Weekly Devotional: Jehovah Nissi - The Lord Is My Banner

 A cross in the light

Jehovah — The Existing One or Lord. The chief meaning of Jehovah is derived from the Hebrew word havah meaning to be or to exist. It also suggests becoming or specifically to become known — this denotes a God who reveals himself unceasingly. Nes (from which Nissi is derived) is described as a banner, a pole with an insignia attached; something lifted to be seen far off, a standard or a signal.

In This Article:

Where Can Jehovah-Nissi Be Found in Scripture 

We first encounter the name of God, Jehovah Nissi in the book of Exodus (17:1-16). The people find themselves fighting a great enemy, one that just keeps coming. 

Moses, recognizing that the Lord was Israel’s banner under which they defeated the Amalekites, builds an altar named Jehovah-Nissi (the Lord my Banner). In battle, opposing nations would fly their own flag on a pole at each of their respective front lines. This was to give their soldiers a feeling of hope and a focal point. This is what God is to us — a banner of encouragement to give us hope and a focal point. His Word is our standard. Look to him during your battles and he will enable you to soar.

Trading Our Banner for His 

A banner is a wonderful picture of God’s protection and deliverance. His banner over us symbolizes his presence, his power and his provision. God as our banner is a symbol and reminder that we need to depend on him for victory in our battles and not our own strength and effort. 

Many scholars see Amalek as a picture/type representing the enemies that God’s people face — those being the flesh, the world and the devil (Galatians 5:16, John 16:33, Galatians 6:14, 1 Peter 5:8-10). But like the Israelites, when we face an enemy, we are not called to fight in our own strength and power. We are to trust and know that the Lord will fight for us. We are to rely upon him. We are to look to Jesus — our banner — Jehovah Nissi.

It will come about in that day, that the nations will resort to the root of Jesse, who will stand as a signal.
Isaiah 11:10ESV

Read the following passages and note what you learn about God as our banner of protection and deliverance. 

  • Romans 8:37-39 
  • Psalm 60:4 
  • Psalm 20:7-8 
  • Song of Songs 2:4

It’s easy to become discouraged when we look at the world and the daily suffering and discord all around us. It’s easy to become discouraged and feel defeated in our own lives at times. However, the book of Hebrews begins with the author reminding us of how God speaks to us. He then goes on to exclaim and expound about the greatness and superiority of Jesus. One day Jesus will return and rule and reign overall. He is greater than anything we are tempted to trust in this life.

Now in putting everything in subjection to him, he left nothing outside his control. At present, we do not yet see everything in subjection to him. But we see him who for a little while was made lower than the angels, namely Jesus, crowned with glory and honor because of the suffering of death, so that by the grace of God he might taste death for everyone.
Hebrews 2:8-9ESV

The Battle Plan

When the battle rages and the armies are advancing in our lives, we need a battle plan. The Lord God is Jehovah-Nissi — Our Banner — we look to him, and then we act.

  • Remember who God is and who you are in him
  • Redirect your focus to look to Jesus — focus on the eternal, not the temporal
  • Recognize God is in control
  • Rehearse His attributes and truth from his Word
  • Recite his praises

Read 2 Chronicles 20:1-34 and note what you learn from King Jehoshaphat when he faced the great army that was advancing against him.


What does Jehoshaphat do? What does he instruct the people to do? How does he redirect his focus? How does he recognize and acknowledge that God is in control? What does he rehearse about who God is? What attributes of God do you see in this passage? What does Jehoshaphat declare about who God is and what he has done? Where in your life do you need to do battle? Remember, redirect, recognize, rehearse and recite.

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Approved by the local outreach coordinator of Department of Spiritual Life on May 13, 2024.

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author’s and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Grand Canyon University. Any sources cited were accurate as of the publish date.