By Walt Giddings
Greetings kindred and fellow sheep. We are on a first name basis here. My name is Walter. My presence in the pulpit indicates I am your Pedagogue. My role is to lead you to our real Teacher, the Master, Jesus Christ. As a direct lineal descendant of Adam in the flesh of Abraham I possess no power of conviction. The jurisdiction or authority to work that kind of dynamite power within us belongs only to the Holy Spirit whose name is Jesus Christ.
Do we have blessed assurance that asking ourselves three questions and sharing the Scriptures will be fruitful? Is Church hard? Christ said in Matthew (18:20) “For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.” With the Master present how can the words of the end-time prophet Isaiah fail? So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it. Isaiah 55:11
Here is a second witness to the blessed assurance that God’s word will prosper whereto he sends it. Jeremiah 23 has a detailed indictment against the under shepherds that “destroy and scatter the sheep.”
But if they had stood in my counsel, and had caused my people to hear my words, then they should have turned them from their evil way, and from the evil of their doings. Jeremiah 23:22
Did God tell us even the false prophets could start a revival?
I discovered to my embarrassment that I did not believe this verse of Scripture. Now How can I possibly not believe a verse of Scripture? This Bible is the Library of God’s Testimonies! In here he testifies of Himself. It was so easy to catch myself in unbelief it was disgusting! I caught myself not acting like I believe this Scripture:
I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last. Revelation 22:13
Do we admit this is a capital description of the God of our Fathers through Jesus Christ our Lord? What is so hard to believe?
At this point we need to give serious consideration to this word “believe.” What we will review is discoverable in the history of the language of the Angles as in Anglo Saxon. Then we must compare it to the history of the Indo-European languages. Indo-European is code for Aryan. During the 1st World War in the 20th Century the change from Aryan to Indo-European was foisted upon Archaeology, Anthropology, History, and related fields. Remember Europe has the meaning “white face.” English contains quite a bit of Hebrew. German contains even more. The German word, “beileben,” does not require translation. It transposes directly into English “believe.” Bei in German is our English by. Leben in German is our English live. “By live”. English believe is by live. By live is a contraction. It is shorthand for the phrase “by this we live,” or “by Him we live.” When we believe it, we live by it! When we believe Him, we live by Him.
I caught myself not living by Revelation 22:13.
We ask ourselves three (3) questions.
Do we believe this verse of Scripture? This is our first of the Three questions.
With a correct understanding of the word believe, do we each have some assurance we believe what Jesus says in Revelation 22:13? I do not want to pass the 1st Question without thorough consideration and meditation. Does anyone here have the slightest vacillating doubt or niggling insecurity? This is not about comparing ourselves with others. This is about the most needful Lifesaving Relationship we can ever have. Does the Second Death have any Power over us?! Our bond with our Maker, Redeemer, Defender, Friend, and Saviour is at stake! In Mark chapter 9 Jesus asks the father of a son possessed by a dumb and deaf foul spirit if he believes Mark 9:23-24:
23 Jesus said unto him, If thou canst believe, all things are possible to him that believeth.
24 And straightway the father of the child cried out, and said with tears, Lord I believe: help thou mine unbelief.
“Help thou mine unbelief.” Does the struggle of the tormented child’s father seem so real and familiar with each of us? The child’s torment was the father’s torment. Is our torment our Heavenly Father’s Torment? Did Jesus accuse Saul on the road to Damascus of persecuting Him? Do we trust the words of Revelation 22:13? How profound is this revelation in Revelation? Is there any revelation in the Scriptures before verse 13 that says anything like this with such impact? Is there? Where? Or, is this one of those times we admit to ourselves our understanding is incomplete? Do we resolve to believe despite our lack of understanding? Do we, each of us, commit to believe? Now is the time to object. Silence is consent. Let the record of these proceedings show we have the silence of consent. We believe.
It is time to leave this 1st Question, Do we believe the words of Jesus in Revelation 22:13?
It is time to ask our 2nd Question:
Where in our Bibles is the first mention of Jesus Christ in the Scriptures?
The thought occurs to me that to gain a valid and reliable answer to our 2nd Question we must preface it with another question:
Where in our Bibles is the very first mention of the Name Jesus Christ?
