Date: Tue Nov 10 1998 - 01:06:19 EST

In a message dated 11/9/98 1:51:47 PM Pacific Standard Time, writes:

<< It seems that there is a distinction between TOKOS and KTISIS in the Greek
 language. The PRWTOKTISIS, according to Genesis 1:1, was Heaven and Earth,
 and we could assume the heavenly hosts as well. >>

I see nothing that would allow such an assumption. Also, neither the LXX or
the NT use the word PRWTOKTISIS. By the way, I think the word you are looking

<<The PRWTOTOKOS is Christ,
 but not in a temporal sense (in which case it would be synonymous with

You will not find a distinction in meaning between these words until the
Nicene crisis. When PRWTOKTISTOS came into use it was in fact used in
reference to Christ. Consider the writings of Clement of Alexandria, for one.

<< According to the Nicene Creed, the Son of God is "...begotten
 not made, of the same substance as the Father...And to those that
 say...'before he was begotten he was not'...these the Catholic and apostolic
 church anathemizes." >>

Yes, I know, but we are discussing the teachings and meaning of NT passages,
not creedal confessions hundreds of years after the fact.

<< I don't think that there is any way to determine the meaning of PRWTOTOKOS
 PASHS KTISEWS on solely grammatical grounds. The different uses of the
 genitive are determined by context, not inflection or syntax. >>

Has someone said otherwise?

<<And in Colossians 1:15, the context makes one thing clear: All things were
created in Christ, so Christ is the firstborn of every creature. >>

No, as we have discussed several times (have you been reading the threads?)
Christ is the firstborn of KTISIS, and TA PANTA was created in and through

<<There is no doubt that PASHS KTISEWS is a genitive of subordination, but is
it also partitive? >>

Actually, there is quite a bit of doubt about that. I think you mean to say
that there is no doubt that we have, inherent from the use of PRWTOTOKOS, a
preeminent sense that conveys the firstborn's superiority over the group to
which he belongs.

<< It seems to me that such an interpretation would be in contradiction with
 the following clause in verse 16. How can Jesus be the first member of
 creation if EN AUTWi EKTISQH TA PANTA? >>

Clearly you have not been following the threads, and I wonder, why are you
commenting on the issues with such certainty without having considered all
that has been said?

<<And perhaps the strongest argument is
 that this phrase is found within a causal clause, linked to the preceding
 verse by hOTI. Why is Christ firstborn? Because he was instrumental in the
 making of all created things.
 Kyle Dillon >>

Indeed, the hOTI clause is key, along with the lexical sense of PRWTOTOKOS,
for it shows that Christ must be the firstborn, since TA PANTA was made in and
through him. No one but the firstborn/firstcreated of God could not have
served as the mediator for TA PANTA. Not one of the TA PANTA could be
firstborn, for it has reference to the through-him [= Christ] things. That
Christ also lives because of the Father is really no an issue.---John 6:57.

Greg Stafford

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