Photo courtesy of David Sharir

ON THE COVER: The Prophet Jonah sleeps in the bottom of a boat while a storm rages outside in this painting from Israeli artist David Sharir’s Jonah series (see sidebar to “Staging Jonah”). Told by God to denounce the evils of Nineveh, Jonah instead flees by boarding a ship to Tarshish. God raises the storm, threatening the ship; eventually, the crew quells the storm by throwing Jonah into the sea, where he is swallowed by a giant fish. In “Staging Jonah,” author Lance Wilcox considers this and other episodes in the Book of Jonah, which he has also scripted as a play. For Wilcox, Jonah’s story is a moral satire in which a naive, childish and most unprophetlike Jonah confronts the greater power and seriousness of God.