The DAY the Sun and Moon Stood Still

BLOGGING FOR GOD BIBLE STUDY FOR THE WEEK:

JOSHUA 10:8-14

GOD CREATED TIME…

Yes, He did and will someday end it and in Heaven time will be no more.  In the meanwhile, we shouldn’t be surprised at the fact that God can stop time if He so desires.  Sometimes I wish we could do that and often we wish we could speed things up.  Especially when we are younger.

Historical Background.

The children of Israel are being led by General Joshua, taking over the land of Canaan and that ‘take-over’ includes modern-day Israel.  They were taking over the land one city at a time.  They had already taken Jericho and then they went up against Ai.

There was SIN in the camp and Achen was the culprit.  God brought that to light…Israel was made right with Him…and they took the city of Ai.

The King of Jerusalem heard about these conquests:

[v. 1-2] – HE WAS SCARED!

[1] Now Adoni-Zedek king of Jerusalem heard that Joshua had taken Ai and totally destroyed it, doing to Ai and its king as he had done to Jericho and its king and that the people of Gibeon had made a treaty of peace with Israel and were living near them.  [2] He and his people were very much alarmed at this, because Gibeon was an important city, like one of the royal cities; it was larger than Ai, and all its men were good fighters.

 A league of nations is formed.

[3] So Adoni-Zedek king of Jerusalem appealed to Hoham king of Hebron, Piram king of Jarmuth, Japhia king of Lachish and Debir king of Eglon.  

[4] “Come up and help me attack Gibeon,” he said, “because it has made peace with Joshua and the Israelites.”  [5] Then the five kings of the Amorites–the kings of Jerusalem, Hebron, Jarmuth, Lachish, and Eglon–joined forces.  They moved up with all their troops and took up positions against Gibeon and attacked it.

[6] The Gibeonites then sent word to Joshua in the camp of Gilgal:  “Do not abandon your servants.  Come up to us quickly and save us!  Help us, because all the Amorite kings from the hill country have joined forces against us.”

These 5 kings get together saying, “United We Stand, Divided We Fall”.

But what they’re about to find out…United They Fall.

You simply can’t fight against God.

Men have always tried to pool their efforts, tried to kill Him, and you just can’t.  That idea made me think of the lyrics to a song from the 70’s from Bill and Gloria Gaither and Ron Huff cantata, Alleluia!  I was thinking of God Gave The Song.

The Song came through a manger…men tried to ignore it…it doesn’t exist…change the tune.  They made laws against it, armies marched against it.  They fought against it, tried to drown it out…the yelled at it and finally they nailed that Song to a tree.  

There, that should take care of it.  

BIT IT DIDN’T.

The children of Israel heard about this union that was formed, and they along with the Gibeonites…surprised an attack on them.

[v. 9-11] – The FIVE Kings and Their Mighty Army Retreat.

[9] So Joshua came upon them suddenly, having gone up from Gilgal all night.  [10] And the LORD caused [the enemies] to panic before Israel, who slew them with a great slaughter at Gibeon and chased them along the way that goes up to Beth-horon and smote them as far as Azekah and Makkedah.

[11] As they fled before Israel, while they were descending [the pass] to Beth-horon, the LORD cast great stones from heaven on them as far as Azekah, killing them.  More died because of the hailstones than the Israelites slew with the sword.

The FIVE kings and their armies run and run until they come to a narrow pass.  Joshua has them right where he wants them.  He realizes that he must utterly destroy this enemy, else they return and haunt him later.  ISRAEL was told to finish the job, not halfway.

But Joshua has a problem.  There isn’t enough TIME to finish the job.

PRAYER IN TIME OF NEED!

So JOSHUA PRAYS in fervency for more DAYLIGHT and to finish what he started.

Look at this incredible PRAYER OF FAITH.

[12-13] – Time Stands Froze and the Earth Experienced An Extra Day.

Skeptics of Bible Events…

For years, skeptics have made fun of this account in the Bible:  “Hogwash, that never happened, it couldn’t happen.  It’s just folklore…a fairytale.”

They say everyone knows it’s not the SUN that moves…our planet revolves and rotates giving that impression!  THAT’S TRUE, but JOSHUA here is simply using language that we all do.  After all, can you imagine him saying,  “Earth stop revolving and rotating, thus making it appear that the sun isn’t setting?”

JOSHUA 10:12-13

The important thing here is not HOW God did it, but THAT He did it!

THE ‘COULD HAVE’S’…

HE COULD HAVE used light refraction to do it…

HE COULD HAVE stopped the motion of the entire universe…

HE COULD HAVE caused the sun to move in the opposite direction if He wanted to.

