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Alone (4 of 18)
The Greatest Texts of the Bible
Clarence Edward Macartney
I have trodden the winepress alone.
The shadows of the night are beginning to lift and
flee away before the advent of the sun. Standing on
the wall of some fortress in Israel and looking off in
the direction of Edom, Israel's congenital and
perpetual enemy, the watchman beholds a solitary
warrior. The hastening day shows him to be grand in
his stature, majestic in his movement, striding
forward like a conqueror, with all his crimson
garments streaming in the wind. As he draws nearer,
the astonished watchman calls to him:
"Who is this that cometh from Edom, with dyed garments
from Bozrah, this that is glorious in his apparel,
travelling in the greatness of his strength?" (Isa.
"I that speak in righteousness, mighty to save" (Isa.
63:1b), comes the answer.
"Wherefore art thou red in thine apparel, and thy
garments like him that treadeth in the winefat?" (Isa.
"I have trodden the winepress alone; and of the people
there was none with me."
Christian belief has always seen in this sublime
Isaian passage a description of the triumph of Christ
in His redeeming work, and the thing which has always
impressed most the eye of him who looks upon this
great portrait is not the majestic mien of the
conqueror, nor his garments crimson from the battle,
but his solitude, his utter loneliness: "I have
trodden the winepress alone; and of the people there
was none with me; . . . and I looked and there was
none to help" (Isa. 63:3, 5).
Loneliness is an inevitable portion of our human lot.
Each life is an adventure by itself. No two people
ever repeat the same experience. There is a
constitutional loneliness which belongs to all men,
for "the heart knoweth his own bitterness; and a
stranger doth not intermeddle with his joy."
Not even the tenderest heart, and next our own,
Knows half t ...
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