You absolutely cannot read the Bible without at least some tolerance for that fact that it’s pretty wacky. We know this. The world got flooded and 2 of every animal species fit on a boat, after all. But none are more bizarre than the Bible tales that revolve around fish. To a skeptic, fishy indeed. To a believer, simply miraculous. To everybody - pretty darn unusual, to say the least. Here are the two most unbelievable fishy tales in the Bible.
Let’s talk about Jonah
Yes, let’s. Most of us spend our lives trying to be good Christians and praying that God will use us in some profound way, and Jonah gets the weighty call to prophesy to a nation and literally runs away. Now, there are so many bizarre moments in this tale it’s hard to know where to start. First of all, Jonah is a prophet yet he isn’t bright enough to realize he cannot run away from God. Odd. Then the Lord sends a massive storm to the ship he’s run away on, and Jonah sleeps through it. You’d think you’d be a bit jumpy, what with being a new fugitive on the run from an omnipotent Creator. Nope. Relaxed as a baby, sleeping through a storm. The other sailors do the obvious thing and cast lots to see who is to blame for the storm. Which implies two things. One, it’s understood that angry god’s cause storms. Two, disobedient people make god’s angry. So, this is just me, but if I were going to blatantly disobey God, I’m pretty sure I would not run away to sea. Oh, Jonah. Not logical, friend. On the bright side, Jonah admits to the crew that it’s his fault, and tells them to throw him overboard. At least he takes responsibility for his actions. Which is about when he gets swallowed by a whale and lives for three days and three nights in its belly. And yes, when he gets out, he’s more than happy to prophesy to the nation after all.
We're in the new testament, and Peter is getting hassled by the authorities about whether or not Jesus pays the temple tax. Jesus makes his point to Peter “from who do you think the kings of the earth collect the tax, from their own children or from others?” but decides he doesn’t want to cause offense. Which is interesting, because Jesus wasn’t afraid of causing offense in the least. In this instance though, he decides to keep everybody happy. So here is the solution - he tells Peter to go down to the shore, catch a fish and take the coin out of his mouth. The fish will pay the taxes for two. And he says it like it’s the most normal thing in the world. And Peter goes and does it like it’s the most normal thing in the world. But it’s not. It’s fishy. Just as well we love the miraculous!