More skeptics say, if something like this actually happened back in the day, there would be a MAJOR historical occurrence.  You’d think we’d have some mention of it in the annals of history, other than just the Bible.

The FACTS are, WE DO!

Most every ancient culture that can be studied has a record of this extra-long DAY,  just like most of them gave a record of a worldwide flood.  Here’s some research I found this past week:

Records of the Chinese during the reign of Emperor Yeo, who lived in Joshua’s day, report the strange occurrence of an extra long day.  Also, Herodotus, a Greek historian, mentions an extra long day recorded by the Egyptians during the same period of time.  Others cite records of the Aztecs in Mexico saying the sun standing still, denoted as 7 Rabbits.  The same year that other historical records show Joshua defeating the Philistines and conquering Palestine.  Other cultures: Incas of Peru, Babylonians, Greeks, Persians, Polynesians.  Some refer to the SUN standing still; others call it an extra long day/night. [See footnote [i].]

Why do you suppose?  (The SUN doesn’t shine everywhere at once!)

HISTORY says this happened.

Some may say, I just can’t believe the Bible, it goes against the laws of NATURE.  In order to have a LAW, you need two things:

  • Someone powerful enough to create the LAW.
  • Someone powerful enough to enforce the LAW.

OK, I’ll stick my neck out and say that God IS powerful enough!  He’s the CREATOR by the way!!

Can’t a clockmaker stop his time piece if he wants to?

God doesn’t OBEY the laws of nature; the LAWS of nature obey God!

So History says it happened…

Here’s some personal application:

  1. The RELIABILITY of God’s Word.
  2. The RELIABILITY of God’s Care.

VERSE 14:  “For the Lord fought for Israel.”

You may be thinking, I wish He would fight for me.  I’ve got battles of my own.  I wish I could get Him on my side!

Hey, you don’t “get” Him on your side, you get on His side.  He’ll fight your battles if you let Him.

I’ve been reading in JOSHUA for some time and remember particularly Joshua 5.  Joshua was sizing up the city of Jericho when he came upon an unusual character, the pre-incarnate Jesus Christ.

The man had a sword drawn and Joshua asked, Are you on our side, or their side?  The man answered, “No”,  Basically he was saying I’ve not come to take sides…I’ve come to take over.

God then gives them (us) a visual aid in Joshua 10:22-25. the picture of their feet on their necks.

[24] “Come here and put your feet on the necks of these kings.”  So they came forward and placed their feet on their necks.  [25] Joshua said to them,  “Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.  Be strong and courageous.  This is what the LORD will do to ALL the enemies you are going to fight.”

God says, remember this. This is what I’ll do for you who are on My side.

SATAN is a defeated foe.

I’m not saying that all your battles are instigated by the devil.  I’m saying that Satan is a defeated foe and he knows it.  He just hopes we won’t find out! He’s a bully!

Yes, Christians have problems like everyone else…maybe more! [family/financial/emotional/spiritual life.] 

If getting SAVED is the end to problems then it has to be front end loaded.

The MESSAGE is that “Christianity isn’t the subtraction of problems, it’s the addition of POWER resulting in the multiplication of BLESSINGS” (Quote from Jerry Shirley).  And that’s all the more reason to avoid the division that Satan wants to bring between us and God/us and each other.

VERSE 14:  There was no day like it before or since when the Lord heeded the voice of a man.  (AMP)

One of these days, the SUN will set in our own lives for the last time.  Jesus said in John 9:4,  “As long as it is day, we must do the work of Him who sent me.  Night is coming, when no one can work”  (NIV).   

We wish at times that we could make time stand still, but it stops for no one but God.

Let’s get serious about making the most of our time BEFORE time runs out!

God IS the Source!

The Source of Time…the Source of the Song in our lives, Jesus Christ!

Make it count!!

 

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CREDITS & FOOTNOTES –

Footnote [i]:  THE MISSING DAY IN HISTORY – Space Explorers, Inc.

Music/Video:  Sandi Patty God Gave the Song Alleluia – YouTube

Photos:  Google Image Search – Settings, Advanced search.

Bible Translations Used:  Amplified Bible (AMP) and the New International Version (NIV).

 

 

 

Are You SEARCHIN’ FOR DIRECTION IN YOUR LIFE?

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SEARCHING FOR DIRECTION IN LIFE?

One of my favorite singers of the past, was the late Dusty Springfield along with Dionne Warwick: Wishin’ and Hopin’ and Thinkin’ and Prayin‘. What was the lyricist “prayin'” for?  To find, search for LOVE, perhaps in all the wrong places?  Perhaps, but in doing so, frustration must have set in to the “thinkin”.

