In Exodus it is recorded that Israel faced a formidable enemy, the Amalekites, who attacked with full force.
The battle raged in the valley, but Moses had given clear instruction to the people: “Choose some men to go out and fight the army of Amalek for us. Tomorrow I will stand at the top of the hill, holding the staff of God in my hand.”
Choose men and go to war against Amalek. The next few verses show us the power of unity and prayer.
As most of you know, Joshua did what Moses commanded. Meanwhile, Moses, Aaron and Hur climbed to the top of a nearby hill. As long as Moses held up the staff in his hand, the Israelites had the advantage. But whenever he dropped his arms, the Amalekites gained the advantage.
Moses’ arms soon became so tired he could no longer hold them up. So Aaron and Hur found a stone for him to sit on. Then they stood on each side of Moses, holding up his hands. So his arms held steady until sunset.
As a result, Joshua overwhelmed the army of Amalek in battle.
This passage of scripture teaches two amazing principles: the power of prayer and cooperation! The instructions were clear: “Select the group for battle.” We are living in a sinful world. We understand that when Adam and Eve sinned in the Garden of Eden, the world was declared a disaster area. We are reminded of this fact through the daily news.
Sin continues to keep multitudes in spiritual slavery, with no hope of freedom outside the power of Christ.
I live life with great expectation. I believe in the power of prayer. A few days ago, I experienced it in my personal life. The journey sometimes can be complex and difficult. The noise of the crowd distracts us. I finally put my thoughts on paper. I felt like my computer was about to explode as I typed an e-mail. After several paragraphs, I felt the presence of the Holy Spirit. He reminded me of His presence, support and protection.
I paused my typing and prayed. Instead of sending the e-mail, I clicked delete. Peace brought calmness to my soul. I trusted the Lord to forgive, bless and walk with me. It was an amazing afternoon.
Moses was clear in his message to Joshua: We cannot win in the valley if there is no prayer on the mountain. Joshua fought the enemy. Even though Moses’ arms grew tired, the cooperation of Aaron and Hur made it possible for the Israelites to complete the task and win the battle.
My encouragement is for each one to have an Aaron or Hur, as prayer partners, lifting us up as we navigate the road ahead.
The enemy is busy seeking to disrupt and discourage us at every juncture. However, we know the victory ultimately is ours. I encourage all California Southern Baptists to be strong in the ministry to which the Lord has called you, no matter the distractions.