General weather beliefs of people recorded in scripture
In chapter one of the book of Job, God himself referred to Job as “a blameless and upright man, who fears God and turns away from evil” and said, “that there is none like him on the earth”. Therefore, we should take the words of this man seriously.
Job’s 500 oxen, 500 donkeys, and 3000 camels were stolen and his servants who watched over them were murdered. Along with all of this, his 10 children were tragically killed in a windstorm, following the fire (“of God”) raining down from the sky, killing his flock of 7000 sheep.
Then Job arose and tore his robe and shaved his head and fell on the ground and worshiped. And he said, “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return. The Lord gave, and the Lord has taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord. In all this Job did not sin or charge God with wrong.Job 1:20-22
After attributing these disasters to the hand of a just God, Job continues to process these events and God’s sovereignty.
He binds up the waters in his thick clouds, and the cloud is not split open under them. He covers the face of the full moon and spreads over it his cloud.Job 26:8-9
By his power he stilled the sea; by his understanding he shattered Rahab.Job 26:12
At this also my heart trembles and leaps out of its place. Keep listening to the thunder of his voice and the rumbling that comes from his mouth. Under the whole heaven he lets it go, and his lightning to the corners of the earth. After it his voice roars; he thunders with his majestic voice, and he does not restrain the lightnings when his voice is heard. God thunders wondrously with his voice; he does great things that we cannot comprehend.Job 37:1-5
Elihu was the one friend of Job who was not rebuked by God at the end of the book. He rebukes Job (for some of his complaints) and the other three friends starting in chapter 32. Then, in chapter 37, Elihu makes some astonishing statements in regards to the relationship between normal, everyday weather occurrences and the almighty God.
For to the snow he says, ‘Fall on the earth,’ likewise to the downpour, his mighty downpour.Job 37:6
From its chamber comes the whirlwind, and cold from the scattering winds.Job 37:9
By the breath of God ice is given, and the broad waters are frozen fast.Job 37:10
He loads the thick cloud with moisture; the clouds scatter his lightning. They turn around and around by his guidance, to accomplish all that he commands them on the face of the habitable world. Whether for correction or for his land or for love, he causes it to happen.Job 37:11-13
Hear this, O Job; stop and consider the wondrous works of God. Do you know how God lays his command upon them and causes the lightning of his cloud to shine? Do you know the balancings of the clouds, the wondrous works of him who is perfect in knowledge, you whose garments are hot when the earth is still because of the south wind?Job 37:14-17
Psalmists certainly agreed with the beliefs of believers such as Elihu and Job. The intimate relationship that God maintains with his creation is mentioned frequently in the collection of Psalms. Here are a few passages that explicitly describe rain, snow, wind, clouds, fog, fire, and ice as providential acts of God.
From your lofty abode you water the mountains; the earth is satisfied with the fruit of your work.Psalms 104:13
He it is who makes the clouds rise at the end of the earth, who makes lightnings for the rain and brings forth the wind from his storehouses.Psalms 135:7
He sends out his command to the earth; his word runs swiftly. He gives snow like wool; he scatters frost like ashes. He hurls down his crystals of ice like crumbs; who can stand before his cold? He sends out his word, and melts them; he makes his wind blow and the waters flow.Psalms 147:15-18
Praise the Lord from the earth, you great sea creatures and all deeps, fire and hail, snow and mist, stormy wind fulfilling his word!Psalms 148:7-8
In 1 Kings chapter 3, we see that Solomon who “loved the Lord” was greatly blessed by God. God granted him a “wise and discerning mind” and assured him that no one like him had gone before him and no one would come after him. Likewise, in 4:29 the author of 1 Kings says, “God gave Solomon wisdom and understanding beyond measure, and breadth of mind like sand on the seashore”. We should keep all of this in mind as we learn about God’s control over rain through Solomon’s prayer.
When heaven is shut up and there is no rain because they have sinned against you, if they pray toward this place and acknowledge your name and turn from their sin, when you afflict them, then hear in heaven and forgive the sin of your servants, your people Israel, when you teach them the good way in which they should walk, and grant rain upon your land, which you have given to your people as an inheritance.1 Kings 8:35
Here it is clear that Solomon, the wisest man who ever lived, believed that God controls the rain.
If you walk in my statutes and observe my commandments and do them, then I will give you your rains in their season, and the land shall yield its increase, and the trees of the field shall yield their fruit.Leviticus 26:3-4
In these Leviticus passages, Moses is relaying God’s words that were spoken to him on Mount Sinai.
But if you will not listen to me and will not do all these commandments,… and I will break the pride of your power, and I will make your heavens like iron and your earth like bronze.Leviticus 26:14,19
And if you will indeed obey my commandments that I command you today, to love the Lord your God, and to serve him with all your heart and with all your soul, he will give the rain for your land in its season, the early rain and the later rain, that you may gather in your grain and your wine and your oil.Deuteronomy 11:13-14
Here in Deuteronomy, towards the end of Moses’ life, he is communicating revelation from God to Israel about the promised land that awaits them.
But if you will not obey the voice of the Lord your God or be careful to do all his commandments… The Lord will make the rain of your land powder. From heaven dust shall come down on you until you are destroyed.Deuteronomy 28:15,24
He changes times and seasons; he removes kings and sets up kings; he gives wisdom to the wise and knowledge to those who have understanding;Daniel 2:21
Daniel, a prophet of God, who after receiving the meaning of King Nebuchadnezzar’s dream (thus saving his life), praised God.
