Christ: Creator or Created?

Editor’s note: This post originally appeared on Tabernacle of David considers this ministry trustworthy and Biblically sound.

Author: David Wilber

The Trinity doctrine states that there is one God who exists eternally as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. This article will demonstrate the biblical validity of this doctrine in regard to the Son. While Yeshua is fully man, the Bible teaches that he is also fully God. We will look at a few biblical passages that testify to Yeshua being God, and then we will unpack the passages some have used to object to this idea and show how they have been misinterpreted.

When it comes to whether or not Yeshua is God, the first question we need to ask is, “What do we mean by God?” For this article, we will focus on a specific attribute peculiar to God: his self-existence. By this, I mean that God is uncaused, i.e., he is eternal in all of his being and independent from his creation. As Tim Hegg writes, “the Creator and His creation, while certainly having a relationship, are clearly different in that the Creator is uncaused, and the creation is caused.”[1]

Regarding the topic at hand, then, the crucial question is this: was Yeshua created, or is he uncreated? God is uncreated by definition. So if Yeshua was created, then he is not God.

However, if Scripture teaches that Yeshua is uncreated, he is God, since such an attribute applies only to God.[2] Logically, this would indicate that God is a plurality of persons since two separate uncreated beings would be two different Gods by definition, which would contradict the biblical doctrine that there is only one God. If Scripture teaches that Yeshua is uncreated, then the only way Scripture doesn’t contradict itself is if there is one God who is a plurality composed of at least the Father and the Son.

Let’s look at several passages that demonstrate Yeshua being uncreated.

Yeshua = The Eternal Word

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. (John 1:1-3)

A few things are noteworthy about these verses. First, the Word was “in the beginning.” Scholars widely recognize “beginning” as an allusion to the beginning of creation. John’s opening statement echoes Genesis 1:1, and then both passages go on to speak about creation. As Craig Keener observes, “This allusion is important precisely because he goes on to speak of creation in 1:3. Although John will go on to depict the advent of a new creation, he refers here to the literal beginning of creation.”[3]

So, in the beginning, before the world came into existence (John 1:3; cf. John 17:5), the Word existed. Notably, the Word was not brought into existence; in the beginning, he simply “was.” As Leon Morris puts it, “there never was a time when the Word was not.”[4]

John intends his readers to see the Word, who eventually took on flesh and became the human man Yeshua (John 1:14, 17), as self-existent. This is made even clearer in verse 3, as the Word is distinguished from all the things that “were made.” Keener provides an excellent summary of this point:

[I]n contrast to many Wisdom texts which declare that Wisdom or Torah was created “in the beginning” or before the creation of the rest of the world, John omits Jesus’ creation and merely declares that he “was.” This verb may thus suggest the Word’s eternal pre-existence; after all, how could God have been without his Word? That God created “all things” through the Word in 1:3 (naturally excluding the Word itself as the agent) further underlines the contrast between the Word and what was created.[5]

Second, the Word (Yeshua) was “with God,” indicating the Word’s distinct identity. John later describes Yeshua as being with the Father before creation (John 17:5). The Greek word for “with” (pros) in this particular context denotes personal relationship or intimacy.[6] According to John, there is an eternal relationship between God and the Word. This indicates that the Word exists as a personal entity with God; he is not an impersonal thought or plan as Unitarians claim. (How can one have an intimate relationship with an impersonal plan?) Moreover, when we examine the concept of the “Word” (Logos) in the Old Testament and Second Temple Jewish literature, it’s clear that John has a person in mind when he uses this word to describe the eternally pre-existent Word who became flesh.[7] Hegg summarizes this point well: 

The Logos [Word] is not an emanation from God, nor a projection of the divine, nor God simply appearing in different forms. The words John uses admit of no other meaning than that the Logos existed with God, on a face-to-face status with God, enjoying unbroken companionship with God, and as One having a distinct identity within this relationship.[8]

So, the Word is a distinct identity, who existed with God in the beginning, before all things were made. Yeshua did not “make himself God” (John 10:33). No, in the beginning, he simply was. He existed with God.

