Jesus, the Alpha and Omega (Revelation 22)
Jesus, the Alpha and Omega Message Introduction
Merry Christmas to everyone! I’m glad you’re here at Life Church to celebrate Christmas this Sunday. It’s the Christmas season, we have Christmas lights, Christmas sales, Christmas gifts, Christmas cookies, Christmas vacation, Christmas parties, Christmas cards and the list goes on and on. Christmas is a busy season for most of us. It’s easy to get so caught up in the activities of the season that we don’t take time to reflect on what Christmas is all about. So, that’s what we’re going to do this morning.
When you drive around at night looking at Christmas lights, you see lots of Santas and reindeer. You’ll see Frostie the snowman. But those aren’t what Christmas is all about. Hopefully, you’ll see a Nativity scene with a baby in a manger. Now, we’re getting closer to what Christmas is all about. That baby born 2000 years ago was named Jesus and He is the reason for the season.
So, today, we’re going to take a look at Jesus, perhaps in a way that you’ve never looked at Him before. Because Jesus is so much more than simply that baby in the manger. Today, my message is entitled “Jesus, the Alpha and Omega.” In our title slide, you can see two non-English letters, they are the letters alpha and omega from the Greek alphabet, the first and last letters of the Greek alphabet. Greek is the language that the original documents of the New Testament were written in. Greek was the universal language of the time into which Jesus was born, like English is today.
In the last chapter of the Bible, Jesus says ….
Revelation 22:13 (NIV) I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End.
What is Jesus saying about Himself? He is saying that He is the beginning and end of human history. He is ruler of everything. Today, God wants to expand your thinking about the significance of Jesus this Christmas season. He was born in a manger 2000 years ago, yet He is Lord of all, Lord of the entire universe. As such, we don’t worship Him as a baby in a manager, we worship Him as the King of Kings, who is alive and reigning over the universe today. So, let’s look at little more closely at Jesus, the Alpha and Omega.
Jesus was in the beginning
You and I have our beginning when we are conceived and then born into this world. Contrary to what many believe, Jesus’ life did not begin when He was born to Mary. Jesus existed long before that, in fact, Jesus was present at the very beginning of the history of the universe. Not only was Jesus present at the beginning of the universe, the Bible teaches us that …
Jesus is eternally God
John 1:1-2 (NIV) In the beginning was the Word [Jesus], and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning.
In this passage in the gospel of John, Jesus is referred to as the Word. John, inspired by the Holy Spirit, tells us that Jesus, the Word existed in the beginning with God. Jesus was not just with God, He was God. Jesus is one of the three persons of the Trinity, Father, Son and Holy Spirit. As such, Jesus has always existed. There never was a time when Jesus didn’t exist. As God Jesus exists outside of time and is eternally God. God’s Word, the Bible, tells us that …
Jesus created the universe
John 1:3 (NIV) Through him [Jesus] all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made.
Him in this verse is the Word or Jesus. Through Jesus all things were made or created. Jesus made the entire universe, consisting of trillions of galaxies, stars, planets, black holes, quasars and all kinds of things we haven’t even discovered yet. In the entire universe, Jesus chose to create a planet called earth. A planet perfectly suited for sustaining myriads of kinds of life, plant, animal and human life.
Jesus made humans in the image of God, in His own image. Human beings were created by Jesus to have a relationship with Him, their creator. Humans were created to love Him and to be loved in return. They were created to be fulfilled in serving and worshipping Jesus. Jesus created humans, He created you and me to live with Him forever. That was His plan in the beginning.
So, when you see a nativity scene this Christmas with Jesus lying in the manger, think about who Jesus was. That baby Jesus had always existed as the eternal God. That baby Jesus was the one who spun the galaxies into motion and created the earth on which we live. He is the alpha and omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last.
As the three wise men came to lay their crowns before Him, so we too, this Christmas, should bow before this Jesus in worship. We worship Jesus as both our God and our creator. The one who made us in His own image, to love and enjoy friendship with forever. This Christmas, let’s worship Jesus as our God and our creator. This eternal God who created the universe, who existed outside of time, this same …
Jesus entered human history
Philippians 2:6-7 (NIV) Who [Jesus], being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness.
So, 2000 years ago, Jesus was in heaven, surrounded by myriads of angels, in untold glory, ruling the universe. He was thinking about a small planet, circling a G2V type yellow dwarf star located on the Orion arm of the Milky Way galaxy. He was watching the planet that we call earth, because it was time for Him to enter into human history and alter history forever. He laid down His power, His glory and His majesty as …
Jesus was born as a baby
John 1:14 (NIV) The Word [Jesus] became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.
