Skip navigation

 

 

Image result for The PrototokosThe Prototokos Debate

The debate over what is meant by being first born as it pertains to Jesus Christ has perplexed theologians and has created a divide resulting in discord within the Body of Christ resulting in a lack of unity, dissention and in some cases rivalry and even hatred among those who profess that Christ is their Lord their Lord and Savior.

The word heretic and heresy is commonly a depiction of one who holds an ideology that is against God or against the Church. The meaning from the Greek and Biblical definition can refer to a sect or individual holding an opinion or choice as in Acts 5:17, Is. 24:5, to speak out against authority( Gal 5:20),  a person of questionable conduct “whose self – will questions (Titus 3-10)”,  or a division in the church itself ( 1 Cor. 11:19) (Easton 1897). A simple meaning could be stated as follows: any view, belief or opinion that does not agree with the official belief, dominant theory, opinion, or practice of a particular religion, institution or system (Heresy 2015).”  However, deviancy is a definition of society and those considered deviant are often innovators of change in society. More so,  one could hardly argue Jesus was a bit of a revolutionary and considered a revolutionary and even considered a heretic by the religious leaders of his time.

What is Paul referring to in Col. 1:15 when He states, “He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation.” First, on the issue of first-born the story of Jacob and Esau comes to mind. Eric Lutzer states: “One should take the word “firstborn” to mean “first-bearer” implying Christ has preeminence over creation or the source of all things that which is above ,supreme and above all else, The Alpha the Omega. In addition, Lutzer points out “It is not a chronological matter but one of status that should be considered for Esau was older but Jacob received the blessing and inheritance (Lutzer 1998).” Secondly, John the Beloved writes: “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God (Jn.  1:1 NIV).” John also restates this as; “The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth (Jn. 1:14 NIV).” The first quote refers to Jesus Christ as being present since before and at the beginning of time, One with God, and the author of creation. The second refers to the second persona of God, Jesus Christ descending from the father to be our savior fully human and divine both in form and in essence; complete in mind, body soul and spirit.

The councils of Nicaea and Chalcedon were called to debate the nature of God and Persona of Christ. In summary, Jesus Christ was of a unified nature of human form- and Divinity born of a virgin mother in a manner which is a mystery and ascended to Heaven in the same state and thus will return in such a state in the second coming. Only such form would be sufficient to pay the price for the penalty of the sins of humanity. Only a Man-God could experience temptation and serve as a teacher and example: A New Adam and role model for a fallen world in need of redemption, a savior who could crush the head of serpent (evil) and hold mastery over all matters of death physical and spiritual (Lutzer 1998).

However, there are some truth and merits to the views of heretics. The Gnostics view that much of the world is under the influence of unseen spirits and the Platonic view that all knowledge is derived from a heavenly origin and all creation has a soul is not without warrant. The Bible cautions of the powers of principalities and the need to put on” The Armor of God” In Ephesians 6. The Holy Spirit is the source of all Inspiration, and in Psalms 148, it is clear all Creation worships and praises God.  All has a soul and Spirit; however, we as humans are in a fallen state suffering a spiritual death because of the sin of Adam and Eve. Humankind must come into a decision of faith, and by the gift of grace of salvation to be redeemed and restored back to our rightful state being baptized of the Spirit.

To the Jehovah Witness who claims that the Father created the Son and the in turn created creation.  A full explanation of context, meaning, and historical as well as relative meaning of the passages from John coupled with the story of Jacob and Esau and the Blessing story should suffice. To the Mormon who claims Christ was born of a union between God the Father and a Goddess the passages from John may be a starting point. However, unlike many fundamentalist and many evangelist the focus should be on salvation, sanctification, and the seven core teachings of Jesus Christ[1] and on Love, unity and humility. It is my belief to overly emphasis doctrine. Dogma or Law is to place religion over relationship and to be more like a Pharisee than to be like our Lord and Savior. If culture, worldview and such can be incorporated into a fashion that does not threaten the Body as a whole it only adds to the dimension of the Church not subtracts from it. God created man in his image but each one of us id unique the world is not black and white but made up of many colors and even forces we cannot see. Even the Highest name of God YHWH means I am which is inclusive not exclusive either God is everything or He is nothing.

In God, Christ, & Spirit,

Trent Rindoks

 

References

Easton, Matthew George. Entry for Heresy. 1897. http://www.biblestudytools.com/dictionaries/eastons-bible-dictionary/heresy.html (accessed 01 21, 2016).

Heresy. 2015. http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/heresy (accessed 21 2016, 01).

Lutzer, Eric. The Doctrines That Divide. Grand Rapids: Kregel Publications, 1998.

 

Image result for john 1:1

 

[1] Repent & Believe (Mark 1:15)Baptism and Sanctification (Matt 28:18; 20; Acts 2:38; Rom 6:1:11), Love God/Others ( Matt 22: 37-40),Communion (Luke 22:17-20),Pray (Matt 6: 5-15),Give (Matt 6:19-21; Luke 6:38)Evangelize the world( Matt 28: 18-20)

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: