My “Chapter a Day” reading schedule has me in the New Testament book of John these days. As I work my way through this book, prayerfully asking the Lord to give me eyes to see and ears to hear what he has for me, I’ve been struck by the number of times the word “believe” appears in one form or another. My unofficial count has the word believe appearing over 80 times in the book of John alone. Clearly, our believing in Jesus and what he says, did, does, and will do is at the heart of biblical faith.
My reading schedule also has me in the Old Testament book of Joshua. As I read this morning, I was struck by Joshua 10:12-13. In the ESV this reads:
At that time Joshua spoke to the Lord in the day when the Lord gave the Amorites over to the sons of Israel, and he said in the sight of Israel, “Sun, stand still at Gibeon, and moon, in the Valley of Aijalon.” And the sun stood still, and the moon stopped, until the nation took vengeance on their enemies.
Think about that for a moment. This verse clearly states that in answer to Joshua’s request in the midst of battle, God caused the sun to stand still in the sky. This raises an important question. That is, do you believe that this actually took place?
In discussing with his disciples how difficult it is for wealthy people to enter heaven, Jesus made a remarkable statement in Mark 10:27. He said:
With man it is impossible, but not with God. For all things are possible with God.
If all things are possible with God as Jesus taught, could God have caused the Sun to stand still as recorded in the book of Joshua? For those who believe this to be true, this realization should be nothing less than life-changing.
If God could cause the sun to stand still in the sky, what could he not do? What could God not do in your life and in my life? Recalling how many times Jesus encouraged us to believe in him, his words, and in Scripture in general, it’s amazing to think what God can do in our lives as we trust in him, live our lives based on God’s word, and seek him in prayer.
Joshua was facing an important battle and cried out to God. As we do the same in our life battles, the same God who answered Joshua is listening to and ready to work in our lives. He may not cause the sun to stand still at our request, yet that does not mean that he cannot do so. God’s will is played out in each Christ follower’s life in different ways. Even if God’s work in our lives is not as spectacular as it has been for others, God knows what we need and when we need it.
Let’s follow Jesus’ encouragement to believe and to trust God. And let’s base that trust on God’s revealed word, the Bible, as opposed to the latest ecumenical doctrines or the latest religious fads of the day. Let’s read God’s word, live our lives based on how he guides us through his word, and trust God to work in the ways that bring him glory.
The next time life brings challenges our way, let’s recall that one day in history God actually caused the sun to stand still in the sky in order to help those who trusted in him. Let’s remember that nothing is impossible for God!