Monday, January 4, 2010

Moses, Aaron and Hur

I was reading the book of Exodus last night, and I read this passage:

8 Then came Amalek, and fought with Israel in Rephidim. 9 And Moses said unto Joshua, Choose us out men, and go out, fight with Amalek: to morrow I will stand on the top of the hill with the rod of God in mine hand. 10 So Joshua did as Moses had said to him, and fought with Amalek: and Moses, Aaron, and Hur went up to the top of the hill. 11 And it came to pass, when Moses held up his hand, that Israel prevailed: and when he let down his hand, Amalek prevailed. 12 But Moses’ hands were heavy; and they took a stone, and put it under him, and he sat thereon; and Aaron and Hur stayed up his hands, the one on the one side, and the other on the other side; and his hands were steady until the going down of the sun. 13 And Joshua discomfited Amalek and his people with the edge of the sword. 14 And the LORD said unto Moses, Write this for a memorial in a book, and rehearse it in the ears of Joshua: for I will utterly put out the remembrance of Amalek from under heaven. 15 And Moses built an altar, and called the name of it Jehovahnissi: 16 For he said, Because the LORD hath sworn that the LORD will have war with Amalek from generation to generation.

So, I was thinking about that, and wondered, Was it the stick that helped the Israelites win? Why does God seem to use such strange images to show he is God?

I wanted to learn more about it, so I searched Jon Courson's sermons for a teaching about this verse. (Jon Courson is my new go-to guy for scripture learning) Anyway, he had a teaching. What I learned was pretty interesting and I thought I'd like to share it with you.

1. Amalek was the son of Esau and represents carnality or the flesh. Remember Esau selling his birthright to Jacob for a bowl of stew? Well, that spirit of indulging the flesh was passed on to his son, and the Amalekites were known as ruthless warriors who attacked people when they were down. Actually, when Israel first started out on their journey to the promised land, the Amalekites attack the Israelites from the rear. The rear of the group is where the tired or weakest of the group traveled.

2. God told Moses to send Joshua and his army out to the valley to battle the Amalekites. And he told Moses to go onto the mountain with rod of God (the one he used to part the sea) with him. He did, and took Aaron and Hur with him. He sought God on behalf of the Israelites and as long as the stick was raised, the Israelites were winning. But of course, his arms got tired. And Hur and Aaron helped him out by holding up Moses' arms. God is showing Moses that it is important to pray for victory over our enemies. But sometimes, we get tired and the "flesh" (Amalekites) starts to win. But, if we're smart, we'll have brought our friends along with us to help hold us up in prayer.

3. After the battle was won, God commanded Moses to write this down for Joshua. It happened before the law was even given to Moses and it is possible that this was the first thing written down for scripture, even before the recording of the book of Genesis. So, it is important to God. He wanted Joshua to know that even though he was the one who led the army in battle, it was Moses' prayers that caused the Israelites to win.

4. God said that he would be at war with the Amalekites from generation to generation. To this day, don't we fight against the flesh? To defeat carnality, what can we do? Seek God. And when we get tired, to keep the flesh from gaining on us, what can we do? Ask our friends to hold our arms up by praying on our behalf.

If you made it this far, you deserve a medal! And if you are interested in hearing Jon Courson's teaching on the topic, go to THIS Website and listen to the sermon called "The Key to Victory".


Anonymous said...

very interesting people usually talk about God in church. It kind of nice to read it on your blog.