Third, the Word (Yeshua) “was God.” Here, John directly identifies Yeshua as God himself (cf. John 1:18; 20:28; Titus 2:13; Romans 9:5; Hebrews 1:8; 2 Peter 1:1). The definition of “God” applied to Yeshua is the same definition of God applied to whom Yeshua was with in the second line of this same verse. There is no indication in the text that the meaning of “God,” as applied to Yeshua here, is anything less than the supreme, eternal deity.[9] 

So, John intends for his readers to see that the Word (Yeshua) has a distinct identity (“with God”) and yet is fully God himself (“was God”). As Keener puts it, “Scholars from across the contemporary theological spectrum recognize that, although Father and Son are distinct in this text, they share deity in the same way.”[10]

The final point I want to make about these verses is that John presents the Word (Yeshua) as not only God himself but also the agent of God’s creative power: “All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made” (John 1:3; cf. 1:10; 1 Corinthians 8:5-6; Colossians 1:16; Hebrews 1:2).

This is significant for two reasons. First, the Bible teaches that God alone is the Creator.[11] YHWH is said to be the one who “made all things, who alone stretched out the heavens, who spread out the earth by myself” (Isaiah 44:24, emphasis added). Since Scripture teaches that God alone is the one responsible for creation, and also that Messiah is the one responsible for creation, it follows logically that Messiah is God.

Second, Yeshua is distinguished from “all things” that were made. Everything that has been created owes its existence to the Messiah: “without him was not any thing made that was made.” If all created things came into existence through the Messiah, then the Messiah himself cannot be a created thing by definition.

Paul takes it even further, saying that it was by, through, and for Yeshua that “all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers of authorities” (Colossians 1:16). Yeshua is the one through whom the natural world was created and the one through whom even all spiritual entities were created.[12] Yeshua is thus distinguished from all created entities, whether natural or spiritual. Yeshua is not a created entity; Yeshua is the Creator.

“Before Abraham Was, I am”

Another significant passage highlighting Yeshua’s eternal pre-existence appears during a confrontation between Yeshua and some Judeans. Yeshua’s opponents asked him, “Are you greater than our father Abraham, who died?” Yeshua tells them that Abraham had been given revelation concerning Yeshua’s coming and was overjoyed by what he saw:

“Your father Abraham rejoiced that he would see my day. He saw it and was glad.” (John 8:56)

According to Keener, the fact that Abraham foresaw Yeshua’s day “probably implies Jesus’ deity.” However, Yeshua’s opponents “miss this point for the moment and notice only the chronological discrepancy, which demanded little insight: Jesus was born long after Abraham’s death.”[13] Here is how they responded:

So the Jews said to him, “You are not yet fifty years old, and have you seen Abraham?” (John 8:57)

The Judeans interpreted Yeshua’s words on only a natural level, highlighting, from a natural perspective, the impossibility of what Yeshua claimed. This is a constant theme throughout John’s Gospel (John 3:3-4; 4:11-12, 6:42, 52). “Yeshua is too young to have seen Abraham!” They thought. In response, Yeshua makes a bold declaration that provokes a violent reaction:

Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I am.” So they picked up stones to throw at him, but Jesus hid himself and went out of the temple. (John 8:58-59)

There was no way Yeshua’s opponents could have misunderstood that! Since this is a statement about the past, it would have been more accurate to say, “Before Abraham was I was.” But John uses incorrect Greek deliberately to make an important point. Yeshua doesn’t claim to have existed merely before Abraham; he contrasts Abraham’s beginning with his own lack of beginning. The Greek text expresses this point more clearly, as Robert Bowman and Ed Komoszewski explain:

Jesus’ statement in John 8:58 expresses not only existence prior to Abraham but also existence of a different order than that of Abraham. That is, they [biblical scholars] understand Jesus to be affirming that his existence antecedent to that of Abraham was the eternal preexistence of deity. John 8:58 contrasts Abraham, who “came into being” (genesthai, translated “was” in the NRSV), with Jesus, who simply is (which Jesus states in the first person, “I am,” ego eimi). The statement recalls a classic affirmation of the eternal being of God in the Old Testament: “Before the mountains came into being [genethenai, the passive form of genesthai] and the earth and the world were formed, even from age to age, you are [su ei, the second-person equivalent of ego eimi]” (Ps. 90:2 [89:2 in LXX]). The Greek sentence here reflects the same grammatical structure as John 8:58 and uses the same verbs to make the same contrast between that which is created and temporal and the one who is uncreated and eternal.[14]

Additionally, scholars widely acknowledge that Yeshua’s “I am” statement in John 8:58 is an allusion to the Divine Name. As Hegg writes:

