The Beginning and the End

Emmanuel (The Saviour) – J93
Icon of Emmanuel (The Saviour) – J93

“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.”  (Rev. 1:8)

We think of time as a progression of successive moments, whether they be minutes, days, years, or even millennia.  This is our experience of time, whether seemingly short or long.  But time as it really is has a dimension beyond just our temporal time, as it also has Eternal dimensions.  Christ has always been in this Eternal time, or as it is spoken of in the Gospel as the “Age to Come”, distinct from just the “Present Age” which we experience in the here and now.  Yet Christ came on Earth and entered through His personal experience into our experience of time—personal limited time which had a beginning and will have an end.  He was born here, lived here, died here, and rose from the dead here.  That is why we can experience His Love so directly and personally all the time since He was born.

Since Christ is born, and we glorify Him, God is not just our Father or our Saviour, but is also our brother, our dearest friend, and therefore is eminently approachable and personal to us.  He is close and real and alive and sympathetic to our joys and sorrows.  He is near—nearer than anyone else can be—for He is the forerunner and bridge to our life to come:  Eternal time, simultaneous time, everlasting time without beginning or end.  And He is not only at the beginning and at the end, but He Himself is the beginning and end of all things, and is the Light of the Age to Come.  May we always stand close and reflect this brightest Light, and be illumined inside with Him until we shine with Him shining out.  O Lord Jesus Christ, born as a little Babe, come close to us today, and warm our hearts so brightly in Faith and in Love to Thee!  Amen.

The Monastics at St. Isaac of Syria Skete
and at the Convent of St. Silouan
and the Faithful at St. Nicholas Church
and the Staff at Orthodox Byzantine Icons and St. Isaac’s Bookstore