Ancient Paths Title

Stand at the crossroads and look, ask for the ancient paths, ask where the good way is, and walk in it.  —Jeremiah 6:16


Messenger: Jonah
Focus: The People of Nineveh
Time Period: 786–746 BC

Jonah declaring God's judgment



Assyria was a great but evil empire and is Israel's most dreaded enemy. The Assyrians flaunted their power before God and the world through numerous acts of heartless cruelty. God commanded Jonah to tell the inhabitants of the great Assyrian city, Nineveh, that He was going to judge the land and destroy the city because of their evil ways and violence. Jonah prophesied destruction would come to Nineveh in 40 days.


The people of Nineveh believed the prophecy of Jonah. They declared a fast, and all of them, from the greatest to the least, put on sackcloth. Even the king himself fasted. The gentile king made a legal decree calling for national repentance and commanding everyone to urgently call on the Lord.


God then had compassion on the Ninevites, and did not bring the destruction He had threatened.

“So the people of Nineveh believed God, proclaimed a fast, and put on sackcloth, from the greatest to the least of them . . . . Then God saw their works, that they turned from their evil way; and God relented from the disaster that He had said He would bring upon them, and He did not do it.” —Jonah 3:5, 10