Have you ever thought about a passage of Scripture, that it seemed…weird? If not, then have you been reading the Scripture? There’s a lot of weirdness in it. If you don’t agree, well, you may have problems deeper than can be addressed here. If we’re agreed that there’s a lot of weirdness in Scripture than, let’s look at one in Exodus.
The setting is that Amalek attacks the sons of Israel. Moses has a day’s warning of what’s coming, so he makes a plan with Joshua. Here’s the plan:
Then Amalek came and fought against Israel at Rephidim. So Moses said to Joshua, “Choose men for us and go out, fight against Amalek. Tomorrow I will station myself on the top of the hill with the staff of God in my hand.”Exodus 17:8-9
In theory, or if you stopped reading right there, it’s already weird. But it’s also dramatic. This is the staff that brought forth water from a rock, turned the Nile to blood, and parted the Red Sea when Moses waved it over the waters. Now, we’re left wondering, “What will Moses do with it now?” And then it’s kind of an underwhelming tactic.
Joshua did as Moses told him, and fought against Amalek; and Moses, Aaron, and Hur went up to the top of the hill. So it came about when Moses held his hand up, that Israel prevailed, and when he let his hand down, Amalek prevailed.Exodus 17:10-11
So, the staff, held high by Moses Israel is stronger than Amalek, but when Moses’ arms grow tired, and he lowers the staff, Amalek is stronger. That’s just weird. Why would that be the thing that makes the difference, the strength of Moses’ arms?
Do you ever feel like that, like it’s all up to you? Have you felt that God took His hands off the tiller, and suddenly you are sailing solo through the storm? Moses had to feel pretty confused about this, doing as He was instructed (who would think of that on their own?), and Amalek prevails whenever the stupid stick gets too heavy. Well, how could it not?
Try this, get a walking stick, of any type, carbon-fiber if you like, it doesn’t matter. Now hold it out in front of you with your arms straight, and see how long you can do it. That’s the longest Moses could, in his own strength, enable Israel to prevail. If you want the short answer, it’s not long enough.
But, part of the instruction included Hur and Aaron. It wasn’t just Moses and the staff of God. And the reason that’s so important is this:
But Moses’ hands were heavy. Then they took a stone and put it under him, and he sat on it; and Aaron and Hur supported his hands, one on one side and one on the other. Thus his hands were steady until the sun set. So Joshua overwhelmed Amalek and his people with the edge of the sword.Exodus 17:12-13
Now, remember the previous question, “Have you ever felt that it was all up to you?” It never is. It does feel that way though, we even try to make it work with just us. But, think it through, why would our Creator and Savior create and save you only to make it all about you? What would that accomplish? It’s never about you, me, or even our favorite people. It’s about our Creator and Savior, and it’s about Him because He’s not done creating and saving! There are others out there who need Him, and you have been created and saved to be used to bring those into relationship with the Creator.
So, it isn’t always easy to spot the Aaron and Hur in our life. We find it way too easy to focus on ourselves and our perspectives, desires, and theories. The truth is much more interesting. Our Creator and Savior has created and saved us to be a part of a multitude no one can count. A multitude He redeems from every people-group that has ever existed. So, look around you. Where is your “Aaron”? Who is your “Hur”? Don’t try to raise the banner of our Savior on your own. We overcome together, raising the banner of our King.
Scripture quotations taken from the NASB. Copyright by The Lockman Foundation