June 9 Morning Verse of The Day

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22:13 the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last. See note on 21:6. Eternal life and lordship characterize God (1:8) and his Christ, who is coming soon (1:17; 2:8).[1]

22:13. Immediately after making promises to return and to reward people on the basis of their work, the Lord reminds His followers that they can rely on the fulfillment of those promises because of who He is in His own person. His promises can be completely trusted because the One making them always has been and always will be. He is “the King eternal” (1 Tim 1:17).[2]      

The eternal christ (22:13)

22:13. Once again Christ is described as the Alpha and the Omega (first and last letters of the Gr. alphabet), the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End. Christ is before all Creation and He will continue to exist after the present creation is destroyed. He is the Eternal One (cf. 1:4, 8, 17; 2:8; 21:6).[3]

22:13 “I am the Alpha and the Omega” This is an allusion to the OT title for YHWH found in 1:8 and 21:6, but here it refers to Christ. The fluidity of these OT titles for deity was one way NT authors affirmed the deity of Christ. Verse 13 has three such titles or phrases describing the eternal God.[4]

13. In 1:8 (where see note) God has said that he is the Alpha and the Omega and again in 21:6 where he adds, the Beginning and the End. Now the identical expression is applied by the risen Christ to himself, with the insertion the First and the Last (cf. 1:17; 2:8). All three expressions mean much the same and they set Christ apart from all created beings. None other than God could share in these titles of God.[5]

22:13 / Jesus’ self-ascription, the Alpha and the Omega, is critical since it refers elsewhere to God (1:8). After maintaining a hierarchy between God and the Risen Jesus (e.g., Father-Son, Sovereign-Lamb), John brings the two together as cosmic equals in his benediction. In his forthcoming monograph, The Past of Jesus in the Gospels, SNTSMS 68 (Cambridge: University Press), E. E. Lemcio argues that God’s resurrection of Jesus marked a substantive change in his status, and that this change is indicated in the gospel narratives by the contrast between pre-Easter and post-Easter portraits of Jesus. Perhaps a similar contrast can be found in Revelation’s description of pre-parousia and post-parousia portraits of the Risen Jesus. If so, then I would suggest that one effect of the parousia will be another substantive change in how the faith community perceives the status of Christ: he is now God’s equal—equal parts of the eschatological temple (21:22).[6]

13 In 1:8 and 21:6 it was God who identified himself as the Alpha and the Omega. Now the risen Christ applies the title to himself. Its meaning is essentially the same as that of the two following designations—“the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End”—the first of which Christ has already applied to himself in 1:17 and 2:8. The names set him apart from the entire created order. He is unlimited by time, and in that all things are found both in the Father and in the Son the attributes of the former belong to the latter as well.[7]

[1] Crossway Bibles. (2008). The ESV Study Bible (p. 2497). Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles.

[2] Vacendak, R. (2010). The Revelation of Jesus Christ. In R. N. Wilkin (Ed.), The Grace New Testament Commentary (p. 1333). Denton, TX: Grace Evangelical Society.

[3] Walvoord, J. F. (1985). Revelation. In J. F. Walvoord & R. B. Zuck (Eds.), The Bible Knowledge Commentary: An Exposition of the Scriptures (Vol. 2, p. 989). Wheaton, IL: Victor Books.

[4] Utley, R. J. (2001). Hope in Hard Times – The Final Curtain: Revelation (Vol. Volume 12, p. 151). Marshall, TX: Bible Lessons International.

[5] Morris, L. (1987). Revelation: an introduction and commentary (Vol. 20, p. 247). Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press.

[6] Wall, R. W. (2011). Revelation (p. 271). Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books.

[7] Mounce, R. H. (1997). The Book of Revelation (p. 407). Grand Rapids, MI: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co.

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