Date: Mon Nov 09 1998 - 16:45:26 EST

In a message dated 11/9/98 12:44:09 PM Pacific Standard Time, writes:

<< A literal, non-metaphorical use of PRWTOTOKOS would imply that Jesus was
 physically born as the first male child born in a physical family, in which
 case he would belong to the group of children in the family. >>

This is not necessary. While it is true, in human terms, that the PRWTOTOKOS
would have a father and mother, in a household of other children, it is not
necessary to transfer this same scenario to the spirit realm. The Bible uses
human terms so that we can have some sense of understanding the relationships
that exist in the spirit realm, in this case between God and his Son. To think
that the use of PRWTOTOKOS in any literal sense would have to transfer the
human familial setting to the heavenly realm is quite a stretch, in my view.

Bound up in the term are thoughts of temporal priority, preeminence, certain
family rights and responsibilities, etc. The human surroundings that are part
of a firstborn's life are not bound up in the term. They are merely the
circumstances surrounding the firstborn when applied to a human. Those who
knew of Christ as the Firstborn of God certainly would have known better than
to transfer such things as a human family etc. along with the aforementioned
notions of temporal priority and preeminence.

Again, the Bible uses human language so that we HUMANS can understand what it
is that God wants us to know about His relationship with other spirit beings,
and us humans.

Greg Stafford

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