Behold Your God: Firstborn Of All Creation

February 20, 2018 at 7:23 AM Leave a comment

Colossians 1:15-20 (ESV) states:

15 He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation.16 For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him. 17 And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together. 18 And he is the head of the body, the church. He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in everything he might be preeminent. 19 For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, 20 and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross.

In our first article, we briefly looked at the first part of verse 15 highlighting the fact that Jesus is the very image of the invisible God. This cannot be ascribed to someone who is merely human. As only human beings, no one can ever rise above that status to “become” God, though of course, this is exactly what the New Age in its many forms teach. This is all rooted in the lie that Satan promulgated in the Garden of Eden to the first two humans to ever set foot on God’s Creation. It was a lie then and it is a lie now.

Human beings cannot raise themselves up to the level of deity. It is an impossibility. God will also not raise a human being to that level. He alone is God. No one competes with Him though many try.

If this is so, then what does the phrase “firstborn of all creation” signify to us? It actually has several meanings. According to Dr. Thomas Constable, ““Firstborn” (Gr. prototokos) may denote either priority in time or supremacy in rank (i.e., sovereignty; cf. v. 18; Exod. 4:22; Ps. 89:27; Rom. 8:29; Heb. 1:6; Rev. 1:15). It may also denote both of these qualities. Both seem to be in view here.70 Christ was before “all creation” in time, and He is over “all creation” in authority.” (pg 19)

At first glance, it would appear as though Paul is referencing Jesus’ human birth into this world. In fact, Paul is going well beyond that in defining Christ’s position in the Cosmos/universe. Jesus, in position, has priority over all things. The text is not stating that Jesus was the first to be “born.” That wouldn’t even be true since He was not the first to be physically born, but came thousands of years after the actual Creation.

Jesus is the very top of the ladder. He is supreme. He is over all and in all. He was here before God even began Creation. In that sense, Jesus is the “firstborn” because He was already here. This is one of the reasons why it is extremely important to delve into the original languages whenever possible simply because it helps to flesh out meaning for us.

Believing that Jesus was the “firstborn” of all Creation is a heresy that has been with us for quite some time. It is error. It has no basis in truth.

What “firstborn” does not mean is that Christ was the first created being, which ancient Arians believed and modern Jehovah’s Witnesses teach. This is clear because verses 16-18 state that Christ existed before all things and is the Creator Himself. (Constable)

If we simply consider the English text, it might be easy to come away with this misconception regarding Jesus. However, it is in the definition of the Greek words and the surrounding context that the actual meaning is clearly delineated for us.

This is also where context serves to do its final work. When we approach God’s Word, we need to understand that God wrote all of it. Though He did so using roughly 40 human authors (all with different perspectives and personalities), over a period of approximately 1,600 to 2,000 years, it becomes very clear when understood properly that God wrote what He chose to write in spite of using human beings to do so. What this means is that other areas of Scripture also come to bear on the truth that Jesus existed before all things and was in fact, the Creator of those things (cf. John 1:3; 3:16; Rom. 8:29; Heb. 1:6; 11:28; 12:23). Context can make or break the meaning of something.

Constable also notes that “ the word “only begotten” (Gr. monogenes) means alone of His kind, not “first-created” (protoktiskos),” as used in John 3:16. In essence, a title of Jesus is “only begotten” and implies designation by God the Father.

When we consider Colossians 1:15b, we should drink deeply of the well that informs us of the fact that Jesus the Prime Creator of all things. That is the essence of the term “firstborn.” Jesus, as God the Son, had the responsibility of Creation. We will soon learn that not only did Jesus create everything, but all Creation is held together by Him and without Him, nothing would hold together or exist.

This fact should inspire a tremendous degree of reverential fear for God. Not fear because of impending judgment or doom, but fear because of the tremendous power of God.

It is amazing to me that in 2018, the nations and leaders of those nations continue to “rage” against God. People fail to see their duplicity and hypocrisy. On one hand, they can demand more gun control laws in the wake of a tragic shooting that left 17 students dead. On the other hand, these same people see no problem at all with the continued and unchecked abortion on demand that murders millions of unborn babies every year. The disconnect between these two trains of thought is terrifying in many ways because of the inability or deliberateness to disassociate one type of event from the other.

This is a result of failure on the part of people to understand the actual Creation of the universe and everything in it. Jesus – God the Son – created all life, all planets, all solar systems. He created critically thinking people and spiritual beings with the ability to choose through what we is termed free will. It is that free will that will always, when given the chance, rebel against Creator God. We can try to blame God for that, but in reality, our free will is ours and we choose as we do based on our understanding of truth.

Yet, in spite of humanity’s constant and continued rebellion against Almighty God, His plan continues to unfold and will do so until every jot and tittle has been fulfilled. Humanity’s free will does not keep God from establishing or bringing to fruition His will.

Jesus is the “firstborn” over all Creation because He existed before all of it. He not only created all things, but He did so for His specific purposes, some of which we will not be aware of until we enter eternity. This truth should make us pause and seriously reflect on who God is, the power that He wields, and the dire consequences of our failure to fully absorb and embrace it.

Jesus is the firstborn over all Creation. It is not that He was somehow physically born into that position. He has always had that position. May we begin to think critically about all that this truth means for us as a global society, and certainly as us who are part of His Bride. The entire point of Colossians 1:15b is to prove that Jesus is above all He created and that He is over all of it. There is nothing that does not come under His authority…whether they like it or not.

As I live, says the Lord, every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue shall confess to God. (Romans 14:11 ESV, see also Philippians 2:10-11)

Entry filed under: Atheism and religion, christianity, eternity, Religious - Christian - Theology, salvation. Tags: .

Behold Your God: Image of Invisible God Q: 2018 Will Be Glorious

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