Another White Horse, Another Rider

Revelation 19

Sunday, December 4, 2022

If you can remember way back to November 21, we read about a rider on a white horse, the first of the “four horsemen of the apocalypse” in chapter 6. The four horsemen constitute the opening section of the “chronology” of Revelation. (If we can call it that. Revelation is in part so fascinating because it loops around, runs back to creation, brings us to the time of Christ, and then thrusts us into the future again!) In chapter 6, the horseman was conquest, the personified human impulse to dominate and subjugate others. The horsemen collectively are personifying human evil with the brakes cut. Humanity is allowed to get as bad as it will get, and then God steps in, in judgement. 

But today, the same imagery of a person on a white horse is used, with VASTLY different purposes. The one who rides the horse does come to conquer, but his name is faithful and true. His motivation and goal is righteousness. Then we see him: eyes of fire, head full of crowns, a mystery to all except God himself, drenched in the blood that saves, the Word made flesh. Christ, magnified, glorified, empowered and regal, comes to take the crowns from the world leaders that are his by birth, his by death, and his by resurrection. He truly is King of Kings and Lord of Lords. 

I recreate so much of the language to encourage you to stop and read 19:11-16 – and actually, the whole chapter while you are at it. This is the Christ we are called to serve, recognize, praise and adore. This is the Christ who comes again, for the second time. When first he came, why we celebrate Advent and Christmas, he was born in a lowly stable with a manger for a bed. He comes the second time riding the warhorse, not lying where it feeds. At Christmas, he was born to a young woman and her husband-to-be and raised as a refugee in Egypt. At the second coming, he will be bringing together those who follow him from every corner of the world, and setting his people up tall, not refugees and sojourners but citizens of the world made new. At Christmas, only shepherds (and magi, but not really) came to him and gave him gifts and bowed down to the king. At his second coming all will bow to Christ, highly exalted and magnified above every name and above every power. 

May we praise and adore the Christ who came and is coming again. 

  • Jake Ballard


  1. We need to reexamine our view of Jesus. Jesus was a child born to the poor, oppressed and disposed. Jesus was a meek and mild suffering servant. But Jesus IS and WILL be Lord over all. Jesus IS and WILL be king of kings and lord of lords. Do you give him the worth and honor due him?
  2. As you celebrate Jesus’ first coming, how can you put more focus on his second coming?

The Second Coming

Revelation 19

Revelation 19 11 NIV
We’ve had some really heavy topics, and we are not quite out of the woods yet. We are coming to the point in the reading where there is just joy and happiness and peace, but we are not there yet. It takes someone showing up on the scene to make that happen. We have the coming of a rider on a white horse. The images that John uses only highlights that he is speaking about Jesus.
I love Christmas; the songs, the snow, the presents, the expectations. I even love the time leading up to it. In the wider Christian tradition, this time is called Advent, which is Latin for “to come”. We recognize in Advent the first coming of Jesus. And in Revelation 19, we are shown a picture of the second coming of Jesus. Those two images could not be more different. 
Jesus came as a peaceful prince riding on a donkey. Jesus will come as a conquering rider on a white horse.
When he came, many called him a liar and a demoniac. He will come and be known as “Faithful and True.”
He came to bring salvation. He will come to bring judgment.
He came with eyes full of tenderness and sorrow. He will come with eyes of fiery flame.
He came and bore a crown of thorns. He will come crowned with many crowns. 
He came and was wrapped in tattered cloths. He will come in a blood stained robe.
He came and was known as Jesus. He will come and be known as Word of God.
He came and refused the help of the legions of angels. He will come and be accompanied by the armies of heaven. 
He came preaching words of truth. He will come and his words will be a sword coming from his mouth. 
He came and only a small number knew who we was. 
He will come, and his name, King of Kings and Lord of Lords, will be emblazoned on his thigh.
This is the Messiah we serve. He is not weak; he is not a push over; he is not a doting parent or Santa Claus. 
He is the conquering king, coming to claim the world that is rightfully his, to avenge his servants who have been oppressed, and to drive out those who did not honor him. 
Let this image of Jesus wash over you, and praise God that the King is coming. 
Amen, Come, Lord Jesus.
Jake Ballard
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