Christ, the Firstborn of Every Creature, The Redeemer of All.

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Christ is the Firstborn of every creature and all are created in Him so that all are related to Him (cf Col.1:15,16). If Christendom truly understood this passage, their idea that God is going to lose the vast majority of humanity could not find a place in their theology. Many sermons have been given where the minister concentrated on “all has its cohesion in Him” as if that is the most important part of Colossians 1:15-20. It is important, but Christ being Firstborn of every creature and the ramifications thereof are critical to the whole passage and its conclusion about the reconciliation of all to Him.

God has revealed to the apostle Paul, Christ’s connectedness to the creation and to every being within the creation:

“. . . out of [God] all is” (1 Cor.8:6), and so God is revealed as the original source of all. And then it is stated: “Jesus Christ, through Whom all is,” thus showing us Christ as the channel through Whom all came into being. So we go back, way back before the eons. Seeing through the mists of time we get a glimpse of God’s plan as it is revealed to us in its most primitive stage, as it is beginning to unfold. Before all the vast starry hosts of the heavens came into being through His Son, God had a plan which is called “the purpose of the eons, which He makes in Christ Jesus, our Lord” (Eph.3:11). That plan, conceived in God’s heart, is being carried out through His Son.

Every Creature is Connected to Christ, the Firstborn

The august wisdom involved in the planning stages must have been immense. How did God conceive all the parts of the atom along with gravity and energy and everything in the universe being held together by forces we are just beginning to get an inkling of an understanding? How did God know to create humanity with its ability to replicate via sperm and egg? How did God know stars and planets would be needed in His grand design where no star or planet ever existed before? The vastness of God’s creation with all the varied creatures just on our earth is so immense as to boggle the mind. Yet what we see today may be miniscule compared with the creation of the first eon or even the eon prior to the flood of Noah’s day. Today we may be seeing only a remnant of the creation which survived the world-wide flood.

Before the creation came into being through God’s Son, the existence of humanity was planned along with its disobedience, its ransom from bondage to sin and death and the exaltation of Christ as well as God being All in all. None of these are the outworkings of a causeless, humanistic evolution. Likewise, it was planned that the entire creation would be subjected to vanity with the goal of being freed from its slavery of corruption into the glorious freedom of the children of God (cf Rom.8:20,21).

Many are the voices arising from humanity accusing God of all manner of evils throughout the ages. God deems it wise to educate humanity in the knowledge of good and evil. The education began with the first Edenic pair and still continues. At the consummation of the eons God is justified in all He does. And as Paul prophetically announces to his readers in Philippians 2:11, these things are for the glory of God, the Father. He will be glorified by all. This glorification reveals that at that future point in time, all have been brought into a realization of the truth. All in the celestials, terrestrial and subterranean finally perceive and enter into the actual goal God had for the eons.

But what is the means by which this goal will be realized? Let us now look at this passage concerning the Son of God’s love which shines so brightly among all the constellations of passages in God’s Word:

15 Who is the Image of the invisible .God, Firstborn of every creature, 16 for in Him is .all created, .that in the heavens and .that on the earth, the visible and the invisible, whether thrones, or lordships, or sovereignties, or authorities, .all is °created through Him and iofor Him, 17 and He ́ is before all, and .all has its cohesion in Him.

18 And He ́ is the Head of the body, the ecclesia, Who is .Sovereign, Firstborn ofrom among the dead, that in all He ́may become |first,19tfor in Him the entire complement delights to dwell, 20 and through Him to reconcile .all to Him (making peace through the blood of His .cross), through Him, whether .those on the earth or .those in the heavens. (Col.1:15-20)

This passage is glistening brilliantly with the glory of God’s goal for the universe. Christ is the Image of the invisible God. He reveals to us God’s wisdom, knowledge, power and love both in creation and by His act of ransoming and reconciliation.

a wonderful connectedness

Christ is revealed as “the Firstborn of every creature, for [or, the reason why this is so, is that] in Him is all created.” So there is a wonderful connectedness Christ has with every creature within the creation which He brought into existence. As the Firstborn, He has the immense responsibility of taking care of every creature with whom He is connected. He must be every creature’s Kinsman Redeemer. We see this theme in the “Old Testament” concerning the firstborn of each family in Israel. The firstborn received the majority of everything the father had in order that, upon the decease of the father, the firstborn would take over the reins of the family.

