[On a mainling list this came in...] From: ... Subject: Bible Accounts for Missing Day!! This is an e-mail my wife received two years ago. It concerns a missing day in time discovered and related by Harold Hill, President of Curtis Engine Company in Baltimore Maryland, and a consultant in the space program. Mr. H. Hill stated that he thought one of the most amazing things God has for us today happened to our astronauts and space scientists at Green Belt, Maryland. They were trying to determine the position of the sun, moon, and planets 100 and 1000 years from now. In order to do this they had to plot the orbits through past centuries. They ran the computer measurements back and forth over the centuries and suddenly it came to a halt. The computer signaled that there was something wrong either in the information fed into it or with the results compared with the standards. They called in the computer service department to check it out and found nothing technically wrong. The computer still came up with the same discrepancy.... a day was missing in space and elapsed time. The scientists were dumbfounded. There was no answer. One of the team remembered a reference to the sun standing still in the Bible. Upon checking, they found in the book of Joshua a pretty "ridiculous" statement for anybody who has "common sense." According to Scripture, Joshua was concerned because he was surrounded by the enemy and if darkness fell, they would overpower him; so Joshua asked the Lord to make the sun stand still: "So the sun stood still in the midst of heaven, and hasted not to go down about a whole day." (Joshua 10:13) There was the missing day!!! They checked the computer going back to the time it was written and found it was close, but not close enough. The elapsed time that was missing in Joshua's day was 23 hours and 20 minutes.... not a whole day. They again read the passage and there it said, "about (approximately) a whole day." This did not account for the other missing 40 minutes. The 40 minutes had to be found because in projecting space orbits, the error would be multiplied over and over. Again, the man remembered somewhere in the Bible that it said the sun went backwards. In II Kings, chapter 20, Hezekiah, on his death bed was visited by the prophet Isaiah who told him that he was not going to die. Hezekiah did not believe him and asked for a sign as proof. Isaiah said, "...shall the shadow go forward ten degrees or go back ten degrees?" Hezekiah replied, "It is a light thing for the shadow to go down ten degrees; nay, but let the shadow return backward ten degrees." (II Kings 20:9-10) Ten degrees is exactly 20 minutes. So, to bring the shadow back ten degrees then return the shadow back to it's original position through it's natural motion is 40 minutes!! Twenty-three hours and twenty minutes for Joshua, plus forty minutes in II Kings makes the missing twenty four hours the scientists had to log in their log book as being the missing day in the universe!!
And there are various newsgroup postings on this issue:
From: firstname.lastname@example.org (John Dale) Newsgroups: soc.religion.christian Subject: Re: Sun standing still Date: 16 Nov 1994 03:30:47 GMT Message-Id: <email@example.com> : We were having a discussion about miracles (reading Lewis' book Miracles) : and several of us from different parts of the country seem to remember an : article coming out supporting the story about Joshua, based on astronomical(?) : or geological evidence. This was several years ago, but does anyone have a : specific reference, or is this urban legend. : (Please e-mail replies) : Thanks : [If it's the story I'm thinking of, it's an urban legend. Supposedly : somebody did a calculation, and it could only come out correctly if : you assume the sun stood still at that time. I know I've seen details : posted. I hope one of our readers will have them. --clh] This was posted in another group shortly after the question appeared here. ALL of the following, from the from line to the .sig is from Marty's post, except that I edited out the copy of the above letter. firstname.lastname@example.org - - - From: Marty Helgesen
Newsgroups: alt.religion.christian Subject: Re: Sun standing still Date: Fri, 11 Nov 1994 04:53:15 EST Organization: City University of New York/University Computer Center ... It's a legend. Here is an account of the legend, followed by some commentary: I received this from a friend: ------------------------------------------------------------------------ Here's some interesting stuff that I got off of IVNet (sorry to those who have already seen it). I heard about this years and years ago, but this is the first time I've seen it in recently. It just goes to show what an awesome and totally amazing God we serve! *** Copied from "The Evening Star" Spencer, Indiana on December 6,1978 *** Did you know that the space program is busy proving that what has been called 'myth' in the Bible is true? Mr. Harold Hill, President of the Curtis Engine Company in Baltimore, Maryland and a consultant in the space program, relates the following development: "I think one of the most amazing things that God has for us today happened recently to our astronauts and space scientists at Green Belt, Maryland. They were checking the position of the sun, moon and planets out in space where they would be 100 years and 1000 years from now. We have to know this so we don't send a satellite up and have it bump into something later on its orbits. We have to lay out the orbits in terms of the life of the satellite, and where the planets will be so the whole thing will now bog