“And Moses built an altar and called the name of it, The Lord is my Banner; 16 And he said, Because [theirs] is a hand against the throne of the Lord, the Lord will have war with Amalek from generation to generation.” ~ Exodus 17:15-16 (AMP)
Hebrew Strong Reference 3071: יהוה נִסִּי
Transliteration: yhwh nissî
Phonetic Pronunciation: yeh-ho-vaw’ nis-see’
Root: from and with the prononimal suffix
Part of Speech: n pr loc
Vine’s Words: None
English Words used in KJV: Jehovahnissi 1 [Total Count: 1]
from (Yehovah) and (nec) with pronoun suffix.; Jehovah (is) my banner; Jehovah-Nissi, a symbolical name of an altar in the Desert :- Jehovah-nissi.
I found the following information that helped me to discover a more definite meaning for Jehovah Nissi. It is the Reference for the root word Strong’s Reference 5251 – nec. the following information from theLexicon/Genesius Lexicon (Help) at the Blue Letter Bible
Lexicon Results for nec (Strong’s H5251)
Hebrew for H5251 נס (Transliteration)
Pronunciation: nās (Key)
Part of Speech: masculine noun
Root Word (Etymology) from H5264
TWOT Reference 1379a
Outline of Biblical Usage:
1) something lifted up, standard, signal, signal pole, ensign, banner, sign, sail
__a) standard (as rallying point), signal
__b) standard (pole)
__c) ensign, signal
Authorized Version (KJV) Translation Count — Total: 20 AV — standard 7, ensign 6, pole 2, banner 2, sail 2, sign 1
Gesenius’s Lexicon (Help):
Also Consider the Following Commentary from The Bible Knowledge Commentary Old Testament, Walvoord and Zuck, Victor Books 1985, pp. 135-36.
17:8-16. At Rephidim the Lord also gave His people a military victory. The Amalekites were nomads in the desert of south of Canaan (cf. 1 Sam. 15:7; 27:8). They were descendants of Esau through Eliphaz (Gen. 36:12). They apparently were attempting to dislodge the Israelites from this pleasant oasis and to secure their territory from intrusion. In this crisis Moses called Joshua, who is mentioned her for the first time. Though Joshua entered into battle with zeal, the victory was secured in a unique fashion in order to demonstrate God’s power. Moses’ holding the staff of God (cf. Ex. 4:20) above his head with both hands symbolized Israel’s total dependence on the power of God. When Moses lowered his head with both hands symbolized Israel’s total dependence on the power of God. When Moses lowered his hands, a picture of lack of dependence, the enemy was winning. With the assistance of Aaron and Hur Moses’ hands remained uplifted and a great victory was secured. (Hur is mentioned only here; 17:12; and in 24:14; 1 Chron. 2:19-20; the Hur mentioned Ex. 31:2; 35:30; 38:22 is probably another person. Still another Hur, a Midianite king, is referrred to in Num. 31:8; Josh. 13:21.)
The defeat of the Amalekites was something God wanted Joshua to remember. The Amalekites remained a persistent, harassing enemy of Israel (cf. Num. 14:45; Jud. 6:33; 1 Sam. 14:48; 15:7; 27:8) until they were finally destroyed by King David (1 Sam. 30). Moses commemorated the victory in his day by building an altar which he named the Lord is my Banner. An interesting sidelight is that Exodus 17:14 includes the first mention in the Bible of the writing of official records, though Moses did keep some type of diary of the soujourn (Num. 33:2). God proved Himself faithful in preserving and protecting His people.
In Ann Spangler’s book, “Praying the Names of God,” she explains the meaning of Jehovah Nissi in this way: “Ancient armies carried standards or banners that served as marks of identification and as symbols that embodied the ideals of people. A banner, like a flag, was something that could be seen from afar, serving as a rallying point for troops before a battle. Though banners were first used in Egypt, Babylonia, Assyria, and Persia, the Israelites carried them on their march through the desert. When you pray to Yahweh (Jehovah) Nissi, you are praying to the God who is powerful enough to overcome any foe.”
This week as we consider what it means to pray to our God as Jehovah Nissi. He is our covenant God who is powerful and mighty to overcome our enemies- any foe we might face. As I read through the account in Exodus 17:8-16 I find these eight verses provide a foundation on which to build our understanding of who God is when we declare Him as our Banner, our Standard. Moses held his arms up during the entire battle declaring God their banner and battle standard- when his arms were lifted in praise to God for victory, the battle was won. However, when he grew weary and lowered his arms- the battle was lost. Aaron and Hur went with him and helped him lift his arms to Lord declaring the Sovereign, Covenant Lord of Israel the rallying point and the standard of victory for the nation of Israel against the Amalekites. God is our rallying point, His covenant and truth are the places we go for protection, for reinforcements, for instruction and a battle plan. He is the source of victory. He is our banner and our standard, the courage and the truth to encourage us to continue in our fight when we grow weary.
In the movie “Glory” a 1989 film depicting the rise of the Massachusetts 54th Volunteer Regiment, which was the first Union African-American regiment to fight in the Civil War. As they went into the last battle to take Fort Wagoner, where the regiment suffered nearly half its total number in casualties including Robert Gould Shaw, the Colonel who raised the idea for the regiment and fought to get them into the war.
In the last battle scene in the movie, leaders are calling the troops to attention standing before the standard-bearer and calling out for a volunteer to come forward and carry the flag in the event the standard-bearer dies.
In the battle, the standard-bearer dies as they advance. One of the men comes to take up the flag. The importance of the flag or standard advancing in order to press the troops forward becomes paramount. These brave men fought hard that day. Charging forward on a battlefield weighted heavily against them. They fought not only their enemy, they fought their oppressors. Many of the men who died, including Colonel Shaw had refuse the pay offered by the military. Their reason? The soldiers were given less than standard pay because they were black. Historically, Colonel Shaw’s last words were “Onward Fifty-Fourth!” as he charged to the top of the fort where he met his death. After the battle, the casualties became interred on the beach outside the fort. Colonel Robert Gould Shaw along with the soldiers he mustered and led remain at the beach where their determination to fight for freedom became the standard of the day.
In our national anthem, “The Star-Spangled Banner,” the words ring of the high value a soldier places on the flag of their country:
Oh, say, can you see, by the dawn’s early light,
What so proudly we hail’d at the twilight’s last gleaming?
Whose broad stripes and bright stars, thro’ the perilous fight,
O’er the ramparts we watch’d, were so gallantly streaming?
And the rockets’ red glare, the bombs bursting in air,
Gave proof thro’ the night that our flag was still there.
O say, does that star-spangled banner yet wave
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave?
(composed by Francis Scott Key, “In Defense of Fort McHenry” in September 1814. Congress proclaimed it the U.S. National Anthem in 1931)
Think of it, the sight of that flag still flying after a night of fighting gave the men the courage and the strength to fight and carry on. The rally point: the standard. In history count the times the sight of the flag being raised as becoming a symbol of the victory.
In yet another movie, “Not Without My Daughter” Sally Field plays the wife of an Iranian man who refuses to allow his American wife and daughter return home from a trip to Iran. Mistreated and held hostage by his family, she bravely hires a man to sneak her and her daughter across the Iranian border where she can seek aid from the U. S. Embassy outside of Iranian territory. The scene of her character walking through the town uncertain of where she is at the end of the movie stirs the heart. She rounds a corner and sees the Stars and Stripes of the American Flag waving above the United States embassy. The very sight of the flag brings hope and strength to her weary body.
The movie and story end as she successfully escapes the tyranny of her husband and his nation and is given hope by the standard of her home nation.
In these examples, the flag of our nation serves as a call to continue in the fight you’ve been in, a symbol of hope and freedom that not only must be upheld, it must be defended. So it is with our God. He is our banner, and we are soldiers in a spiritual battle on behalf of our God. He is our strength to continue in the fight, the focus of our hope and the source of our freedom. Upholding Him in our lives makes Him our defense. He is our Banner. “He brought me to the banqueting house, and his banner over me was love.” Song of Solomon 2:4 (NKJV) He is our banner and His banner over us is His love. The victory is sure sweet sisters. Now let us look to Scripture for more evidence of this truth!
Read the passage and note anything new you learn about the Lord your Banner.
“17 Remember what Amalek did to you on the way when you had come forth from Egypt, 18 How he did not fear God, but when you were faint and weary he attacked you along the way and cut off all the stragglers at your rear. 19 Therefore when the Lord your God has given you rest from all your enemies round about in the land which the Lord your God gives you to possess as an inheritance, you shall blot out the remembrance of Amalek from under the heavens; you must not forget.” ~ Deuteronomy 25:17-19 (AMP)
That God’s deliverance is evidence of His Banner. When we face any battle and overcome, we are not to declare the trouble of the battle, but the glory of God’s Victory in our lives. It is our Banner, Jehovah Nissi, that receives the glory when we overcome.
