Strong + Courageous: Sun Stand Still

Feb 20, 2023

We’re continuing on with Part 3 our February 2023 series, Strong + Courageous, where we're discovering what it means to live by faith, lead with strength, and lean on God in every situation.

In his message, Sun Stand Still, Pastor Eric shares an encouraging word with us as we study Scriptures from Joshua chapter 10. We are reminded that, with God, nothing is impossible (Luke 18:27) and we are discovering practical ways to live ‘Sun Stand Still’ lives, just like Joshua did in the Old Testament. 

In the first two weeks of Strong + Courageous (Into Faith We Go and Promise Lands + Problem Lands) we followed Joshua as he began his faith adventure to lead the Israelite nation into the long-awaited Promise Lands following the death of Moses. This week, we’re picking up right where we left off last week in the book of Joshua and diving into an incredible story where we see Joshua align His will to God’s and miraculous events happen because of his integrity, his faith, and his audacity in prayer. 

Sun Stand Still

As we jump into chapter 10 of Joshua, we learn about the 5 kings of the Amorites who were not a fan of Joshua and all that he and the Israelites were accomplishing in the land of Canaan. These kings were afraid and intimidated, so they made a plan to rally together and fight the Israelites and make an attack against God. The Scriptures we’re studying pick up in the middle of this massive battle where we see Joshua pray a bold prayer that requires monumental strength and courage: 

Joshua 10:7-14 (NIV) 7 So Joshua marched up from Gilgal with his entire army, including all the best fighting men. 8 The Lord said to Joshua, “Do not be afraid of them; I have given them into your hand. Not one of them will be able to withstand you.” 9 After an all-night march from Gilgal, Joshua took them by surprise. 10 The Lord threw them into confusion before Israel, so Joshua and the Israelites defeated them completely at Gibeon. Israel pursued them along the road going up to Beth Horon and cut them down all the way to Azekah and Makkedah. 

11 As they fled before Israel on the road down from Beth Horon to Azekah, the Lord hurled large hailstones down on them, and more of them died from the hail than were killed by the swords of the Israelites. 12 On the day the Lord gave the Amorites over to Israel, Joshua said to the Lord in the presence of Israel: “Sun, stand still over Gibeon, and you, moon, over the Valley of Aijalon.'' 13  So the sun stood still, and the moon stopped, till the nation avenged itself on its enemies, as it is written in the Book of Jashar. The sun stopped in the middle of the sky and delayed going down about a full day. 14 There has never been a day like it before or since, a day when the Lord listened to a human being. Surely the Lord was fighting for Israel!

Joshua acted on a word from God that promised he would have success (Joshua 10:8) and in the middle of this battle, Joshua realizes that he’s not only fighting the Amarites, he’s also fighting daylight. He’s running out of time to win this battle today! In Joshua 10:13-14, we see God move in a miraculous way. Does it make sense to us? No. Did Joshua pray an audacious prayer that God actively responded to? Yes!

We have a lesson to learn from Joshua: We cannot settle for a faith that makes sense to our human thinking. We cannot try and cram God into a box that fits our compartmentalized understanding of reality. We must choose to be strong and courageous and ask God to do the impossible! If we keep a ‘Sun Stand Still’ type of spirit within us, we too, like Joshua, can contend for the miraculous. When we believe for more, for miracles, for God’s almighty hand to work in our lives, we can change the world and help bring Jesus back. 

God wants all of us to live a life that is marked not by hearing of God doing the impossible in someone else’s world, but by God doing the impossible in our own lives. God wants us to live a life that dares to believe differently–to believe God to see the miraculous. This is the life that we're contending for! God is stirring a hunger and a passion within us here and now. Amen! 

So how do we actually live a Sun Stand Still kind of life? How do we apply this teaching to our day-to-day, during our work week, at home with our families, managing the pressures of everyday life? We find the answers in Joshua’s story where we discover 3 simple, practical ways to embody a daily ‘Sun Stand Still’ lifestyle. 

