Alpha and Omega

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The Greek letters Alpha and Omega (Α and ω), spoken four times by Jesus to the apostle John (Revelation 1:8, 11, 21:6, 22:13), reveal several Bible truths concerning himself. These truths revolve around his character, the power and authority he possesses, and his role in carrying out God the Father's awesome goals.

"I AM THE ALPHA AND THE OMEGA, THE BEGINNING AND THE ENDING," says the Lord, "Who is, and Who was, and Who is to come - the Almighty" (Revelation 1:8, HBFV, see also 4:8, 11:17).

Revelation 1:11 is a slight variation of verse 8 as the Lord states he is "the first and the last." Interestingly, the final occurrence of these two Greek letters combines the previous three times they are recorded.

I am Alpha and Omega, the Beginning and the End, the First and the Last (Revelation 22:13).

All this begs the following question. How is Jesus Christ the first (beginning) and last (ending) of what God is doing?

The first (Alpha)

The Apostle John reveals that God the Father, through God the Son (Jesus), created all things. The Lord not only brought into existence the physical universe but also the first humans. He additionally created the invisible spirit world (John 1:1 - 3, Ephesians 3:9, etc.) with its many angels.

The Apostle Paul declares that Jesus was the first person to announce "so great a salvation" to humanity (Hebrews 2:3). His words were later confirmed and amplified by the apostles.

Jesus is the first or head (beginning) of the spiritual organism known as the Church of God. This group is a collection of all those who ever lived who were converted and will be in the first resurrection (Ephesians 1:22, 4:15, 23, Colossians 1:18).

Greek letters Alpha and Omega found in Rome's catacombs
Alpha (left), Omega (right) and letters Chi and
Rho (middle) found in Rome's catacombs.

Christ lived a physical life and died, but was resurrected from the dead. He is the first (the Alpha, first fruit or firstborn) of countless others who will also be resurrected and changed into an eternal spirit Being (1Corinthians 15:20 - 23, Colossians 1:15 - 18, Revelation 1:5).

The last (Omega)

Adam, the first human created, sinned. His sin caused humanity to be cut off from their Creator, resulting in death passing on to all humans (1Corinthians 15:21 - 22). Jesus, as the second or last Adam, lived a perfect life in obedience to the Father. His sacrifice makes possible a resurrection into eternal life to all those who repent and live a life of overcoming (verses 20 - 24).

The Lord, after the order of Melchizedek (Hebrews 5:5 - 6), is the final (Omega) and greatest High Priest. As man's spiritual advocate before the Father, he lives to intercede on our behalf and to make possible the perfecting of our character for eternity (10:14, 21 - 22).

Jesus, as a member of the Godhead, was tasked with beginning and finishing the Father's great plan for mankind. When he has fully ended his work, and "cleaned up" all that exists so that what remains is sinless and perfect, "He shall have delivered up the kingdom to Him Who is God and Father . . ." (1Corinthians 15:24, see also Revelation 21:27).

Profound meanings

The first two sentences Jesus speaks to the Apostle John (Revelation 1:8, 11), as well as two others (21:6, 22:13), use the Greek letters Alpha and Omega to convey multiple spiritual truths.

Alpha and Omega, along with the declaration he is "the Almighty" (Revelation 1:8), clearly shows Jesus is divine and a member of the Godhead. The Greek word translated as Almighty, Strong's #G3841, refers to God as a universal sovereign who is all-powerful and ruler of all. These letters testify, from eternity to eternity, of his unchangeable righteous character.

These Greek alphabet letters additionally convey that the Lord is the first cause of all things in the universe. He created all things, whether visible or invisible. Lastly, Alpha and Omega insures us Christ, as the one who began the Father's plan to create countless holy beings, will perfectly carry it out to the end.

List of terms in
Dictionary of Biblical Words

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