The White Horse Rider Returns

Today’s reading is Revelation 19.

Do you remember the rider on the white horse from Revelation 6:1-2? He’s back. And this time, we absolutely know who He is. He’s actually been riding throughout the book, but it is not until this last cycle we see His ultimate victory. He went out conquering and to conquer, but what happened next was shocking. Instead of immediate conquest and ensuing peace, the enemies seemed to be conquering. No doubt, we’ve read the cycle multiple times. We know Jesus always wins no matter how it looks in the moment. However, with each cycle, we got a fuller and deeper picture. Now, he circles back and brings complete closure and demonstrates full victory. He went forth conquering and to conquer, and now we see it truly happening. But not only do we see Him, we see the armies in fine linen, white and pure. Do you remember who was given the white garments in the fifth seal in Revelation 6:11? Those martyrs are part of the conquering army now. God had told them to wait. The waiting is done. Victory has come. In Christ’s kingdom even death doesn’t signal defeat. It is merely a rest stop on the way to victory. Praise the Lord! Over and over and over again, the message is found: Jesus Always Wins!

Tomorrow’s reading is Revelation 20.

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The Weapons of Our Warfare

Today’s reading is 2 Corinthians 10.

We are in a kingdom. Our king is Jesus. He is opposed to all other kings. The battle is on for domination of the world. However, our kingdom is different. We do not wage war according to the flesh. Sadly, this has been overlooked throughout the centuries. Perhaps the worst of these oversights was the Crusades. Then there were the holy wars during the Reformation years. Of course, there was the Inquisition. But is it any different today when churches mount political campaigns and try to mobilize social justice marches and movements to get the world to act like Christians are supposed to act? These may use voting booths instead of military offensives and sit ins instead of bombing raids, but they are still weapons of the flesh. We bring the gospel. Then we live by the gospel, holding those in Christ’s kingdom accountable to the gospel, and let the kingdoms of the world see what that looks like. These are our weapons. They worked in the first couple of centuries of Christianity. Let’s pick them up again.

Tomorrow’s reading is 2 Corinthians 11.

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The Monster

Today’s reading is Revelation 12.

You’ve seen the movie or heard the stories. The Hero wants to marry the would-be bride, but first he must rescue her from the monster. That is our story now. We’ve met the Hero. We’ve met the Bride. Now meet the Monster. The dragon, the serpent of old, the devil himself. The dragon would have the Bride sacrificed on his altar, a meal for his supper. The Monster has lost one battle already, being cast from heaven. But he stands on the shore of the sea and wages war on the Bride. Will the Monster win? Will the Hero arrive in time to save the day? In this chapter we are left merely at the point of battle. If it were a movie on TV, it is time for a commercial break. What will happen next? Of course, you already know my answer. And if you’ve read ahead you can see. But appreciate for now the terror of facing the dragon, the Monster that wages war. Yes, victory is coming, but don’t be deterred by the battle; it is exactly what God said would come. Hang on, though, because Jesus always wins!

Tomorrow’s reading is Revelation 13.

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