A banner in ancient times was a standard carried at the front of a military grouping. It was the rallying point, and it showed the line of march. It wasn’t necessarily a flag; it could have been a pole with a bright ornament on top that shone in the sun. When in battle, soldiers would look over in the midst of the confusion and see the king’s banner held high, and they would fight with courage and confidence.
In Exodus 17:8-16, Israel is attacked by Amalek, and at Moses’ command, Joshua leads men into the battle. Moses stations himself on top of the hill with the “staff of God” in his hand. Hur and Aaron are with him. When Moses holds his hand high, Israel prevails but when he holds his hand down, Amalek prevails. Hur and Aaron put a stone under Moses to prop him up, and they each hold his hands up on either side of him until sunset. Joshua wins the battle and Moses knows it was the LORD who gave the victory. Thus Moses gives God the name Jehovah-nissi. To whom do we run when we are weary in the battle of faith? God is our strength when we look to Him.
In Exodus chapter 18, Jethro, father-in-law to Moses, converts to Yahweh based on hearsay. At first through the grapevine (Exodus 18:1) and then from Moses (Ex.18:8-12), Jethro hears how Yahweh delivered His people from the Egyptians. May we be encouraged to share testimonies with relatives we long to see saved. Next, observe the humility of Moses when he receives Jethro’s counsel on sharing leadership responsibility, something every leader learns…eventually.