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that is white. And looking on all the past history of man, what body of men is to be seen, that, in the eyes of angels while they look upon our world, could be viewed from heaven itself as white, like unto those men of understanding, and others who have the same spirit of faith as theirs, who, as the prophet Daniel" marked the time and drew their character, knew their God and instructed many, at the time when Judaism was overthrown and Judea left desolate, and the church of Christ was established on the earth,—of whom the world was not worthy, who fell by the sword, and by flame, by captivity and by spoil many days, and of whom also, or of those who followed in their footsteps, maintained their character, and shared their faith and their fate, it is said they shall fall, to try them and to purge them, and, in the one same word, to make them WHITE, even to the time of the end : because it is yet for a time appointed. Such, in its purity and truth, is the church that is Christ's. And blessed are they who read and understand and practically know the meaning of the leading symbol of the book of revelation ; and who know that, as members of his church, a peculiar people unto him, they are called to be white,-made like unto the raiment of their righteous Lord, exceeding white as snow,—and themselves clothed with fine linen, white and clean, the righteousness of the saints, -which no fuller on earth could whiten.
But if such be its significancy, such an emblem could not by itself have been seen on earth by any heavenly spectator of a world like ours. It is as pertaining unto Christ and purchased by him, and as directed, reined, and ruled by his hand alone, that white is the word of an angel concerning any people upon earth.
And I saw, when the Lamb opened one of the seals and behold a WHITE horse: and he that sat on him
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had a bow ; and a crown was given unto him; and he went forth conquering and to conquer. These, surely, are most fitting emblems of Christ and of his church : and as whiteness is its characteristic, every word also accords with what was written concerning Him by Moses and the prophets, in the psalms, gospels, epistles, and, as definitely as before, in the book of Revelation, where he is manifestly spoken of. At the time when, after his resurrection, Jesus opened the understanding of his disciples that they might understand the scripture, he said all things must be fulfilled which were written in the law of Moses, and in the prophets, and in the psalms concerning me. And as he who sat on a white horse and had a bow, went forth as a conqueror, so it is written of him in the psalms, in the very words applied to him in the first chapter of the epistle to the Hebrews ;-Ride prosperously, because of truth and meekness and righteousness, (the fine white linen of the saints); and thy right hand shall teach thee terrible things. Thine arrows (from the bow) are sharp in the heart of the king's enemies ; whereby thy people fall under thee. Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever, the sceptre of thy kingdom is a right sceptre, Psalm xlv. 3. The serpent, indeed, bruised his heel, but,--as we learn from the first words of prophecy, that, so soon as it came to destroy, au. gured the destruction of sin,--he who for that end became the seed of the woman, shall bruise the serpent’s head. In the days of these kingdoms, says Daniel, shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed—whose kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and all dominions shall serve and obey him.---All power is given unto Christ in heaven and on earth. He will swallow up death in vietory. He must reign till he hath put all enemies under his feet. When the first seal was open
Christian Chure, and not beyond a
ed, he was seen going forth to conquer. And when the seventh or last angel sounded, " there were great voices in heaven, saying, the kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord and of his Christ; and he shall reign for ever and ever.” (Rev. xi. 15.) In the sequel of the Revelation, (xiv. 14), in another vision, it is said, And I looked and behold a white cloud, and upon the cloud sat one like unto the Son of Man, having on his head a golden crown. But a single passage from this book might suffice to put beyond a doubt the signification of the figure, and to show that Christ and the true Christian church are designed by it. The same person, under the same symbol, who was seen going forth conquering and to conquer, is seen again after the warfare is accomplished, triumphant over all that opposed him ; and he who at first had a crown given, is seen at last with many added diadems or coronets,—still united to his church, which he does not leave in his triumph, after he has led it on to victory. -" Let us be glad and rejoice and give honour to him ; for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready. And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white; for the fine linen is the righteousness of the saints.-And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse : and he that sat upon him was called faithful and true, and in righteousness doth he judge and make war. His eyes are as a flame of fire, and on his head are many crowns ; and he had a name written that no man knew but he himself. And he was clothed in a vesture dipped in blood, and his name is called the WORD OF GOD. And the armies which were in heaven followed him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean. And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations; and he shall rule them with a rod of iron : and he treadeth the wine-press of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God. And he hath on his vesture and on his thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS,” Rev. xix. 7-16. There is none among the kings of the earth, there is none among the principalities and powers in heaven, to whom this name pertains or this character belongs, but that of the Lord Jesus Christ, who is exalted far above them all.
From these words of inspiration it is manifest that no wresting of Scripture, no straining of a text, no aid from fancy, nor violence to reason, are needful to expound the import of the figure, which, first of all, one of the bright intelligences of heaven called on the apostle to come and see. I saw, and behold a white horse, and he that sat on him had a bow, and a crown was given him, and he went forth conquering and to conquer.
He went forth conquering. When his gospel was first preached, Christ was believed on in the world. He came to make an end of sin, and to bring in everlasting righteousness. His vesture was dipped in blood, whose name was the Word of God. He took part of flesh and blood, that through death he might destroy him that had power over death, that is, the devil. Satan was beheld to fall before him like lightning from heaven. The kingdom of God was preached unto the world, power to become the sons of God was promised to them that believed, and received him. He who reigns by righteousness, sought for himself a kingdom from among the sinful children of men, and in a world enslaved by sin, he went forth to conquer. Never on earth was there a triumph of light over darkness, of righteousness over iniquity ; nor did the power of Satan ever sustain such a shock, as at the time when the men of understanding who knew their God, instructed many, when
the apostles of the Lord Jesus, and all the first preachers of the gospel, went forth to convert a world lying in wickedness, established Christian churches in every land, and not with carnal weapons of their warfare, but strong in the Lord and in the power of his might, themselves fought as they taught others to fight the good fight of faith, and, as the servants of Jesus, conquering sin, which till then had held the world in unredeemed slavery and unchallenged dominion. Christ, by a preached gospel, went forth conquering. Thousands at a time were delivered from the power of darkness, and translated into the kingdom of God's dear Son. That kingdom shall abide for ever. And when first it was preached, a new era began not only in the history of man, but in the universe of God. The efficacy of his death, the power of his resurrection, the effusion of his Spirit, the preaching of his word, were not to be the work only of a day, but to affect the interests of innumerable multitudes throughout eternity.-The world itself was finally to be won, by the warfare which then had but its beginning. The little seed was sown, which was to become a tree to cover the whole earth, and on the branches of which all the birds of heaven shall lodge. Christ went forth not only conquering but to conquer, or more literally and emphatically, that he may conquer*- till all enemies be put under his feet, and that at last it may be manifest that there is nothing that God hath not put under him. Against his church, founded on a rock by the preaching of the gospel, all the gates of hell—whatever they may send forth, or whatever form they may assume by any other religion or any perversion of the faith, or even in more than satanic hardihood by the want of all-never shall prevail. Christ shall be the con