The symbolism in these banners developed
over the many years I have served the Lord. They show this ministry's commitment to the truth and fighting for the Kingdom - to make ready a people prepared for the Lord (Luke 1:17)
The first banner shows the Christian Age of ministry, while the
second one shows our Jewish heritage as a People of God with the Jews (Romans 10:12-13; 1 Corinthians 12:12-26; Galatians 3:26-29; Ephesians 2:11-22, 3:6; Colossians 3:11; 1 Peter 2:9-10; also Romans 12:4-5)
This has been important in my ministry and growth as a Christian,
especially since much of the church has forgotten that heritage and actively
ignores our Hebrew roots and culture. We need to remember we are all one in Christ, neither Jew nor Gentile (Galatians 3:26-29; Ephesians 2:12-22)
Both banners show the Shield of Faith (Ephesians 6:16)
which in the original Greek refers to a large full body shield. The
wings on the shields go with the wings the woman of Revelation 12 who
represents God's People. She gets the wings of an eagle in Revelation
12:14 so she can fly and be kept from harm away from the enemy of mankind. "But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint" (Isaiah 40:31)
Her name is Hephzibah (or Hephzi-bah/Heftzi-Vah/Hafzbah), which means "My delight is in her" (Isaiah 62:4)
The name comes from the Hebrew root "hafz" meaning "guarding" or
"taking care of" so words with this root suggest "safeguarding," which
goes with her being kept safe in Revelation 12:14.
The Helmet of Salvation (Ephesians 6:17)
the shield links to the menorah and the miracle of Hanukkah, because
when we are saved into God's Kingdom by the New Covenant in Christ
Jesus, we also receive a miracle of renewal when our spirits are reborn
with God's Spirit (1 John 4:15; Acts 2:38; John 3:3-7; Matthew 10:32-33; Romans 10:9-10; Ephesians 1:13-14)
This goes with Hanukkah because the
menorah is lit over eight days during Hanukkah to remember the miracle
of one day's worth of lamp oil lasting the full eight days to rededicate
God's temple. It is a miracle the Jews need to link to our bodies being
dedicated and reborn as God's temples when we are saved in Christ.
Breastplate of Righteousness is shown with the Helmet because it is
righteousness to believe in Jesus. It is our justification for being
saved (Romans 10:10)
. Acting righteously also brings us blessings and protection when we avoid sin and please God.
pieces of the Armor of God are shown on these banners. The Sword or
Word of God is shown breaking a chain and shackles from the Judian period, because Jesus brought
the New Covenant to free the Jews from the burden of having to keep the
Law of Moses. The Word also breaks the chains from sin in general when
people accept the truth of what sin really is and turn away from it.
The sandals are are at the base of the shepherd's staffs
because they are for fitting our feet with the Gospel of Peace in Jesus
Christ (Ephesians 6:15)
. He is our Shepherd and we
are shepherds of His People as His ministers. We use this peace to evangelize, and God's gospel gives us great peace because Christ reconciles all we've done wrong so that we have no worries of getting to heaven in the next life.
The Belt of Truth (Ephesians 6:14)
is shown above the sandals with the shepherd's staff because we are to use the truth to evangelize
and minister. It is also part of the Armor because knowing the truth
protects us against the lies of the world and enemy that would lead us
to sin and into darkness if we believe them.
A shofar is shown on
both banners because blowing a shofar announces and commemorates important
things, such as the anointment of a king (1 Kings 1:39; 2 Kings 9:13, 11:12-14; 2 Chronicles 23:11-13)
. I also believe Yom Teruah or the Day of Trumpets/Shouting (also called Rosh Hoshana; see The Lord's Holidays for more info
) was meant to celebrate the new age of the New Covenant and Jesus' reign as King of kings and Lord of lords.
musical instruments are shown on both banners because of the importance
of music, songs, and poetry for our faith and worship. Much of the psalms are songs and poetry. A lyre or harp of the period when King David lived is shown with a timbrel/tambourine on the heritage banner because these instruments were often mentioned in the Old Testament.
making music became increasingly important in my own walk with and for
the Lord. Our heart for the Lord is shown when singing in worship, and music is the
language of our souls, giving expression for our hearts.
"...be filled with the Spirit; Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns
and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord;
Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father
in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ" (Ephesians 5:18-20)
"Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you,
with all wisdom teaching and admonishing
one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs,
singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God." (Colossians 3:16)