Sunday, January 13, 2013

The Trumpet Speaks

The A and the Z

   Behold, He comes with the clouds, and every eye will see Him, and those who pierced Him will see Him, and all the kindreds of the earth will wail because of Him. Even so, Amen. 
   I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End,” says the Lord, “who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.” 1:7-8
   We have been taught that this refers to Christ, but actually, it is not so.  In verse 7 the word is, He, and it refers to Christ: He comes with the clouds. However, in verse 8 the speaker has changed to first person, saying I as in I am the Alpha and the Omega.  It is Jehovah who is speaking.

   In 21:1-6 the words Alpha and Omega are distinctly ascribed to the Lord God.    Jehovah says, I am the A and the Z; I am the first and the last, I am the Beginning and the End.  I am the Almighty.  He also says I am in the present, I was in the past, and I will be coming back to earth in the future.   Yes, Christ is coming back to earth for His Bride, but Jehovah is also coming back.  

   The words the Beginning and the End are omitted in the oldest manuscripts, though found in Vulgate and Coptic. Transcribers probably inserted the clause from Rev_21:6. JFB

   The term, I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last was discussed concerning 1:8.  The same phrase shows up again in 1:11 and with it comes this argument.  

   Alpha and Omega: The description that was applied to God the "Almighty" in verse 8 is here applied to Christ, showing that Christ is God. The King James Version Bible Study.  What that Bible study does not mention is that only very few translations, mostly the variety of King James versions of the Bible, include these words I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last in verse 11.  

   Some of those that do include it have it in italics which tells us that it should not be included in verse 11.  

   I am Alpha and Omega, the first and the last; and — The oldest manuscripts, omit all this clause. JFB.  

  I am Alpha and Omega, the first and the last: and - This whole clause is wanting in ABC, thirty-one others; some editions; the Syriac, Coptic, Ethiopic, Armenian, Slavonic, Vulgate, Arethas, Andreas, and Primasius. Griesbach has left it out of the text. Clarke

  So, again, the argument for the trinity falls by the wayside.

The Trumpet Speaks

    I came to be in the Spirit in the Lord's day and heard behind me a great voice, as of a trumpet saying, “I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last,” and, “What you see, write in a book and send it to the seven churches which are in Asia: to Ephesus, to Smyrna, to Pergamos, to Thyatira, to Sardis, to Philadelphia, and to Laodicea.”  Then I turned to see the voice that spoke with me. And having turned I saw seven golden lampstands. 1:9-12.

   Both Dr. McGee* and The King James Version Bible Study state that the Lord's Day refers to Sunday. 

  However, Mr. Jerome Smith in, The New Treasury of Scripture Knowledge makes a long, believable, argument, based on Greek grammar, why, the Lord's Day cannot refer to Sunday, as we use the term, "the Lord's day".   He says that since that was the day in which the Lord chose to speak to John --- that was the Lord's Day.

   the seven churches which are in Asia - That is the area that is now Western Turkey.

Knowing that trumpets do not speak with a voice, this phrase, a loud voice, as of a trumpet, saying, forces a question. 

   Was John hearing a loudspeaker, something that physically resembles a trumpet, as a bullhorn does?  The trumpet did not play notes, it talked, it was saying.  Again, in 1:12, John speaks of the voice that spoke to him through the trumpet.  Strong's definition of the word totally dispels the idea that the trumpet was playing musical notes - through the idea of disclosure; a tone (articulate, bestial or artificial); ... saying or language: - noise, sound, voice. Strong 5456.  

   It is not too far-fetched to believe that Jehovah would use an electronic, physical device to speak to his servant.  After all, He uses physical, mechanically printed pages (the Bible) to speak to his servants.  He also uses loudspeakers in radios and TVs to call sinners to repentance.  There is only a technical difference between a radio and the trumpet that John heard.  We will come back to this topic again in chapter four.

I turned to see the voice...and having turned I saw seven golden lamp stands.  John turned to see the origin of the voice, but having turned, he forgot all about the loudspeaker, because, by now, he had become transfixed on the seven golden lamp stands.

   He said I saw seven golden lamp stands.  What are they?  There is no reason for confusion here, because, like, in much of The Revelation, if symbolism is used, the meanings of the symbols are also given. 

   To find out what the seven golden lamp stands represent we go to 1:20, where we read that, the seven lamp stands which you saw are the seven churches.  Truly, church buildings are to be light holders, but Christians are the lights.  

   Christ said You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. "Nor do they light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lamp stand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. "Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven. Mat.5:14-16
* Through the Bible with Dr. J Vernon McGee.