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Also: "aleph to taw" and First to last
Smith's Bible Dictionary | International Standard Bible Encyclopedia | Thompson Chain Reference
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Isaiah 44:6, 48:12 (The LORD, the first and the last, the only God)
Revelation 1:8 (the Alpha and Omega: who is, who was, who is to come; the Almighty)
Revelation 21:6 (Alpha and Omega, the Beginning and the End. To the thirsty I will give water without cost...)
Revelation 22:13 (the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End)
|ALPHA [Smith's Bible Dictionary]|
(A), the first letter of the Greek alphabet. With Omega, the last letter, it is used in the Old Testament and in the New to express the eternity of God, as including both the beginning and the end. (Revelation 1:8,11; 21:6; 22;13; Isaiah 41:4; 44:6) hence these letters became a favorite symbol of the eternal divinity of our Lord, and were used for this purpose in connection with the cross, or the monogram of Christ (i.e. the first two letters, ch and r, of Christís name in Greek). Both Greeks and Hebrews employed the letters of the alphabet as numerals.
|ALPHA and OMEGA [International Standard Bible Encyclopedia]|
Compare Theodoret, Eusebius, Historia Ecclesiastica, iv. 8: In Patristic and later literature the phrase is regularly applied to the Son. God blesses Israel from 'aleph to taw Leviticus 26:3-13), but curses from waw to mem (Leviticus 26:14-43). So Abraham observed the whole law from 'aleph to taw. Consequently, "Alpha and Omega" may be a Greek rendering of the Hebrew phrase, which expressed among the later Jews the whole extent of a thing.
al'-fa, o'-me-ga, o-me'-ga (Alpha and Omega = A and O):
The first and last letters of the Greek alphabet, hence, symbolically, "beginning and end"; in Revelation "The Eternal One" in Revelation 1:8 of the Father, in Revelation 21:6 and Revelation 22:13 of the Son.
J. E. Harry
"We used alpha down to omega, i.e. all." A similar expression is found in Latin (Martial, v.26). Compare Aretas (Cramer's Catenae Graecae in New Testament) on Revelation 1:8 and Tertullian (Monog, 5):
"So also two Greek letters, the first and last, did the Lord put on Himself, symbols of the beginning and the end meeting in Him, in order that just as alpha rolls on to omega and omega returns again to alpha, so He might show that both the evolution of the beginning to the end is in Him and again the return of the end to the beginning." Cyprian, Testim, ii.1; vi.22, iii.100, Paulinus of Nola Carm. xix.645; xxx.89; Prudentius, Cathem., ix.10-12.
Compare Theodoret, Eusebius, Historia Ecclesiastica, iv. 8:
In Patristic and later literature the phrase is regularly applied to the Son.
God blesses Israel from 'aleph to taw Leviticus 26:3-13), but curses from waw to mem (Leviticus 26:14-43). So Abraham observed the whole law from 'aleph to taw.
Consequently, "Alpha and Omega" may be a Greek rendering of the Hebrew phrase, which expressed among the later Jews the whole extent of a thing.
|ALEPH [International Standard Bible Encyclopedia]|
The first letter of the Hebrew alphabet. It is nearly soundless itself and best represented, as in this Encyclopedia, by the smooth breathing ('), but it is the direct ancestor of the Greek, Latin and English "a" as in "father." In either case this beginning of the alphabet happens to be near the very basis of all speech--in one case the simple expiration of breath, in the other the simplest possible vocal action--the actual basis from which all other vowels are evolved. It became also the symbol for the number one (1) and, with the dieresis, 1,000. It is the symbol also for one of the most famous of Greek Biblical manuscripts, the Codex Sinaiticus. For name, written form, etc., see ALPHABET .
E. C. Richardson
|ALPHA [Thompson Chain Reference]|
* (fist letter of the Greek alphabet, a name applied to Christ)
* Revelation 1:8
* Revelation 1:11
* Revelation 21:6
* Revelation 22:13