Summary: A flag can tell us a lot about a nation or it’s people. A flag becomes a symbol of that body. It can become so revered, that it can cause men and women fight to their death for it’s cause. And a flag is usually on a pole at a high or prominent place to
In the scripture that we have read, there is a reference to setting up the standard. Scholars tell us that the word used here can mean a rallying point, a signal, a banner or a flag. And to set up the standard simply means to raise the flag.
A flag can tell us a lot about a nation or it’s people. A flag becomes a symbol of that body. It can become so revered, that it can cause men and women fight to their death for it’s cause. And a flag is usually on a pole at a high or prominent place to let everyone know who has occupied the place.
God has planted His flag on our lives. It is up to us to chose to keep the flag high in our lives. But, sadly, too many Christian want to lower the flag.
THE FLAG OF OUR IDENTITY
“But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own peculiar people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light.” 1 Peter 2.9
As God’s children, we have many identities.
As a chosen generation, we are adopted family members who have been offered salvation.
As a royal priesthood, we have a responsibility from the King to be religious leaders in this world of darkness.
As a holy nation, we are a tribe of saints who are gathered in a troop to swarm in to the enemy under the guidance of our commander.
As a peculiar people, we are God’s special treasure that He alone possesses.
THE FLAG OF OUR TESTIMONY
Our testimony and witnessing are evidence of God’s work in us and through us. “The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life, And he who wins souls is wise.” Proverbs 11:30
Testimony and witnessing are evidence of our obedience. “Ye are the light of the world . . . Let your light so shine before men.” Matthew 5:14, 16
Testimony and witnessing are evidence of God’s absolute hold on our hearts. “Then I said, ‘I will not make mention of Him, Nor speak anymore in His name.’ But His word was in my heart like a burning fire Shut up in my bones; I was weary of holding it back, And I could not.” Jeremiah 20.9
THE FLAG OF SEPERATION
Abstain from every form of evil. 1 Thessalonians 5:22
The first thing we must do is “look” holy.
Our outward appearance and action must be righteous and pure.
"Be holy, for I am holy." 1 Peter 1:16
We are instructed to be pure, hating sin and evil.
But if I were to walk in the auditorium with hip-hop fashion (loose hanging jeans, big gold rings and necklaces, extra big jersey), talking the hip-hop language, and throwing out a rap, it would look very fake. The young people would doubtlessly laugh out loud at me. Some of the adults would probably wonder if I thought it was Halloween. It would look that way because that is not who I am inside.
Abhor what is evil. Cling to what is good. Romans 12:9
God is always about going further. He is not satisfied with us being outwardly pure, but He wants us to be inwardly pure.
It is impossible to be outwardly holy if you are not inwardly holy.
It is impossible to be inwardly pure outside of the shed blood of Jesus Christ.
The War of 1812, a nasty conflict with the British where they had burned down the Capitol and the White House. Now they were set on taking the port of Baltimore, which was protected by Fort McHenry.
On September 7th, 1814, two Americans had gone out to one of the British ships to negotiate the release of Dr William Beanes. The British agreed, but the men had learned too much about the plan to attack Baltimore. They were detained on board the British frigate Surprise until it was over.
The attack on Fort McHenry started on a rainy September 12th, 1814, and after an initial exchange of fire, the Brits withdrew to form an arc just outside the range of Fort McHenry’s fire.
The three Americans watched much of the bombardment from the British deck. The major attack started on the morning of September 13th. About three miles away the three men could see the fort with its huge flag proudly waving.
In the dark of the night of the 13th, the shelling suddenly stopped. Through the darkness they couldn’t tell whether the British forces had been defeated, or if Fort McHenry had fallen.
As the rain cleared, and the sun began to rise, one of the Americans, a poet and a lawyer, peered through the lifting darkness anxious to see if the flag they had seen the night before was still flying. And so it was that he scribbled on the back of an envelope the first lines of a poem he called Defense of Fort M’Henry: The words that he penned were as follows: