I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, said the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty.
I. First, consider the title as expressive of THE ETERNAL DURATION OF OUR SAVIOUR'S EXISTENCE. "I am the first," He says, and thereby claims precedence of all created beings and things. He is before all things, and by Him are all things. "I am the first," He says, and thereby claims to be coeval with the Father; for if the Father existed prior to Himself He could not be said to be the first. It is a most direct and unequivocal assertion of His divinity. He, as the God-man, the Divine taking upon Him the human, is the Centre and the Sun, the Alpha and Omega, of His own world. This statement is supported by the second part of His title. It points us to an impenetrable future, as the first does to an illimitable past. He is the Omega no less than the Alpha; the end even as He is the beginning. His existence bounds all being. As no one preceded Him, so no one can outlive Him. The Father does not live longer than the Son. What could show more clearly that He is dependent on none; that all are dependent on Him. It is of no small importance that you should practically realise this truth. It bears on our conduct, for if the Saviour be what this title claims, He is not to be regarded as a mere man, however holy and divinely endowed, but to be worshipped even as the Father is worshipped. It is conducive to our comfort, for, to say nothing of the efficacy which His dignity imparts to His atoning work, it is a blessed thing to know, amid the trials and the vicissitudes of this changing scene, that there is a Friend who ever lives and who is ever the same.
II. Then we consider the title as EXPRESSIVE OF OUR SAVIOUR'S ACTION IN ALL THE MOVEMENTS OF THE UNIVERSE. The self-existent and independent one must necessarily be the author and upholder of all created existence. Observe
1. How unlimited is the power which is thus attributed to our Lord. The fact of creation is in one point of view the most stupendous of which we have any knowledge. While all this is awful, is it not delightful to reflect how that power is wielded by our best Friend, by One whose heart is as tender as His arm is strong, and wielded for the welfare of those who put their trust in Him?
2. He carries all things forward to their consummation. He terminates as well as originates all the processes of the universe — all beings, all things, all existence. We are not to think of Him as severed from Bib works, but as pervading and upholding them, and still conducting them all. He is the centre of all forces, the fountain of all law, the sustainer of all existence. Look around you in your own world; in the multitude of the activities that you witness you behold the exercise of His power. It is seen in the flowing river, in the restless ocean, in the rising and setting sun, in the still or stormy atmosphere, in all activities of organic substance, in animal and vegetable life. It is His power that bursts in the budding of the plant; His beauty which is unfolded in the opening flower; it is His providence which shapes the life of the buzzing insect, His will that determines the mode and manner of its death. Even the smallest grain of dust takes its shape from His hands; He directs the course of every particle of spray, every feather and every snowflake in the breeze. There is nothing too minute for His care, as there is nothing too great for His might. Look into the inner world of the soul, and with equal certainty you can discern His movements there. Not only did He lay down His life to provide redemption for us, but by His Spirit He applies that redemption to the individual soul. The work of grace in its beginning, its continuance, its consummation, is all of Him. There is human instrumentality, but the efficiency is all Divine.
III. Again, consider the title as intimating that ALL THINGS EXIST ON OUR SAVIOUR'S ACCOUNT, AND ACTUALLY AND ULTIMATELY TEND TO THE PROMOTION OF HIS GLORY. It is not a subject for dogmatism, scarcely for speculation, when we say that the purpose of creation was the manifestation of the Divine attributes, to give expression and embodiment to the truth, the purity, the beauty, the wisdom, the goodness, and the perfection of the attributes which exist in the Divine mind, that God might complacently behold and rest in His works, and that His intelligent creatures, beholding these perfections in the visible universe, might respond to those expressions of the Divine with devout and joyful adoration. Christ came to restore the Divine order which sin had interrupted, and all creation, true to the purpose of its existence, co-operates with Him for this end. His Incarnation is not an isolated fact; it is the centre of the universe, pointing to the past order which has been broken and is yet to be restored.
Parallel VersesKJV: I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty.