On the day the Lord gave the Israelites victory over the Amorites, Joshua prayed to the Lord in front of all the people of Israel. He said,
“Let the sun stand still over Gibeon,
and the moon over the valley of Aijalon.”
So the sun stood still and the moon stayed in place until the nation of Israel had defeated its enemies.
Is this event not recorded in The Book of Jashar? The sun stayed in the middle of the sky, and it did not set as on a normal day. There has never been a day like this one before or since, when the Lord answered such a prayer.
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I’ve heard people scoff at this account, as if the God who created the world with a spoken word and made a man from nothing but dust couldn’t also control the moon and sun He thought up and cast into the sky (which He also thought up). I think some people are bent on making God little.
Maybe their skepticism comes from the fact that we’ve never seen a repeat of this incident. But just because it hasn’t happened again doesn’t mean it never happened at all.
Must every act be repeated in order to be valid? No. I think of the different ways Jesus healed the blind: with the touch of His hand (Matthew 9 and Luke 18), using mud (John 9), and with just a word (Mark 10). Each of those healings was real, and their uniqueness does not negate their reality.
So it doesn’t rattle me that this incident has never been repeated. After all, the scripture itself states that. But it’s very difficult to find any kind of consensus for an explanation.
Some say the words are simply poetic. Other say that dozens of culture have parallel stories in their oral history about either an extraordinary long day or long night, depending on where that culture was on the globe when this happened. It is true that the Chinese, Egyptian, Hindu and Native American oral histories all include a long day/night. Some say that you can trace those stories back to the 15th century B.C., when this occurred in Joshua. Others say that although the stories exist in those cultures, the times are off. I’ve heard that NASA discovered a glitch in the solar system that pointed to a missing day I’ve heard that no such thing happened at NASA. One theory is that the sun didn’t stop altogether, it just slowed down a bunch.
I have my own conclusion: God said it, so I believe it. And I don’t have to know the hows or whys right now. It’s the same attitude I take toward the parting of the Red Sea, the voice of God coming out of a burning bush, Noah’s Ark, the presence of the Nephilim, the Resurrection and the Rapture. I don’t have to have photo evidence or a blueprint. it’s enough for me that God recorded it in His Word.
The Bible tells us that, “For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face; now I know in part, but then I will know fully just as I also have been fully known” (1 Corinthians 13:12).
I love the New Living Translation’s version of this:
”Now we see things imperfectly, like puzzling reflections in a mirror, but then we will see everything with perfect clarity. All that I know now is partial and incomplete, but then I will know everything completely, just as God now knows me completely.”
There are just some things we are not going to know this side of heaven. And I’m perfectly okay with that, because whatever puzzles me now will be seen with perfect clarity there.