After Israel had crossed the Red Sea, their first battle was against Amalek. While the soldiers on the ground may have seen the victory of the children of Israel due to any number of military factors, the Scriptures remind us that it was a supernatural victory.
On a hill overlooking the battle, Moses stood with the staff of God in his hands. While the staff was raised, Israel prevailed, and when his arms grew tired, the Amalekites began to gain ground. What to do? Moses wasn't a young man (he was about 8o by now), and his arms were getting tired.
Aaron and Hur stood on either side, holding up his arms until Joshua led the people in complete victory. Imagine it - a smelly calling that day, to stare into Moses' armpit, his oxter, and yet a vital one to secure victory for God's people.
To remind Joshua of the victory, the LORD tells Moses: "Write this as a memorial in a book and recite it in the ears of Joshua, that I will utterly blot out the memory of Amalek from under heaven." (Exodus 17:14)
Why was it that Amalek was chosen for such special treatment? It appears to be because they first opposed the free children of God, and as such were inspired of the devil, to prevent the coming forth (in due time) of the Messiah. As we shall see, their scheming continued through the generations.
What a fearful thing for the LORD to declare war against you. And yet millions of our neighbours and friends are currently God's enemies, as they live in opposition to the Lord Jesus, in rejection of his rightful rule.