“Thou hast given a banner to them that fear thee, that it may be displayed because of the truth. Selah.”
Today’s verse passage speaks of God giving His people a banner (Hebrew, “Nes,”referring to a standard, signal, or ensign). In ancient times, armies marching out to do battle would carry their distinctive banners with them. These readily identifiable emblems made it clear which nations were in conflict and which side the soldiers were fighting for. Today’s verse reminds us that God’s people march under the banner of truth. The Christian is sanctified by the truth (John 17:17) and is called to speak and defend the truth, even in a world enveloped in confusion and deception (2 Timothy 3:13). Though the western world still largely claims to value and seek for truth, this is clearly not the case. The unregenerate, which currently dominate our government and their cultural megaphones, academia, the media and entertainment, routinely and consistently deny and suppress the truth in unrighteousness (Romans 1:18-20). In the area of philosophy we have the sophists who specialize in rhetoric, the art of persuasion regardless of whether their conclusions are true. Among contemporary scientists we see many who have prostituted themselves, publishing whatever results the highest bidder requires. Even in the area of mathematics, surely the hardest of the hard sciences, we see the regular manipulation of statistics in order to promote one agenda or another. In contrast, the Christian, unashamedly and often at great cost to himself, shines like a light in the world, holding forth the word of life (Philippians 2:15-16). Though we can expect much opposition and even persecution for sharing the truth, we may rest assured that one day things will change. Though Jesus has never yet been “mainstream” in this dark world, at the dawn of the Kingdom Age He surely will be. The prophet Isaiah declared that “in that day there shall be a root of Jesse, which shall stand for an ensign of the people; to it shall the Gentiles seek: and his rest shall be glorious” (Isaiah 11:10). “Thus saith the Lord GOD,” wrote the great prophet, “Behold, I will lift up mine hand to the Gentiles, and set up my standard to the people: and they shall bring thy sons in their arms, and thy daughters shall be carried upon their shoulders” (Isaiah 49:22). In ancient times the ensign, or standard, not only accompanied an army marching into battle, it also stood at the rallying place of retreat. As Isaiah seems to suggest, the LORD Himself is our ensign. The Truth Incarnate was raised between heaven and earth (John 3:14; 12:32) and has become the standard to which we have fled and the banner under which we march. May we do so faithfully and courageously, knowing that in the Kingdom Age, we will commune with the Savior, and His banner over us will be love (Song of Solomon 2:4).
God bless and encourage you today, dear saints