down! They ran the computer measurement back and forth over the centuries and it came to a halt. The computer stopped and put up a red signal, which meant there was something wrong either with the information fed into it or with the results as compared to the standards. They called in the service department to check it out and they said, "It's perfect." The head of operations said, "What's wrong?" "Well, we have found there is a day missing in space in elapsed time." They scratched their heads and tore their hair. There was no answer! One religious fellow on the team said,"You know, one time I was in Sunday School and they talked about the sun standing still." They didn't believe him, but they didn't have any other answer so they said, "Show us." He got a Bible and went back to the book of Joshua where they found a pretty ridiculous statement for anybody who has common sense. There they found the Lord saying to Joshua, "Fear them not, I have delivered them into thy hand; there shall not a man of them stand before thee." Joshua was concerned because he was surrounded by the enemy and if darkness fell they would overpower them. So Joshua asked the Lord to make the sun stand still! That's right ... "The sun stood still and the moon stayed ... and hasted not to go down about a whole day!" The space men said, "There is the missing day!" They checked the computers going back into the time it was written and found it was close but not close enough. The elapsed time that was missing in Joshua's day was 23 hours and 20 minutes - not a whole day." They read the Bible and there it was ... "about (approximately) a day." These little words in the Bible are important. But they were still in trouble because if you cannot account for 40 minutes you'll still be in trouble 1000 years from now. Forty minutes had to be found because it can be multiplied many times over in orbits. This religious fellow also remembered somewhere in the Bible where it said the sun went backwards! The space men told him he was out of his mind. But they got out the Book and read the words in II Kings. Hezekiah, on his deathbed, was visited by the prophet Isaiah who told him that he was going to die. Hezekiah asked for a sign as proof. Isaiah said, "Do you want the sun to go ahead ten degrees?" Hezekiah said, "It's nothing for the sun to go ahead ten degrees, but let the shadow return backward ten degrees." Isaiah spoke to the Lord and the Lord brought the shadow ten degrees backward! Ten degrees is exactly 40 minutes! Twenty-three hours and twenty minutes in Joshua plus 40 minutes in II Kings make the missing 24 hours and the space travellers had to log in the logbook as being the missing day in the universe! * end of article * Another IVNetter responded with the following: I enjoyed the story that you posted to the net. I also came across something that you, and hopefully others on the net, would find interesting. When the sun moved backwards in the day of Hezekiah, it means that somewhere on the other side of the world where the sun has just risen, the sun would have backed up and then risen again. Several, thousand years ago, around the estimated time of Hezekiah, the Chinese recorded a day with two dawns. At the time, the Chinese were meticulous record keepers of astronomy. However, the scientists tried to accomodate this with the theory that they witnesses a solar eclipse and that they didn't have the means at the time to know the difference. Now, I don't know about you, but even if I was as thick as a post, I think that I would see a difference between a solar ecliplse and two sunrises. =================================== That's the story as it was posted. Here are some comments I wrote, not necessarily in reply to that appearance of the legend: The story of a NASA computer finding Joshua's long day has come up several times on the net over the years. Here is something I posted when it came up a while ago in another forum, followed by something James Kiefer posted several years earlier on the origin of the leg- end: The mention of the hoax/folk legend of a NASA computer finding Josh- ua's long day reminded me of an article that appeared in the July 16, 1990 issue of _Christianity Today_, "Scientists Discover Hell in Siberia: Stalking the Vanishing Hitchhiker and other Christian Fic- tions," by Rich Buhler. People had been calling his radio talk show about reports that scientists drilling in Siberia had broken through to an area of extreme heat. They lowered microphones into the hole--why they did so is not explained--and heard human screams. Buhler did what his callers did not do and investigated, tracking down the origin of this nonsense. He mentioned other urban folk legends current among some Christians, such as the Social Security checks that came with a statement that the holder must have an iden- tification number on his right hand and forehead. The Social Securi- ty Administration reportedly explained that the checks were intended for future use and had been sent out by mistake. He did not mention the NASA computer hoax. I recommend that anyone with access to a library that carries _Chris- tianity Today_ read this article. Christians who repeat silly sto- ries like those waste their time and the time of other Christians, and discredit Christianity in the eyes of unbelievers. It is impor- tant that unbelievers come to know Jesus Christ, but if they think that Christians believe nonsense like the Hell Under Siberia story or the NASA and Joshua story they are less likely to listen when people witness to them.
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