I don’t know when I’ve enjoyed a series of little Bible Verses, “snippets” I used to call them, any more than these on the Holy Spirit! Nearly 3 weeks of Lessons, all focusing on the amazing Spirit of the Lord.
Today’s thought is equally interesting!
“When the enemy shall come in like a flood, the Spirit of the LORD shall lift up a standard against him.” Isaiah 59:19
Yes, there are always enemies, even in the Christian life. Or should I say especially in the Christian life? The Devil and his cohorts see to that!
Yet here in Isaiah’s Verse the enemy is formidable. He attacks “like a flood.” Or does he even attack? The verb “come in” suggests he just “joins” the group! Jude 4 says “crept in unawares!” Tares in the wheat field!
The noun “flood” (in Hebrew “nahar”) means “river” 98 of 120 times in the Bible. But the translators here felt that word was not strong enough, and used “flood” instead. In fact, 17 more times they did the same thing, as led by the Lord.
A roaring flood!
What is just one man or woman, though he or she may be a Christian, against such a massive onslaught?
“When the enemy shall come in like a flood ….” Notice not “if” he comes, but “when” he comes! We are in a battle, aren’t we?
But when Satan opposes, inundates us … we are not alone!
“When the enemy shall come in like a flood, THE SPIRIT OF THE LORD SHALL LIFT UP A STANDARD AGAINST HIM.”
What an encouraging promise!
The Holy Spirit is with me!
Watching my back, surrounding me, protecting me!
What does he do? What is He doing right now? What will He do the rest of our earthly days? What is His very Nature?
“To lift up a standard” against the approaching harm, so says the Prophet, directly led by God to pen these powerful words.
And folks, all that is the result of a single Hebrew verb, “lift up a standard!” It is spelled “nus” (pronounced noos) and normally means (142 times in the Old Testament) “to flee.” But here that meaning does not exactly fit. Partly because of the phrase “against him,” opposing the enemy.
This is not running away from the enemy … no! This is running TOWARD him! Attacking him, counterattacking him! Going on the offense! Using the sword of the Spirit and lunging toward that old rascal!
Furthermore, still discussing grammar by the way … “nus” here is built (in Hebrew, not English) on the Polel stem, meaning its last letter is doubled (now spelled “nuss”) and this dramatically adds to the verbal action implied. It’s then a super-powerful “Piel” stem verb then. The Holy Spirit ENERGETICALLY, FURIOUSLY, WITH ALL HIS MIGHT counteracts that encroaching enemy of my soul! DILIGENTLY, WHOLE-HEARTEDLY, FERVENTLY
Clearly, it’s not defense here as much as OFFENSE, Brothers and Sisters in Christ!
This thought today gives new, fresh meaning to Paul’s words: “If God be FOR us, who can be AGAINST us? Romans 8:31
With the Holy Spirit’s aid we then literally can: “Be not overcome of evil, but OVERCOME evil with good.” Romans 12:21, where “overcome” is the verb “nikao,” meaning “to conquer!” In the Name of the Lord, of course!
This too gives more emphasis to the expression “the Sword of the Spirit!” Again note this is an “attack weapon.” Ephesians 6:17
And sheds even further illumination to 2nd Thessalonians 2:8-9, a yet future event, at Jesus’ Second Coming. “And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord SHALL CONSUME with the spirit of his mouth, and SHALL DESTROY with the brightness of his coming: even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders.” Offense, for sure!
Running toward the floodtide, opposing it!
Oh, the amazing vastness of the Holy Spirit’s ministry among us today!
Mercy, how we ought to thank Him for being such a Warrior in our behalf!
— Dr. Mike Bagwell