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Do These Texts Deny the Trinity


 

Revelation 3:14 "The beginning of Creation"
Colossians 1:15 "First born of Creation"
Hebrews 1:4 "Did Christ inherit Godhood?
John 14:28; 5:19 "The Father is Greater"
John 8:42 "Came forth"


Revelation 3:14 "These things says the Amen the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God."

First of all: WHO is "the Amen"?

Deut. 7:9 The "Amen" God is the faithful God. (the Hebrew word faithful comes from "amen")
Isaiah 49:7 "Jehovah that is faithful.
Isaiah 65:16 "The God of truth," marg. "The God of Amen".

"Amen" spoken by God means "it is and shall be".

Jesus Christ was the member of the Godhead to begin creating — in fact — nothing NOTHING was created without Him.

John 1:3 "All things were made by Him; and without Him was not anything made that was made."
Colossians 1:16,17 For by Him were ALL THINGS created. .visible or invisible thrones, dominions, principalities, or powers, all things consist by Him!

Paul's Greek here is clear: He created "ta panta" -- the all.

This is the "AMEN" GOD who spoke and it was done. Who said, "Let there be, and it was-- this is none other than Jesus Christ.

However, all three members of the Godhead participated in creation. (God said, let US make....) The Oneness of God means they do not work independant of each other though each has individual responsibilities. Yet the Bible is clear that Jesus Christ was the Primary Creator — He was the One Who began the creation process. The Beginning of everything that was created!."

Gen. 1:1-3 "In the beginning God created...and the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters.
And God said, "LET US MAKE...."


Another "problem" text cited against Christ's eternal divinity is:

Colossians 1:15
"Who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of every creature."

Does this mean Christ is literally born--given birth to, by God? Some will take these texts and the texts speaking of Christ as the "SON" of God, to humanistic literalism and say God, in some way actually gave birth.
However, Firstborn here, does not mean God began giving birth and every creature that followed was also literally "born" of God in a literalistic sense. First born of creation — would be followed by second born of creation - third born etc. (By the way there is a whole doctrine of demons from that misunderstanding )

Yet we must see this verse in context. Read the verse following, Colossians 1:18, and see it in context.

For by Him were all things created..All things were created through Him and for Him. He is before all things, and in Him all things consist.
"And He is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the FIRSTBORN FROM THE DEAD: that in all things he might have the preeminence."

Now that we've read the whole passage we realize that firstborn of every creature means PREEMINENCE. This preeminence is established first because Christ is the creator of all!

Romans 8:29 For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.


Note this is in the context of mankind's salvation, not in the context of Christ's eternal reality. The firstborn, Jesus Christ, the Son of God, has taken upon Himself humanity and has shown how a human being living in connection with God can live as a son of God! Others are to be conformed to His image— born again by the Spirit as Jesus explained in John chapter three, walking in the Spirit not in the flesh as Romans chapter eight outlines.

The Greek prefix, "proto", means "first; earliest; in front; beyond; ahead." In every case, it indicates others are following. The proto is out in front and others are following. (We use this same Greek prefix in an English word, "prototype," the model after which everything that follows it is based.) Thus Christ is our example of the "born again" experience and life we can have through faith in HIM!

In Colossians 1:18 Paul says Jesus was "the firstborn [prototokos] from the dead" refering to the resurrection. Christ's resurrection is our hope for resurrection! We are to follow the same pattern as the One Who took upon Himself our humanity and who went first. He lived His life in complete dependance and submission to God the Father, being obedient even unto death, and was resurrected as the firstborn of God, into the Family of God (Ephesians 3:15). Therefore we can be called the children of God, through HIM, our elder brother. As Christ was raised and given a glorified body so we will be raised and glorified by the resurrection as His younger brethren and sisters!

PREEMINENCE

Some may say, but doesn't the Father have preeminence?

The term—firstborn“ is a Messianic term; the "first born" or THE CHIEF ONE of the human race, Who leads the human race back into reconciliation with God! Therefore, it is appropriate only for Jesus, not for the Father or the Holy Spirit. Thus, the term was not be used of either of them in Scripture.

He, the Creator, also overcame death, He is the assurance of the resurrection and salvation.

John 3:1 Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not.
3:2 Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is.
3:3 And every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as he is pure.


Hebrews 1:4 "Being made so much better than the angels, as he hath by inheritance obtained a more excellent name than they."

Heb. 2.9 - “Now, we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man.” For HE, CHRIST--

Phil. 2.6-9 “Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: had made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name:"

Christ did not earn a promotion in the courts of heaven. He already was God in the highest sense! But He laid aside that glory, and became a man, not just for a season, but He ascended to heaven in His glorified humanity. When Christ passed within the heavenly gates, He was enthroned amidst the adoration of the angels even with the glory which He had with the Father from all eternity.

