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The Rock

Pastor Matt Osborn



Exodus 17:10-14

[10] So Joshua did as Moses had said to him, and fought with Amalek: and Moses, Aaron, and Hur went up to the top of the hill. [11] And it came to pass, when Moses held up his hand, that Israel prevailed: and when he let down his hand, Amalek prevailed. [12] But Moses' hands were heavy; and they took a stone, and put it under him, and he sat thereon; and Aaron and Hur stayed up his hands, the one on the one side, and the other on the other side; and his hands were steady until the going down of the sun. [13] And Joshua discomfited Amalek and his people with the edge of the sword. [14] And the Lord said unto Moses, Write this for a memorial in a book, and rehearse it in the ears of Joshua: for I will utterly put out the remembrance of Amalek from under heaven.


In this passage of the Bible, we have a simple story of how God provided an improbable victory for the nation of Israel soon after being released from slavery in Egypt. There was no reason for Israel really to win this battle except for God stepping in through Moses. Let’s look at the three parts that would help give Joshua and the nation of Israel the victory.


1. Moses


The one person that everyone normally gives the credit to for the victory is Moses. Moses was the leader of Israel. He was the person who God spoke to directly. Moses is the one who gets most of the recognition. He has a great relationship with God, and God uses him many times to do some incredible things.


This is not just a correlation to pastors, evangelists, or famous Christians but also to everyday Christians that God uses because they are willing. There are many people that God has blessed in leadership positions at a time where one may be used of God to be a part of something great. At those times, the leader seems to get a lot of the credit. Moses and Christians that have leadership positions do deserve credit. God places them in their positions for a reason. We know that they aren’t perfect, but that is not what we are talking about here. God does call us to give honor to whom honor is due, and we can all be a Moses at some times in our lives.


With this in mind, Moses did not do this great thing alone, and neither can that pastor, evangelist, or we ourselves. Moses had help. This leads us to our second part of the success story of this battle…

2. Aaron and Hur


Moses does get to do this great thing without the willingness and sacrifice of Aaron and Hur. They had to sacrifice sleep. They endured standing for long periods of time, fatigue, and more to be a help to Moses in his time of need. If Moses tried to do this task given to him by God only by himself, he would have failed.


Just like Moses needed help, we as Christians are supposed to help, to encourage, to challenge, and much more. In this instant, the recipient was Moses, but it could have been anyone. We are called to help other Christians as Paul tell the church at Galatia in Galatians 6:2, “Bear ye one another's burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ.”


Aaron and Hur were such a major part of this victory, and without them, it would not have been possible. There is one other part, though, that truly was a big help to Moses, and this truth was taught to me at my ordination.


3. The Rock


You will notice that there was another major part of helping Moses be able to continue, and it was the rock. Now we might think that this is not that significant, but the rock is what made it possible for Moses to keep doing what he was doing. It was the rock that would allow Aaron and Hur to be able to help keep Moses’ hands in the air. What would make a lot of sense in this case was for Moses to sit on the rock so his arms were at a better height for Aaron and Hur to help keep them up. The rock was not talented. The rock did not have a name. The rock did not give to missions. The rock was just sitting there doing what a rock does.


I do not know if this resonates with you as it resonated with me about the rock, but sometimes we get to be a Moses—the person in charge or the face of something, sometimes we are Aaron and Hur—the people who are encouraging or even the memorable people that helped in a huge way, but sometimes we are the rock—we are faithfully doing exactly what we normally do and nothing changes. The rock was just there and God used it in what we would say an insignificant way. However, it made all the difference in winning the battle for the Israelites.


Joshua had to go out and fight, but without Moses, Aaron, Hur, and a simple rock, the battle would have had a much different ending. Do not be afraid to be Moses. Allow God to use you in a great and mighty way. Be on the lookout for times to make the difference in someone else’s life like Aaron and Hur. But do not forget that sometimes you may not get the credit for what you do by name. Sometimes people forget that the toilets actually get cleaned a few times a week. We forget the nursery workers. We can forget that faithful friend who has just always been there. They are the rocks that are just right there next to us, staying faithful, and allowing God to use them without any recognition. Don’t be afraid to be the rock. All three components were necessary.


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