1. Live From Integrity

In order for us to understand what takes place in Joshua chapter 10, we need the context of what first took place in Joshua chapter 9. Pastor Eric gives us all the details about Israel and Gideon about 15 minutes into Sun Stand Still, but the takeaway is that the leaders of Gibbeon proposed a treaty with Joshua and Joshua agrees without first seeking the counsel of God. Unfortunately, we soon discover that the treaty was a hoax, the Israelites were lied to about Gibbeon’s good intentions, and now Joshua has made a covenant, a promise to protect the people who are traitors with an intention to manipulate and deceive the Israelite nation. 

Soon thereafter, we see Gibbeon fall under attack by the 5 kings of the Amorites that we learned about earlier. Instead of taking the easy way out and allowing the lying, deceiving city of Gibbeon (that Joshua never should have been in covenant with to begin with) to be captured and attacked, Joshua honors his word, lives from integrity, and comes to their defense as promised. 

Long before Joshua prayed his audacious prayer for the sun to stand still in the sky and long before he entered this battle defending Gibbeon against the Amorites, Joshua mad a decision to live from integrity. Integrity is the framework for a move of God. We see throughout God’s word the importance of integrity as we walk out our faith adventures.

Psalm 15:4 (NKJV) He who swears to his own hurt and does not change.

Integrity is defined as the quality of being honest and having strong moral principles that you refuse to change. Integrity is living with conviction. It’s about doing what is right when no one is watching and remaining true to our word even when it’s inconvenient or may cause us harm. Integrity is about choosing to live rightly and be trustworthy in all of our decisions and pursuits. 

Proverbs 10:9 (NKJV) He who walks with integrity walks securely, but he who perverts his ways will become known.

Proverbs 11:3 (NKJV) The integrity of the upright will guide them, but the perversity of the unfaithful will destroy them.

God has called us to live lives by being people in our world who live with integrity. Integrity is required if we’re going to see and sustain a move of God. Integrity is about being the same people in our private lives as we are in our public lives. It’s about choosing to do what’s right over what’s easy. Joshua shows us the importance of living with integrity. 

1 Peter 2:12 (NIV) Live such good lives among the pagans that, though they accuse you of doing wrong, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day he visits us.

“Integrity is the glue that holds our way of life together. What our young people want to see in their elders is integrity, honesty, truthfulness, and faith. What they hate most of all is hypocrisy and phoniness . . . Let them see us doing what we would like them to do.” - Billy Graham


We know that part of living with integrity means doing what’s right when no one else is looking. Share a time when that was difficult for you to do and the result you noticed from choosing God’s way over the way of the world. 

Think about someone you look up to, admire, or respect. How do you see integrity carried out in their lives?

2. Walk By Faith

As we know, the Gibbeonites came to Joshua and asked for help when the Amorites planned to attack them. Joshua, a man of integrity, knows that he should help them and respond. But before he does that, Joshua seeks the Lord and gets a word from God. Joshua knew that before he walked, he must first hear the voice of God and then move out by faith. 

Joshua 10:8 (NIV) The Lord said to Joshua, “Do not be afraid of them; I have given them into your hand. Not one of them will be able to withstand you.”

Remember, in chapter 9, Joshua had a moment with the Gibbeonites where he did not consult the Lord and instead of moving out by faith, he moved out by on his own opinion and ability to read the situation. In response, he found himself in trouble. Thankfully, Joshua is a quick learner! Just one chapter later, we see Joshua align his plans with God’s plans before ever entering battle with the Amorites. We see Joshua pause, listen to how God would have him act, and when he gets God’s word, Joshua acts according to the Lord’s plan. 

The way of the world is to walk by what we can conceptualize, what we can prove through data and facts and science. The way of Jesus is so different! As followers of Christ, we are called to live from positions of faith, to walk by faith, and go where God directs us. Amen! 

It’s easy for us to compartmentalize faith to only being necessary or needed when we’re in crisis. When we get sick or a family member is hurting or we’re facing a problem–it’s then that we start seeking God’s word and choosing to walk by faith. 

Faith is intended to play out in a holistic nature for our whole lives. As followers of Jesus, we are called not just to walk by faith on occasion, but to walk by faith every single day. We are called to live lives that are marked by God’s word to us and let our actions follow. This is the way Joshua lived!

Romans 1:17 (NKJV) The just shall live by faith.

2 Corinthians 5:7 (NKJV) For we walk by faith, not by sight.

To walk by faith means that we take God at His word, regardless of what we may see, feel, or comprehend. We hold on to our belief in God and His Word as more true than our experiences and we are active, moving forward based on faith. We can chronicle our lives based on what God speaks to us! We don’t move unless He tells us to go and when He tells us to go, we move immediately. 

Hebrews 11:1 (NKJV) Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.

Faith is. That means faith is present tense. It is a belief not based on our feelings or emotions but actually finds its substance in God’s word. Walking by faith is not always easy but if we are to live “sun stand still lives” then we must learn to do so everyday. How do we walk by faith? 



  • Romans 10:17, Faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.
  • Hearing the word initiates our faith. 



  • 2 Corinthians 4:13, And since we have the same spirit of faith, according to what is written, “I believed and therefore I spoke,” we also believe and therefore speak


  • Speaking the word activates our faith.


  • James 2:26, Faith without actions is dead.
  • Doing the word demonstrates our faith.


How would you describe faith to a small child? 

What does walking by faith look like in real life? How do we see faith play out in our daily activities? 

What challenges will we face in this world as believers who walk by faith?

3. Pray With Audacity

We’ve now reached the pinnacle moment of Joshua’s story where he stands up before all of Israel in the middle of this massive battle with the Amorites and he prays, “Sun stand still!” (Joshua 10:12). We see Joshua put his faith and his reputation and his life on the line and prays, out loud in front of his entire nation, a bold and audacious prayer. Joshua chose not to limit his prayers to the size of his understanding. He wanted to show the nation of Israel that when believers pray with audacity, God responds. 

We’re not to pray with cockiness or arrogance, but with a willingness to contend for our God to do good and big things in our lives. God loves it when we pray for the impossible! We see this truth in Luke 11:

Luke 11:5-9 (NIV) 5 Then Jesus said to them, “Suppose you have a friend, and you go to him at midnight and say, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves of bread; 6 a friend of mine on a journey has come to me, and I have no food to offer him.’ 7 And suppose the one inside answers, ‘Don’t bother me. The door is already locked, and my children and I are in bed. I can’t get up and give you anything.’ 8 I tell you, even though he will not get up and give you the bread because of friendship, yet because of your shameless audacity he will surely get up and give you as much as you need. 9 “So I say to you: Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.

God loves it when we come before Him with boldness and shameless audacity and ask Him to move according to His word in our lives. We too often place limits on God and our prayers that He never asked us to limit! God has given us great and many promises. But if we’re not careful due to the fear of disappointment or a lack of understanding of our identity in Christ, it’s easy for us to put a guard or a limit or a lid over our prayer life to only pray for that which we can conceive or imagine God actually being able to do. 

When we pray, God wants us to ask Him to do the impossible because he loves doing the impossible! Praying audacious prayers is not about manipulating God to our own fleshly desires or trying to make God do what we want. Praying with audacity is about taking God at His word and then removing the limitations of our experiences, our feelings, our fears, and asking God to move anyway!

Luke 18:27 (NIV) What is impossible with man is possible with God.


Have you ever wanted to make an audacious prayer but stopped yourself? What held you back? 

We know that when we do things God’s way we get God’s results. We are encouraged in Luke 11:5-9 to pray God’s way, with boldness. How can you pray with audacity today? 

When you have prayed with audacity, what incredible things have you seen God do in your lives and the lives of others?



Thank you Lord for giving us your Word that is living and active, sharper than a double-edged sword cutting to our soul. Thank you for the story of Joshua and for using his story to speak to us and encourage us to live boldly for you as we journey through our faith adventure. Please give us the strength and courage to continue pursuing you and living with integrity, walking by faith, and praying with audacity. Father, we love you. It’s in Jesus’ mighty name we pray, Amen!



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