Matthew 1:1 The Book of the generation of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham.
Right out of the gate in the Koine Greek Scriptures the name Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham, gets its first mention in all the Scriptures.
Why is there no earlier mention of the Name Jesus Christ in Scripture from Genesis unto Malachi? Was the Name Jesus Christ kept secret? What is the Authorized Version 1611 word for secret? [vv 2-3].
2 Continue in prayer, and watch in the same with thanksgiving;
3 Withal, praying also for us, that God would open unto us a door of utterance, to speak the mystery of Christ, for which I am also in bonds:
4 That I may make it manifest, as I ought to speak.
To speak the secret of Christ that it might be manifest unto the Old Covenant Israel hearers was in Paul’s time a daunting task needing to be bathed in prayer. In our time we add the daunting task to speak the secret of The People of the Book that it might be manifest, revealed, opened unto Israel in Dispersion, also needing to be bathed in prayer. Should we speak it before the readiness to hear it?
Does making a mystery manifest mean revealing a secret? Was the name Jesus Christ kept secret from the foundation of the world?
1 Timothy 3:16 And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory.
What secret did the Devil not know? What if Satan refused to plot the conviction and execution of Jesus Christ, the Righteous? Where would we be without His shed blood’s Atoning? Without His Death would we be reconciled to God? Without His Resurrection would we be saved by His Life? Did God use the Devil as the Instrument of his own Doom?
1 Corinthians 2:7-8
7 But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, even the hidden wisdom, which God ordained before the world unto our glory:
8 Which none of the princes of this world knew, for had they known it, they would not have crucified the Lord of Glory.
Are the princes of this world the fallen angels who like their master Lucifer exercise the dominion that Adam abdicated at the Fall? “None of the princes of this world knew.”
What was the mystery, what was the hidden wisdom, what was kept secret from the foundation of the world? Before they died in Christ did all our fathers have fellowship in the mystery? Did our fathers Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob have fellowship in the mystery before they died in Christ?
Ephesians 3:9 And to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God who created all things by Jesus Christ.
Does this mean that our Redeemer is also our Creator? Is there a second witness to God creating all things by Jesus Christ? [1:13, God’s “dear Son”].
Colossians 1:16 For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him and for him.
From Genesis unto Malachi do we fail to find Jesus Christ’s Name? Was it secret?
Should we expect to find mention of Jesus Christ in the older Scriptures? Without the appearance of His Name will we know it is Him? Do the newer Scriptures give us blessed assurance we can know it is Him?
1 Corinthians 10:1-4
1 Moreover, brethren, I would not that ye should be ignorant, how that all our fathers were under the cloud, and all passed through the sea;
2 And were all baptized unto Moses in the cloud and in the sea;
3 And did all eat the same spiritual meat;
4 And did all drink the same spiritual drink: for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them: and that Rock was Christ.
“That Rock was Christ.” Is there a 2nd witness to what we just read? Is there a reference to “that spiritual Rock” in the Book of Psalms?
Psalms 18:31 For who is God save the LORD? or who is a rock save our God?
With these witnesses in Corinthians and Psalms, do we have some blessed assurance we can find evidence of Jesus Christ in the older Scriptures without the mention of His Blessed Name? Where should we look first?
Does every major Doctrine of Scripture find origin in the Book of Genesis? Is this saying, this old adage, this byword, this maxim, this proverb common to serious students of the Bible? Should we expect to find in-our-face, prima facie evidence of Jesus Christ in the Book of Genesis? Our 2nd Question, Where in our Bibles is the first mention of Jesus Christ in the Scriptures (?), is now amended to read: Where is the earliest mention of Jesus Christ in Genesis? Remember: His Name was kept secret in the older Scriptures.
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It was so easy to catch myself in unbelief it was disgusting! For years I disbelieved Revelation 22:13 and its cousin chapter 21:6. I failed to identify the earliest mention of Jesus Christ in Scripture. Unbelief caused my failure.
“HELP THOU MINE UNBELIEF.”
Have we, as classmates in God’s classroom, agreed upon an answer? (p7.)
