Do Flags Belong in the Church?

 “24 This is the day which the Lord hath made; we will rejoice and be glad in it.”

Psalm 118:24

Worship is a key part of the writings in the Bible from David in the Old Testament to Paul and Silas in jail in the New Testament. Worship is important to God, and to His people because it connects us to God. According to Acts God performs His work when we praise Him. In the Messianic Psalm 22 it tells us the glorious truth that God inhabits the praises of His people Israel, and as believers are we not grafted into the root of Jesse and are indeed His people Israel. We are commanded in Philippians to be a people that rejoice in their God always.

 

2 Samuel 6:14

“14 And David danced before the Lord with all his might; and David was girded with a linen ephod.”

 

Acts 16:25-26

“25 And at midnight Paul and Silas prayed, and sang praises unto God: and the prisoners heard them.

26 And suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken: and immediately all the doors were opened, and every one’s bands were loosed.”

 

Psalm 22:3

“3 But thou art holy, O thou that inhabitest the praises of Israel.”

 

Philippians 4:4

“4 Rejoice in the Lord always: and again I say, Rejoice.”

 

Worshiping Jesus

Pastor Chuck Smith, a contributor to the blue letter Bible website states that in John 12, the crowd waved palm branches at Jesus Christ as he rode a donkey colt into Jerusalem the week before the crucifixion the people greeted Him, waving palm branches and crying Hosanna [3]. The people rejoiced and wave palm leaves they knew their King had come and they may not have understood it yet but the people praised the fact that Jesus brought salvation to all.

 

John 12:12-15

“12 On the next day much people that were come to the feast, when they heard that Jesus was coming to Jerusalem,

13 Took branches of palm trees, and went forth to meet him, and cried, Hosanna: Blessed is the King of Israel that cometh in the name of the Lord.

14 And Jesus, when he had found a young ass, sat thereon; as it is written,

15 Fear not, daughter of Sion: behold, thy King cometh, sitting on an ass’s colt.”

 

John 12 was a fulfillment of the prophecy in Zechariah 9 where we are told to rejoice and shout for the King is coming. Hallelujah the King did come and shout oh you His people.

 

Zechariah 9:9

“9 Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion; shout, O daughter of Jerusalem: behold, thy King cometh unto thee: he is just, and having salvation; lowly, and riding upon an ass, and upon a colt the foal of an ass.”

 

Many churches wave palm leaves on Palm Sunday symbolizing salvation and the victory of Jesus Christ. If we celebrate Him with waving palms on Palm Sunday why not celebrate more frequently and exult Jesus by praising, worshiping, and waving flags to rejoice in His salvation for mankind to celebrate that He is King of Kings. We are told in Ephesians 5:19 and Colossians 3:16 we should sing in Psalms, songs, and hymns to the King remember when Paul and Silas sang praises God caused an earthquake to free them from their bonds. We need to be excited to sing, to dance, to rejoice, to wave flags and banners to Jesus for He has brought us salvation. Praise His Holy name.

 

Ephesians 5:18-20

“18 And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit;

19 Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord;

20 Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.”

 

Colossians 3:16

“16 Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.”

 

Flags in the Bible

In Psalm 60, it states that God has given His children a banner, a flag so, let’s explore some of the uses of flags in the Holy Bible and see how this form of worship pertains to the church today.

 

Psalm 60:4

“4 Thou hast given thy people a banner to them that fear thee, that it may be displayed because of the truth, Selah.”

 

Flags, and banners are mentioned in the Old Testament of the Holy Bible, and they bring a distinctive visible aspect to worship. Although not mentioned in the New Testament flags and banners are like when the people waved the palms in celebration of Christ.  Scripture uses the words banner, ensign, flag and standard from Strongs “a flag; also a sail; by implication, a flagstaff; generally a signal; figuratively, a token:—banner, pole, sail, (en-) sign, standard.” [4].

Worship flags are an asset to the church body, and while flags are not mentioned in New Testament worship, neither are drums, keyboards, electric guitars, painting prophetically or several other things we use to worship our Lord and Savior in the church today.  If the worshipers dress and dance to the Lord in modesty while honoring leadership, flag worshipers join in unity with the whole church to bring God’s purpose for the service into fruition. Flags, banners, and streamers are used in the Holy Bible bring a distinctive visual representation of glory, praise, and worship to God, joy to the dancer who worships God, and help release the intentions of God for the service. Worshippers help release the intentions of God for the service while bringing joy to the flagger who worships with flags to bring glory to God.

 

Isaiah 49:22

“22 Thus saith the Lord God, 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 13:2

“2 Lift ye up a banner upon the high mountain, exalt the voice unto them, shake the hand, that they may go into the gates of the nobles.”

 

Song of Solomon 2:4

“4 He brought me to the banqueting house, and his banner over me was love.”

 

Psalm 60:4-5

“4 Thou hast given a banner to them that fear thee, that it may be displayed because of the truth. Selah.

5 That thy beloved may be delivered; save with thy right hand, and hear me.”

 

Flag Worship

Worshipers use flags as a visible representation of raising His standard, and praise and worship our Lord God. Flaggers proclaim many aspects that the Holy Spirit is working in or seeks to achieve during worship, including spiritual warfare, and declaring the downfall of the enemy.  The most beautiful worship occurs when flaggers work with the worship team to bring the joyous freedom of the Lord to the congregation.

 

Worship is Collective and Individual

The flags, banners or streamers provide a visual or visible element of what the Holy Spirit wants to bring forth especially when the Pastoral Team, the worship team, the flag worshippers and the congregation all are united in praise to our King. This collective worship brings forth delightful worship to the glory of God because the Holy Spirit uses collective worship to bring an individual response to Jesus Christ. Each  individual with their singular worship including, the Pastoral team, the worship team, the flaggers/dancers, and all the members of the congregation, affect the corporate worship, and when the individual worshiper joins the collective worship in praise to our God, the Holy Spirit brings a sweet, sweet joy to the people’s heart.

