November 25, 2013

Jehovah Nissi – God Our Banner

Message for my Proverbs 31 Friends visiting Tuesday, November 26th:

If you’re joining us from my Encouragement for Today devotion, I’m so excited you stopped by! We are in the middle of an on-line study, “Who Is God and Why Should I Care?” studying the names of God. This study is nearly complete, but if you would like to join us for future studies, it’s easy to sign up.

To register for future on-line studies (this means you’ll receive an invitation before each study begins), visit my sidebar and click on “Sign up for Wendy’s On-Line Bible Study Updates.”  Place your e-mail address in the box and click “subscribe.”  This registers you for this study and ensures you will receive invitations for all future studies.  If you have registered for an on-line study in the past, you do not need to re-register.

If you would like to receive the weekly lessons for an on-line study in your inbox, visit the side bar again.  At the top of this sidebar, you will see “Sign up to receive posts from Wendy Blight.”  Place your e-mail address in the box and click “Go.”  Be sure to reply to the confirmation e-mail that follows. This ensures you are subscribed to my web site. Each week you will receive an e-mail with the post for the week.  It is important to note that to view the video, you will need to visit the web site directly.  You may do so by clicking on the title of the post in the e-mail.

One more exciting piece of news. In March 2014 I have a new book coming out with Thomas Nelson, Living So That Making Faith-Filled Choices in the Midst of a Messy Life. It’s now available for pre-order through Proverbs 31, and you can find it by clicking here.  If you order it by December 1, we’ll send you a signed copy when it’s released! Also, if you’d like to join Wendy’s Street Team to receive pre-release announcements, participate in fun giveaways and help promote the book, please click here. And most exciting of all, this will be a 2014 P31 On-Line Bible Study!!!!!!

Lesson Three

Thank you, thank you for another great week of study and discussion. You girls go deep and continue to bless and challenge me. Heading into this week of Thanksgiving, I’m so very thankful for you! Don’t forget, we won’t meet here again until the Wednesday after Thanksgiving. That gives us over a week to complete our homework. We’ll end our last week with Jehovah Rapha, God our Healer.

Remember, the lessons are divided into days, but you can complete them any way that works best for you.

Also, please don’t forget to send your creations to Heather if you are participating in creating pictures of our names of God. E-mail them to her at thegoodariel@hotmail.com by the Sunday after Thanksgiving. Looking forward to seeing how Jehovah Nissi inspires you this week. Below are the beautiful images you created for El Roi. Don’t you love them!!!  I can’t wait to see what you create next week! Thank you to those of you who sent yours in and thank you, Heather, for putting them together for us.

El_Roi (1)

Below is our Week Three Teaching:

 

Memory Verse: “Moses built an altar and called it The Lord is my Banner.” Exodus 17:15 (NIV)

Prayer:

Heavenly Father, Jehovah Nissi, the God who sees me, thank You that Your banner over me is love and that nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate me from Your love. Thank You that You love me with an everlasting love, and I don’t have to do anything to earn or keep Your love. It makes my heart sing to know that You are always in my midst and that You rejoice over me with gladness; quiet me with Your love, and rejoice over me with singing. As I study Your Word and seek to know You more, let every morning bring me word of Your unfailing love. When the battle seems too hard and the mountain too high, remind me that though the mountains be shaken and the hills be removed, Your unfailing love for me will not be shaken nor Your covenant of peace removed.  Teach me more about Who You are, Jehovah Nissi, as I study another aspect of Your character, my amazing, sovereign God Who is the same yesterday, today and forever. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.

Homework:

WEDNESDAY

1Read Genesis 49. List the twelve sons of Jacob (Israel).

 

2Read Numbers 2:3-16.

God commanded Jacob’s (Israel’s – new name) twelve sons to divide into tribes. When the Israelites settled in the Promised Land, God allotted each tribe a parcel of land, except Levi and Joseph. The Levites did not own land because God set them apart to serve as His priests. God doubled Joseph’s allotment and awarded it to his sons, Manasseh and Ephraim. These became the 12 tribes of Israel. Israel’s identity and structure was rooted in these tribes. They camped in tribes; they traveled in tribes, and eventually they settled in tribes.

* God spoke to Moses in Numbers 2:2. How were the Israelites instructed to set up camp?

