forgiveness. Because of this Allah, the Most-Merciful, spared them from their punishment.
Prophet Jonah peace be upon, not knowing his people finally believed in his Message, boarded a ship. The ship then got caught up in a storm that shook the ship. The people in the ship realized that they would drown if they did not empty the ship and lighten the load, so they threw out their belongings into the Ocean. But that was not enough, the ship kept shaking. Then they realized they needed someone in the ship to jump out so that the rest of the people would survive and not drown.
So, the people in the ship decided to draw lots and whosever’s name is drawn would have to jump off the ship to make the ship lighter. Prophet Jonah peace be upon was drawn, but the people decided to try again because he looked like a righteous man and they wanted someone else to jump. So, they drew lots, again and again, but all three times Prophet Jonah was chosen. Prophet Jonah peace be upon him understood this was from God, the Almighty. So, he jumped off the ship.
After Prophet Yunus peace be upon him threw himself into the sea, God caused a big fish to swallow Prophet Jonah without tearing his flesh or breaking his bones. Prophet Jonah realized his mistake of abandoning his people without the permission of God. In three layers of darkness– the depth of the night, in the darkness of the bottom Ocean, in the darkness of the Whale’s belly, Prophet Jonah filled with total despair, turned to Allah, prostrated to Him, and cried out to Him saying ‘There is no deity except You; exalted are You. Indeed, I have been of the wrongdoers’ Prophet Jonah peace be upon him acknowledged that Allah is the only deity worthy of worship, then declared the Greatness of Allah, then admitted his sin, taking responsibility for his actions. Then, Allah, the Glorious released him by having the Whale spit him out on the shore.
Prophet Yunus was feeling sick and his skin was peeling off from all the acid from being in the Whale’s belly. He was in a land without any trees. God caused a plant to grow and cover Prophet Jonah with its shade to protect him from the wind and heal him. After Prophet Jonah’s health recovered, God commanded him to go back to his people. When he returned, he noticed his people were not harmed and that they submitted to their Lord. Prophet Jonah was content and happy his mission had been accomplished and his people submitted to their Lord.