The Kinsman Redeemer

Abraham had become very old and so Isaac was given everything Abraham had according to Genesis 24:36 and 25:5. This indicated Isaac was the true firstborn. “Abram was very heavy in cattle, in silver, and in gold” (Gen.13:2), and so all these went to Isaac in order to take care of the family. In the case of Jacob and Esau, Esau sold his birthright (“firstbornship”) and relinquished the right to receive the majority of blessings from his father. It is interesting to note that the Hebrew word for “firstborn” and “birthright” belong to the same family, as seen by their spelling: bkur is used for “firstborn” and bkure for “birthright.” “Birthright” could be thought of as “firstbornship.” In Genesis 27, Jacob became the kinsman redeemer (Gen.27:28,29). Right afterward, in chapter 28, Yahweh revealed Himself to Jacob (Gen.28:13-15). Likewise, following Joseph’s reception of the distinctive tunic, Yahweh revealed to Joseph the future when he would reign over his family rather than Reuben his brother, who was the firstborn from Leah. Reuben had his father’s concubine Bilhah. Jacob was so upset concerning this that he made a distinctive tunic, not for Reuben but for Joseph, his firstborn from his beloved wife Rachel. Jacob was telling his family that Joseph was now the leader among his brothers even though Reuben was his firstborn (Gen.46:8; 49:3). Joseph would watch out for the kin related to him. This is exactly what he did when they came to him in Egypt. That is why such a one is called the kinsman redeemer. If the kin got into trouble, it was his responsibility to redeem them. This is a wonderful picture of the Grand Kinsman Redeemer, the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, in Whom we have deliverance (Rom.3:24).

Firstborn Responsibilities

It is of great interest that God sent all the plagues upon Egypt to free His people. It was only when God ransomed His people with the death of Egypt’s firstborn that they were freed from slavery. What a fitting picture of the death of God’s Firstborn, the Firstborn of every creature, to ransom and free the entire creation from the slavery of corruption. Our salvation from sin and death was not without great sacrifice. Christ gave Himself a correspondent ransom for all. But why did He give Himself a ransom for all? Because He is the Firstborn of all and that is what His responsibility is: to ransom all connected to Him! Thus we read:

4 [God] |wills that all =mankind be saved and come into a realization of the truth. 5 For there is one God, and one Mediator of God and =mankind, a hMan, Christ Jesus, 6 .Who is −giving Himself a correspondent Ransom fors all . . . . (1 Tim.2:4-6)

boaz, a type of Christ

Now, some may wish to claim that it was possible for Christ the Antitype, to fail as to His own responsibility here even as the original kinsman redeemer in type failed in the case of Ruth. So shameful it was for that kinsman redeemer not to redeem Ruth that the Scriptures refuse to even name him, calling him a “so and so” and “[of the] House of the Pulled-off Sandal.” As proof that he had refused to carry out the responsibilities, if Ruth had been present, it would have been her right to receive so and so’s sandal because this was so, and she was obliged to spit in his face. His duty was also to raise up offspring in the name of the deceased husband.

Boaz was next in line as a near kin to her, and it was he who redeemed her. It was through the kinsman redeemer, Boaz, that the Kinsman Redeemer of the universe came!

The story of Boaz and Ruth

From the book of Ruth we read concerning this:

4 + Boaz had gone up to the gate and |sat down there, + bdwhen the kinsman redeemer| was passing by of whom Boaz had spoken. + 7Boaz0 |said 7to him0, Do turn in, do

sit down here, So-and-so. And he |turned in and |sat down. 2 +Then 7Boaz0 |took ten men fof the elders of the city and |said, Sit here. +When they were |seated 3 + he |sastated to the kinsman redeemer|:

Naomi, .who has returned from the field of Moab, has put up for sale the portion of the field wthat > our kinsman Elimelech >had. 4 +As for me, I sathought I should reveal it to your ear, > saying, Acquire it in front of .those seated| here, + in front of the elders of my people. Should you want to |redeem, so redeem it. +Yet should 7you~cs not |redeem, do tell > me so +that I may know, for there is no one except you to redeem, and I am after you.

+ He |sareplied, I ́ shall redeem it.

5 +Then Boaz |sacontinued, iOn the day you acquirethe field from the hand of Naomi, + you acquire ~mralso~ `Ruth, the Moabite wife of the dead|, in order to raise up the name of the dead| on his allotment.

6 + The kinsman redeemer| |sareplied, I am not |able to redeem it for myself, lest I |impair `my own allotment. As for you, redeem `my redemption right for yourself, for I am not |able to redeem it.