In the Old Testament, when we read about a banner, it referred to a tribal banner. Standing under a banner identified an individual with a tribe or a family; this was true with the Israelites. Each tribe had its own banner. Some conjecture the banners matched the color of the precious stone in which the name of that tribe was written in the high priest’s ephod. Others believe there was coat of arms painted in each standard, which referenced the blessings of that tribe by Jacob. Others say the name of each tribe was written on its standard. The Israelites were always on the move, so they continually traveled under their banners, with their tents, always setting up and taking down.

* Read Numbers 9:15-23. How did the Israelites know when and where to go?

 

3. Read Exodus 17:1-7. As the Israelites wandered in the wilderness, their food and water supply ran low on several occasions. Each time they complained to Moses, questioning his motives for bringing them in the desert.

* What is your reaction when things don’t go your way?

* Read Philippians 2:14-16 and 1 Corinthians 10:10. How do these verses speak to the issue of grumbling?

*Why shouldn’t we grumble and complain according to Paul’s words in Philippians?

* What did Moses do when the people grumbled and complained to him? (v. Exodus 17:2-4)

* What was God’s response? (v. 5-6)

*What did Moses use?

 

THURSDAY

4. Read Exodus 17:8-16.

We find the Israelites under attack from the Amalekites (they were the descendants of Jacob’s brother, Esau…remember Jacob and Esau? Jacob stole Esau’s birthright and blessing. Esau hated Jacob for what he did, and his descendants hated Jacob’s descendants, carrying on the family feud. Amalek was Esau’ grandson). The Amalekites pulled a sneak attack on Israel (see Deut. 25:17-19). They wanted to oust the Israelites from the land and claim the territory as their own.

* What did Moses tell Joshua to do?

* What did Joshua do?

* Where did Moses go and who went with him?

*What was in Moses’ hands?

* What happened when Moses raised his hands? lowered his hands?

* What happened when Moses grew weary?

Moses’ friends held his arms up as he prayed, so his hands remained raised until sunset, and Joshua overcame the Amalekite army with the sword!

Do you see how God assigned Moses and Joshua very specific roles: Joshua would fight; Moses would pray?  Moses held up the “rod of God”…the miracle working rod which had summoned the plagues of Egypt, parted the Red Sea, and brought water from a rock.” It served as a banner to remind the soldiers…and all God’s people…of the glorious and miraculous feats God had accomplished on their behalf.

5. What did Moses build after they won the battle and what did he call it? 

 

Moses built an altar to forever remind God’s people of what He had done that day on the mountain and in the battle field. It’s no different for us, sweet friend. When we are in the midst of a battle, we must remember the great things God has done for us so that we can persevere through the unknown.

 

6. What are some great things God has done for you…times where you have experienced His faithfulness and His provision? Write a prayer of gratitude and reflect on how this can help encourage you through a tough time you or another may be going through.

 

Never forget, sweet friend, our God fights for His people. Anyone who touches, harms, or defies us, touches, harms, and defies the apple of God’s eye, and He will exact justice!

7. Read Zechariah 2:8-10. What does it say?

 

Friday

8. Moses set an example for us. When we face a battle, Moses set forth steps for us to follow:

a. Come Apart and Pray

*How did Moses “come apart?” (Exodus 17:9b)

*Read Habakkuk 2:1. What does it say Habakkuk did when he felt like God was not answering his prayers and had abandoned him and His people?

 

b. Pray with Authority

* Read Exodus 4:1-5. What went on between God and Moses in this exchange?

The staff represented Moses’ authority, and we have that same authority today. We do not have a staff. We have something better. The Word of God is a powerful weapon in our hands. We must wield it in every battle we encounter. It is our authority against Satan.

 

c. Invite Friends

* Moses went to the mountain alone. True or False?

* Can you think of another time when a man of God called upon friends to strengthen and pray for him in his time of need? (Matthew 26:36-46)

*What happened in this story?

*What difference would it have made in Jesus’ last hours if His friends had stayed up and prayed with Him?

* Do you have friends to come alongside you in prayer? If not, pray for God to bring some prayer warriors into your life.

* Do you come alongside others in prayer? If you don’t, pray for God to show you people around you for whom you can pray and join together with in prayer.

 

d. Document What God Has Done

* Read Exodus 17:14. What else did God tell Moses to do?

God wanted Joshua to hear about the prayer. God wanted Joshua to know that he did not win the battle alone. It was won with prayer and might working in tandem. God wanted Joshua to know He was sovereign over this battle and all their enemies.

