The Holy War
Revelation 19:11-21
And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat on him was called Faithful and True…

There now opens to our view another scene of warfare. It is brief, comprehensive, and decisive. It is a view of the heavenlies. The conflict is between the heavenly and the earthly powers. It is a "representation of the conquest of the kingdoms to Christ, which, like all his conquests, is accomplished by the power of the truth, wielded by a faithful Church, and rendered efficacious by the power of his Spirit."


1. One called "Faithful and True" - "the Word of God." He is distinguished by symbols which indicate his Divine power and authority. He is "KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS." His visage corresponds to earlier descriptions: "his eyes are a flame of fire;" "on his head are many diadems;" his name is unknown but to himself; his garment is sprinkled with blood; from his mouth proceeds a sharp sword; his feet wend the wine press of the Divine wrath; he is seated on a white horse.

2. He leads forth an army also upon white horses, and clothed in "fine linen, white and pure" Thus is represented the Divine Captain, the Lord Jesus, leading forth his faithful ones to do battle against sin in its various guises.

3. On the other hand is represented the contending foes: "the beast, and the kings of the earth, and their armies." Against these Christ and his faithful Church wage war: war against sin - foul, filthy sin - "the beast;" and against all the spirit of error and untruth, "the false prophet;" and against all the powers of evil which by them inspired domineer over the life of men, and they wage war against whatever stands in opposition to the idea of "the Christ" - the King set upon the holy hill, of whom the psalmist sings. They are the enemies, the "foes" of David's Son and Lord, which shall be made his "footstool."

II. THE CONFLICT IS NOT DELINEATED. It has been already, and abundantly. We are to see in it all the contention long continued between the diverse elements, light and darkness, truth and error, righteousness and sin, Christ and Belial, the judgment of human conduct by the true standard of right, the life of Christ. This is the struggle now going forward.

III. THE ISSUE IS A VICTORIOUS CONQUEST GAINED BY CHRIST AND HIS ARMY OVER ALL THE POWER OF THE ENEMY. "The beast was taken, and with him the false prophet." Their destruction is complete and final. They are cast alive, as in their activity, into a "lake of fire that burneth with brimstone."

IV. THE INSTRUMENT OF WARFARE SUFFICIENTLY INDICATES THE NATURE OF THE STRIFE. In a few words is indicated the nature of the weapons (weapon), and so the nature of the strife. He smites the nations with the sword which proceeded out of his mouth: "The sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God." With this only weapon the "rest are killed."

V. THE FINAL JOY OF ALL in the ascendency of the truth is indicated in the gathering of the fowls of the air to the supper of the great God, called by an angel standing where all can see - in the sun. - R.G.

Parallel Verses
KJV: And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war.

WEB: I saw the heaven opened, and behold, a white horse, and he who sat on it is called Faithful and True. In righteousness he judges and makes war.

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