15 The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. 16 For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him. 17 He is before all things, and in him, all things hold together. – Colossians 1:15-17
In our reading of Colossians 1, our framework/worldview of thinking continues to be reshaped so that we might better understand the 3 following chapters. It is also reshaped so our ability to see and think within the framework of God’s Word will affect the way we live each day. In verse 15 of Colossian 1, Paul puts his entire focus on the person of Jesus. This section is often called “The Preeminence of Christ.”
Preeminence is a big word, but it is quite simple in the definition. It means to have superiority or to surpass all other things. In other words, Jesus is better, greater, more important, and more worthy of being treasured than everything else that is in existence. We see this idea repeated multiple times in the verses above. In verse 15, we understand that Jesus is chronologically before everything else that was created. Before anything else was in existence, Jesus was. It then goes on to say that everything was created “in him… through him and for him” (v.16).
Finally, Paul summarizes these two verses in verse 17: “He is before all things, and in him, all things hold together.” The Son of God, eternally begotten, and before all other things were the catalyst through which the Father created the entirety of the existing world. Additionally, in stating that everything was created “for Him,” it implies that everything in the grand story-arc of the world is for the purpose of Jesus.
The human race was created through God’s Son. This happened so that God’s Son, Jesus Christ could be presented with His Bride, the Church, who are redeemed, restored, reborn, forgiven, and justified humanity. From before time, the Father was thinking of His Son, weaving the tapestry of history together in Him, through Him, and for Him. If this is true, it vastly changes the way we should be thinking about our lives and the world we live in. Everything plays a part in what is ultimately for the purpose of Jesus being presented a Bride that is spotless and blameless.
No single thing defines itself. Everything finds meaning or meaninglessness in the person of Jesus. This is why subjective or personal truth is so dangerous to the Church. As soon as we start defining our lives, actions, and preferences on our own, we are attempting to tear reality away from its true definition in Jesus. Everything finds its definition in Christ.