So, Jesus, the eternal God, took on human flesh. Jesus, became human and yet was still fully divine. Jesus came from heaven to earth to live among us, as one of us. He came to show us the truth about where we came from and where He desires for us to go. Jesus came as a baby to show us what God was like, to teach us God’s truth and demonstrate God’s grace.
Why did Jesus enter human history? Why did the eternal God take on human flesh?
Jesus died to save us
Revelation 1:5 (NIV) Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, the firstborn from the dead, and the ruler of the kings of the earth. To him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by his blood,
Jesus entered into human history because something had gone terribly wrong with creation. The human beings who had been created in the image of God had rebelled against God. Because of the human rebellion, called sin, people’s relationship with God had been broken. Mankind was worshipping idols, devoted to violence and afflicted with demonic spirits. Man’s destiny apart from God was eternal death. Something had to be done. So Jesus, because of His great love for people, came into this world and ultimately died on the cross, that we might be freed from our sins.
Jesus came that those who believe on Him might be saved and have eternal life, the life that God created people for. Although Jesus died on the cross, He did not stay dead.
Jesus was raised as Lord of all
Philippians 2:9 (NIV) Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name,
God, the Father, raised Jesus from the dead and He ascended back into heaven. In heaven, Jesus was given the name that is above every name. Jesus is Lord of all, He is the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords. No power can stand against Him. He conquered every evil force on the cross and reigns until all evil is removed from His creation.
Let’s watch a video about Jesus, the King of Kings.
So, this Christmas, we worship Jesus, who humbled Himself to enter human history and die for us, that we might be saved. Christmas is truly mind boggling. That the God who created the universe, came into this tiny, dusty, dirty planet to be born in a manger because He loved us. Not just be born, but to die a cruel death on the cross, that He might be restored to a relationship with people who had turned their backs on Him.
Let’s worship Jesus this Christmas as our Savior. This Jesus, who is the alpha, the beginning, and the first is also the omega, the end and the last.
Jesus will bring the end
Revelation 1:17 (NIV) When I saw him, I fell at his feet as though dead. Then he placed his right hand on me and said: “Do not be afraid. I am the First and the Last.
Not only did Jesus create the earth and begin history, He will also bring history as we know it to an end. On that first Christmas, 2000 years ago, Jesus came to this planet for the first time, to be born as a baby. Following His death and resurrection, He returned to heaven, where He waits until the proper time. The time in which …
Jesus will return to earth
Revelation 22:12 (NIV) “Behold, I am coming soon! My reward is with me, and I will give to everyone according to what he has done.
At the end, Jesus will return to the earth that He created, it will be the second coming. The first coming was as a baby on that first Christmas. The second coming will be as King of Kings and Lord of Lords. He comes for the second time as Judge of the earth, to give everyone what is due them.
When Jesus returns, He will wrap up human history as we know it. He will usher in the events leading to eternity and the new heavens and earth. When Jesus returns at the end of time …
Jesus will give believers eternal life
Revelation 22:14 (NIV) “Blessed are those who wash their robes, that they may have the right to the tree of life and may go through the gates into the city.
Those who wash their robes are believers whose sins have been forgiven. Believers will be given the right to eat from the tree of life, the tree of eternal life, that they might live forever with Jesus. Believers will be allowed to enter into the holy city from heaven, which comes down to earth. Those who are not believers will be cast into outer darkness into a place of eternal torment called hell.
So, at the end, all sin, evil and unbelief will be purged from God’s creation of the new heavens and earth. Jesus will have His heart’s desire, of spending eternity with the people He has created in His image. Those believers who have bowed their knee to the Lordship of Jesus Christ in this life.
Philippians 2:10-11 (NIV) at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
You see, at the end, every knee will bow and confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, both those who are believers and those who were not. Yet, only those who have bowed the knee and made Jesus Lord of their lives in this live will spend eternity with Him.
So, this morning, the last Sunday morning before Christmas 2014, I want to ask you a question. This question is the most important question in the world. Have you bowed your knee and confessed Jesus Christ as your Lord?
None of us know how long our lives will last. When life is over, our opportunity to acknowledge Jesus as Lord is gone. None of us knows when Jesus will return. He is coming soon, it could be today. Are you ready? That baby who was born in a manger 2000 years ago, Jesus who created the universe, is coming to the planet earth again, as King of Kings.
Understanding the End Times Message Series
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