In the last chapter of the Bible we read the verse where Jesus Christ equates “the Beginning” to Himself. In the first chapter of the Bible:
Genesis 1:1 In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.
Is this the true 1st Mention of Jesus Christ in our Scriptures? His name is made manifest in the Gospels. It was first made manifest to one of the Apostles.
13 When Jesus came into the coasts of Caesarea Phillippi, he asked his disciples, saying, Whom do men say that I the Son of Man am?
14 And they said, Some say that thou art John the Baptist: some Elias; and others Jeremias, or one of the prophets.
15 He saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am?
16 And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God.
17 And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven.
20 Then charged he his disciples that they should tell no man that he was Jesus the Christ.
Verse 20 reveals the Disciples kept it secret until Peter’s Sermon at Pentecost. (Same event Mark 8:27-29 and Luke 9:18-21). There is a later occasion this secret was shared privately by the Apostles and closest Disciples. This occurred right after Jesus taught that his disciples should drink his blood and eat his flesh. Can we imagine the impact of the Doctrine that Jesus’ disciples must drink his Blood and eat his Flesh? .
John 6: 66-69
66 From that time many of his disciples went back, and walked no more with him.
67 Then said Jesus unto the twelve, Will ye also go away?
68 Then Simon Peter answered him, Lord, to whom shall we go? Thou hast the words of eternal life.
69 And we believe and are sure that thou art that Christ, the Son of the living God.
In Genesis 1:1, is the beginning the first mention of Jesus Christ in our Scriptures? We have “the beginning” mentioned in both Revelation 22:13 and Genesis 1:1. (Handout). Did Jesus equate the Beginning to Himself? Is there another witness this is a valid equation? Do we have a second witness?
In Revelation 22:13 the English “the beginning” is translated from the Greek word G746 arche, ar-khay’. The Hebrew Scriptures were translated into the Greek language and were widely read by the “dispersed among the Gentiles.” The Greek language version of the Hebrew Scriptures is named the Septuagint for the Seventy Elders who accomplished the task. Both the Septuagint and the Authorized Version 1611 were translated by Committee. This same Greek word G746 arche (“the beginning”) in Revelation 22 is used in the Septuagint to translate the Hebrew word H7225 reshiyth, ray-sheeth (“the beginning”) in Genesis 1:1.
Do we have two witnesses? Did we in Revelation 22:13 think of the verb “to be” as an equals (=s) sign? “The Beginning” equals Jesus. Did we also discover that the Greek word “The Beginning” is the same Greek word “The Beginning” in The Septuagint Genesis 1:1? Do we have the Witness of Jesus in Revelation, AV 1611, and the Witness of Jesus in Genesis, The Septuagint: Two Witnesses?
But, what if some of our kindred would be totally bewildered and even intimidated by our excursion into Greek and Hebrew?
This brings on our 3rd Question.
Do we have one or two other Witnesses from the Scriptures to confirm that “The Beginning” is the 1st Mention of Jesus Christ?
In this verse of Scripture who shall we say is speaking? How do we know that He is the one who is speaking? Does this verse contain internal evidence of the identity of the speaker?
Revelation 21:6 And he said unto me, It is done. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life freely.
Is the speaker in Revelation 21:6 the same speaker in Revelation 22:13? Does the Law of Bible Study the Harmony of The Scriptures serve us well again?
Do we see that Jesus again equates The Beginning with Himself?! By this do we live? By Him do we live? Are we by-livers? Are we believers? Do we believe The Beginning in Genesis 1:1 is identified?
Does The Beginning equal (=) Jesus Christ? Is Jesus Christ =s The Beginning a valid equation? How many of us wondered in high school why Algebra would be a required subject? Is it because the verb, to be, can function as an equals (=) sign? Is there algebra in Scripture? Is Algebra a branch of Mathematics that subjects both numbers and letters to mathematical operations such as addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, and reduction? Look it up! (1828 Webster).
Is there truth in 2+2=4? Is there truth in John 1:1 “The Word was God”?
1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
2 The same was in the beginning with God.
Do we know what the Word is? Do we know who the Word is? The Gospel of John has already instructed us right from the first verse of John that “The Word was God.” After the 1st Celebration of The Lord’s Supper Jesus and the Apostles sang an hymn, and went out toward The Garden of Gethsemane. On the way to the Garden of Gethsemane Jesus prayed.
