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If Jesus was created then why is the word protoktisis not used the Bible?

    I_love_Jeff posted Wed, 17 Oct 2012 20:26:44 GMT(10/17/2012)

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    Is the word protoktisis from Koine Greek language? I do know that Clement used it a centuries later. Any greek scholars out there? Thanks

    Leolaia posted Wed, 17 Oct 2012 20:36:15 GMT(10/17/2012)

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    Hold on, I'll do a search in the TLG.

    Christ Alone posted Wed, 17 Oct 2012 20:50:33 GMT(10/17/2012)

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    Because Jesus was NOT created. Every "proof text" that JWs use to "prove" that Jesus was created is easily answered when you look at the Greek. Rev 3:16 uses the word "arche" and is translated "beginning" by many translators. He IS the beginning of the creation of God, but this is in reference to His position, status, and authority. Arche means "origin" or "first in position" or "Leader" or "Cause". It's what we get our English word "architect" from.

    When you apply this word "arche", you get a clear picture. Jesus is the Leader over all of creation. Jesus is the ORIGIN over all creation. Jesus was teh architect.

    No, Jesus was not the first created. Col 1:15,16 shows that Jesus exists before ALL THINGS. This would make no sense if Jesus was a created thing. That is why the WT was forced to insert "other" into the text to try and make sense of it.

    Christ Alone posted Wed, 17 Oct 2012 20:56:59 GMT(10/17/2012)

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    Also the word "firstborn" in Col 1 does not mean first created. PROTOTOKOS, as you brought out, is not the same as PROTOKTISIS. Prototokos refers to position. There are several passages in the Bible where someone is spoken of as being "firstborn" when they were not actually the first person born. An example that is used by many is the example of Manasseh and Ephraim. Manasseh was born first with Ephraim being the second child. (Gen 41:51,52) However, later it is Ephraim that is spoken of as being first born. (Jer 31:9) This is because "first born" refers to position. The usual definition given is "pre-eminence".

    This is shown in Psalm 89:27 where God says that He would make David the Firstborn. Obviously David was not the first one born to his father. But in regards to position, David would be pre-eminent over everyone in Israel.

    M slimboyfat posted Wed, 17 Oct 2012 21:22:19 GMT(10/17/2012)

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    As I recall Greg Stafford argued that this word is not actually attested in Greek until centuries after the New Testament was written.

    A second point is that if Bible writers wanted to express that Jesus was the first creation by calling him the firstborn then why should they not do so?

    A third point is that the Bible does actually call Jesus the "beginning of the creation of God" (Rev 3:14) by that still doesn't stop Trinitarians denying it.

    Leolaia posted Wed, 17 Oct 2012 21:25:12 GMT(10/17/2012)

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    There are about a hundred instances of this word, all from Late Antiquity onward. Nothing earlier than Clement of Alexandria, who used it about twenty times. It was also used by Gregorius Nyssenus, Epiphanius, Eusebius, Basilius, Didymus Caecus, Joannes Chrysostomus, Julius Africanus, Gregorius Syncellus, and Gelasius Cyzicenus, usually in the context of the Son being described as "firstborn" as opposed to "first-created" in Scripture. It thus appears in a few NT catenae. Outside of this context there are a few occurences in profane (?) sources, but all very late. There is a scolion on line 1113 of Euripedes' Phoenissae regarding the Ogygian gates in Thebes that uses it in the plural. It also occurs a few times in magical papyri.

    So no hard evidence that the word pre-dates Clement (early third century AD). It possibly could have existed in earlier times, but there is no evidence that it did, and it looks somewhat like a back-formation from pròtogonos/pròtotokos, derived for apologetic purposes.

    I_love_Jeff posted Wed, 17 Oct 2012 21:33:33 GMT(10/17/2012)

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    THANK YOU SOOOOO

    I_love_Jeff posted Wed, 17 Oct 2012 21:34:34 GMT(10/17/2012)

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    What is the TLG, by the way?

    Leolaia posted Wed, 17 Oct 2012 21:35:22 GMT(10/17/2012)

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    http://www.tlg.uci.edu/

    M slimboyfat posted Wed, 17 Oct 2012 21:35:33 GMT(10/17/2012)

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    Leolaia what is TLG and is this a resource that others (like lowly me) can access too?

    Christ Alone posted Wed, 17 Oct 2012 21:36:32 GMT(10/17/2012)

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    A third point is that the Bible does actually call Jesus the "beginning of the creation of God" (Rev 3:14) by that still doesn't stop Trinitarians denying it.

    Slimfat, see above. Just because you have a concept of what beginning means in English does not mean that that is what was being spoken of by the Bible writer. The context of Revelation is not speaking of Jesus nature, but instead speaking of His authority over all creatures. That's the problem with JWs. They don't understand hermeneutics, which is vital if you want to understand basic doctrine of scripture. They just don't know how to interpret than to stick with English, and go ONLY off of what the Watchtower has taught them. Even non trinitarians (that are not JWs) know that Rev 3:16 is not speaking of nature, but is speaking of position.

    Christ Alone posted Wed, 17 Oct 2012 21:37:39 GMT(10/17/2012)

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    Also, the meaning of a text is given by context. Unfortunately for non trinitarians, the context usually upholds the trinitarian position.

