A man with no arms walks into a church and asked
the priest if he could be the new bell ringer.
The priest said he was unsure if he could hire him,
but would give him a chance.
The man went to the bell tower and started running
into the bells head first to make the most beautiful
sounds the priest had ever heard.
Unfortunately, on his second attempt the man
missed the bell and fell out of the tower and died.
The priest ran outside to the body and asked the
gathering crowd if anyone knew who he was and
they all said no, but his face did ring a bell.
A few minutes later another man walked up and
claimed that the armless man was a dead ringer for
I hope you enjoyed celebrating the resurrection last
Easter is an incredible time of celebration and reflection
of what Christ did on our behalf.
This week we are going to get back to our study of
We will be in chapter 10 this morning.
Let’s take a look at the first 5 verses
The Fear of the Canaanites
Chapter 10 begins by introducing Adoni-zedek,
king of Jerusalem – his name could be translated My Lord
is righteous, but Zedek is a known Canaanite god so the
most likely translation is my lord is (the god) Zedek
He heard that Joshua captured Ai and destroyed it.
He also heard the people of Gibeon had made peace with
He feared greatly – because Gibeon was greater than Ai.
all its men were mighty.
Adoni-zedek sent word to 4 other kings
Hoham – king of Hebron 19 miles S of Jerusalem
Piram – king of Jarmuth 16 miles W of Jerusalem
Japhia – king of Lachish 25 miles SW of Jerusalem
Debir – king of Eglon 7 miles W of Lachish
Each of these cities were within 30 miles of Jerusalem.
Alliance Formed Against Gibeon
Adono-zedek makes an alliance with these other kings,
not because they were friendly with one another, but
because there is strength in numbers.
At least that‘s what he thought.
He requests that they all come join him and fight against
So the 5 kings of the Amorites gathered together and
camped by Gibeon and fought against it. v.5
Gibeon Begs for Help from Israel
Men of Gibeon sent word to Joshua to the camp at Gilgal
saying, do not abandon your servants!
Come quick and help us and save us from all the kings of
the Amorites that live in the hill country have come
Gilgal to Gibeon is around 20 miles and over 3000 feet
higher elevation than Gilgal.
Now would be a good time to recall chapter 9.
You remember how the men from Gibeon came to Joshua
with their worn out sandals, crumbly bread and torn up
clothes pretending to be from a far off country, asking for
peace. They duped Joshua and he made a covenant with
them to not harm them.
We might think that Joshua would have laughed off their
petition for help, but the covenant they made bound
them to come to their aid in times of need.
Joshua went up from Gilgal with his people of war
and valiant warriors
This 19 mile trip would take no less than 8 hours.
God Assures Joshua
He will help them defeat the 5 kings and their armies.
The Lord said to Joshua, “Do not fear them, for I have
given them into your hands; not one of them shall stand
This helps us realize that God is in control of this battle.
It was part of God’s plan and He is leading the way.
Just like the crossing of the Jordan and the victories at
Jericho and Ai.
God Confuses the 5 Armies
ESV – the Lord threw them into a panic
NASB – the Lord Confounded them before Israel
CSB – the Lord threw them into confusion before Israel
Despite the varied translations, the verb used here (Heb.
hāmam) often occurs in descriptions of God’s aid to Israel
in defeating its foes. It often has meteorological elements
to it, like thunder and lightning.
Remember, God is the creator of everything and has
complete control over it all.
Think about Jonah,
God appointed a storm,
He appointed a fish,
He appointed a wind,
He appointed a plant
God is in complete control.
Remember when He caused the men to go blind when
they were trying to get into Lot’s house.
Israel defeated all 5 armies that day.
Some were killed by the sword and some were killed by
hailstones from heaven.
The hailstones from heaven didn’t kill any of the
Israelites. God sent them directly on the 5 armies that
were attacking Gibeon.
More died from hailstones than those who sons of Israel
killed with the sword.
The armies tried retreating, but they were followed by
Israel all the way to Beth-horon and Makkedah.
Joshua Prays the Impossible
Who would have thought to utter a prayer like that?
It takes great faith to ask God for something out of the
ordinary. And it takes great faith to believe that God will
Joshua understood that God was going to give him the
victory over these 5 armies. He asked for more daylight
so they could continue to utterly destroy the people that
were occupying the promised land that God had reserved
God answers Joshua’s Prayer
The Bible doesn’t describe any waiting period. It simply
says the sun stood still and the moon stopped.
3 Reasons for Joshua’s Success.
1.He believed God’s promises – in Joshua 1:5 God
told Joshua no man would be able to stand against
him. And God promised to be with him just like He
was with Moses. God also promised never to leave or
forsake Joshua. In Joshua 10:8 God tells Joshua not
to fear because He has given them into his hands.
2.He used sound strategy – Joshua marched all
night from Gilgal to Gibeon. When they arrived, the
enemy wasn’t expecting it. He took them by
3.He prayed about it – He asked God for the
impossible. He asked for the sun to stand still so
they could finish defeating the 5 armies. He learned
from his mistake of not praying when he lost 36 men
at the first battle at Ai.
Believe God – trust that when He makes a promise He
The Bible is full of promises that He has made to His
children. He loves us, He sent His Son to die for us.
Ask God – He knows what we need – sometimes we don’t
have, because we fail to ask God for it. We should be in
prayer constantly. Don’t be afraid to ask God for the
impossible. For there shall be nothing impossible for God.
Obey God – When God speaks to us – we must be ready
and willing to take the action He calls us to.
Like Isaiah, Here am I, send me.