The Amalekites came and attacked the Israelites at Rephidim. Moses said to Joshua, "Choose some of our men and go out to fight the Amalekites. Tomorrow I will stand on top of the hill with the staff of God in my hands."
As long as Moses held up his hands, the Israelites were winning, but whenever he lowered his hands, the Amalekites were winning. When Moses' hands grew tired, they took a stone and put it under him and he sat on it. Aaron and Hur held his hands up - one on one side, one on the other - so that his hands remained steady till sunset. So Joshua overcame the Amalekite army with the sword. (Exodus 17:11-13)
In this chapter, Joshua is mentioned for the first time in the Bible: a young man, appointed Commander-in-Chief in a war between Israel and Amalek.
Joshua was one of the youngest generals ever to serve in the Israelite army. General Douglas McArthur listed Joshua among the greatest generals of world history. President Theodore Roosevelt's favorite book in the Bible was the book of Joshua.
Already in this first encounter with Joshua, we see a spiritual principle in the Kingdom of God: Not by might, nor by power, but by My Spirit. "Hands were lifted up to the throne of the Lord." (Exodus 17:15)
That does not eliminate human responsibility. Joshua still had to battle against the enemy in the valley. But the secret of the victory must be found in the spiritual battle that was fought. Hands uplifted to God. "My help comes from the Lord." (Psalm 121)
Work as if everything depends on you. Pray as if everything depends on God.
Ora et Labora - Pray and work.
Copyright [C] 1995 Open Doors International. Used by permission.
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Day by Day with the Persecuted Church
compiled by Jan Pit with a forward by Brother Andrew (paperback, revised 2000)
Compelling wisdom from the pen of actual believers living amidst persecution, you'll be connected to the suffering, courage, and depth of life that exists in the harshest places in the world. Each of these 365 thought-provoking devotions will deepen your understanding of Christian persecution and provoke you to pray for our brothers and sisters with a new found depth.