John 17:17 Sanctify them through thy truth; thy word is truth.
Does the Word equal truth? Is the Word equals (=) truth a valid equation?
20 But ye have not so learned Christ;
21 If so be that ye have heard him, and have been taught by him, as the truth is in Jesus:
“The Truth is in Jesus.” Does Jesus equate (=) the truth with Himself?
Is the Truth equals (=) Jesus a valid equation? Jesus speaks to the Apostle Thomas.
John 14:6 I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.
Did Jesus equate the truth to Himself? Is Jesus Christ the personification of the Truth?
There is a form of the verb “to be” that is the name of God. The Book of Exodus instructs us that this is God’s Name forever and His memorial unto all of us and our children.
14 And God said unto Moses, I AM THAT I AM: and he said, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I AM hath sent me unto you.
15 And God said moreover unto Moses, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, the LORD God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, hath sent me unto you: this is my name forever, and this is my memorial unto all generations.
“I AM”: “This is my name forever.” Do we believe this Scripture? If “I AM” is His Name forever, can we find it 4000 years after the Fall of Adam?
John 13:13 Ye call me Master and Lord: and ye say well; for so I am.
The English word “for” translates a Greek particle that assigns a reason. It indicates an explanation, and is translated elsewhere in other contexts as “because, therefore, and why.” The word “so” is in italics indicating it translates no Greek word. The translators added it to make the English sensible. In verse 13 follow with your eyes while I explore the meaning: “Ye call me Master and Lord: and ye say well; [because] I am.”
This is The FootWashing. Jesus washed the Apostles’ feet. Look down to verse 19. Jesus prophesied His Betrayal by one among them. Verse 19 explains what Jesus in- tended the Apostles to learn from the prophecy’s fulfillment:
John 13:19 Now I tell you before it come, that, when it is come to pass, ye may believe that I am he.
“He” is in italics. Italics indicates that there is no Greek word that is the source for “he.” “He” is added to make it sensible English. Does Jesus want his disciples to be- lieve that He is I am? By Him we live that He is I am?
In John chapter 8 Jesus spoke to the Jews that believed on Him, the Jews that believed not on Him, and they who were of this world and were from beneath, and were as incapable of believing He was God in the flesh as Cain was incapable of bringing a blood sacrifice:
24 I said therefore unto you, that ye shall die in your sins: for if ye believe not that I am he, ye shall die in your sins.
What will happen to them who do not believe Jesus is I am? What did his hearers understand from what he said? Were they astonished? What did they ask Him?
25 Then said they unto Him, Who art thou? And Jesus saith unto them. Even the same that I said unto you from the beginning.
They asked Jesus, “Who art thou?” The name of this lesson is The Beginning. Look down to verse 28:
John 8:28 Then said Jesus unto them, When ye have lifted up the Son of man, then shall ye know that I am he, and that I do nothing of myself; but as my Father hath taught me, I speak these things.
There is no equivalent or source in the Greek text for “ he”. Jesus was teaching in the Temple. All the people were of three kinds: the Jews who believed on him, the Jews who did not, and them from beneath, not above. Verse 30 says “As he spake these words, many believed on Him.” Does verse 30 say all?
There is one place the italicized “he” is not added and that is John 8:57:
57 Then said the Jews unto him, Thou art not yet fifty years old, and hast thou seen Abraham?
58 Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am.
What did many who heard him understand? Is God’s judgment on blasphemers stoning? Does verse 59 read, “Then took they up stones to cast at Him”?
From the chief priest and Pharisees Judas received and led a band of temple guards and officers carrying lanterns, torches, and armaments. Verse 4 is stunning. It says Jesus knew all things that would happen to Him. He met them and asked, Whom seek ye?:
5 They answered him, Jesus of Nazareth. Jesus saith unto them, I am he. And Judas also, which betrayed Him, stood with them.
