We are all very familiar with the “Prayer of Jabez”, but very little is known about the prayers of Moses! I would like to bring to your attention, one of his prayers. We are aware of two kinds of prayers, “prayer of intercession”, and “prayer of thanksgiving and praises”. However, there is a third kind of prayer, “prayer of blessing”, which was used by Moses in this passage. It is a terrific arsenal to have, and I hope, we use this kind of prayer more often in our life.
It is really shocking to see Israelites, who were called by God, lead by God, and kept in the perfect will of God being suddenly attacked by Amalekites! It tells us clearly that we may be attacked by Satan anytime, even though we walk in the will of God perfectly. We always ask the question, “Why do the Righteous suffer?” There is a very simple answer to this complicated question: because Satan attacks! We often forget one important aspect of our life, that is, the world we live in is a war zone, and we must be prepared for any kind of Satan’s assault on us.
Now, Joshua goes out with his men to fight, and Moses takes Aaron and Hur to the top of the mountain to pray. Here we see one batch going to fight, and the other going up for prayer. A classic example of different parts of the body of Christ coming into action for the kingdom of God (1 Cor.12). Also, please note the beautiful example of prayer and action going together hand in hand. It is not just all prayer or all action. It is both! They both go simultaneously, side by side!
Moses goes to the highest point of the mountain to have a better view of the battlefield, and also he makes himself to be seen by the Israelites. Before we pray for others, we must have a clear picture of the battlefield of our problems. Also, our prayers will be very encouraging for others, if we pray with others directly, face to face.
Moses raises his hands, holding the “Rod of God”. This is not an ordinary rod anymore. Moses used it often in Egypt to bring various plagues for the Egyptians. He stretched forth the rod toward the Red Sea, and it divided. It is the same rod that he used to bring water out of the rock. He showed the “Rod of God” as a banner, a reminder of God’s faithful salvation acts, and His unfailing promises, that bring us victory every time! We must lift up our “Rod of Salvation” above us to proclaim God’s faithfulness in our life. We must not forget how God delivered us from various trials and tribulations, and how He saved us. (Ps.103:1, 2). The Lord is indeed our banner (Jehovah Nisseh)!
He not only used the Rod of God as a banner, but also for something else. “When Moses held up his hand, that Israel prevailed; and when he let down his hand, Amalek prevailed.” It is imperative that we learn to bless one another as Moses did. Blessing is wholistic! It covers every area of our life – spiritual, physical, emotional, and psychological. We should bless with a clear view, and direct it toward the right person(s). We must also bless with absolute passion and love for that person(s)! Without love, we cannot bless! Any resentment or bitterness will dampen our prayer of blessing.
When we bless with intensity, and passion, power goes forth, and the person(s) starts battling better. But when we slack off and fail to bless, things start falling apart for our loved ones, (children going astray, grades falling down, marriage problems, various satanic attacks etc). So it is essential that we bless without ceasing.
It is important to know that we may feel weak at times, and start losing our battle in our life. But do not give up! We will conquer in the end, because some one is blessing us, showing us the rod of God! Be part of God’s church to receive this special blessing. Ask your church to pray for your battles.
Here we see that Moses' hands grew tired! Prayers of blessings and supplication can be very exhaustive, if we do it all by ourselves! Thank God for Aaron, and Hur. They each carried one arm, and steadied the hands of Moses, so that they were always lifted up! Our loved ones need steady blessing. We definitely need the help of other people to pray for us. We need the church! Forsake not the assembling of our brethren. Jesus desperately wanted this help in the Garden of Gethsemane! But He did not get it. As we remember His passion this month, can we give prayer support for one another? Or will we be like His sleepy disciples?
It is interesting to note that Joshua’s hands did not feel that tired as Moses' hands. Why? Because, he had lot of people to fight for him. But Moses was trying to do everything by himself. Let us share our burden of missions, prayer support, and evangelism with one another.
The battle goes on until the evening. God could have finished the battle in few minutes! But He deliberately let it continue until the evening! Why? God trains us through long battles. There are certain problems that will not go away in our life. God leaves those problems to strengthen us! (2 Cor.12:7-10). But eventually all our problems must go at the sun set! (when we die).
Finally, Israelites won by the grace of God. An atheist would say that both Amalekites and the Israelites fought very well, but in the end, Israelites got the decisive victory. But you and I know that it was God who was controlling the whole battle for a very good reason! It is by His grace alone! So let us pray and bless with absolute humility.
Amalekites represent our fleshly desires and passions. We may be saved, baptized, and filled by the Holy Spirit, and yet, the flesh attacks us and tempts us. We will have war with our “fleshly desires” for the rest of our life because the flesh and the Spirit are opposite to each other. So let us be vigilant and sober. Bless one another with passion and love. Let us not give up. We will win eventually through the Holy Spirit, the Word, and the binding prayer support of each other!
|Pastor's Column - Prayer of Moses
by Rev. Daniel Israel