Saturday, April 16, 2011

OUR ALMIGHTY GOD

REVELATION 1:8--"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."

I've already explained in a previous post about how Jesus is the Alpha and Omega--and about the eternal aspect of God as JHVH, the Hebrew tetragrammaton, which is translated in our English Bibles as Jehovah. BUT JUST A QUICK REVIEW:

Verse 8 is full of TITLES for Jesus Christ. As the Alpha and Omega, Jesus is the same as the English rendering of A and Z. Jesus is THE BEGINNING; He is THE ENDING--and in His ETERNAL aspect, He KNEW what the END would be from the very BEGINNING.

This CONCEPT is repeated in the phrase, "saith the Lord, which IS, and which WAS, and which IS TO COME." As ETERNAL GOD, Jesus exists in the HERE AND NOW, the PRESENT.  He has ALWAYS EXISTED, in the PAST. He will ALWAYS exist, on into THE FUTURE, and for ALL ETERNITY.  He KNOWS the beginning and the end, and everything which is in between.

Jesus is the Alpha and Omega, the beginning and end, and Jesus IS the ETERNAL GOD.  Jesus is revealed here as the SECOND PERSON in the TRINITY, the GODHEAD.  Jesus has EQUAL STANDING with the ETERNAL GOD, Jehovah.  Jesus is ONE with Jehovah--God, the Father of the Old Testament.  This is SEEN in the description of the Hebrew tetragrammaton, JHVH--the Lord which IS, which WAS, and which IS TO COME.

When Jesus claimed ONENESS with God, the Father, He caused the Jewish priests and elders, the scribes and the Pharisees, the ruling Sanhedrin, to respond in shock and anger, so much so that they took Him to Pontius Pilate to be crucified.  What did Jesus say?  We find part of the answer in Luke 22:66-71 to Luke 23:1.  HOMEWORK--READ THIS SCRIPTURE.

Jesus was led in to face the COUNCIL of elders, chief priests and scribes.  They asked Him--"Are You the Christ (the anointed one, the Messiah)?  Jesus replied, "If I told you, you will NOT believe.  And if I also ask you, you will not answer Me, nor let Me go."   Jesus went on to add words which must have enraged that council.   "Hereafter shall the Son of man sit on the RIGHT HAND OF THE POWER OF GOD."

The council then asked Him, "Are You the Son of God?

Jesus answered, "You say that I am."  (I'll explain what He REALLY said below.)

Another picture of this scene is recorded in Matthew 26:63-66.  PLEASE READ THIS, TOO.

The council asked Jesus the same question, this time calling upon God's name "I adjure You BY THE LIVING GOD, are you the Christ, the Son of God?"

Jesus gave the same answer, proclaiming that He will sit at God's right hand and come again in the clouds of heaven.  The scribes and elders tore their clothing (an act of shock, responding in horror).  They said, "He (Jesus) has spoken blasphemy, do we need any further witnesses?"  And they carted Jesus off to see Pontius Pilate.  What was it that enraged them so?

We'll understand a little better when we backtrack to a scene at the Garden of Gethsemane.  This time we'll look at John 18:3-6.  PLEASE READ IT THAT SCRIPTURE, TOO.

Judas Iscariot, the traitor of Jesus, led a band of chief priests and Pharisees, with lanterns, into Gethsemane.  Jesus, knowing what was happening, asked them, "Whom seek ye?"  They answered, Jesus of Nazareth, and Jesus responded (pay attention to how He said it), I am He."  As soon as Jesus said unto them, "I am He," THEY FELL BACKWARDS ONTO THE GROUND.  (There was some kind of power in the words, I AM, which caused these people to be bowled over backwards.  I'll explain further below.)

I now ask--"What did these people experience when Jesus proclaimed , "I AM HE," in both the Luke account and in John's account? Why did the scribes and elders proclaim blasphemy as seen in the Matthew account?

In the English, we can miss what Jesus TRULY said to these people.  He spoke the words "I AM."  These WORDS are the EXACT phrasing as what God proclaimed to Moses in Exodus 3:14 at the burning bush.  "And God said unto Moses, 'I AM THAT I AM': and He said, 'Thou shalt say unto the children of Israel, I AM hath sent me unto you.'"

The words I AM are the Hebrew equivalent of JHVH, the tetragrammton, the name Jehovah.  JESUS SAID HE WAS GOD.  This so ENRAGED the elders and scribes (the Jews have a tradition that they will NEVER utter God's name)--to SPEAK GOD'S NAME was considered blasphemy.  And to make it worse, Jesus boldly stated with His I AM (Jehovah) that HE IS INDEED GOD.  The scribes and elders hauled Him off to be crucified FOR THEIR that Jesus had committed blasphemy.

In John's account, these are the words that Jesus spoke:  "I AM He," had such POWER, the very NAME OF GOD, that the people FELL OVER BACKWARDS to the ground.  They must NOT have known WHAT hit them, because they did NOT accuse Jesus of blasphemy at this point in Gethsemane.

There was NO mistaking it, when later, before the council, Jesus said I AM again.

This IS SCRIPTURAL PROOF of HOW Jesus and God (Jehovah) ARE ONE.  JHVH.  I AM.

God (also Jesus) is THE ALMIGHTY.  I'll point out DEFINITIONS in the Greek for "the Almighty."

God (also Jesus) are these things in the list below:

He's God--the ABSOLUTE and UNIVERSAL sovereign.

God (also Jesus) is ABSOLUTE--the complete and perfect supreme Authority.

God (also Jesus) is FREE from any restriction or limitation.  He's therefore UNLIMITED.

He's the unconditional and absolute monarch.

God (also Jesus) is UNIVERSAL.  He's the supreme being Who is MASTER of the WHOLE UNIVERSE.

He's a supernatural being Who preserves HIS SAME IDENTITY no matter what changes happen upon the earth, or any other region of His creation.  God (also Jesus) NEVER changes--He's the same yesterday, today and forever.  Hebrews 13:8.

God (also Jesus) is SOVEREIGN.  He's the ETERNAL RULER, the KING, the MONARCH, and He has SUPREME AUTHORITY.  NOTHING is ABOVE God (also Jesus).  No created thing can ascend above God--no angel, no man or woman, no living animal.

The roots in the Greek word for ALMIGHTY show additional and supporting concepts.  God (Jesus) is Almighty in ALL MANNER of ALWAYS--thorough and totally and forever (always). 

God (also Jesus) is Almighty in VIGOR, in DOMINION (supreme authority), in POWER and STRENGTH.

When we delve deeply into shades of meaning in the original languages, our understanding of God's qualities and character is GREATLY ENLARGENED.  I suggest you mediate upon the long list presented above.  Then answer these questions.

Do you feel more SECURE in this very uncertain world?  Can you TOTALLY give yourself into God's ALMIGHTY and capable hands?  He's THERE FOR US, no matter what.  He is FOREVER our REFUGE and STRENGTH.  Doesn't this give you the strength and courage to face any situation you may encounter?

This certainly helps me, especially in this week when so many end time SIGNS have happened around the world.  GOD CARES ABOUT EVERY LITTLE DETAIL OF OUR LIVES.  Big or little, it doesn't matter--God cares for us in everything!

Please be abundantly blessed, encouraged and joyful.

If God is for us, who can be against us?

Do you feel encouraged and strengthened by this Word?  I certainly do!  WE SERVE AN ALMIGHTY GOD.  WE TRUST AN ALMIGHTY SAVIOR.



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