    Leolaia posted Wed, 17 Oct 2012 21:38:36 GMT(10/17/2012)

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    slim....You need a subscription to the Thesaurus Linguae Graecae. You said you are taking Coptic lessons? See if your institution gives you access.

    M slimboyfat posted Wed, 17 Oct 2012 21:52:08 GMT(10/17/2012)

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    Thanks Leolaia I'll check it out.

    Christ Alone, the latest edition of the Bauer Lexicon states that arche in Rev 3:14 "probably" means Jesus was the beginning of God's creation. Hugh Schonfield said of the verse "clearly the first Christians believed Jesus was a created being". That would appear to be easiest way to understand the verse. Etymological interpretations along the lines of "source" or "ruler" are attempts to avoid the plain meaning of the statement.

    The gospel of John also states that life is given to the Son by the Father. Isn't that the very definition of a created being? No one gave God life, that's what sets him apart.

    Londo111 posted Wed, 17 Oct 2012 22:00:07 GMT(10/17/2012)

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    I believe it's a difference between "begotten, not made." His substance comes out the Father's substance. He is not made from external parts or ex nihilo.

    M slimboyfat posted Wed, 17 Oct 2012 22:02:22 GMT(10/17/2012)

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    "Begotten not made", "substance", not "ex nihilo".

    What a collection of fourth century extra-biblical concepts right there!

    Bobcat posted Wed, 17 Oct 2012 22:15:31 GMT(10/17/2012)

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    Although the OP argument makes for some interesting research, it is also an argument from silence. It wouldn't rule out the proposed conclusion, but it would shift the burden of proof to the one proposing it.

    "The gospel of John also states that life is given to the Son by the Father. Isn't that the very definition of a created being?"

    Thats John 6:57 for one. I always used to think this was one of the best verses for this subject too.

    Leolaia posted Wed, 17 Oct 2012 23:51:56 GMT(10/17/2012)

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    The distinction between begetting and creating was not clearly observed before it became an issue in Christian apologetics, first in the gnostic controversy (where the gnostics made a sharp distinction between demiurgical creation involving matter and the divine generation of the aeons and archons from divine substance) and then in the later Arian controversy (whence the Nicene credal stipulation that the Son was begotten and not made).

    There is a much looser overlap between begetting and creation in earlier Jewish and Christian sources. Consider how the LXX translates the following OT passages using qanah "produce, create, acquire":

    Genesis 4:1: " Now the man had relations with his wife Eve, and she conceived and gave birth (MT: wattêlad; LXX: eteken) to Cain, and she said, ' I have created (MT: qanitî, LXX: ektèsamèn) a man with the help of the Lord' ".

    Genesis 14:19: " Blessed be Abram of God Most High, creator (MT: qoneh; LXX: ektisen) of heaven and earth".

    Psalm 139:13: "For you created (MT: qanîta; LXX: ektèsò) my kidneys, Lord, you made me in my mother's womb".

    Proverbs 8:22, 25: "The Lord created (MT: qananî; LXX; ektisen) me [i.e. God's wisdom] at the beginning of his way into his work.... Before the mountains were settled, before the hills I was brought forth (MT: c hôlal e tî; LXX: genna) ".

    Philo of Alexandria also used language of begetting to refer to God's acts of creation; for instance, "when he begot (gennèsas) plants and animals, he summoned them before man as their governor, that he might give each of them their appropriate names (De Mutatione Nominum, 63). I think also Philo used language of both begetting and creation in reference to the Logos. And even in the second century, we see language that mixes the two metaphors together, such as Tatian: "The Logos, begotten (gennètheis) in the beginning, in turn begets (gennèse) as his own work (poièsan), by imposing order on matter (hulèn), the things which we see" (Oratio, 5). The overwhelming metaphor applied to the Son in the second century is that of being begotten or produced, as opposed to created, often conceived as an extension or generation of God like a ray of light from the sun or fire kindled from fire.

    Wonderment posted Thu, 18 Oct 2012 10:24:38 GMT(10/18/2012)

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    Christ Alone: There are several passages in the Bible where someone is spoken of as being "firstborn" when they were not actually the first person born. An example that is used by many is the example of Manasseh and Ephraim. Manasseh was born first with Ephraim being the second child. (Gen 41:51,52) However, later it is Ephraim that is spoken of as being first born. (Jer 31:9) This is because "first born" refers to position. The usual definition given is "pre-eminence". This is shown in Psalm 89:27 where God says that He would make David the Firstborn. Obviously David was not the first one born to his father. But in regards to position, David would be pre-eminent over everyone in Israel.

    Manasseh, Ephraim and David are CREATURES, position or not.

    Christ Alone: "Unfortunately for non trinitarians, the context usually upholds the trinitarian position."

    You know right.. that non-trinitarians will say the opposite with no less conviction.

    Wonderment posted Thu, 18 Oct 2012 10:27:52 GMT(10/18/2012)

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    slimboyfat: Hugh Schonfield said of the verse "clearly the first Christians believed Jesus was a created being". That would appear to be easiest way to understand the verse. Etymological interpretations along the lines of "source" or "ruler" are attempts to avoid the plain meaning of the statement.

    Well said!

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