Many have attempted to explain what happened that day. Some have said that Joshua was just confused, or that this was mere poetic expression, or even that what actually happened was that the sky was cloudy, so it wasn’t as hot. It’s kind of baffling the lengths people will go to sometimes to explain away the miracles of the Bible.
We need to be careful, in our attempts to understand this event, that we don’t say something that the Bible doesn’t say. So understanding that, let me tell you that my faith is a pretty simple faith, and if the Bible says that the sun stood still so the Israelites could complete the victory, then I believe it. My curiosity leads me to read about it and wonder if it happened this way or that way, but in the end, I believe it happened exactly the way the Bible says it did.
Now before you scoff, let me point out to you that perhaps you already believe other things that are just as fantastic: God creating the universe by speaking it into existence; God speaking to Moses from a bush that burned and yet was not consumed; the Red Sea parting so the Israelites could cross over on dry ground; Naaman, healed of leprosy; Mary, giving birth, though she was a virgin; Lazarus, raised from the dead; the blind, seeing; the deaf, hearing; the lame, walking. And if you believe that Jesus was raised from the dead after three days, and if you believe that our sins can be washed away and we can be made clean and whole, you already believe something far more incredible than what we read about in Joshua 10.
And here’s why: God is certainly able to do what He wants with the universe He spoke into existence. Our own knowledge is too limited for us to say with certainty that He could not make the earth stop in its rotation. Both day and night belong to Him, as we read in Psalm 74:16-17, “The day is yours, and yours also the night; you established the sun and moon. It was you who set all the boundaries of the earth; you made both summer and winter.” So why could He not command them? We read in Genesis that God commanded the sun and moon to shine, and even when—if we truly believe that, why would we be tripped up when we read in Joshua 10 that God commanded them not to move?