My search for some answers, begins with finding and knowing God’s will in my life; the search for direction–thus, the question presented in the title for this weeks BLOG.  Not in your life necessarily, but in mine.  Hopefully. in reading this post, you will find and know God’s will more clearly in your life too!

“Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed–not only in my presence, but how much more in my absence–continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling,  for it is God who works in you to will and to act according to His good purpose”  (Philippians 2:12-13 NIV Bible).

DOING GOD’S WILL WITH A SMILE –

Before doing God’s will…we need to know before the “doing”, “HOW DO I KNOW WHAT GOD’S WILL IS in any given situation of my life?”

The answer I found, isn’t really complicated.  There are steps in the process like everything else in life.

We live in a “I want it now society”, and patience in knowing, is not a virtue of ours.  Yeah, we might know the words found in Galatians 5:22-23 (“THE FRUIT OF THE SPIRIT”)…love, joy, peace, PATIENCE, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control…but living with them, applying Holy Spirit’s gifts…that’s not something most of us seek on a daily basis.  I’m not saying we shouldn’t…just, most of us don’t!

FINDING THE ANSWERS IN THE RIGHT PLACES:

How can we find the WILL OF GOD for our lives?  If we don’t follow God’s will for us, we will pay a heavy price in facing the negative consequences.

GOD wants to know His will for your life–

If you’re NOT a believer in Jesus Christ, NOT placed in a saving faith in Him, you’re out of the will of God!  He desires that ALL come to repentance, faith, and to be born-again.

GOD’S WORD:

Psalm 40:8:  “To do your will, O my God, is my desire; your law is within my heart.”

“LAW” (or His Word) = WILL OF GOD.

Example:  We know through reading the Word of God that marrying an unbeliever is NOT God’s will for our lives (2 Corinthians 6:14-15).  God tells us in His Word, ‘Don’t get the cart before the horse’ in new relationships in dating.  Your desires may just precede God’s desire in your life.  And that’s not His will.

THE FIRST and PRIMARY WAY of knowing God’s will for your life…

You are unsure in making an important decision in your family; changing jobs, changing locations because of your job, financial commitments, and you don’t know where to find the answers in your Bible.

If you don’t know where to find your particular circumstance in God’s Word, and don’t have a BIBLE CONCORDANCE, invest in one.  SEARCH for it in God’s Word.  IMPATIENCE might just lead you in the wrong direction.

 1.  God wants us to be WHOLE and NOT SICK…

[2] And behold, a leper came up to Him (JESUS) and, prostrating himself, worshiped Him, saying, “Lord, if You are willing, You are able to cleanse me by curing me.    [3] And He reached out His hand and touched him, saying,  “I am willing; be cleansed by being cured.  And instantly his leprosy was cured and cleansed  (Matthew 8:2-3 AMP).

2.  Knowing God’s Will for us is Not to be Poor and in Debt…

More than Enough!
More than Enough!

God wants us to have enough so our needs are met and we give to others in return.

“The rich rule over the poor, and the borrower is the servant to the lender”  (Proverbs 22:7).

God’s Word also tells us, to those who might be struggling making ends meet in this economy, one reason why He sent His Son into this world:

[JESUS speaking] …I came that they may have and enjoy life, and have it in abundance (to the full, till it overflows)”  (John 10:10 AMP).

The “overflow” is much more than “just enough”!

3.   GOD doesn’t want us to be DEPRESSED:

HIS WILL for us is to be happy (to “enjoy life”), full of joy!  (Philippians 4:4)

“REJOICE in the Lord always; again I say, Rejoice!”

THE NEW ROGET’S THESAURUS, definesDEPRESSION” – dishearten, dejection, lowness, worthlessness.  

If you are feeling in a state of constant depression right now…it’s NOT God’s will for your life!

The general will of God is clearly specified in the Word of God for us.  But just knowing where to find thee TRUTH and not claiming and receiving God’s will for our life is another.

So, how can we know the specifics, the details of GOD’S WILL?  Our Bible doesn’t tell us which job to take, doesn’t tell us who to marry, even if we are following God’s will.  E.g., disciples in the boat–“Let us go over to the other side.”

4.  Through the PEACE OF GOD:

“Let the PEACE OF CHRIST rule in your hearts, since members of one body, you were called to peace.  And be thankful”  (Colossians 3:15 NIV).

“RULE” =  “BRABEUO” (Greek word)  [Footnote [i] ].

This verb is found only in this verse and expresses the underlying sense of “having the role of greatest influence.”  The Amplified Bible says PEACE, [“acts as umpire continually”.]

