“Whenever Moses held up his hand, Israel prevailed, and whenever he lowered his hand, Amalek prevailed.” – Exodus 17:11
In verses 8-11, Amalek has been a constant enemy for the Israelites for years. Before the battle, Moses tells Joshua to choose some men to fight the Amalekite army. Meanwhile, Moses will stand on top of a hill with his rod. While Joshua left to go fight, Aaron and Hur followed Moses to the top of the hill. Whenever Moses raised his rod in his hand during the fight, Israel was winning. Whenever he lowered it, Israel was losing. Raising a rod symbolized God’s exercise of power.
In verses 12 and 13, Moses’ hands became heavy, so Aaron and Hur put a stone under Moses to sit on. Then they helped Moses hold up his hands, keeping them steady until the sunset. Afterwards, Joshua and the Israelites won the battle. Moses’ weakness showed that he was not the source of victory.
Finally in verses 14 through 16, God asked Moses to record this event and recount it for Joshua. God promises to blot out the remembrance of Amalek from under heaven. Moses built an alter and named it The Lord is my Banner. A banner was a rallying point for armies that was raised high during battles. The image asserts Moses’ intention to orient his life and actions according to God’s direction.
Through this story in the Bible, God shows us that if we obey His words and put into action, we can overcome any spiritual obstacles. Even when we feel weak physically, emotionally or spiritually, God has put people in our lives to lift us up and helps fight our battles. As a result of their obedience to God, the Israelites defeated their enemies and conquered a part of the land God promised them. In the same way, God will fulfill His promises to us. All we have to do is obey His commandments and keep fighting the good fight.
This week, talk to someone about a spiritual battle you are going through. Ask them for prayer and share how God has worked in your life to help you get through the obstacles in your life. That way, God can make you a blessing to someone else who might be going through something they can’t handle alone.