Jehovah Nissi: The Lord Our Banner

“And Moses built an altar and called its name, The Lord Is My Banner.” Exodus 17:15

The Hebrew word nissi means, “something lifted up, a signal to be seen far off.” What was lifted up could be a pole, rod, or banner. In battle, an army would fly their flag or banner on a pole at their front line as a rallying point for defense.

The name Jehovah Nissi is used one time in the Bible; it’s in Exodus 17:15. In Exodus 17:8-16, as Israel was on their journey through the wilderness, the Amalekites, a wandering tribe, confronted Israel in battle. Moses sent Joshua to choose men to fight in the valley while he sought God’s help on a high hill. Moses understood the power of prayer and the importance of reliance upon God. Moses called out on God, and lifted up both his hands and the rod, a declaration of God’s power and authority. As long as Moses’ hands were lifted up, Israel was winning. As Moses’ arms grew weary, he lowered them, and the Amalekites would be winning. Moses could see the battle. He could see the lives of his men being brutally taken when he couldn’t hold up his arms any longer. When Aaron and Hur saw Moses physically struggling to hold up the rod, they held up Moses’ arms as he sat on a rock. Together they kept the rod in the air until the end of the day. Joshua and his army won the battle.

After Moses felt the pain and struggle of lifting up the rod of God with both of his arms throughout the day, he decided to name a memorial, “You are Jehovah Nissi,” meaning “You are the God who is lifted up!” When we lift up the Lord as our authority, He gives us the victory. He is the banner we raise, declaring His lordship.

When we rally underneath the banner of God’s lordship, we are submitting to Him with our obedience. Joshua did what Moses told him to do. Joshua and his men fought through the entire day for the cause of their God and their nation.

God is your banner! When you lift Him up, you are declaring Him to be lord over your life and any situation you might be facing. You are expecting a victory because You know the lord is helping you to overcome. II Corinthians 2:14 says, “Now thanks be to God who always leads us in triumph in Christ…” In Jesus you always win!

Application: I Timothy 6:12 says to “fight the good fight of faith.” If you feel you are in a battle right now, declare God to be Jehovah Nissi. He is with you in the fight – you are not on your own. He is with you, and He will add His strength to your strength. Lift Him up!

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