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Thursday, May 19, 2016

Kraybill Church Road 5/17/16 (Photo by Ester)
Ester caught a nice view looking up Kraybill Church Road from our home.

"The White Horse Rider"

Message Summary: John
saw heaven standing open and what did he see? Actually not what we might expect! If the verse was not before me I would expect it to say something to the effect, "Jesus sitting at the right hand of His Father" which is indeed the most common place we see Him after the ascension. But John says he saw a "white horse, whose rider is called Faithful and True"

Note: Podcast not available for today's message due to busyness and weariness.

"I saw heaven standing open and there before me was a white horse, whose rider is called Faithful and True" (Revelation 19:11a).

As we drive throughout Lancaster County we see a lot of horses. In our own neighborhood here on Kraybill Church Road we see them grazing peacefully in a pasture, or working as a team in a field. One of the distinct pleasant sightings that we'll usually stop what we're doing and run to the porch is when a horse and buggie or open cart clip clop right past our house. Late each afternoon we have been seeing the Amish boy in our lead photo returning home after his work on a nearby farm. Our border collie Mollie doesn't pay much attention to cars any more but when this horse comes by she darts off to the road barking at what to her must be an amazing sight! Of course we call her back trying to keep the situation peaceful not chaotic.

Horses are mentioned all through the Bible from Genesis to Revelation. The book of Revelation refers to horses 17 times so we might reasonably conclude there will be animals in heaven!

Lancaster City Police Mounted Unit.

Hoses are majestic animals but a white horse is especially so. The above photo shows our Lancaster City police horses with "Duke" in the center.

As I study heaven I note that no single extended Scripture portion gives us substantial information. Rather we have glimpses, kind of like a teaser, of what heaven is like. Today's portion comes from the book of Revelation. It's a tremendous comfort to believers. John had just received a remarkable revelation from an angel and had bowed down to worship the angel when he was firmly rebuked and told to "Worship God".

Then he saw heaven standing open and what did he see? Actually not what we might expect! If the verse was not before me I would expect it to say something to the effect, "Jesus sitting at the right hand of His Father" which is indeed the most common place we see Him after the ascension. But John says he saw a "white horse, whose rider is called Faithful and True".  As you read on through the passage this is clearly a vision of Jesus.

Let's examine and receive encouragement from the two titles given to Jesus Christ in the daily passage.

He is called "Faithful". This translates the very common Greek word "pistos", which objectively has the meaning of trustworthiness and reliability. This is one of the great attributes of God found throughout the Scriptures. Believers in every generation can join with Jeremiah in declaring, "Great is Thy faithfulness!"

He is called "True". This word denotes real and genuine. It places Him in contrast to the antichrist who is also depicted on a white horse earlier in Revelation 6:2. While on earth Jesus had said in encouraging His disciples, "I am the way, the truth, and the life" (John 14:6).

Warren Wiersbe comments on this portion of Scripture: "This description of Christ is thrilling! He is no longer on a humble donkey, but on a fiery white charger. His eyes are not filled with tears as when He beheld Jerusalem; nor is He wearing a mocking crown of thorns. Instead of being stripped by His enemies, He wears a garment dipped in blood, signifying judgment and victory. When on earth, He was abandoned by His followers; but here the armies of heaven follow Him in conquest. He comes to rule with a rod of iron (Psalm 2). He comes not to bear the wrath of God on the cross, but to tread the winepress of God's wrath at the Battle of Armageddon. He is King of kings and Lord of lords!"

The humility of Calvary and the assertiveness of Armageddon may seem inconsistent, but wherever sin exists, both will be found. Our faithful and true Saviour will triumph in the end and His kingdom will know no end.

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Praying manDaily prayer: Dear Jesus, on that great appointed day we will behold You in all of Your glory, power and splendor!  Your appearance will far surpass the glimpse of a superstar, for You are the King of kings and Lord of lords! And because You are faithful You will not shirk Your duties but You will bring discipline and justice where injustice has so long prevailed. Capturing the vision of You as our conquering Faithful and True High Priest riding on a white horse renews our anticipation for that which is yet to come! Even so, come quickly, Lord Jesus. Amen.

Horses in meadow along Colebrook Road
Horses in meadow along Kraybill Church Road and Colebrook Road

Photo of Amish plow
Amishman down our road using team horses with single plow

Kraybill Church Road 5/17/16 (Photo by Ester)
Another photo Ester took looking down Kraybill Church Road where the horse and rider are just passing our house.

Central Market alley with police horse in Lancaster PA
I received an interesting email from the commander of our Lancaster City Police Mounted Unit who had apparently come across the photo above. I took it in front of the Central Market in Lancaster, PA about 10 years ago. He wrote that the horse's name was Duke and he told me he was black when the police force first received him. In my photo from ten years ago he looks dark gray. He has fully transitioned to white in the photo below!

Lancaster City Police Mounted Unit.
Another photo of the Lancaster City Police Mounted Unit with Duke appearing to be getting a bit frisky.

Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources

"My Redeemer Is Faithful and True"  Video  Steven Curtis Chapman

"We Will Ride!"  Video  Not identified

"Dirt On My Hands"  Video  Booth Brothers

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Scripture references are from The Holy Bible: New International Version. © 1984 by International Bible Society; NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1995 by The Lockman Foundation, New King James Version (NKJV) Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. and the King James Version.

Personal Mission Statement: "I am created by God to bring Him glory. Through God's Son Jesus Christ I have been redeemed and make it my life's goal to please the Lord. My mission in life is to honor God through my faith and obedience and prepare myself and all whom I may influence for eternity."

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