Isaiah 59:16-20 “And he saw that there was no man, and wondered that there was no intercessor: therefore his arm brought salvation unto him; and his righteousness, it sustained him. For he put on righteousness as a breastplate, and an helmet of salvation upon his head; and he put on the garments of vengeance for clothing, and was clad with zeal as a cloak. According to their deeds, accordingly he will repay, fury to his adversaries, recompence to his enemies; to the islands he will repay recompence. So shall they 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 shall lift up a standard against him. And the Redeemer shall come to Zion, and unto them that turn from transgression in Jacob, saith the LORD.”
How can a standard, which is a little flag used to identify something, bring comfort in the midst of a flood? A preacher once said that the comma in this verse is in the wrong place. In the original text, there are no commas.
Instead, it should read, ‘When the enemy shall come in, like a flood the Spirit of the LORD shall lift up a standard against him.’
If a translator is focused on what the enemy is doing, he might think ‘when the enemy shall come in like a flood’, but if the translator is focused on what the Lord is doing, then, ‘when the enemy shall come in, like a flood the Spirit of the Lord…’
The context of this passage is about the coming Messiah, when He shall come to deliver His people. The Lord was rushing in to destroy and defy the evil that seemingly was prevailing. The Lord is coming in to bring victory.
Other translators have said: Isaiah 59:19 “From the west, people will fear the name of the LORD, and from the rising of the sun, they will revere his glory. For he will come like a pent-up flood that the breath of the LORD drives along,” (NIV).
Does the flood belong to the Lord? Well, the flood of Noah was an act of cleansing of the earth.
Psalm 29:1-4 “Give unto the LORD, O ye mighty, give unto the LORD glory and strength. Give unto the LORD the glory due unto his name; worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness. The voice of the LORD is upon the waters: the God of glory thundereth: the LORD is upon many waters. The voice of the LORD is powerful; the voice of the LORD is full of majesty.” (v10) “The LORD sitteth upon the flood; yea, the LORD sitteth King for ever.”
It is the Lord riding the flood.
In Cowboys and Indians movies on the horizon, you’d see a little flag and hear a trumpet sound. All of sudden you’d see what that standard represented: The Calvary—come to save the day!
That standard represents the Host of the Lord!
Even when the enemy seems like a flood, the Spirit of the Lord will rise up and He will bring the victory.
In the New Testament the concept is a little more Spiritual, more real.
Rom 5:20 “Moreover the law entered, that the offence might abound. But where sin abounded, grace did much more abound:”
God’s ‘much more’ is so much more than our ‘much more’!
The word ‘more’ in the Greek is so emphatic, the translators added the word ‘much’.
Our ‘much more’ isn’t very much compared to God’s ‘much more’.
James says, ‘He giveth more grace.’
2 Cor 12:9 “And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.”
Joshua 23:9 “For the LORD hath driven out from before you great nations and strong: but as for you, no man hath been able to stand before you unto this day.”
Deut 32:30 “How should one chase a thousand, and two put ten thousand to flight, except their Rock had sold them, and the LORD had shut them up?”
The devil comes along and will size you up and bring along something to take you. But, the Lord comes along and gives the strength of a thousand. When two get together, on the Lord’s side, it isn’t just addition, the Lord multiplies it, not just two thousand, instead, it’s ten thousand! When three get together, it becomes 100,000. When you get four, the unity of the strength of God in His people, there is more than enough to handle 1,000,000. That’s much more grace!
There is a ‘much more’ grace giving God who will multiply over and abundantly beyond what you could ever ask or think!
What does God do? The enemy is camped around Samaria. They’ve held a siege and there’s no food. God said He would take care of this camp of the Assyrians. God took four of the measliest rejects of society, lepers with no strength, no weapons, and no hope. He took their footsteps in the sand and multiplied it into the sound of an army. The enemy fled at the sound of just four men walking in the sand.
If you sit down, you will get nothing. But, if you walk in faith, God will multiply and amplify and become all you need. Like a flood He will raise up a standard against the enemy!
Psalm 91:7 “A thousand shall fall at thy side, and ten thousand at thy right hand; but it shall not come nigh thee.”
Romans 14:17 “For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost.”
Prayer is entering into the peace of God’s presence. In prayer we need to not only experience the joy of God, but also the peace of God. Under His shadow and under His wings, we find a great consolation.
We find our place in Him, a place of rest in His shadow.
The flood belongs to the Lord. It is time to lift your eyes unto the Lord and let His presence take control of that thing that is plaguing you. There is an abundance supreme. God is on the throne and He has you in His hands.
‘Where sin doth abound, grace does much more abound.’
You can put your confidence in God.
Jesus is a father to the fatherless. He said, ‘I will not leave you orphans. I will come to you.’ He is a God who responds.
When you feel like your situation is hopeless, like a flood His Spirit will come.
God has a flood headed your way. His breath, His word, His presence is driving that flood.
Just lift your eyes a little higher, above the wind and the waves. When Peter walked on the water, he looked at Jesus. As long as He kept his eyes on Jesus, he was fine. But when he looked at the waves, he started to sink.
There is a flood coming your way, representing the armies of Israel. Like Gahazi with Elijah when the armies came to take the prophet away. The servant was scared, but Elijah wasn’t worried at all. He knew that the armies of Israel outnumbered the armies of the enemy. He prayed that God would open Gahazi’s eyes to see. And God did!
Excerpted from a sermon preached by Evangelist Monty Showalter.
If you are in the Chicagoland area, come to The Life Church located at 3030 Central Road in Glenview, IL. Services are Sundays at 1pm and Wednesdays at 7pm.