Hello "Fan" - tasting Passengers,
Whenever there is a rainstorm of some sort, where there is fallen hail, if I am caught in it outside, then I personally quickly run for cover because of its impending danger. In Joshua 10 we are given the description of a hailstorm which characterized the battle of Beth-horon. This battle is often referred to as “the day the sun stood still.” The battle is a strategic one for the program of conquest under God's servant Joshua. Jericho had fallen, Ai was subdued, and now the south west part of Canaan was next on the route of casting out the squatters and Israel taking possession of the Promised Land. The Gibeonites, realizing that their territory was in imminent danger from the highly successful invaders, sought and succeeded in making a treaty with Joshua (Josh.9:1-15).
As a result of the Gibeonites treaty with Joshua and the Israelites, the other Canaanite cities in the area—Jerusalem, Hebron, Jarmuth, Lachish, and Eglon—thought of Gibeon’s action as that of a traitor. Therefore, the kings planned to attack Gibeon, which is today called el-Jib. The Gibeonites immediately appealed to the obligations of the treaty saying to Joshua, “...Slack not thy hand from thy servants; come up to us quickly, and save us, and help us: for all the kings of the Amorites that dwell in the mountains are gathered together against us" (Josh.10:6).
Subsequently, Joshua came upon them (i.e., Gibeon’s attackers) suddenly, having marched up all night from Gilgal. Scripture tells us how the Lord threw them into a panic before Israel, who slew them with a great slaughter at Gibeon, and chased them by the way of the ascent of Beth-horon, and smote them as far as Azekah and Makkedah. In addition, as they fled before Israel, while they were going down the ascent of Beth-horon, Scripture describes a scene where, “...the Lord cast down great stones from heaven upon them unto Azekah, and they died: they were more which died with hailstones than they whom the children of Israel slew with the sword" (Josh.10:11).
What are hailstones?
Hail is comprised of frozen raindrops. They are often much larger than any single raindrop, sometimes reaching three or four inches in diameter and a pound or more in weight. It usually falls in the spring or summer during severe thunder storms, when raindrops are carried upward by rising air currents and freeze in the cooling air. When the hailstones fall, they often cohere, forming solid masses, which can do great damage to crops and even endanger life.
Hail as used in Scripture
Hail is often mentioned in the Bible, and always as an instrument of God’s judgment, when He fights on behalf of His redeemed (Isa.28:2, 17. It is sometimes used as a symbol of God's anger (Ezek.38:22; Hag.2:17; Rev.8:7; 11:19; 16:21). For example, a severe hailstorm was the seventh plague in Egypt (Exod.9:13-34). It probably occurred at the beginning of February, when the flax was in bloom and the barley in the ear (Exod.9;31
The hailstones that God miraculously cast down from heaven upon the enemy were real. Note their: 1) source, God; 2) size, large; 3) slaughter, more by stones than by sword; 4) selectivity, only on the enemy; 5) swath, “as far as Azekah” (Josh.10:11). In this battle, God defended His people; while simultaneously, defeating and embarrassing the enemy before Israel.
In conclusion, the big question is the following: Can God cast great hailstones on His and your enemies today (Psa.17:8; Eph.6:12). The answer lies in this. While God is faithful and He promises to repay them that hate Him, we must leave all vengeance to Him (Deut.7:9-10; 32:35; Rom.12:19). Scripture says, Therefore, no matter what method He chooses, God will avenge you of your adversary (Psa.18:47). Finally, the Bible tells us that God promise to deliver His anointed and his seed forevermore from the striving of the people. Therefore, David best sums it up when he testified saying, "Great deliverance giveth he to his king; and sheweth mercy to his anointed, to David, and to his seed for evermore (Psa.18:50).
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