Chapter 1.
THE ALPHA & OMEGA

What's in a name? More than we think. How many times have you been upset in your life by a name that was given to you? Perhaps you have been called names like chicken, bum, stupid, dummy, fatty, clumsy, etc. Names are important! They label us, perhaps, identify our character, condition, or the events that took place in the life of our parents at the time of our birth. As we look at the titles and names given to Jesus Christ, they are not given by accident, but give us His divine purpose for us and a divine message.

The name of Jesus Christ is special for several reasons.

Alpha (α) is the first letter of the Greek alphabet and Omega (Ω) is the last letter. The word "alphabet" comes from the first two letters of the Greek alphabet...alpha, beta. Christ is saying, "I am the first and the last, the beginning and the ending." It is interesting that this title is put at the very beginning and end of Revelation. The title of Alpha & Omega teach us some great truths about Jesus Christ.

I. THE PRE-EXISTENCE OF JESUS CHRIST

Creation had a beginning. Civilization had a beginning. Time had a beginning. Jesus Christ had no beginning because He has always been. He is Alpha, the beginning.

John 8:58— Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am.

Colossians 1:17— And he is before all things, and by him all things consist.

What was the Father and the Son doing before creation?

1. He was fellowshipping with His Father.

John 17:5— And now, O Father, glorify thou me with thine own self with the glory which I had with thee before the world was.

2. He was choosing the elect.

Ephesians 1:4— According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love:

This verse speaks of the doctrine of election. It is a doctrine that has confused some and confounded others. One Bible professor put it this way, "Try to explain election and you may lose your mind. Try to explain it away and you may lose your soul." There were three kinds of election in the Bible: God's theocratic election of Israel; Vocational election where the Lord called the tribe of Levi to be His priests; and salvation election.

John 6:44— No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day.

No person receives Christ as their Savior who has not been chosen by God.

John 15:16— Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you.

The lost sinner left to his own way does not seek after the Lord in his life.

Romans 3:10,11— As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one: There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God.

The Scriptures are clear that man has a responsibility to exercise his own will. God's sovereign election and man's exercise of responsibility in choosing Christ seem opposite an irreconcilable. Only the Lord knows how they exactly go together. The mystery of God's sovereignty and human responsibility will never be solved in this life. Both are taught in the Bible.

John 6:37— All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out.

The Father gives and man comes.

2 Thessalonians 2:13— But we are bound to give thanks always to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth:

God provides the salvation but we must choose to believe. We respond to the Lord's drawing because God's grace makes us willing to respond.

God draws men and women to Himself. We know that it is God's desire that none perish, but all come to repentance (2 Peter 3:9). I don't know who the elect are, all I know is it is my job to get the Gospel to a lost and dying world and let the Lord do the rest. I'm the messenger and God does the saving with His message. The doctrine of election was not intended by God for us to sit on our blessed assurance and do nothing for Christ. Get busy for God in reaching the lost for Christ. Notice the third thing Jesus was doing before creation.

3. He was Planning for a Church.

Ephesians 3:8,9— Unto me, who am less than the least of all saints, is this grace given, that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ; And to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God, who created all things by Jesus Christ:

4. He was Preparing a Kingdom.

Matthew 25:34— Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world:

5. He was Planning for a Saviour.

1 Peter 1:18-20... Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; [19] But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot: [20] Who verily was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you,

II. THE PRE-EMINENCE OF CHRIST

Christ was the alpha and omega, the A to Z. Christ is all, He is everything.

Colossians 1:16-18— For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him: [17] And he is before all things, and by him all things consist. [18] And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence.

Jesus Christ is all you and I need. He is A to Z. A man or woman truly begins to live when Christ comes into their life. The Lord is to be number one in our life. He is to be our Alpha.

What does a child need to know in order to read? The answer is his ABC's. Letters build thousands of words. Jesus is the Word that builds our life.

John 1:1,2,14— In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.

When we know Christ we will never be at a loss. Christ is the key to wisdom and knowledge. In Him, we understand our past, present, and future.

Colossians 2:3-In whom are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. Those who do not know Christ do not understand the Bible because they do not have the key to unlocking it's truths.

1 Corinthians 2:14— But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.

III. THE PERPETUALNESS OF CHRIST

Jesus Christ is perpetual or eternal. He is the beginning and the end.

Isaiah 41:4— Who hath wrought and done it, calling the generations from the beginning? I the Lord, the first, and with the last; I am he.

Hebrews 13:8— Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever.

Christ is the beginning and the ending. He is the final goal or destination in which all life is moving either to be saved by Him, judged by Him, or ruled by Him. Paul referred to the Lord as the mark he was pressing for. We do know that what the Lord has begun, He will finish.

Philippians 1:6— Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ:

The world began with the Lord and will end with Him (Genesis 1:1 and Revelation 22:21). What was started in Genesis ends in Revelation.

Genesis Revelation
3:17 Ground Cursed 22:3 No more curse
3:17 Daily Sorrow 21:4 No more sorrow
3:18 Thorns & thistles 21:4 No more pain
3:19 Death returns us to dust 21:4 No more death
3:15 Satan opposing 20:10 Satan banished
3:24 Man kept from the tree of life 22:14 He's given access to the tree
3:23 Banished from the Garden 22:14 Free entry to God's city
1:4 Division of light and darkness 21:25 No more night
1:10 Division of land and sea 21:1 No more sea
1:16 Sun & moon created 21:23 No need of sun and moon
2:8,9 Man in a prepared garden 21:2 Man in a prepared city
2:12 Gold in the land 21:21 Gold in the city
3:15 Redeemer is promised 5:9,10 Redemption is accomplished

Christ commenced and will conclude all time periods. He conceived the duration of the ages and will crown and consummate the ages to come. Christ is the Alpha and Omega. Is He the Alpha of your life? Trust Him today and serve Him for eternity.