- December 2, 2020
- Posted by: Carolyn Mahal
- Category: Devotions
Then Amalek came and fought with Israel at Rephidim. So Moses said to Joshua, “Choose for us men, and go out and fight with Amalek. Tomorrow I will stand on the top of the hill with the staff of God in my hand.” So, Joshua did as Moses told him, and fought with Amalek, while Moses, Aaron, and Hur went up to the top of the hill. Whenever Moses held up his hand, Israel prevailed, and whenever he lowered his hand, Amalek prevailed. But Moses’ hands grew weary, so they took a stone and put it under him, and he sat on it, while Aaron and Hur held up his hands, one on one side, and the other on the other side. So, his hands were steady until the going down of the sun. And Joshua overwhelmed Amalek and his people with the sword. – Exodus 17: 8-13
I cannot read this passage of scripture and not think of the hymn, “Hark the Voice of Jesus Crying.” I am sure many people do the same – the reference to Aaron holding up the prophet’s hands makes it pretty obvious. However, as I read through the passage, I wasn’t focused on the one act of sacrifice by Aaron, but by the persistent efforts of Moses, Aaron, and Hur. As the story goes, Moses went and held up the staff, relying first upon his own strength. But when he became tired, Aaron and Hur provided him a stone upon which he sat. Then as Moses grew even more weary, Aaron and Hur assisted him by holding up his arms.
A lesson is shown in perseverance by the work done to keep Moses’ arms raised. As the day moved on, new ideas were developed to keep Moses’ arms in the air. Not once does the story talk about giving up. God had revealed to them what they must do for the victory to be won, and so these men renewed themselves hour by hour, minute by minute to keep following what God had commanded. As a result of their obedience – not their endurance – God delivered on His promise and provided the people of Israel with their victory.
The road that we travel down as believers often leaves us tired. We follow the commands of the Lord and do what He is calling us to do, but despite these things, we still find ourselves tired, worn down, and hard pressed to continue. Even with the help of others who come and offer their support, we sometimes still feel the pain and the hurt that comes from following the will of the Lord. But then again, we know that following the plan that God has in store for us is not always easy. As we face our struggles today, when we raise our arms toward heaven in search of the victory that God assures us is ours through Jesus Christ, we can rest assured that the pain and difficulty we feel now will be replaced with the power and abundance of the love of Christ.
Devotion by Richard Schumacher
LSEM Director of Programs & Services