November 27, 2016 Sunday School Commentary
Lesson Guide, Direction
Alpha and Omega
Devotional Reading: Revelation 1:4b-8
Highlighted Text – Revelation 22:12-21
Key Verse – “I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last” (Revelation 22:13).
During the holiday season is when we tend to be more thankful, loving and merciful. It is during this time that believers crave to get closer to God, agnostics are open to the hope of faith, and people in general seek validation for their lives. Nonetheless, there are still sidebar thoughts and conversations about the perils that daily attack this world. Such evil acts that causes one to doubt or question if or when it will all come to an end. Every time a tragedy hits it causes the masses to really dive into eschatology. And it should. Because studying the end times; the death, judgement, heaven and hell should prompt one to face the reality that life as it is known will cease to exist one day. And it is this truth that should cause us all to daily think beyond this life, causing us to pay closer attention to our daily actions towards God and the treatment of others.
Alpha and Omega (v 12-13)
The root of the Alpha and Omega phrase derives from Exodus when Moses asked God who should he tell the people of Israel that sent him. God gave his famous response of “I AM THAT I AM,” meaning whatever is needed and everything from the beginning, in between alpha and omega and everything afterwards. Because God is not just the end, He is the ending. He never stops existing. So when John, the disciple, was given the vision that penned the book of Revelation, it was to let the initial followers of Christ, modern believers and the world know that we all will have to give an account for every daily work; action, choice and sin that we have committed during our life span. Our lives do not end with a final breath.
Point to ponder: Are you living for today only?
City Gates (v 14-15)
John reminds us about the magnificent 12 gates to the city of God that was first mentioned in chapter three. It has been reserved as a reward for those waiting to hear God say, “Well done, good and faithful servant!” But there is a punishment for those that have been disobedient to God. Those who chose to continue with their lifestyles that God disapproved of. The lifestyle that consisted of lying, idolatry, adultery, murder and other acts that God outlined as sin. The same acts of sin that fell among the believers that will be allowed inside of the Gates, but the difference is that those believers asked God’s forgiveness and repented of their sins and chased after God’s heart in order to stay in God’s will.
Point to ponder: Will you be on the inside or outside of the Gates?
The Son of David is Coming (v 16-21)
Jesus restates his authority and connects himself to the messianic prophecies throughout the Bible. He is from the lineage and legacy of King David. He is the promised Messiah. He is the sacrificial lamb and Savior. He is the beginning and the end, Alpha and Omega and King of kings. And it is this Jesus who will return for His kingdom.
Point to ponder: Will you be ready?
We wake up everyday to news that has already been prophesied about. The question can not be afforded “Will you be ready” but rather are you ready now? While watching Way of the Master the other day, Kirk Cameron posed a relevant question: How many days do you have left to preach the Gospel? After all of our accomplishments and contributions to the world, the significant matter will be who will dwell in the aftermath of life on earth? Who will be allowed into the 12 Gates and enter into the New Jerusalem? The reality is that the unsaved will not enter in. The only way they receive salvation is through the preached Word, the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Are you sharing the Gospel with unbelievers and those not saved?