Just as every sport that has disputes, they must be settled by the officials, the PEACE OF GOD as the umpire, settling all disputes as to what the will of God is for our lives.

THE PEACE OF GOD is always “umpiring” in our hearts, but we don’t always pay attention to it.  Sometimes, we even go against the PEACE of God in our hearts.

As you sit in the presence of God, be still, take a “time out”, consider all the options, discerning the will of God by the PEACE given to your heart (Psalm 46:10).

5.  DISCERNING correctly what the Lord is trying to tell us–

Lining the Lights Up…

Aligning Things Up!
Aligning Things Up!

There was a certain harbor that was treacherous and dangerous to enter.  In order for the captain to guide his ship safely into the harbor, he had to be attentive to three lights used to guide him.  When all three lights lined up as one, he knew it was safe to proceed.  Then, and only then, would he bring his ship safely to port.

As we seek GUIDANCE, we too have to be attentive to “THREE LIGHTS”…to guide us into the harbor of His will:

~ The WORD of God,

~  Our outward circumstances,

~  Our inner conviction.

When all three of these Lights line up, we can then proceed with assurance, of being led safely into the harbor.

6.  God’s Will Revealed Through the Word of Knowledge and Prophecy:

“To one is given in and through the [Holy] Spirit [the power to speak] a message of wisdom, and to another [the power to express] a word of knowledge and understanding according to the same [Holy] Spirit”  (1 Corinthians 12:8 AMP).

“…to another prophetic insight (the gift of interpreting the divine will and purpose); to another the ability to discern and distinguish between [the utterances of true] spirits [and false ones]”  (1 Corinthians 12:10).

WE HAVE TO BE CAREFUL with this!  Whatever is being revealed should be tested and consistent with the Word of God.  We shouldn’t take others words blindly, but we ourselves should test what the other person has said in respect to what God says (His will) from His Word (Scripture).

God does speak through audible voices sometimes (friends and family).  We have to DISCERN whether we’re listening to God’s voice, or someone elses.

Good intentions…

If we are receiving a word of knowledge or prophecy from a person, we should know and make sure that particular person that’s speaking to our issue is living a godly life too.

But it is possible for some true servants of God to NOT LISTEN to the Lord correctly.  In that case, they should tell you clearly they are not sure.

PROPHECY is not fortune-telling.  We’ve got to be careful of this.

“What should we DO to know God’s will for our life?”

Romans 12:1-2 KJV:

[Verse 1]  “I BESEECH you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your responsible service.

[Verse 2]  “And be not conformed to this world; but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.”

This “renewing” is not a  one time experience, but a daily reminder in every decision and circumstance we face in our lives.  In order TO KNOW GOD’S WILL, we need to…

OFFER OUR BODY (who your are in your spirit–our whole being) as a LIVING SACRIFICE, living holy lives.

KING DAVID came upon the scene of a threshing floor of a Jebusite by the name of Araunah as commanded by the Lord.  When Araunah saw the king coming, he went out and bowed himself down before the king.

Araunah said, “Why has my lord the king come to his servant?”  And David said, “To purchase the threshing floor from you; to build there an altar to the Lord.”

What Araunah did next seemed to me a honoring gesture as he offered the king everything he had for the altar of sacrifice–of worship and praise.

But David refused the offer in saying to Araunah,  “I will not offer burnt offerings to the LORD my GOD of that which cost me nothing.” (2 Samuel 24:24).

“What’s that particular story have to do with knowing God’s Will for my life?  There is never an offering, a sacrifice of worship, praise or anything else that doesn’t cost you something.  After paying the price, according to God’s Will in the circumstances, David made the offering.  He knew God’s will in this matter because of the Word of his LORD GOD.

The RESULTS OF KNOWING and APPLYING THE STEPS:  

So the Lord heeded the prayers for the land, and Israel’s plague was stayed.”  (verse 25).

PHILIPPIANS 2:13:

“for it is God who works in you to will and to act according to His good purpose.”

GOD gives us the DESIRE to do His will and…He also enables us to do His will.

ILLUSTRATION:

A young man entered his church one Sunday morning where he started praying before the service began.  He was so anxious to find God’s will for his life that he took out a piece of paper he kept in his bible, writing down all the things he was going to do for God.

He started to PRAY that God might revel to him whether these promises were acceptable to Him.

God whispered in his ear, “This is not the way I want you to find My will.  All I want of you is for you to sign your name and leave the paper blank for Me to fill in.”

 

 

Footnotes:

[i]  Expository Dictionary of Bible Words.

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