When he utters his voice there is a tumult of waters in the heavens, and he makes the mist rise from the ends of the earth. He makes lightning for the rain, and he brings forth the wind from his storehouses.Jeremiah 51:16
While prophesying the destruction of Babylon in chapter 51, Jeremiah breaks briefly in verse 15 into more of a descriptive message about God – switching to the third person. In verse 15 he starts with, “It is he who made the earth…established the world…stretched out the heavens.” At this point, Jeremiah had recorded some 30,000 words from the voice of God. After all of that, it is made very clear what Jeremiah believes about God’s ultimate power over the rain, fog, lightning, and wind.
so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven. For he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.Matthew 5:45
Men, why are you doing these things? We also are men, of like nature with you, and we bring you good news, that you should turn from these vain things to a living God, who made the heaven and the earth and the sea and all that is in them. In past generations he allowed all the nations to walk in their own ways. Yet he did not leave himself without witness, for he did good by giving you rains from heaven and fruitful seasons, satisfying your hearts with food and gladness.Acts 14:15-17
Specific examples of God controlling the weather
For behold, I will bring a flood of waters upon the earth to destroy all flesh in which is the breath of life under heaven. Everything that is on the earth shall die.Genesis 6:17
But God remembered Noah and all the beasts and all the livestock that were with him in the ark. And God made a wind blow over the earth, and the waters subsided.Genesis 8:1
Then Moses stretched out his staff toward heaven, and the Lord sent thunder and hail, and fire ran down to the earth. And the Lord rained hail upon the land of Egypt.Exodus 9:23, See also: Psalm 105:32
So Moses stretched out his staff over the land of Egypt, and the Lord brought an east wind upon the land all that day and all that night. When it was morning, the east wind had brought the locusts.Exodus 10:13, See also: Psalm 105:34
And the Lord turned the wind into a very strong west wind, which lifted the locusts and drove them into the Red Sea. Not a single locust was left in all the country of Egypt.Exodus 10:19
And the Lord went before them by day in a pillar of cloud to lead them along the way, and by night in a pillar of fire to give them light, that they might travel by day and by night.Exodus 13:21, See also: Psalm 105:39, Exodus 14:19, 14:24, 33:9, 40:38, Numbers 9:15, 14:14, Deuteronomy 1:33
Then Moses stretched out his hand over the sea, and the Lord drove the sea back by a strong east wind all night and made the sea dry land, and the waters were divided. And the people of Israel went into the midst of the sea on dry ground, the waters being a wall to them on their right hand and on their left.Exodus 14:21-22, See also: Exodus 15:8
You blew with your wind; the sea covered them; they sank like lead in the mighty waters.Exodus 15:10, See also: Exodus 14:26-31, Exodus 15:19
And as they fled before Israel, while they were going down the ascent of Beth-horon, the Lord threw down large stones from heaven on them as far as Azekah, and they died. There were more who died because of the hailstones than the sons of Israel killed with the sword.Joshua 10:11
As Samuel was offering up the burnt offering, the Philistines drew near to attack Israel. But the Lord thundered with a mighty sound that day against the Philistines and threw them into confusion, and they were defeated before Israel.1 Samuel 7:10
So Samuel called upon the Lord, and the Lord sent thunder and rain that day, and all the people greatly feared the Lord and Samuel.1 Samuel 12:18
Now there was a famine in the days of David for three years, year after year. And David sought the face of the Lord. And the Lord said, ‘There is bloodguilt on Saul and on his house, because he put the Gibeonites to death.’2 Samuel 21:1
After many days the word of the Lord came to Elijah, in the third year, saying, ‘Go, show yourself to Ahab, and I will send rain upon the earth.’… And in a little while the heavens grew black with clouds and wind, and there was a great rain. And Ahab rode and went to Jezreel.1 Kings 18:1, 45
Though he may flourish among his brothers, the east wind, the wind of the Lord, shall come, rising from the wilderness, and his fountain shall dry up; his spring shall be parched; it shall strip his treasury of every precious thing.Hosea 13:15
Be glad, O children of Zion, and rejoice in the Lord your God, for he has given the early rain for your vindication; he has poured down for you abundant rain, the early and the latter rain, as before.Joel 2:23
I also withheld the rain from you when there were yet three months to the harvest; I would send rain on one city, and send no rain on another city; one field would have rain, and the field on which it did not rain would wither;Amos 4:7
But the Lord hurled a great wind upon the sea, and there was a mighty tempest on the sea, so that the ship threatened to break up.Jonah 1:4
The Lord is slow to anger and great in power, and the Lord will by no means clear the guilty. His way is in whirlwind and storm, and the clouds are the dust of his feet.Nahum 1:3
And if any of the families of the earth do not go up to Jerusalem to worship the King, the Lord of hosts, there will be no rain on them.Zechariah 14:17
And he said to them, ‘Why are you afraid, O you of little faith?’ Then he rose and rebuked the winds and the sea, and there was a great calm. And the men marveled, saying, ‘What sort of man is this, that even winds and sea obey him?’Matthew 8:26-27
But when he saw the wind, he was afraid, and beginning to sink he cried out, ‘Lord, save me.’ … Jesus immediately reached out his hand and took hold of him,… And when they got into the boat, the wind ceased.Matthew 14:30-32, start from verse 32: Matthew 14:24-32
And he awoke and rebuked the wind and said to the sea, ‘Peace! Be still!’ And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm. He said to them, ‘Why are you so afraid? Have you still no faith?’ And they were filled with great fear and said to one another, ‘Who then is this, that even the wind and the sea obey him?’Mark 4:39-32
And they went and woke him, saying, “Master, Master, we are perishing!” And he awoke and rebuked the wind and the raging waves, and they ceased, and there was a calm.Luke 8:24
And great hailstones, about one hundred pounds each, fell from heaven on people; and they cursed God for the plague of the hail, because the plague was so severe.Revelation 16:21