Thursday, December 2, 2010

The Lord's Standard by Nancy Minor

Isa 59:19 So [as the result of the Messiah's intervention] they shall [reverently] fear the name of the Lord from the west, and His glory from the rising of the sun. When the enemy shall come in like a flood, the Spirit of the Lord will lift up a standard against him and put him to flight [for He will come like a rushing stream which the breath of the Lord drives]. [Matthew 8:11; Luke 13:29]

When the enemy comes in like a flood… threatening to wash you off your feet, threatening to drown you in circumstances seemingly beyond your control…when the enemy comes in, like water seeping through the foundation… creating mess, and extra work and turmoil…

Do not fear, be of good cheer! The Lord also comes in to comfort, to strengthen, to make firm and establish you through HIS Standard.

A standard in Military terms is a flag or banner or pennant with decoration or emblems on it, representing the people, land or nation that carried it.

The twelve tribes of Israel each had their own flag or standard as revealed in Numbers 2:2

(CEV) how the Israelites should arrange their camp: Each tribe must set up camp under its own banner and under the flags of its ancestral families. These camps will be arranged around the sacred tent, but not close to it.

(KJV) Every man of the children of Israel shall pitch by his own standard, with the ensign of their father's house: far off about the tabernacle of the congregation shall they pitch.

Flags or Standards were used for Identification, Distinction, Loyalty, Honor, and Pride. They created points for gathering around. They reminded you of the past and brought hope of a future. Wrapped up in each flag was a personal tribal history, along with any promises that G-d had made to them of their future.

In military maneuvers, Standards would locate your troop. It would show what ground had been gained (or lost) and it brought courage, for as long as you could see the Standard, you knew all was not lost.

Even so, if you look at our own National Anthem and read the words, you will see that this held true for Francis Scott Key:

“Oh, say can you see by the dawn's early light

What so proudly we hailed at the twilight's last gleaming?

Whose broad stripes and bright stars thru the perilous fight,

O'er the ramparts we watched were so gallantly streaming?

And the rocket's red glare, the bombs bursting in air,

Gave proof through the night that our flag was still there.

Oh, say does that star-spangled banner yet wave

O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave?”

So what is the significance of the Lord raising up a Standard?

The Lord’s Standard represents Heaven and its citizens! It represents the approved and lawful way of doing and being right. (Righteousness) It represents all the attributes of the One Who Rules Heaven. And it represents the blessings of living under His Rule!

So what is the Standard of Heaven? During Israel’s time in the Old Testament, it could best be said it was represented by the Veil in the Temple that separated the Holy of Holies. It kept a clear separation and also shrouded the mercy seat with mystery and fear.

But that was only a temporary standard. For when the Standard Bearer came, HE tore the veil in two! So what is the New Standard? It is the Blood Stained Cross upon which the flesh of Christ waved in the winds of all He had created, to secure the Victory for them once and for all.

The Lord raised up a standard, one made of flesh and blood, but incarnate with His own Spirit. First in a manger, then on a cross, then Risen from a tomb that held all mankind captive!

That Standard decrees Victory! Deliverance! Protection! That Standard bought Wholeness, Restoration, Pardon!

That Standard brings Fellowship, Family, and Intimacy with God!

That Standard affords us Healing, Provision, and Peace!

That Standard says, “This far and No further enemy! You are a defeated foe, who must bow in subjection to My People who are called by My Name…”

In the Hebrew “to raise up a standard” means to :

  • chase, impel, make to flee (away,)
  • put to flight,
  • to fly (to the attack) on horseback, to drive hastily
  • to cause to disappear, hide

Truly, the Lord will, and does fight for us! He comes to our aid, and he sends the enemy packing. Even when things happen to us that are “bad,” we can look and see how much worse they could have been.

When the enemy is howling mad, screaming at us how ‘we are done for” and ‘we will never make it,’ we must remember the Standard of Heaven which has already been lifted up for us, and Who tells us that He has overcome the World.

Yes, sweet people, we are living in perilous times. But they who KNOW ( have intimate and personal knowledge and relationship with) their God, shall do exploits.

The veil has been torn into two. The way has been. The way of escape. The way of mercy. The way of help and hope. We are told to come boldly to the Throne of Grace. By a new and living Way. The Way of Covenant found only in and through our Standard Bearer, who flew His Colors high upon a Cross. The colors of the skin of man and the Blood of the Lamb.

Whereby, every Tribe, Tongue and Nation now can find their way home to the One who Loves them all and Died to set them free.

We must rally round the Standard and Lift High the Name of the Standard Bearer who gives us Life Eternal- Jesus Christ Our Lord!

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