“22 Thus says the Lord God: Behold, I will lift up My hand to the Gentile nations and set up My standard and raise high My signal banner to the peoples; and they will bring your sons in the bosom of their garments, and your daughters will be carried upon their shoulders. 23 And kings shall be your foster fathers and guardians, and their queens your nursing mothers. They shall bow down to you with their faces to the earth and lick up the dust of your feet; and you shall know [with an acquaintance and understanding based on and grounded in personal experience] that I am the Lord; for they shall not be put to shame who wait for, look for, hope for, and expect Me. 24 Shall the prey be taken from the mighty, or the lawful captives of the just be delivered? 25 For thus says the Lord: Even the captives of the mighty will be taken away, and the prey of the terrible will be delivered; for I will contend with him who contends with you, and I will give safety to your children and ease them.” ~ Isaiah 49:22-25 (AMP)
God’s standard brings the promise of protection, favor and deliverance. It is also a signal to those outside the faith. When God is given the glory in our lives as we surrender to His will and realize victory in every circumstance people sit up and take notice. It is not our job to make a name for God and declare the victory, it is our job to declare our God and His favor upon us and allow Him to make a name for us and declare the victory over us. If we lift Him up He draws those we exalt Him before to Himself.
“10 And it shall be in that day that the Root of Jesse shall stand as a signal for the peoples; of Him shall the nations inquire and seek knowledge, and His dwelling shall be glory [His rest glorious]! 11 And in that day the Lord shall again lift up His hand a second time to recover (acquire and deliver) the remnant of His people which is left, from Assyria, from Lower Egypt, from Pathros, from Ethiopia, from Elam [in Persia], from Shinar [Babylonia], from Hamath [in Upper Syria], and from the countries bordering on the [Mediterranean] Sea. 12 And He will raise up a signal for the nations and will assemble the outcasts of Israel and will gather together the dispersed of Judah from the four corners of the earth” ~ Isaiah 11:10-12 (AMP)
The root of Jesse, is that Christ? Think of that, Jesus Christ is our signal flag, our banner and our standard. He will gather us all together, and raise up a signal to the nations to assemble all the outcasts and bring back to us the plunder stolen from us – His promise is always victory. Jesus is the banner over us that declares the love of God over us. He is our covering, our shelter, our battle cry – He is our all in all.
“4 You have given a banner to those who fear You, That it may be displayed because of the truth. Selah” ~ Psalms 60:4 (NKJV)
His banner declares His truth! It declares His truth, the evidence and fruit in our life gives light to the fact that He is God, His Word is true and He is as He declares Himself in all things.
“18 For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.” ~ 1 Corinthians 1:18 (NKJV)
His banner is now the message of the cross. It sounds like foolishness to the world who is perishing, but to those saved by it – it is the power of GOD! GLORY! GLORY! GLORY!
“52 In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the [sound of the] last trumpet call. For a trumpet will sound, and the dead [in Christ] will be raised imperishable (free and immune from decay), and we shall be changed (transformed). … 54 And when this perishable puts on the imperishable and this that was capable of dying puts on freedom from death, then shall be fulfilled the Scripture that says, Death is swallowed up (utterly vanquished forever) in and unto victory. 55 O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting? 56 Now sin is the sting of death, and sin exercises its power [upon the soul] through [the abuse of] the Law. 57 But thanks be to God, Who gives us the victory [making us conquerors] through our Lord Jesus Christ.” ~ 1 Corinthians 15:54-57 (AMP)
Our Banner is that we are conquerors and victory. But, when He returns He will raise us up and we will be the symbol of His victory and we will share in the victory of His banner.
As we weigh the word today, read through the following verses of Psalm 20 and consider all the ways we learn that God is our Banner and our Standard in the Battles of our Lives. You are more than an overcomer, walk in victory today – His banner over you is love!
1 To the Chief Musician.
A Psalm of David.
May the Lord answer you in the day of trouble;
May the name of the God of Jacob defend you;
2 May He send you help from the sanctuary,
And strengthen you out of Zion;
3 May He remember all your offerings,
And accept your burnt sacrifice.
4 May He grant you according to your heart’s desire,
And fulfill all your purpose.
5 We will rejoice in your salvation,
And in the name of our God we will set up our banners!
May the Lord fulfill all your petitions.
6 Now I know that the Lord saves His anointed;
He will answer him from His holy heaven
With the saving strength of His right hand.
7 Some trust in chariots, and some in horses;
But we will remember the name of the Lord our God.
8 They have bowed down and fallen;
But we have risen and stand upright.
9 Save, Lord!
May the King answer us when we call.