After He had suffered the fullest disgrace in His death upon the cross, bearing the sins of the world, because of OUR TRANSGRESSIONS, Jesus Christ, Who will forever carry His identification with humanity, (the SON OF MAN as well as the SON OF GOD) returned to heaven where the Father exalted Him back to glory, and where the angels worship Him because His journey from the highest point of being, to the lowest point of hell, utterly amazes them. That He would do this to reconcile lost humanity to Himself and restore to them the inheritance they lost by winning it back (as the Son of Man) for them is an act of love unfathomable. It didn't earn Him Godhood, it SHOWED THE PERFECT LOVE OF GOD -- and all the angelic host proclaim God worthy of worship!

Some will say Hebrews 1:4 means all these divine attributes were initially "given" or "inherited" to the Son from God the Father.

INITIALLY?

The divine glory and honour and equality and other Divine attributes belonged to Christ from all eternity.

However, HE INHERITED them as our representative. Mankind lost his inheritance, and Christ, by becoming man, won it back. We must not confuse Christ's eternal reality with His role or position in the redemption of mankind.

When the world was created it was given to "Adam, who was the son of God." Luke 3:38
But Adam sold his birthright there in the garden of Eden. He lost his inheritance, and mankind, as the sons and daughters of Adam lost their inheritance.
But by becoming the SECOND ADAM, (THE SON OF GOD) Christ as the (the Son of man) regains the lost inheritance!

1 Corinthinians 15.47 The first man (Adam) is of the earth, earthy: the second man (Jesus) is the Lord from heaven.

And through HIM we inherit the kingdom-- our corruptable will put on incorruption and we shall be changed and the sting of death will be conquered. The victory being THROUGH CHRIST. (See the rest of 1 Cor. 15)

Gal. 4.7 Wherefore thou art no more a servant, but a son; and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ.

Christ INHERITS the lost inheritance and THROUGH HIM we inherit the lost inheritance as well!


John 5:19 "Then answered Jesus and said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do: for what things soever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise."
John 14:28 "Ye have heard how I said unto you, I go away, and come [again] unto you. If ye loved me, ye would rejoice, because I said, I go unto the Father: for my Father is greater than I."

When Christ became man, He placed Himself totally in subjection and dependency upon the will of HIS FATHER. Like a Son to His Father He was obedient, even to the death on the cross.

He walked this earth as a man, not as a God (though He was fully God), but as a human who must look and depend fully upon God the Father.


But what of all those texts of Christ being the "begotten son" of God?

When did Christ go through the birth process?
When did Christ totally and completely put His own divinity and authority on "hold" and take the position of one totally in dependance upon God?
The answer to that question is -- the incarnation, when Christ came to this earth as a human.

When Christ became man, He placed Himself totally in subjection and dependency upon the will of HIS FATHER. Like a Son to His Father He was obedient, even to the death on the cross.

Philippians 2:5-9 - "Christ. . .being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God, but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a servant, and coming in the likeness of men. He humbled Himself and became obedient to death, even the death of the cross. Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, and every knee should bow, of those in heaven and of those on earth and every tongue should confess tha Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father."

We should not confuse Christ's role as a human, with His role as God.

Do you believe that Christ came forth from the very essence of the Godhood in heaven, when He came to this earth to redeem mankind. Do you believe it was GOD WITH US, when Christ was born in Bethlehem.

Matthew 1.23 - "Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us. "

Yes, Christ is the real Son of God, born of a virgin in Bethlehem. God (known to us as the SON, for He is our brother, and through Him we too can look to God as Father) became human, lowering Himself from the most exalted position in the universe to became one of us, for our salvation. He totally emptied Himself, and became totally dependant and obedient to His Heavenly Father. He, Who was equal to God, emptied Himself and came to be our brother-- leading us to look up and to see God as Father."

This was foreordained from before creation!

1 Peter 1:20 – “Who verily was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you"


John 8.42 - "Jesus said unto them, If God were your Father, ye would love me: for I proceeded forth and came from God; neither came I of myself, but he sent me. "

John 16.28 - "I came forth from the Father, and am come into the world: again, I leave the world, and go to the Father."

These texts are not speaking of "procreating Christ" WHO was with God and was God from all eternity, what these texts tell us is that CHRIST CAME FORTH from the very essence of the Godhood, and came into the world. It DOES NOT MEAN He came into initial existence by a birth processes---
He came forth from God into the world and is returning TO GOD. He came to this world and was called EmmanuEL, which being interpreted is, GOD WITH US. (Matt. 1:23)

"When the fullness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman , made under the law." Gal. 4:4

1 Peter 1.18-20
Who verily was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you,
Rev. 13.8
the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.