[T]he manner in which Yeshua expresses His existence before Abraham is clearly reminiscent of the giving of the Divine Name in Ex 3:14, for in saying “I am” (ego eimi), He apparently utilized language that reminded His listeners of the “I will be what I will be” of the burning bush. As is often noted, the Lxx of Ex 3:14 uses the same Greek as Jn 8:58 in translating אֶֽהְיֶה אֲשֶׁר אֶֽהְיֶה (literally “I will be what I will be,” often translated “I am Who I am” in English versions), that is ego eimi, “I am.”[15]

Keener likewise remarks:

The absolute use of the expression in 8:58, contrasted explicitly with Abraham’s finite longevity, clearly refers to a Jewish name for God. The most natural way to express simple preexistence (e.g., for divine Wisdom) would have been to have claimed existence in the past tense before Abraham; the use of the present, by contrast, constitutes a deliberate citation of the divine name.[16]

That Yeshua was making a divine claim is the only way to make sense of his opponents’ violent reaction. As Bowman and Komoszewski explain:

Had Jesus stated only that he had been alive longer than Abraham, they might have regarded such a claim as crazy (as they apparently did with regard to his earlier comments, vv. 48–57), but not as an offense meriting stoning. Of the offenses for which Jews practiced stoning, the only one that seems to fit the context here is blasphemy. Claiming to be older than Abraham might have been judged crazy, but it would not have been judged as blasphemy. Speaking as if one were Abraham’s eternal God, on the other hand, would be quickly deemed blasphemous by Jesus’ critics, who of course did not recognize his divine claims as valid.[17]

Thus, in John 8:58, Yeshua claims to have not only an eternal pre-existence but also, through his apparent reference to the Divine Name, an identity as YHWH himself. Once again, as we’ve seen in John 1:1, in the beginning, Yeshua was with God and was God.

The Messianic Shema

1 Corinthians 8:4-6 is another passage distinguishing Yeshua from the creation:

Therefore, as to the eating of food offered to idols, we know that “an idol has no real existence,” and that “there is no God but one.” For although there may be so-called gods in heaven or on earth—as indeed there are many “gods” and many “lords”—yet for us there is one God, the Father, from whom are all things and for whom we exist, and one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom are all things and through whom we exist. (1 Corinthians 8:4-6)

This passage is significant not only because it affirms Yeshua’s existence independent of creation but also because of its connection to the Shema. The Shema is a Hebrew word that means “hear,” and it comes from the first word in Deuteronomy 6:4: “Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one.” The word Shema came to represent this declaration in Deuteronomy 6:4 and the commands connected to it (Deuteronomy 6:5-9).

In Judaism, Deuteronomy 6:4 became a creedal affirmation of monotheistic faith. This affirmation of God’s “oneness” was so foundational that, by the first century, Jews recited the words of the Shema every evening and morning based on a literal reading of verse 7: “You shall teach them [“these words”] diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise [emphasis added].”

In alignment with the Judaism of his day, Yeshua declared the Shema to be the greatest commandment in the Torah (Mark 12:28-30). When the apostles proclaim throughout the New Testament that there is one God, they are echoing the Shema (Romans 3:30; Galatians 3:20; Ephesians 4:6; 1 Timothy 2:5; James 2:19). Paul’s teaching in 1 Corinthians 8:4-6 is yet another echo of the Shema—remarkably, however, Paul rearticulates this foundational affirmation of monotheism to include Yeshua!

Indeed, Paul forthrightly declares that “there is no God but one” (8:4), contrasting monotheistic faith with paganism, which worships “many ‘gods’ and many ‘lords’” (8:5). Then, Paul once again echoes the Shema but identifies the Father as the “one God” and Yeshua as the “one Lord” (8:6). Sound familiar? “The Lord our God, the Lord is one.”

That Paul is rearticulating the Shema in 1 Corinthians 8:6 to include Yeshua is widely recognized by scholars. As Richard Bauckham writes:

In stating that there is one God and one Lord, Paul is unmistakably echoing the monotheistic statement of the Shema (“YHWH our God, YHWH, is one”), whose Greek version in the Septuagint reads: kurios ho theos hēmōn kurios heis estin. He has, in fact, taken over all of the words of this statement, but rearranged them in such a way as to produce an affirmation of both one God, the Father, and one Lord, Jesus Christ…The only possible way to understand Paul as maintaining monotheism is to understand him to be including Jesus in the unique identity of the one God affirmed in the Shema…Paul is not adding to the one God of the Shema a “Lord” the Shema does not mention. He is identifying Jesus as the “Lord” (YHWH) whom the Shema affirms to be one. Thus, in Paul’s quite unprecedented reformulation of the Shema, the unique identity of the one God consists of the one God, the Father, and the one Lord, his Messiah (who is implicitly regarded as the Son of Father).[18]

As Bauckham notes, Paul is not adding another God to his faith. That wouldn’t make sense in light of the previous two verses in which he affirms monotheism in contrast to pagan polytheism. Instead, by rearticulating the Shema to include Yeshua, Paul reaffirms monotheism. He does not say that there is more than one God; he says there is one God whose being is composed of Father and Son.

So, 1 Corinthians 8:4-6 teaches that Yeshua is not only distinguished from creation and thus self-existent but also is included in Paul’s definition of the one God.

Every created thing worships him

Another significant passage distinguishing Yeshua from creation is Revelation 5:13-14. In this passage, Yeshua receives worship alongside the Father from “every created thing”:

 And I heard every created thing which is in heaven, or on the earth, or under the earth, or on the sea, and all the things in them, saying, “To Him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be the blessing, the honor, the glory, and the dominion forever and ever.” And the four living creatures were saying, “Amen.” And the elders fell down and worshiped. (Revelation 5:13-14, emphasis added)

Scripture declares that only God is to be worshiped (e.g., Exodus 20:3; 34:14; Deuteronomy 6:13-14). Paul even pronounces God’s wrath upon those who worship the created rather than the Creator (Romans 1:25). And yet, in the Book of Revelation, Yeshua is glorified and worshiped alongside the Father.

Revelation is not the only passage where Yeshua receives worship. Scripture describes numerous other occasions: the disciples worshiped Yeshua after he calmed the wind and waves (Matthew 14:24-33) and when he appeared to them after his resurrection (Matthew 28:17). Eventually, all humanity will worship Yeshua (Philippians 2:10-11; Revelation 5:12-14). Angels are even commanded to worship Yeshua (Hebrews 1:6).

If Yeshua were not God—if he’s just a created being—these instances of him receiving worship would be entirely inappropriate. Indeed, when John twice tried to worship the angel in the Book of Revelation, the angel rebuked him for doing that and said, “Worship God” (Revelation 19:10; 22:8-9). Yet, the Bible presents these instances of Yeshua receiving worship without any note of condemnation. The only way this tension can be resolved is if Yeshua is God.

Only Begotten?

One objection to the biblical doctrine that the Messiah is uncreated is that some English translations of John 1:14 refer to Yeshua as “the only begotten of the Father.” Some argue that Yeshua being the Father’s “only begotten” indicates that he had a beginning. Thus, the Father must have specially created the Son at some point in the past.

How do we read this verse in light of the passages we’ve already covered that demonstrate the Messiah to be eternal and uncreated? This apparent contradiction is easily cleared up when we realize that the Greek word translated “only begotten” (monogenes) is more accurately understood as unique, one of a kind, and even beloved,[19] not “point of origin.”

The author of Hebrews uses this same word to refer to Isaac being the “only” (monogenes) son of Abraham (Hebrews 11:17). Abraham obviously had other sons besides Isaac, so the author of Hebrews uses the term monogenes to say that Isaac was unique—he was the son of the promise. Thus, the Greek word behind “only-begotten” in some translations of John 1:14 does not imply a beginning. John was merely expressing the Son’s unique relationship to the Father.

Firstborn of All Creation?

Another objection to the biblical doctrine that Messiah is uncreated is that he is called “the firstborn of all creation” in Colossians 1:15. Based on this, some argue that the Messiah is not eternal and uncreated, but rather God’s first creation before creating everything else.

The problem is that this interpretation contradicts the very next verse, which states “all things” were created by, through, and for the Messiah. If Paul meant that Yeshua was the first of God’s created things, we would expect the next verse to say, “For by him all other things were created.” Indeed, Jehovah’s Witnesses, who reject Yeshua’s deity, have recognized that Colossians 1:16 directly opposes their theology in this regard. This is why their translation of the passage adds the word “other” in the passage, despite the fact that such an interpolation has no basis in the Greek text.[20]

A better interpretation of “firstborn of all creation” is to view it in light of its Old Testament background. David is also called “the firstborn, the highest of the kings of the earth” (Psalm 89:27). As Bowman and Komoszewski explain:

This statement did not mean, of course, that David (or Christ) was the first one born among all the kings of the earth. Rather, it refers to David (as a type of the Messiah) as the preeminent ruler, God’s heir, the one who rules as his son in his stead (see also Ps. 2:2, 6–8). Paul’s description of the Son as “firstborn of all creation” is thus equivalent to the description in Hebrews of the Son as “heir of all things” (Heb. 1:2; cf. Heb. 1:6).[21]

So, if we understand “firstborn of all creation” in light of its Old Testament context, it’s a title denoting royal status and preeminence, which fits Paul’s point in the passage. It also clears up the apparent contradiction between verses 15 and 16 without the need to make baseless interpolations like the Jehovah’s Witnesses do.

The Beginning of God’s Creation?

Another objection we’ll look at is based on Revelation 3:14. Yeshua describes himself with the title “the beginning of God’s creation.” Some have argued that this indicates the Messiah was created. However, this interpretation is unlikely.

First, instead of “beginning,” other translations say “ruler” and “origin.” All of these are possible translations of the Greek arche. Bowman and Komoszewski have argued persuasively that “ruler of God’s creation” best fits the context in Revelation 3:14.[22] Keener also recognizes that “ruler” is possible: “Cognates of the Greek word used here (arche) denote ‘ruler’—a word that can denote rule or power.”[23]

Nevertheless, even if we translate arche as “beginning,” as Keener points out, this need not imply being created: “Elsewhere in Revelation ‘beginning’ is an explicitly divine title linked with ‘first’ (21:6; 22:13), a clear divine title in Isaiah 41:4; 44:6; 48:12.”[24]

Indeed, John describes the Lord God Almighty with the titles “the Alpha and the Omega” as well as “the beginning and the end” (Revelation 1:8; 21:6). Remarkably, at the end of Revelation, he applies these same divine titles to Yeshua:

“Behold, I am coming soon, bringing my recompense with me, to repay each one for what he has done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end.” (Revelation 22:12-13; cf. 1:17-18; 2:8)

These titles—the Alpha and the Omega (referring to the first and last letters of the Greek alphabet), the first and the last, the beginning and the end—are synonymous. The title “the first and the last,” in particular, evokes God’s title in Isaiah, in which YHWH declares himself to be the only God (Isaiah 41:4; 44:6; 48:12). In Revelation, these divine titles belong to both the Father and Yeshua, demonstrating that they both share in the divine being. As Ben Witherington III remarks:

“[B]oth God and Christ are called Alpha and Omega in this work (in 1.8 and 21.6, it is God; but in 1.17 and probably here at 22.13, it is Christ). This does not make Christ a second God, but rather includes him in the being of the one God of Israel who is Alpha and Omega. The use of the reward language, like the use of Alpha and Omega language, is derived from Isaiah (cf. 40.11; 62.11 on the former; 41.4; 44.6; 48.12 on the latter). It implies that John sees Christ as included within the godhead, for only God is the truly eternal one who will at the last day dispense rewards.”[25] 

So, the word often translated as “beginning” in Revelation 3:14 can mean ruler. But even if we render it “beginning,” the word does not imply being created. After all, the Father is called “the beginning (arche) and the end” in Revelation 21:6. Therefore, this verse is weak support for the belief that the Messiah was created.


We’ve looked at a number of biblical texts that demonstrate Yeshua to be uncreated. The Bible testifies to Yeshua existing independent of creation; he existed with God in the beginning and is identified directly as God. Yeshua contrasted Abraham’s beginning with his own lack of beginning when he said, “Before Abraham was, I am.” Remarkably, Paul even includes Yeshua in the Shema, Judaism’s creedal affirmation of monotheism. Finally, every created thing worships Yeshua in the Book of Revelation, which is entirely inappropriate unless Yeshua himself is the uncreated God. There is no way to interpret the passages we’ve covered differently without doing some serious mental gymnastics.

Additionally, we have also explored common texts that some use to say Yeshua is created. Upon closer examination, we have seen that those who reject Yeshua’s deity misinterpret those passages. Therefore, seeing as how Scripture testifies to Yeshua being uncreated, an attribute that applies only to God, we have every reason to affirm Yeshua as God.

[1] Tim Hegg, God’s Self-Revelation: A Course in Theology Proper (Tacoma, WA: TorahResource, 2012), p. 55

[2] This is not counting non-beings, such as abstract objects, numbers, logic, etc., which exist within the mind of God.

