And it came to pass, when Moses held up his hand, that Israel prevailed: and when he let down his hand, Amalek prevailed. (Exodus 17:11)
Israel was in conflict with the forces of Amalek. Moses was on top of the hill,, overlooking the battle field. The position of Moses hand spelled the difference between victory and defeat. The uplifted hand turned Amalek back. The lowered hand turned Israel back.
As long as Moses hand was raised, he pictured the Lord Jesus as our Intercessor, for us His hands uplifting in sympathy and love. It is through His intercession that we are saved to the uttermost. But from then on, the type breaks down, because our Intercessors hand is never lowered. No fatigue causes Him to need outside help. He always lives to make intercession for us.
There is a second way in which we may apply this incident, namely, to ourselves as prayer warriors. The uplifted hand pictures our faithful intercession for those believers who are engaged in the spiritual conflict on the mission fields of the world. When we neglect the ministry of prayer, the enemy prevails.
A missionary and his party on safari had to spend the night in an area infested by brigands. They committed themselves to the Lords care, then retired. Months later when a brigand chief was brought to a mission hospital, he recognized the missionary. We intended to rob you that night out in the open country, he said, but we were afraid of your twenty-seven soldiers.
Later, when the missionary related this in a news letter to his home church, one of the members said, We had a prayer meeting that same night and there were twenty-seven of us present.
When our God beholds us there,
Pleading in the place of prayer,
Then the tide of battle turns,
Then the flame of conquest burns,
Then the flag of truth prevails,
Foes slink back and Satan quails!
Then the faltering wail of fear
Turns to victorys ringing cheer!
Bring us, Lord, O bring us there,
Where we learn prevailing prayer.
Then we can see another insight in this incident. The Lord swore that He will have war with Amalek from generation to generation. Amalek is a picture of the flesh. The Christian must wage ceaseless warfare against the flesh. Prayer is one of his principal weapons. The faithfulness of his prayer life often spells the difference between victory and defeat.
SI Moderator - Greg Gordon