New American Bible (Revised Edition)
Jonah’s Prayer. 1 But the Lord sent a great fish to swallow Jonah, and he remained in the belly of the fish three days and three nights.(A) 2 Jonah prayed to the Lord, his God, from the belly of the fish:
3 [a]Out of my distress I called to the Lord,
and he answered me;
From the womb of Sheol[b] I cried for help,
and you heard my voice.(B)
4 You cast me into the deep, into the heart of the sea,
and the flood enveloped me;
All your breakers and your billows
passed over me.(C)
5 Then I said, “I am banished from your sight!
How will I again look upon your holy temple?”(D)
6 The waters surged around me up to my neck;
the deep enveloped me;
seaweed wrapped around my head.(E)
7 I went down to the roots of the mountains;
to the land whose bars closed behind me forever,
But you brought my life up from the pit,
O Lord, my God.(F)
8 When I became faint,
I remembered the Lord;
My prayer came to you
in your holy temple.(G)
9 Those who worship worthless idols
abandon their hope for mercy.(H)
10 But I, with thankful voice,
will sacrifice to you;
What I have vowed I will pay:
deliverance is from the Lord.(I)
11 Then the Lord commanded the fish to vomit Jonah upon dry land.
- 2:3–10 These verses, which may have originally been an independent composition, are a typical example of a song of thanksgiving, a common psalm genre (e.g., Ps 116; Is 38:9–20). Such a song is relevant here, since Jonah has not drowned, and the imagery of vv. 4, 6 is appropriate.
- 2:3 Sheol: cf. note on Ps 6:6.