Now Amalek came and fought with Israel in Rephidim. And Moses said to Joshua, “Choose us some men and go out, fight with Amalek. Tomorrow I will stand on the top of the hill with the rod of God in my hand.” (Exodus 17:8-9)
There are two things of note within these verses. To begin with, this is the first mention of Moses’ successor Joshua. It is he who leads the fight against the Amalekites, albeit under the supervision and observation of Moses. The second notable thing is the fact that the Amalekites attacked Israel in the first place. They were not defending their homeland; this was an act of aggression against the sons of Jacob, most likely because they were Esau’s descendants. In other words, they attacked simply because they hated Israel which is to imply they would have attacked if Israel had been headed toward Canaan or had been returning to Egypt.
Furthermore, this was a sneak attack in defiance of Israel and Israel‟s God and was directed at the faint and the weary who were at the rear of the column. And though God declared war against Amalek for all time because of this sinister act, He nevertheless used it to make a point. The children of Israel had wondered aloud if God was with them. He allowed this attack to occur to show what could happen if He is not with them and demonstrated the victory that comes when He is.
This is a lesson that should resonate with us today. We should never doubt that He is with us especially when He has shown time and again that He is. It is entirely possible that when His people consistently doubt Him, that “Amalek” is allowed to attack from out of nowhere, just to remind us of what life can be like without Him. In the Bible, Amalek attacked those who were tired and lagging behind meaning that we can’t afford to grow spiritually weak and lag behind in our faith and commitment to the Almighty. Let us soldier on in our journey always believing that He is with us as He has promised.
Blessings and Shalom,