 

Saturday

Just as the staff served as Moses’ banner in his battles, the cross of Christ serves as ours. Through the cross, God reminds us of one very important truth…one I want us to never forget.

9. Read Romans 8:37. Write this verse below.

 

10. Write this verse in your own words and share what it means in your own life…a past, present or future situation.

 

Exodus 17 doesn’t simply document the Israelites first battle after crossing the Red Sea. If we believe that, we totally miss the meaning of Exodus and, really, the entire Old Testament. God, through His Holy Spirit, spoke through men like Moses not to give us mere history lessons but that we might understand Him and know the hope that we have in Him.

We engage in battles every day. We have an enemy of our  souls. We need to gird ourselves up for  battles with the enemy. Jehovah Nissi provides us a banner…the Cross…to prepare our hearts and minds for the battles.

11. Read Ephesians 6:12.

* Who is our enemy?

* What does 1 Peter 5:8 say about our enemy?

* If you see your enemy not as flesh and blood, how can it change how you respond in a battle?

 

12. Is there someone in your life who you see as “the enemy?” Identify that person and identify what it is that makes him or her your “enemy.”

*How does what we are learning this week speak into this relationship?

* What is one step you can take to resolve your situation with this person and give God the victory and not Satan?

 

Sunday

1 Peter 5:8 begins with these words, “Be alert and of sober mind.” The King James Version says, “Be sober, be vigilant.” Sober translates from the Greek word nepho which means “to be free from the influence of intoxicants.” This brings to mind another word with which we are familiar, “sobriety.” Sober speaks of a sober mind. We must be mentally self-controlled.

Vigilant translates from the Greek word gregoreuo and means “to keep awake to watch.” Peter was encouraging the persecuted church to be alert, self-controlled, and vigilant in prayer.  We are to watch for and be alert for the devil. The word “satan” means “adversary,” and the word “devil” means “the accuser, the slanderer.” We have an enemy of our souls, and we must be prepared for the lies, accusations, battles, and troubles he (and this world) will send our way.

Satan does not work alone.

13. Who does Ephesians 6:10 say works with Satan?

 

He is a formidable enemy we must never underestimate. We must be sober and alert and prepare in advance for our battles with him.

14. Read 6:13-18.

* What does Ephesians 6:13 tell us to do to prepare?

* Read 2 Corinthians 10:3-4. What does it say?

* If we put on every piece of God’s armor in preparation for our battle, read Ephesians 6:13b and explain our standing after the battle.

*Read Ephesians 6:14-17 and list the six pieces of armor.

* Read Ephesians 6:18. What is the last instruction God gives on how to stand firm in a spiritual battle?

 

15. Read Joshua 5:13-15.

God identified himself to Joshua in Joshua 5:14 as the Commander of the Lord’s Armies. Joshua served as the human commander of the Israelite army. But standing before Joshua in this story was the Divine Commander… the true Commander of not only the Israelites but of all God’s armies!  God is the same yesterday, today and forever. So He is our Commander today.

Friends, just as God had His sword drawn for Joshua, He has it drawn for us. The Sword is our Banner. And you hold that weapon in your hand right now. It’s now our weapon. God uses His sword to fight through us…just as He used Moses’ rod and Joshua’s sword to fight through them. Ephesians 6:17 tells us that sword is the Word of God. It is our only offensive weapon. As long as we keep our Bible in our hands and His Word hidden in our hearts, we’ll never be without hope! We will always be more than conquerors!

As children of God, when we pray God’s Word, we fight against the evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, the mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places, with the full force of the Commander of the Lord’s Armies behind us.

We are more than conquerors through Him!

Take time to review your lesson and prayerfully answer the questions below based on what you have learned from God’ s Word and what God has spoken into your heart throughout your time with Him.

*Who is Jehovah Nissi?

 

* Why should I care?

 

Praying Jehovah Nissi makes Himself very real to You as You seek Him this week. Praying God will richly bless the time you spend with Him. I look forward to reading your comments throughout the week!  Meet you back here after Thanksgiving.

Blessings to you,

 

Comments

  1. Wendy, I loved your video! It reminded me of a conversation I had with God nearly 5 years ago. I think I could have passed for Moses twin sister if he had one!! As I walked down our gravel road, my mind began to reflect on all that God was doing in my life and honestly I was amazed. He was doing things I never expected and at times ones I didn’t feel I deserved. I thought about the privileges and responsibilities He had given to me as a wife and Mom, along with my role on a women’s ministry team. On top of that I was in the process of publishing a book. Personally I did not feel worthy and on that lonely, quiet country road I can remember saying to God, “Who am I? Why are you blessing me? Why are you using me?”

    Instead of an answer to my question, God shifted my thinking with the same three words as He whispered to my heart, “Jill, Who am I?” From that point on, He’s been showing me the only way to truly understand who I am begins first with knowing Who He is and knowing Him in a personal way.

    In that process, I have come to know Him better and just this past week felt myself relating a bit to the confidence you describe in David. God does work and I’m so grateful the journey with Him is never ending! Jehovah Nissi is a name I’m not real familiar with so I’m looking forward to the lessons I’ll learn and Truth God will reveal this week. Asking Him to speak to each of us in a powerful way! And then may we use what we know to impact what we do!!

    • Jill… thank you for this, “He’s been showing me the only way to truly understand who I am begins first with knowing Who He is and knowing Him in a personal way.” I so appreciate this truth, my friend!

    • Jill, it is such a sign of maturing in your faith to gain that Christ confidence. Love hearing this from you as you have been stepping out in obedience more.

      W

  2. Charlotte Askew says:

    Just a share:

    Jehovah-Nissi
    The Lord my Banner
    by William Cowper
    The Olney Hymns

    By whom was David taught,
    To aim the dreadful blow,
    When he Goliath fought,
    And laid the Gittite low?
    No sword nor spear the stripling took,
    But chose a pebble from the brook.

    ‘Twas Israel’s God and king,
    Who sent him to the fight;
    Who gave him strength to fling,
    And skill to aim aright.
    Ye feeble saints your strength endures,
    Because young David’s God is yours.

    Who ordered Gideon forth,
    To storm th’ invaders’ camp,
    With arms of little worth,
    A pitcher and a lamp?
    The trumpets made his coming known,
    And all the host was overthrown.

    Oh! I have seen the day,
    When with a single word,
    God helping me to say,
    My trust is in the Lord;
    My soul has quelled a thousand foes,
    Fearless of all that could oppose.

    But unbelief, self-will,
    Self-righteousness and pride,
    How often do they steal
    My weapon from my side?
    Yet David’s Lord and Gideon’s friend,
    Will help his servant to the end

  3. Judy Redden says:

    I am very thankful that The Lord is my Banner. Going into this week is going to have it’s challenges with my husbands work schedule and some family issues that need to be dealt with. This lesson has given me the confidence that I need to go forward. I will trust in the Lord to give me the words to share and the ears to listen. Thank you Wendy for the words you have so faithfully shared through your video.
    Blessings

    • Judy, I pray Jehovah Nissi has brought His name alive in your life this week as you have learned of His character through this name and sought after more of Him this week!

      Blessings,

      Wendy

      • Judy Redden says:

        This lesson has come to an end but not the blessings I have received from my obedience to Jehovah Nissi! I have spent my week with the bronchitis bug. :(( However :))) my heart is full of joy. Instead of getting depressed with having to be bundled under the covers eating chicken soup which I did several days, including Thanksgiving Day, I have reflected on the way the Lord has worked in getting me back with my son and his family. I have prayed for this for weeks now and it has come to pass. I personally have a lot of work to do to make the changes I need on my end. The Lord has certainly shown me that he will guide me down straight paths, all I have to do is believe, trust and follow.

  4. Thank you Wendy for preparing these Bible studies for us! Thank you for being faithful to God’s calling on your life! You are blessing so many people by helping us learn more about the Bible and how to live a life that honors God.

    • Stephanie, what sweet words of encouragement to read as I prepare to write and record our next lesson. Thank you!!!

      Blessings,

      Wendy

  5. I can’t wait to get started on these lessons and learn more about our God.

    I love, love, love your vest!!!

  6. Dear Wendy,
    First off, thank you for being such a great role model. Thank you for following God’s lead and having a heart for His priorities in your life. I think so many times, we as women will break our backs to squeeze far too much into each day, not realizing that God only had a few things on our lists of things to do. Thank you for beginning Week 3 when you did!

    “Despite the miracles, Moses…” Oh my. How this hits home for me! I have lived through many miracles which prove God’s fingerprints are all over my life! Yet, despite the miracles, I can question God, fall prey to my insecurities or my lack of belief! But just as Moses grew and learned who he was and WHOSE he was… just as David had always known… I strive to settle into this monumental truth!

