In the final installment of our current series, there is a final feature we must consider about the Second Coming of Christ: its unalterable certainty.
Revelation 1:8 is God’s signature on the promise of the Second Coming: “‘I am the Alpha and the Omega,’ says the Lord God, ‘who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.’”
“I am” intentionally recalls the personal name of God—Yahweh (see Exod. 3:14). Regarding Christ’s statement, “I am the Alpha and the Omega,” Alpha is the first letter in the Greek alphabet and Omega is the last letter in the Greek alphabet. The point of this expression is that God controls the beginning, the end, and everything in the middle.
Revelation 1:8 goes on to say, “says the Lord God.” That expression occurs frequently in the Old Testament, especially in the prophets, specifically Ezekiel. It speaks of God’s greatness and His power. Verse 8 then says, “who is and who was and who is to come.” That expression is repeated from Revelation 1:4. “Who is” refers to God’s self-existence, eternality, and unchangeability. “Who was” tells us that He continually existed in the past. And “who is to come” speaks of His future coming. When the Son returns, the Father will come in and through Him to save and to judge. In other words, the One who is coming will bring human history to its end!
Verse 8 ends by referring to God as “the Almighty.” God is referred to as “the Almighty” nine times in Revelation, but only once in the remainder of the New Testament. This is an interesting word because in the Septuagint (the Greek translation of the Hebrew Old Testament) the word translated “Almighty” is used to translate the Hebrew expressions the “Lord of Hosts,” the “Lord of Armies,” the “Lord of the Armies of heaven.”
The focus in Revelation 1:8 is not merely raw, unlimited power, although certainly that’s true of God, but rather His power to rule and control. Nothing happens outside of His powerful control. Why is that important? In context, we’ve just been promised that the Lord Jesus Christ will return—He will save His people, Israel; He will destroy His enemies; He will vindicate His name. God’s divine signature says that He has the power to make those things happen. How? He is the “Almighty.”
My question for you is—and I mean this with all my heart—“are you ready for Christ’s Second Coming?”
The book of Revelation portrays Jesus Christ as two different animals. On the one hand He is portrayed as a pet lamb, as if having been slain. On the other hand, He is portrayed as a ferocious roaring lion. But Jesus is not one or the other—He’s both. And which of those attributes of His you experience depends entirely on your response to His offer of grace through the gospel.
You will either receive Jesus now as a lamb slain to pay the debt for your sin, and submit to Him as Savior and Lord. Or one day He will destroy you as a lion, not because of vindictiveness, but because His pure justice demands it.
Have you truly repented of your sins? Have you truly put your faith in Him? Repent of your sins and come to Him as the Lamb slain—for you—before the foundation of the world.