The story of Jonah is a favorite one for kids of all ages, but it can be especially fun for younger children. I hope you enjoy these Jonah and the whale free printables and have so much fun introducing this beloved classic bible story to your little one.
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Traditional Retelling of the Classic Biblical Story
Jonah was a prophet. God asked him to deliver a message to the the people of Nineveh. God wanted Jonah to tell them to repent from their sins and stop living in their wicked ways.
The people of Nineveh were enemies of Jonah’s people the Jews.
Jonah didn’t want to give them God’s warning because he knew that if they did repent, God would forgive them and spare them from the punishment he was planing for them.
He thought they deserved to be punished, so instead of doing what God told him to do, Jonah decided to run away and go in the opposite direction of Nineveh.
He boarded a ship bound for Tarshish.
Once at sea the Lord sent a great wind with a violent storm and everyone on board the ship was afraid they were going to sink. The sailors cried to their own god’s for help, and tossed overboard all the extra cargo to lighten the ship.
While all of this was going on, Jonah was asleep below deck.
The captain of the ship went and woke him up and said, “How can you sleep? Get up and call on your God! Maybe he will have mercy and save us!
All the sailors drew straws to see if they could figure out who’s sins had caused this misfortune on them.
When Jonah picked the short straw, he confessed to them he had disobeyed God and was running away from Him. He told them the ship would be saved if they threw him overboard.
The sailors didn’t want to do that to Jonah but the sea grew more and more wild, to the point where they were terrified, so they did as Jonah told them to do.
Jonah In The Belly of a Whale
They prayed for forgiveness from God for throwing Jonah into the sea. As soon as they threw him overboard the storm stopped and the sea was calm again.
God then sent a great big fish to swallow Jonah, and Jonah stayed in the belly of the fish for three days and three nights.
While he was in the belly of a fish Jonah prayed and asked for forgiveness.
“I cried unto the Lord and He heard me. I cried for help and He listened to my cry.” -Jonah 2:2
God forgave Jonah and made the fish spit him up unto dry land. He then headed towards the city of Nineveh to deliver the message from the Lord.
The grand finale of the Jonah bible story is that the people of Nineveh repented from their evil ways and asked God for forgiveness.
God in his great mercy and love, forgave the people of Nineveh just like Jonah knew He would.
Bible Lessons In The Jonah and the Whale Story
There’s a few lessons we can teach our young children and older kids from this story. Actually the lessons in this story apply to people of all ages!
One is the importance of obedience. It’s important for children to obey their parents, and for parents to obey God.
“Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. Honor your father and mother which is the first commandment with a promise -so that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth.” –Ephesians 6:1-3
Lesson two. No one can ever run away from God or hide from God. God is everywhere.
“Where shall I go from your spirit? Or where shall I flee form your presence? If I ascend to heaven, you are there! If I make my bed in sheol, you are there! If I take the wings of the morning and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea, even there your hand shall lead me, and your right hand shall hold me.” –Psalm 139:7-10
Number three. God gives everyone who asks for forgiveness a second chance.
“If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” -1 John 1:9
Lesson four. God is loving and merciful. He doesn’t want anyone to parish, but to have everlasting life.
“Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope: Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for His compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.” -Lamentations 3:21-23
You can find more Bible verses and the complete bible story in the book of Jonah in the Bible
Jonah and The Whale Free Printables
Whale Coloring Pages
Related: 8 Simple Toddler Must Haves
Coloring pages are such a fun way to teach bible stories to little ones. Print the whale printables on blue paper for an extra fun touch!
Pictures Of Jonah
Bonus Pages To Add To Your Printable Pack
Again, feel free to use these Jonah and the whale free printables at home or at church when teaching a Jonah lesson. Just enter your email in the form above and check your inbox for printing instructions.
More Jonah and the Whale Fun Activities
1. Sing a Song
Here’s a cute song about Jonah. Sing it to the tune of I’m a little teapot.
Jonah ran from God to get away.
He didn’t want to hear what God had to say.
He climbed aboard a boat and sailed to sea.
He told the Lord to let him be.
God said to Janah, “not so fast.”
My time with you has not yet passed.
The Lord sent a storm and rocked the boat.
Jonah fell into the sea and tried to float.
A fish swam by and swallowed the man.
Jonah prayed, “Lord, I’m sorry I ran”
God forgave Jonah after three days.
Jonah thanked God and was on his way.
I wish I could give credit to whoever wrote this cute little song, but I couldn’t find the author.
2. Watch a Movie
Jonah -a VeggieTales Movie is a great one for younger kids, although the whole family will enjoy it. It tells the story of Jonah’s big fish adventure with the classic VeggieTales characters.
3. Go to the aquarium
If you are lucky enough to live near an aquarium that has BIG FISH or maybe even whales, make a field trip out of it. Pack a lunch and go learn about whales and other large fish.
4. Make crafts
Gather supplies like paper plates, child safe scissors, popsicle sticks, glue, crayons, washable non-toxic paints and make a whale craft or a wooden Jonah. Just do a quick Pinterest search to get a few great ideas for crafts.
5. Read the Jonah and the Whale Bible Story Together
Take out your children’s Bible and read the entire Jonah story out loud. Or head to your local library and pick out some fun books about Jonah or about whales, or both!
If you’re on the hunt for a good children’s Bible with beautiful illustrations, here are my favorites. Some of these I own or friends of mine own and love.
- The Jesus Story Book Bible: Every Story Whispers His Name
- The Complete Illustrated Children’s Bible
- Baby’s First Bible Stories