Monday, June 4th, 2012
Standard Bearers (Part 1)
Thus says the Lord God: 'Behold, I will lift My hand in an oath to the nations, and set up My standard for the peoples.'
Isaiah 49:22 (NKJV)
So shall they fear the Name of the Lord from the west, and His glory from the rising of the sun; When the enemy comes in like a flood, the Spirit of the Lord will lift up a standard against him.
Isaiah 59:19 (NKJV)
Most of us consider the word 'standard' to mean 'a level of excellence or quality'--which is true if the standard is high. In ancient times a standard was also 'a flag or emblem used to show the central or rallying point of an army in battle' (World English Dictionary).
Therefore, a standard is also a banner: a flag that a field army follows in the midst of confusing warfare.
When the men of Israel defeated the Amalekites, 'Moses built an altar and called its name, The-Lord-Is-My-Banner' (Exodus 17:15). 'And in the Name of our God we will set up our banners!' (Psalm 20:5).
Even today, we know that the Living God is our Flag, our Banner, and our Rallying Point. The 'Root of Jesse Who shall stand as a Banner' (Isaiah 11:10) is Jesus, and the Standard Bearer is 'The Spirit of the Lord' (Isaiah 59:19).
We are in the midst of war, and our enemy is Satan. Since he and his army fell from grace, they made their own evil banners. God says, 'Your enemies roar in the midst of Your meeting place; They set up their banners for signs' (Psalm 74:4).
Waving dirty signs in public is not new.
What is new is their number. Enemy signs cover our earth like a discordant symphony; their sounds are deafening and their sights are blinding. They travel on the airwaves of media. And if we like media, we can be easily trapped in a sticky blanket called the World Wide Web.
Therein are the doomed and deceived: the flies to Satan's spiders.
Our standards have sunk low.
To Be Continued...
P.S. To read the other devotions in this series, please see the Standard Bearers series.