Contained in the Gospel According to John are a series of “I AM” statements. In several places, Jesus gives good news to people by claiming that what they need – He is. This statement of His identity and purpose is also continued in the Revelation that was given to John.
Then he said to me, “It is done! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. To the thirsty I will give water as a gift from the spring of the water of life.”
I am not a good student of languages. I have spent over fifty years working on my English, and there are times when I still can’t find the right word. In Junior High School, I had my first exposure to Spanish, and I wish now that I have kept with it. In High School, three years of Latin helped me obtain my diploma. As a seminary-bound college student, I took Hebrew and Greek. And when I was a student at Columbia Theological Seminary, I was pushed to become conversant with Koine Greek and biblical Hebrew. While I have dabbled in all of those linguistic endeavors, I am hardly proficient in any language but my native tongue.
Knowing something about biblical languages, however, helps open the doors to some of the words of our Lord. In the gospel according to John, we find that Jesus referred to himself with I AM statements, often identifying who he was with items from daily life. In the Revelation that was given to John, this same Lord Jesus sums it all up with “I AM the Alpha and the Omega”.
Language students can quickly tell you that the words of Jesus here, which were recorded in the common Greek of the New Testament, were a summary. Alpha and Omega are the first and last letters of the Greek alphabet – the “A” and “Z”, if you will. “I AM the first and the last. I AM the beginning and the end.” Jesus revealed to his followers.
There is a song that we sometimes sing in the church that says “You are my all in all … Jesus, precious Lamb God, worthy is your name.”
It is fitting to think about the Lord God who made us, who saves us, who claims us, and who is indeed our all in all. I belong to the One who wants me to know him as “The Alpha and the Omega” to be my “A and Z”, and that is enough for me.
God, thank You for coming into the world in the person of Jesus to provide what we need most. And thank You for coming into my life to save me, claim me, and fill me with Your love to the point of overflowing. You are all that I need and I praise You today. Amen.