    Moses… David… Elijah… US! I pray that each of us wave our banners of victory with humble confidence because the Lord is our Banner! Thank You Jehovah Nissi! Thank You for bringing these truths and these stories to life through Wendy’s faithful heart… to You and to us. May we learn to be a community of women who hold one another’s arms up so that we can wave our banners! In Jesus’ Name, Amen!

    On my gratitude list for Thanksgiving… Wendy… her amazing studies… this group of women throughout the WORLD who encourage one another knowing that He who began a good work in us will be faithful to complete it until the day of Christ Jesus!

    • Amen and amen, Noelle!! And thank you for your sweet words of Thanksgiving. I too am so thankful for the community of women God has so graciously gathered to meet here for each study. I stand in awe at what He has created…something only He could do!!!

      Love you,

      Wendy

    • Oh Noelle, it hits home with me too! Grateful for God’s grace as we walk this road of faith!

  7. Earlier this week I commented that I was looking forward to this lesson, but I had no idea all God had in store! I greatly appreciated and needed the return visit to the Armor of God.

    This week I’ve been reminded that the battle is never over. A week ago God had led me to and through a hard conversation…I diligently put on the armor as I prayed and prepared and intentionally prayed as my friend and I talked. But the struggle came when a few days had passed…looking back I see I let up my guard and Satan pounced – whispering lies, caused me to doubt and lose peace. I was grateful for how God opened my eyes as I got back into this study.

    This look at the armor led me to dig deeper and I went back to some notes from when I heard Voddie Baucham speak on spiritual warfare. I appreciated this and thought somebody here might too –
    Our Resources are Sufficient
    Our Adversary is Spiritual
    Our Goal is Simple (Stand)
    Our Uniform is Supplied
    Our Weapons are Supernatural
    Our Partners are Substantial
    Our Victory is Secure

    As I read Eph. 6, I’m amazed that our job is to put on the armor so that we can stand. Paul doesn’t instruct us to battle, but to prepare for it so Jehovah Nissi can do the fighting through us and for us. Wow. Pray this is a truth we don’t forget!

    • Jill, I have never seen this before. It is a wonderful summary of the Armor with powerful descriptive words to go along with it!! Thank you for sharing. And thank you for reminding us that we are not instructed to battle, only to prepare for battle and STAND.

      Blessings,

      wendy

  8. (A little background here first) I experienced some doubt a few weeks ago after talking to a friend who had lost the faith. I was upset at my feelings of doubt and called my brother to vent and ask for his advice. I have no doubt Satan was behind my doubt reaction and my brother told me (among other things) that God does a lot that He doesn’t get credit for because we can’t see those things. He led me to the verses in 2 Kings 6:15-17. I won’t go into detail but basically Elisha is facing an army that wants to capture him and he has a buddy who seems to be worried about that. But Elisha prays to the Lord to ” open his eyes so he may see” the armies of the Lord all around Elisha.
    I think verse 16 and 17 are some powerful verses that remind us that A. There is a lot that Jehovah Nissi does for us that we can’t see and B. When we face battle with evil, Jehovah Nissi has His army right there with us. What a comfort to know we are not alone. I thought this fit nicely with our study this week so I wanted to share. :) Bless you girls!

    • Beth,

      I just love that you brought in the story of Elisha. I had it in my notes to share (I closed my live teaching here in Charlotte with it), but I ran out of time for our recorded teaching. I was so disappointed. God is so good to use you to bring the story in for all of us!! Thank you, thank you for sharing and adding this wonderful story of Elisha. It is truly one of my favorites in Scripture.

      Blessings,

      wendy

  9. Wendi, I did a painting that in my heart is God’s, not mine. It is in a series I will be doing videos to get God’s message out He has expressed in this series of 9 paintings. The Lord told me to paint these abstract, so it may be difficult to see here. The one titled The Warrior has the armor of God symbolized and the warfare we face. I sent it to the site Proverbs 31 gave me in a current Bible study, The Confident Heart. It did not get posted. Don’t know if it could be or they didn’t feel it when with the comments in the chapter. Perhaps it is something you can use here with this lesson in comments. If you can use it, let me know. I would love to hear how others here respond to His work, His message in the painting. If Proverbs 31 received the email, they should have it unless they deleted it. God bless you for the time you take to teach us.

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