7 +Now this was 7the customc beforetime in Israel, onconcerning .redemption and on .exchange, to confirm every matter: A man would pull off his sandal and give it to his associate; + this was the attestation in Israel. 8 +So the kinsman redeemer| |said to Boaz, Acquire it for yourself. And he |pulled off his sandal 7and |gave it to him0. (Ruth 4:1-8)

And from Deuteronomy we have this:

5 In case brothers |dwell together, and one fof them dies, and he >has no son, the wife of the dead| one shall not bcome tod the outside, to an alien| man. Her brother-in-law, he shall come onto her, and he will take her to himself >as his wife and mperform the |levirate for her.

6 +Then it will come to be, the firstborn whom she |bears shall carry on the name of his father’s .dead| brother so +that his name may not be wiped out from Israel. 7 +But should the man not be |inclined to take `his sister-in-law, +then his sister-in-law will go up to the elders atd the gate and say: My brother-in-law refuses to raise up a name for his brother in Israel; he is not willing to mperform the levirate− for me. 8 +Then the elders of his city will call to him and speak to him. +But if he persists and says: I am not inclined to take her, 9 +then his sister-in-law will come close to him >before the eyes of the elders, + pull his sandal off his foot, + spit in his face and answer and say: as Thus shall be done to the man who will not |build up `his brother’s house. 10 And his name will be called in Israel, House of the Pulled-off Sandal. (Deut.25:5-10)

Only One Could Ransom Us

Only Christ Could Ransom All

Had Christ reneged on His responsibility He would have just been a so and so. He would carry the disparaging title: House of the Pulled-off Sandal. Had He failed, who could have done what He was supposed to have done? No one! There just wasn’t anyone in the universe. There wasn’t another connected to every creature through the creative act of Christ! This is what the Colossian passage is showing us! It is so grand, so marvelous, and so spectacular. It is a marvel that so few have seen it. That so few have seen it is a testimony to the blindness of humanity.

The Father has given Christ all and has seated Him at His right hand. Rather than blessing the universe with physical goods, they are blessed with even greater, that is, spiritual. Immortality, incorruption, righteousness, reconciliation and love along with the fruit of the spirit, Christ is heavily weighted with these incredible treasures and He dispenses them to all in the universe with unstinted grace! It is through the blood of Christ’s cross that every creature in the universe will be reconciled to God. The blood of Christ was shed due to His love and connectedness to every creature. Being the Firstborn of all creation He has responsibilities no one else had or could have. Being the Firstborn of all creation He is the Kinsman Redeemer of every creature of the entire creation since the entire creation came through Him! How spectacular—how wonderful for the creation that God had such a faithful Son! God gave His Son the faith and ability to go ahead with the incredible task of going to the cross, enduring the shame and facing death. He did it all in faithfulness to God and to His high office as the Firstborn of all creation. He did it due to the vast love with which He loves us. How grand is our Redeemer: Rather than ending up being just a so and so, He is given a Name above all names!

If the current theology of Christendom is correct, if Christ has failed to ransom and redeem the vast majority which Christendom has assigned to eternal loss, then Christ’s name must be for ever relegated to that of a “so and so” and He must give every lost soul His sandal. Such is the scandalous nature and outcome of one who fails to redeem his kin. But a glorious picture emerges of One exalted to the highest place in the universe and given a Name above every name! Is it any wonder that, in the future, this grand display of adoration will take place:

8 . . . He humbles Himself, becoming obedient unto death, yeven the death of the cross. 9 Wherefore, also, .God highly exalts Him, and graces Him with the Name .that is above every name, 10 that in the Name of Jesus every knee should bow, celestial and terrestrial and subterranean, 11 and every tongue should acclaim that Jesus Christ is Lord, iofor the glory of God, the Father. (Phil.2:8-11)

Anthony Nungesser.

(Anthony publishes The Saviour of All, Fellowship, newsletter)

Join my newsletter and subscribe to our YouTube channel. Get notified about live streams and get my weekly written essays on Paul's letters. -Ace

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  1. […] KEY POINT… REGARDING CHRIST AS THE CORRESPONDENT RANSOM.You might want to check out this teaching again (linked below). It’s a lesson about how THE KINSMAN REDEEMER was required to redeem his kin. And if he did not redeem his kin, his name was disgraced. But Christ did redeem all, and thus He’s given a name above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee will bow. Redeemed by the redeemer of all.… […]

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