Ruins of the Great Hazor
By Eva Marie Everson
Reflections of God's Holy Land
The gates of Hazor open wide, embracing us with a dignity neither destruction nor time can ruin. As I step between them, I imagine the number of those who have entered throughout the millennia—those who would rule the world and those who only wanted to be ruled by God.
It is not the stones and relics that draw my attention. It’s not the obvious landscape. Hazor had been the leader of all these kingdoms—with its roads leading to and through it. Nor is it the evidence of the Ages, the rise of one king and then another and another, nor is it the tangible proof of lifetimes brought to their knees.
It is the verdant rolling near the ancient, rising in places, dipping to level ground in others. It is the image. Within this place I see a fierce slave-turned-warrior; I see Joshua, leader of Israel’s army. Servant of Moses, servant of the Most High, Joshua has pushed back his fears and—trusting God—has crossed the Jordan with a nation behind him, defeated the fortified city of Jericho, and watched as its impenetrable walls crumbled. He has witnessed God’s fury over Achan’s disobedience, built an altar and renewed a covenant with the Almighty, then fought in awe as Nature obeyed her Master, holding the sun in place and hurling hailstones upon his enemies.
The central Canaanite cities had bowed to his authority, the southern followed suit, and finally the northern kings, led by Jabin of Hazor, have fallen. And now, with sheer determination etched across his face, he turns back and commands his ragged troops, “As we did before God in Jericho, burn her to the ground!”
The words echo between the hills; they swirl around these ruins of the great Hazor, nearly lost to time and history. They rise up in my heart, and my entire body shivers in anticipation of what I know is near the bottom of this tel.
It is the soot, some say, from Joshua’s fire.
I am given special permission to touch it, to feel its velvet beneath my fingertips. To see with my eyes the evidence of God’s power in a man—in his soul—that is determined to trust the word and direction of El Shaddai.
Be strong and courageous, he said to Joshua.
“Be strong and courageous,” he now says to me. I look up again to the hills and whisper, “I will obey. I will obey."
Printed by permission of Thomas Nelson. For additional information on Thomas Nelson, visit www.thomasnelson.com.
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