WE are told in an Old Testament tale, how an angel of
God having appeared to man disappeared again by going up in the flame from
the altar. And in the same way Elijah, when he could no more be found,
was believed to have gone up on the crests of flaming horses. The
flame which carried Christ to heaven was the flame of his own sacrifice.
Flame tends always upwards. All his life long Christ's love burnt
towards the heart of heaven in a bright fire, until he was wholly consumed
in it, and went up in that fire to God. The fire is kindled on our
altars, here Christ ascends in fire; the fire is kindled in the Christian
heart, and we ascend. He says to us, Lift up your hearts; and we
reply, We lift them up unto the Lord.