The Chrismons… The Alpha and Omega

Look, he is coming with the clouds! Every eye will see him, including those who pierced him, and all the tribes of the earth will mourn because of him. This is so. Amen. “I am the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God, “the one who is and was and is coming, the Almighty” (Revelation 1:7-8, Common English Bible).

Then the one seated on the throne said, “Look! I’m making all things new.” He also said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.” Then he said to me, “All is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. To the thirsty I will freely give water from the life-giving spring. Those who emerge victorious will inherit these things. I will be their God, and they will be my sons and daughters (Revelation 21:5-7, Common English Bible).

12 “Look! I’m coming soon. My reward is with me, to repay all people as their actions deserve. 13 I am the alpha and the omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end. 14 Favored are those who wash their robes so that they may have the right of access to the tree of life and may enter the city by the gates (Revelation 22:12-14, Common English Bible).

One of the things I love about the Advent/Christmas season is the chrismons on the tree in the church building. I really like the white and gold that colors these symbols of the faith. I also treasure their meaning.

Over the years I have been in the United Methodist Church, I have learned the meaning behind many of the symbols that become chrismons. I thought that during December (I will have a few days this month I will take off due to hand surgery) I would share with you a little of what I have learned.

I thought that for our first chrismon we would begin with the one where Jesus says he is the beginning (and the end). The Alpha and Omega is a symbol Jesus himself claimed. Alpha is the first letter of the Greek alphabet and Omega is the last. It would be similar to saying “I am the A to Z…”

For many theologians to say “I am the Alpha and Omega,” as Jesus does three times in Revelation above, it means, Jesus always was, always has been and always will be a part of God’s creation.

While I think that is true, I think that idea doesn’t go far enough. I think it means  Jesus always was has, always been and always will be a part of everything. The idea of the beginning and the end to me means Jesus, who is both omnipotent and omnipresent, is always with us, always involved and always touches our lives in everything we do. Even when we sin, Jesus is still there with prevenient grace, working to lead us back to the place we need to be on our faith walk.

From the beginning of our lives to the end of our lives and then beyond, Jesus is always there. And with that, we are blessed, always.

Have a blessed day in the Lord.

With Joy and Thankfulness,
Keith

Copyright 2017, J. Keith Broyles, All Rights Reserved.

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