[3] Craig Keener, The Gospel of John (Grand Rapids, MI: BakerAcademic, 2003), p. 365

[4] Leon Morris, The Gospel According to John (Eerdmans, 1971), p. 73

[5] Keener, John, p. 369

[6] See James White, The Forgotten Trinity: Recovering the Heart of Christian Belief (Minneapolis, MN: Bethany House, 1998): “The term has a wide range of meanings, depending on the context in which it is found. In this particular instance, the term speaks to a personal relationship, in fact, to intimacy. It is the same term the apostle Paul uses when he speaks of how we presently have a knowledge comparable to seeing in a dim mirror, but someday, in eternity, we will have a clearer knowledge, an intimate knowledge, for we shall see “face to (pros) face” (1 Corinthians 13:12). When you are face-to-face with someone, you have nowhere to hide. You have a relationship with that person, whether you like it or not. In John 1:1b, John says the Word was eternally face-to-face with God, that is, that the Word has eternally had a relationship with God.”

[7] See Keener, John, pp. 339-369; Michael Heiser, The Unseen Realm: Recovering the Supernatural Worldview of the Bible (Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press, 2015), pp. 127-132

[8] Tim Hegg, The Messiah: An Introduction to Christology (Tacoma, WA: TorahResource, 2006), p. 111

[9] See Keener, John: “It certainly cannot connote ‘a god,’ as in ‘one among many,’ given Jesus’ unique titles, role, and relationship with the Father later in the Gospel. Nor should it mean ‘divine’ in a weaker sense distinct from God’s own divine nature, for example, in the sense in which Philo can apply it to Moses. Had John meant merely ‘divine’ in a more general sense, the common but more ambiguous expression [to theion] was already available.” (p. 373)

[10] Keener, John, p. 374

[11] Genesis 1:1ff; Psalm 95:5-7; 100:3; 102:25; Jeremiah 10:16; 51:19; Isaiah 37:16; 40:25-26; 42:5; 44:24; Nehemiah 9:6; Acts 4:24; 14:15; 17:24; Revelation 4:11.

[12] See Nijay K. Gupta, Colossians (Macon, GA: Smyth and Helwys, 2013): “The totality of Christ’s work in creation is without doubt in Paul’s view. His power spans the two main cosmological realms in early Jewish and Christian theology: heaven and earth. In general, we could say that the heavens hosted angelic and spiritual beings and the earth was the place of material beings (see Ps 115:16). However, Christ, the agent who came into body and flesh, created beings in both realms.” (pp. 55-56)

[13] Keener, John, p. 768

[14] Robert M. Bowman Jr. and J. Ed Komoszewski, Putting Jesus in His Place: The Case for the Deity of Christ (Grand Rapids, MI: Kregel, 2007), p. 96

[15] Hegg, The Messiah, p. 125

[16] Keener, John, p. 770

[17] Bowman and Komoszewski, Putting Jesus in His Place, p. 97

[18] Richard Bauckham, Jesus and the God of Israel (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2008), p. 112-113

[19] See Keener, John, pp. 412-416

[20] Bowman and Komoszewski, Putting Jesus in His Place, p. 105

[21] Ibid., p. 106

[22] See Bowman and Komoszewski, Putting Jesus in His Place: “An alternative interpretation with much to commend it is that arche in Revelation 3:14 means “ruler.” In most, if not all, other New Testament texts referring to persons, arche is used to mean ruler in both the singular (1 Cor. 15:24; Eph. 1:21; Col. 2:10; and possibly Col. 1:18) and plural (Luke 12:11; Rom. 8:38; Eph. 3:10; 6:12; Col. 1:16; 2:15; Titus 3:1). Moreover, the context offers some support for the meaning to be “ruler.” Jesus’ statement in Revelation 3:14 comes at the beginning of his message to the Laodicean church (3:14– 22). At the end of that message, Jesus promises a place on his throne to those who conquer (3:21). Two of the three descriptions of Jesus in Revelation 3:14 also strongly echo two of the descriptions of Jesus in Revelation 1:5. This suggests that arche in Revelation 3:14 may have a meaning similar to archon in Revelation 1:5 (“the ruler of the kings of the earth”). (p. 108)

[23] Ibid.

[24] Craig Keener, The NIV Application Commentary: Revelation (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2000), p. 158

[25] Ben Witherington III, New Cambridge Bible Commentary: Revelation (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2003), p. 281

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About David Wilber


David is first and foremost a passionate follower of Yeshua the Messiah. He is also a writer, speaker, and teacher.

David’s heart is to minister to God’s people by helping them rediscover the validity and blessing of God’s Torah and help prepare them to give an answer to anyone who asks about the hope within them (1 Peter 3:15)…

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