6 As soon then as he had said unto them, I am he, they went backward, and fell to the ground.
7 Then asked he them again, Whom seek ye? And they said, Jesus of Nazareth.
8 Jesus answered, I have told you that I am he: if therefore ye seek me, let these go their way.
If Jesus uses the memorial Name of God with reference to Himself, is He God?
Do the first five English words of Genesis 1:1, AV 1611, identify Jesus Christ? If Jesus Christ was God Incarnate, was he God in the flesh of Abraham? Did we admit Jesus equates The Beginning with Himself?
Referring to the Genesis 1:1 Handout...
In Test by Substitution can we substitute the phrase “In Jesus Christ” in place of “In the beginning? The first verse of The Bible now reads “In Jesus Christ God created the heaven and the earth? Is this nonsense or sense? If we have not changed the meaning of the first verse of The Bible can we say our substitution makes sense?
We need to say what Test by Substitution is not! This Test is not intended to lobby for a change in the wording of Genesis 1:1. In using this Test our intention is not to change the wording of the AV 1611. In using this Test our intention is to explore the Meaning of the First verse of The Bible.
Test by Substitution is not our sole witness. Have we read Ephesians 3:9, “God
...created all things by Jesus Christ”? Have we read Colossians 1:15-16 that by Jesus Christ, “the image of the invisible God .. were all things created”? Look at the first verse in The Bible. Do these two witnesses, Ephesians and Colossians, identify our Creator in the fifth English word “created”? And who else but God can encompass his own Creation? Can any of the created encompass the heaven and the earth?
There is a witness in the Hebrew in Genesis 1:1 testifying to Jesus Christ. I am grateful to my brother Rex at The Meetinghouse for calling my attention to this. He showed me two Hebrew particles in the First verse of The Bible and questioned me. To Rex’s knowledge, (and mine), no Hebrew scholar has ever raised the Question concerning these two Hebrew particles.
The 1st Hebrew particle appears (reading right to left) in front of the word translated heaven. It has two Hebrew consonants: Aleph (aw’-lef) and Thav (thawv). The 2nd Hebrew particle (reading right to left) appears in front of the Hebrew word translated earth. It consists of Vav (vawv), Aleph and Thav. Vav appears often in front of words, and, here, a particle. It is a conjunction joining two or more things, often translated and. Strong’s Hebrew and Chaldee dictionary classes this particle (aleph-thav) as H853, the demonstr. sense of entity; (but gen. used to point out more def. the object of a verb or prep., ) : - [often unrepresented in English].
(Psalms 119) The same question Rex asked me I now ask you. What do you notice about aleph thav? What is the 1st consonant in the Hebrew alphabet? [Above verse 169] What is the last consonant in the Hebrew alphabet? The Hebrew scholars say aleph thav is unrepresented in English! Does Aleph Thav equal Alpha Omega?
In this lesson we have been seeing equations in The Bible. Is aleph thav equivalent to Alpha Omega? Are Things Equal to The Same Thing, Equal to Each Other? If Alpha Omega equals Jesus, is Jesus equal to Aleph Thav? Do we see Jesus Christ all over Genesis 1:1? What Sequelae follow our seeing Jesus Christ all over Genesis 1:1? What follows?
In Genesis 15 did the pre-Incarnate Jesus appear in a Vision to Abram, saying, I Am thy Shield and Exceeding Great Reward? After sundown did the pre-Incarnate Jesus cut a covenant by passing as a smoking furnace and a burning lamp between the sacrificial peices, giving Abram and his seed The Holy Land?
In Genesis 18 did Abraham bow himself to the ground on the plains of Mamre at the visit of three men to his tent. Was one of those men the Great I Am pre-Incarnate Jesus? Did the Great I Am Holy One of Israel, the pre-Incarnate Jesus, in Genesis 26, appear unto Isaac the miracle child? Did He change Jacob’s Name to Israel? In Exodus did He speak to Moses from the Burning Bush? In Joshua 5 did the pre-Incarnate Jesus, as Captain of the LORD’s Host, give Joshua blessed assurance by Jericho?
Is Jesus Christ mediator between our Heavenly Father and Adam man? Has Jesus Christ been Mediator from The Beginning?
John 10:30: I and my Father are one.
Is the validity of The New Covenant based squarely upon the validity of the Old Covenant?