 

1 Corinthians 12:12-14, 27

“12 For as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body: so also is Christ.

13 For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.

14 For the body is not one member, but many…

27 Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular.”

 

Biblical Use of Flags

In the following verses in the Word of God shows several attributes of how the Lord instructed His people to use flags/banners. Some of the uses for flags/banners are warfare and declaration for the intentions of the Lord, raising to proclaim the victory of our Lord, the salvation of our Lord, the deliverance of our Savior, strongholds coming down by our Lord, prophetic warnings from God, and most importantly that we are under the banner the protection of Almighty God.

 

Warfare

Jeremiah 50:2 

“2 Declare ye among the nations, and publish, and set up a standard; publish, and conceal not: say, Babylon is taken, Bel is confounded, Merodach is broken in pieces; her idols are confounded, her images are broken in pieces.”

 

Declaration

Isaiah 13:2

“2 Lift ye up a banner upon the high mountain, exalt the voice unto them, shake the hand, that they may go into the gates of the nobles. “Lift up a standard on the bare hill, Raise your voice to them, Wave the hand that they may enter the doors of the nobles.”

 

Victory, Joy, and Answered prayer

Psalm 20:5

“5 We will rejoice in thy salvation, and in the name of our God we will set up our banners: the Lord fulfil all thy petitions.”

 

Salvation and Deliverance of God

Psalm 60:4-5

“4 Thou hast given a banner to them that fear thee, that it may be displayed because of the truth. Selah.

5 That thy beloved may be delivered; save with thy right hand, and hear me.”

 

Warfare and bringing down strongholds

Isaiah 13:2-3

2 Lift ye up a banner upon the high mountain, exalt the voice unto them, shake the hand, that they may go into the gates of the nobles.

3 I have commanded my sanctified ones, I have also called my mighty ones for mine anger, even them that rejoice in my highness.”

 

Isaiah 13:2-3

“2 Lift up a war flag upon the high mountain! Raise your voice to them! Shake the hand so they can go into the gates of the nobles! 3. I have commanded My consecrated ones! My mighty ones for My anger, those who rejoice in My majesty.” [2]

 

Prophetic Warning from Lord

Jeremiah 4:6

“6 Lift up a standard toward Zion! Seek refuge, do not stand still, For I am bringing evil from the north, And great destruction. 

 

The Lord our Banner-The Lord our Protector

One of the most prominent use of banners/flags in the Bible is in Exodus, where the name of God is Jehovahnissi or “Jehovah is my banner,” and is found in Exodus 17:15 [5]. While a banner/flag was not used, God was their banner their standard, their victory, and they and we who are His are under the banner of His protection. Just think of it, we are under the protection of the King of Kings. So, raise your banner/flag high and proclaim. He is King.

 

Exodus 17:8-16

“8 Then came Amalek, and fought with Israel in Rephidim.

9 And Moses said unto Joshua, Choose us out men, and go out, fight with Amalek: to morrow I will stand on the top of the hill with the rod of God in mine hand.

10 So Joshua did as Moses had said to him, and fought with Amalek: and Moses, Aaron, and Hur went up to the top of the hill.

11 And it came to pass, when Moses held up his hand, that Israel prevailed: and when he let down his hand, Amalek prevailed.

12 But Moses hands were heavy; and they took a stone, and put it under him, and he sat thereon; and Aaron and Hur stayed up his hands, the one on the one side, and the other on the other side; and his hands were steady until the going down of the sun.

13 And Joshua discomfited Amalek and his people with the edge of the sword.

14 And the Lord said unto Moses, Write this for a memorial in a book, and rehearse it in the ears of Joshua: for I will utterly put out the remembrance of Amalek from under heaven.

15 And Moses built an altar, and called the name of it Jehovahnissi:

16 For he said, Because the Lord hath sworn that the Lord will have war with Amalek from generation to generation.”

 

Praise God that He is our banner, and His love is infinite with no end. Lift your banners, lift your voices, and sing and dance to the glory of God. Halleluiah, He reigns. Come on, sing, dance, raise your hands, and rejoice in the Lord!!!!!!!!!!! God loves us and rejoices over us so sing and rejoice, oh His people. Let all His children, Praise the LORD.

Zephaniah 3:14-17

“14 Sing, O daughter of Zion shout, O Israel; be glad and rejoice with all the heart, O daughter of Jerusalem.

15 The LORD hath taken away thy judgements, he hath cast out thine enemy: the king of Israel, even the LORD, is in the midst of thee: thou shalt not see evil any more.

16 In that day it shall be said to Jerusalem, Fear thou not: and to Zion, Let not thine hands be slack.”

17 The LORD thy God in the midst of thee is mighty; he will save, he will rejoice over thee with joy; he will rest over thee with love, he will joy over thee with singing.”

 

 

“Rejoice in the Lord always; again, I will say, rejoice.”

Philippians 4:4

 

References:

[1.] [The Holy Bible [KJV] Authorized King James Version], Except if noted all Scriptures are taken from the King James Version.

[2.] [“Scripture taken for The One New Man Bible, copyright @ 2011 William J.    Morford. Used by permission of True Potential Publishing, Inc.”]

[3] https://www.blueletterbible.org/Comm/smith_chuck/c2000_Jhn/Jhn_011.cfm?a=1009015

[4] https://www.blueletterbible.org/lang/lexicon/lexicon.cfm?Strongs=H5251&t=KJV

[5] https://www.blueletterbible.org/lang/Lexicon/Lexicon.cfm?strongs=H3071&t=KJV

 

 

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