Lessons from Our National Banner
Numbers 2:1-2
And the LORD spoke to Moses and to Aaron, saying,…

When the Union Jack flies to the breeze the meaning is that what is under it is British property, and is a sort of challenge to touch that property. Every country had a flag. In old times very little did for a flag. One great nation had simply a wisp of straw on a pole, and another power in the East had but a blacksmith's apron. The Union Jack was their flag, and its composition was very simple. It was not made at all; like all the best things in this world, it grew. At first, in the thirteenth century, there was nothing but a single cross-one straight horizontal line and another perpendicular line. That was the cross of St. George, and it was introduced by Richard of the Lion-heart on his return from the Crusades. When away fighting in Palestine he came to know about St. George, whom he installed as his patron saint, took for his battle cry, and emblazoned on his flag. When England and Scotland were united under James I. of England, that monarch added the Scottish cross, and called the flag the Union Jack. That was his own name, as he usually signed it in the French way, Jacques. Two centuries later the Irish flag was placed on the top of the other two. The Union Jack was thus made up of three crosses, each being laid on the top of the other as each country came into the Union. These were the emblems of St. George, St. Andrew, and St. Patrick — the patron saints of the three countries. First, there was St. George. "George" originally meant a cultivated piece of ground, and parents in thus christening their children meant to say, "Would that God would make this little boy a garden of God!" They could desire nothing better than to be gardens of God. They must be gardens — they must allow themselves to be sown in — and they had to in their choice either to produce good or evil. Every good thought was a good seed. Now let us think a little about St. Andrew. There never was a live apostle in Scotland, but some one thought the bones of St. Andrew would do the Scots some good. So they were brought to St. Andrews, and that was the beginning of what was at one time the greatest city in Scotland. Andrew meant manly. Why was the object of the Brigade said to be the promotion of true manliness? Was it not as opposed to false manliness? Every one despised those who tried to be men before their time. Little was known about St. Patrick. He was carried away captive from Scotland to Ireland when a boy, and after obtaining his liberty he so pitied the people of Ireland that he went back to try and do them good. It was well for them to remember St. Patrick. Now, what did the flag teach them? It was a union — a Union Jack. It had been the strength of the British army all through, and it was owing to it that the English, Scotch, and Irish had fought side by side and helped one another. What they had to learn was the strength of union. The Cross led to victory. The Cross meant death to Christ, and the death of Christ meant that One came from heaven to die for them that they might be God's children. Under which flag would they determine to serve? Under that of Christ, which led to happiness, or under that which assuredly would lead to misery and ruin? The greatest disgrace that could befall a man was the forsaking of his own flag to serve under another. To act thus was to be a traitor to his king. It was the worst thing possible not to yield themselves to Christ. Let them not try to serve Christ and some one else. Let them make up their minds and resolve that they would henceforth fight for what was good and do what was good.

(Prof. Marcus Dods, D. D. , Sermon to Boys' Brigade.)

Parallel Verses
KJV: And the LORD spake unto Moses and unto Aaron, saying,

WEB: Yahweh spoke to Moses and to Aaron, saying,

Israel Typical of the Christian Church
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