The significance of this symbol, the 8 pointed cross, known as the Cross of St. John, later known as the Maltese Cross is of interest. It is said that each point represents one of the Beatitudes from the Sermon on the Mount, but to the Order of St. John, the 8 Points of the Cross that they wore on their religious habit and appeared on the flag of the Order represented 8 obligations or aspirations (found to be very similar to the Beatitudes)
“live in truth;
repent of sins;
give proof of humility;
be sincere and whole-hearted; and endure persecution” 1
The 8 points also represented the 8 kingdoms from which the knights were drawn consequently, 8 languages or dialects were spoken in the order.
This humble symbol of Christian faith, the 8 pointed Cross of St. John, the sign of the Hospitallers was one of the principal banners at the forefront of Christian soldiers and sailors in the Holy Land and Mediterranean Sea in their defense against Islamic expansion.