Summary: 2 of 5. YaHWeH(the LORD) sought for a man who would be willing to stand for Him in the midst of apostasy. Who will stand for the Lord or stem the tide of sin? A person who stems the tide of sin, Addresses spiritual...
STEMMING THE TIDE-II—Ezekiel 22:23-31
Standing in the Gap
The concise story behind the book & movie ‘300’(From Wikipedia)
The Battle of Thermopylae; was fought between an alliance of Greek city-states, led by King Leonidas of Sparta. These fought the imperialistic Persian Empire of Xerxes-I over the course of three days, during the second Persian invasion of Greece.
The battle took place in ~Aug.-Sep. 480 BC, at the narrow coastal pass of Thermopylae(~25 mi. N. of Dephi & ~60 mi. NNW of Corinth).
Xerxes had amassed a huge army & navy, & set out to conquer all of Greece. The Athenian(Greek) general had proposed that the allied Greeks block the advance of the Persian army at the coastal-mountain pass of Thermopylae, & simultaneously block the Persian navy at the Straits of Artemisium.
Around 7,000 Greek troops marched north to block the pass. The Persian army, could have numbered over one million, but may have been between about 100,000 & 150,000.
Xerxes moved to attack the Greeks. He ordered five thousand archers to fire a barrage of arrows, but they were ineffective; they fired from at least 100 yards away, but the Greeks' bronze shields & helmets deflected the missiles.
The Persians then launched a frontal assault, in waves of around 10,000 men each. The Greeks fought in front of the narrowest part of the pass, which enabled them to use as few soldiers as possible. The Greek units were rotated in & out of the battle to prevent fatigue. The Greeks killed so many Medes that Xerxes is said to have stood up three times from the seat from which he was watching the battle. Xerxes’ first wave was "cut to ribbons", with only two or three Spartans killed in return.
Xerxes sent in the infantry to attack the pass, supposing that the Greeks had been disabled & could not resist long. Again, the Persians were thwarted with no more success than the first day. Xerxes having been met with steadfast resistance, stopped his assault & withdrew to his camp, "totally perplexed.”
That day, however, a Greek--Ephialtes--informed Xerxes of a mountain path around & paralleling the coastal road where the Greeks were located. Ephialtes offered to guide the Persian army there being motivated by a reward. For this act of treason, the name of Ephialtes has received a lasting stigma, his name coming to mean "nightmare" & his becoming the archetypal traitor in Greek culture much like Judas Iscariot is among Christians.
“At daybreak on the third day,” the Persians acted on a plan to encircle “the main Greek force.” King “Leonidas called a council of war at dawn.” “Some of the Greeks argued for withdrawal, but Leonidas resolved to stay at the pass with the Spartans.”
The Greeks were defeated & Thermopylae was thus opened to the Persian army, at the cost of ~20,000 Persian fatalities. Leonidas’ rearguard, was totally annihilated, with a total loss of some 2,000 men during all three days of battle.