Strong and Courageous | Day Eleven
By: Kate Downing
Welcome to our final week together studying what it means to be strong and courageous! As we begin this new week of the study, do you feel like there just aren’t enough hours in the day to get things accomplished? Between school, work, sports, band, friends, family, and the million other things on our schedules, time just isn’t on our side.
Today, we are going to study one of the most incredible stories in all of Scripture! We are going to see that Joshua understood the feeling of needing more hours in the day and how God worked an incredible miracle.
But, before we jump into chapter ten, spend a few minutes praying over these things:
· Thank the Lord for the privilege of studying His Word.
· Ask God to speak to you through Scripture today.
· Let God know why you want to hear from Him today.
Refer back to chapter nine and be reminded of what we studied last. The Gibeonites tricked Joshua into making a treaty with them. This treaty ensured that the people of Israel would not conquer the people of Gibeon.
Read Joshua 10:1-5.
Whew! That had a lot of hard words in it! Don’t let the hard names discourage you; there are some important details in these verses.
How many kings and therefore people groups were in the alliance made in these verses?
Why were these kings afraid (vs. 1-2)?
Read Joshua 10:6-8.
What promise does God make to Joshua in verse eight?
We’ve talked about how being strong and courageous doesn’t mean having great physical strength or unbelievable bravery. Instead, it means trusting God’s strength and courageously obeying His call on our lives. When God made this promise to Joshua, He didn’t explain how He was going to deliver victory, He just promised to do so, and Joshua took God at His word.
Read Joshua 10:9-11.
Um wow! Verse nine in the NIV translation of the Bible says that God “threw them into confusion.” God literally caused these five armies to start fleeing in confusion!
What does verse eleven say God used to defeat many of the enemy armies?
Read Joshua 10:12-14.
Apparently, even after the hail there was still a great amount of work to be done in this battle. In fact, the battle was so overwhelming that Joshua knew his army would need more time to defeat the enemy.
What did Joshua ask for (vs. 12)?
How did God answer (vs. 13)?
Again, um wow! As if all the hailstones weren’t enough to prove the power of God, He literally made the day pause for the length of an entire day! Can you even imagine what that must have been like to stand there for hours and have the sun not move? God so specifically and powerfully answer Joshua’s prayer!
It’s an amazing miracle for sure, but the really amazing part and the part that should speak to us the most is what is praised in verse fourteen.
Read Joshua 10:14 again.
What is listed as the memorable part of this day?
“…the Lord listened to a human being…” - Joshua 10:14
The author doesn’t point out the incredible occurrence of the sun standing still. Instead, he records the even more incredible occurrence of the Almighty God listening to and responding to the request of a lowly human.
Joshua was a great warrior and leader who had spoken with God many times before. However, it’s here in the middle of this amazing story-- directly following Joshua’s lack of obedience to seek God’s wisdom--that God chose to help us understand the significance of His willingness to listen to and act upon the requests of an imperfect human.
God is a big and powerful God able to control even nature. Yet, He also is willing to listen to and act upon the big requests of man. We can ask big things of God because He is able to answer in big ways!
What big thing (the kind of thing that requires faith) do you need to courageously ask of God?
Read Ephesians 3:20 and spend a few minutes asking God to help you trust Him to be a big God! Then courageously make your request to God trusting that if it is to His will, He will answer in the best way!