The writers of the New Testament recorded that a New Creation had come into being - that a revolution in thinking had taken place. Whereas before, the earth had been filled with death and corruption, the disciples saw it spring to life once again in the teachings of Jesus of Nazareth.
Just as the earth responds to rain and brings forth life more abundantly, so too did these men respond to the love that was in Jesus of Nazareth and brought forth new life in the preaching of the word of the Kingdom of God. They witnessed a New Creation coming into existence, brought into being by and through Jesus.
In the beginning, as recorded in the Hebrew Scriptures, Almighty God made the earth by his power, established the world by his wisdom, and by his understanding stretched out the heavens (Jeremiah 10:12).
But in the new 'beginning' as described by John, when the Word of Eternal Life was made flesh in Jesus, the world came into existence in the presence of love. The old things passed away, they became new (2 Corinthians 5:17). The one great element which had been lacking, and over which no earthly authority has any power, was supplied, and Life in the Age to Come was received through the Gospel of Love. (2 Timothy 1:10)
Love is Godliness (for God is love). It is in this setting, and in the knowledge that the disciples had been been transformed by the renewing of their minds, that the New Testament becomes clear in its meaning. The difference between the Old Man and the New Man, the Old Creation and the New Creation, is that whereas the ecclesiastical teaching is that God became manly, the disciples preached that, once again, as in the beginning, man became Godly.
The application of their teachings will become clear when the difference is grasped. Unfortunately, the subtle similarity of ecclesiastical teachings has led to a misinterpetation of some texts while rendering others completely unintelligible.
John's words in 1:3-5 - "...what has come into existence by means of him was Life..." - are the keys to the Kingdom, so to speak. For in these words we see revealed the purpose and meaning of the entire New Testament. When we realise that Jesus "created" Life, was the architect of the New Creation, not of the Old, then other texts supposedly supporting the 'pre-existence' and 'divinity' of Jesus can finally be understood:
"...yet to us there is one God, the Father, of whom are all things, and we unto him; and one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom are all things, and we through him." (1 Corinthians 8:6 )
"...who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation; for in him were all things created, in the heavens and upon the earth, things visible and things invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers; all things have been created through him, and unto him." (Colossians 1:15-17)
"And he is the head of the body; the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead." (Colossians 1:18. See also Revelation 1:5)
Jesus is the firstborn of the dead, the firstborn in the New Creation of Life, the first of many brethren to follow who, together, constitute the Kingdom of God. It is to Jesus as the architect of this New Creation of Life, not as co-creator of the Old World of dead matter, that the following texts apply:
"for in him were all things created"
"through whom are all things"
"all things have been created through him, and unto him"
"all things came into existence through him, and apart from him, not even one thing came into existence."
This simple message of the New Testament, that Jesus is the "firstborn of all creation" because he is the "firstborn from the dead," in the New Creation has somehow managed to elude the complex minds of theologians for nearly two millennia. Is this not the great wonder of all creation - both Old and New? Is it not ludicrous, farcical even? Perhaps it has been...ordained? After all, why should the priests of Christianity have an advantage over the priests of Jerusalem? Where's the justice...the level playing field? But more on divine justice later.