Romans 15 says “For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope.” (v. 4). The book of Jonah was written for us! And this book ends with a question we all ought to ponder.
To His servant who is furious that his comfort has been taken away and his prophesied judgment has not taken place, God makes a statement: “You have been concerned about this plant, though you did not tend it or make it grow. It sprang up overnight and died overnight. And should I not have concern for the great city of Nineveh, in which there are more than a hundred and twenty thousand people who cannot tell their right hand from their left — and also many animals?”
Jonah’s concern was for his comfort. He had no part in planting or assisting that shade plant in growing. None of Jonah’s skills contributed even a little to that comfort-bringing vegetation. The only skill Jonah showed in the book was his (finally) preaching to Nineveh, but his preaching was not out of his great concern for those lost people.
God’s concern was for the great city of Nineveh, a city with over a 120,000 children — and many animals! Why would Jonah not recognize his misplaced concern? Why don’t we? (conclusion)