Joshua 10:12
Parallel Verses
New American Standard Bible
Then Joshua spoke to the LORD in the day when the LORD delivered up the Amorites before the sons of Israel, and he said in the sight of Israel, "O sun, stand still at Gibeon, And O moon in the valley of Aijalon."

King James Bible
Then spake Joshua to the LORD in the day when the LORD delivered up the Amorites before the children of Israel, and he said in the sight of Israel, Sun, stand thou still upon Gibeon; and thou, Moon, in the valley of Ajalon.

Darby Bible Translation
Then spoke Joshua to Jehovah in the day when Jehovah gave up the Amorites before the children of Israel, and he said in the sight of Israel, Sun, stand still upon Gibeon; And thou, moon, in the valley of Ajalon!

World English Bible
Then Joshua spoke to Yahweh in the day when Yahweh delivered up the Amorites before the children of Israel; and he said in the sight of Israel, "Sun, stand still on Gibeon! You, moon, stop in the valley of Aijalon!"

Young's Literal Translation
Then speaketh Joshua to Jehovah in the day of Jehovah's giving up the Amorites before the sons of Israel, and he saith, before the eyes of Israel, 'Sun -- in Gibeon stand still; and moon -- in the valley of Ajalon;'

Joshua 10:12 Parallel
Commentary
Barnes' Notes on the Bible

These four verses seem to be a fragment or extract taken from some other and independent source and inserted into the thread of the narrative after it had been completed, and inserted most probably by another hand than that of the author of the Book of Joshua.

It is probable that Joshua 10:12 and the first half of Joshua 10:13 alone belong to the Book of Jasher and are poetical, and that the rest of this passage is prose.

The writer of this fragment seems to have understood the words of the ancient song literally, and believed that an astronomical miracle really took place, by which the motion of the heavenly bodies was for some hours suspended. (Compare also Ecclesiasticus 46:4.) So likewise believed the older Jewish authorities generally, the Christian fathers, and many commentators ancient and modern.

It must be allowed, indeed, that some of the objections which have been urged against this view on scientific grounds are easily answered. The interference, if such there were, with the earth's motion was not an act of blind power ab extra and nothing more. The Agent here concerned is omnipotent and omniscient, and could, of course, as well arrest the regular consequences of such a suspension of nature's ordinary working as He could suspend that working itself. It is, however, obvious, that any such stupendous phenomenon would affect the chronological calculations of all races of men over the whole earth and do so in a similarly striking and very intelligible manner. Yet no record of any such perturbation is anywhere to be found, and no marked and unquestionable reference is made to such a miracle by any of the subsequent writers in the Old or New Testament. For reasons like these, many commentators have explained the miracle as merely optical.

The various explanations show how strongly the difficulties which arise out of the passage have been felt. Accordingly, stress has been laid by recent commentators on the admitted fact that the words out of which the difficulty springs are an extract from a poetical book. They must consequently, it is argued, be taken in a popular and poetical, and not in a literal sense. Joshua feared lest the sun should set before the people had fully "avenged themselves of their enemies." In his anxiety he prayed to God, and God hearkened to him. This is boldly and strikingly expressed in the words of the ancient book, which describes Joshua as praying that the day might be prolonged, or, in poetical diction, that the sun might be stayed until the work was done. Similarly, Judges 5:20 and Psalm 18:9-15 are passages which no one construes as describing actual occurrences: they set forth only internal, although most sincere and, in a spiritual sense, real and true convictions. This explanation is now adopted by theologians whose orthodoxy upon the plenary inspiration and authority of holy Scripture is well known and undoubted.

Joshua 10:12

In the sight of Israel - literally, "before the eyes of Israel," i. e. in the sight or presence of Israel, so that the people were witnesses of his words. (Compare Deuteronomy 31:7.)

Sun, stand thou still - literally, as margin, "be silent" (compare Leviticus 10:3); or rather, perhaps, "tarry," as in 1 Samuel 14:9.

Thou, moon - The words addressed to the moon as well as to the sun, indicate that both were visible as Joshua spoke. Below and before him, westward, was the valley of Ajalon; behind him, eastward, were the hills around Gibeon. Some hours had passed, since in the early dawn he had fallen upon the host of the enemy, and the expression "in the midst of heaven" Joshua 10:13 seems to import that it was now drawing toward mid-day, though the moon was still faintly visible in the west. If the time had been near sunset, Joshua would have seen the sun, not, as he did, eastward of him, but westward, sinking in the sea.

The valley of Ajalon - i. e. "the valley of the gazelles." This is the modern Merj Ibn Omeir, described by Robinson, a broad and beautiful valley running in a westerly direction from the mountains toward the great western plain. The ancient name is still preserved in Yalo, a village situated on the hill which skirts the south side of the valley.

Joshua 10:12 Parallel Commentaries

Library
Gibeon. Josh 10:06

John Newton—Olney Hymns

Sign Seekers, and the Enthusiast Reproved.
(Galilee on the Same Day as the Last Section.) ^A Matt. XII. 38-45; ^C Luke XI. 24-36. ^c 29 And when the multitudes were gathering together unto him, ^a 38 Then certain of the scribes and Pharisees answered him, saying, Teacher, we would see a sign from thee. [Having been severely rebuked by Jesus, it is likely that the scribes and Pharisees asked for a sign that they might appear to the multitude more fair-minded and open to conviction than Jesus had represented them to be. Jesus had just wrought
J. W. McGarvey—The Four-Fold Gospel

Cross References
Judges 5:20
"The stars fought from heaven, From their courses they fought against Sisera.

1 Samuel 14:31
They struck among the Philistines that day from Michmash to Aijalon. And the people were very weary.

2 Samuel 2:12
Now Abner the son of Ner, went out from Mahanaim to Gibeon with the servants of Ish-bosheth the son of Saul.

2 Kings 20:11
Isaiah the prophet cried to the LORD, and He brought the shadow on the stairway back ten steps by which it had gone down on the stairway of Ahaz.

Isaiah 28:21
For the LORD will rise up as at Mount Perazim, He will be stirred up as in the valley of Gibeon, To do His task, His unusual task, And to work His work, His extraordinary work.

Isaiah 38:8
"Behold, I will cause the shadow on the stairway, which has gone down with the sun on the stairway of Ahaz, to go back ten steps." So the sun's shadow went back ten steps on the stairway on which it had gone down.

Jeremiah 28:1
Now in the same year, in the beginning of the reign of Zedekiah king of Judah, in the fourth year, in the fifth month, Hananiah the son of Azzur, the prophet, who was from Gibeon, spoke to me in the house of the LORD in the presence of the priests and all the people, saying,

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