I have a serious question and would like some feedback: What is the proper place of the American Flag in Christian places of worship. NOTE: Only civil discussion will be allowed. Any vitriol or improper comments will not be allowed.
For the moment, the discussion of whether the American flag should be in a Christian place of worship will not be considered. That is another discussion. Also, the point of discussion will relate only to flags in Christian houses of worship. In my mind, small things matter much like the one straw that breaks a camel’s back. For me, what is small to some… many… or most people… is huge for me in relation to my Christian faith (NOT politics… NOT political party… NOT secular morals or ethics).
There are a number of websites that set forth proper American flag etiquette (Click, Click, Click, Click). Basically, the American flag is to be placed in the highest honor when displayed indoors with other flags. All other flags are to be to the observers right according to subservient honor (State, City, other nations, etc). This is given just as a point of reference.
The question for the believer is where the representation of our God (The Christian Flag) is to be displayed? Should the Christian flag to defer to the American flag when presented together? If the American flag is displayed to the viewer’s left and the Christian flag to the right, does that not make the Christian faith subservient to the nation by presentation? If Christians say: God first, family second, country third… wouldn’t it be proper to present such in the display of flags? Shouldn’t the Christian flag be to the viewer’s left (Place of highest honor) and the American flag to the right? If there are “God and Country” services in Christian worship, GOD should be the point of highest honor from beginning to end in all things.
I can’t help but remember what is written in Daniel 3:16-18. This event was when a king demanded everyone to submit to a representation of him. Everyone did bow down, except three young Hebrew boys (Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego). They were threatened with death for not deferring to the king to which they answered…
“O Nebuchadnezzar, we have no need to answer you in this matter. 17 If this be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of your hand, O king. 18 But if not, be it known to you, O king, that we will not serve your gods or worship the golden image that you have set up.”
Granted, Christians are not yet forced to make a decision with such dire consequences. Never the less, what messages are Christians sending by placing a flag in a place of honor above the representation of our faith? If our allegiance is to God before all others (As represented by the Christian flag) shouldn’t the Christian flag be on the viewer’s left in places of worship?
Some may suggest I’m making a mountain out of a mole hill. But maybe not. Like the frog in the kettle… a slow rising of the water’s temperature isn’t all that much at first. But when a degree is added… over time… eventually it is too late to escape and the frog dies. Where a flag is placed in Christian places worship may not be much to some people, but to me everything in worship of God matters… including flags.