Summary: Jesus Christ is exclusive and unique. This is seen in His relationship with God, with God’s creation and with God’s church
The verses we will consider this morning comprise some of the most magnificent descriptions of Jesus that can be found. There is probably no other paragraph in the Bible that contains more concentrated doctrine about Christ than these verses. Most Bible scholars believe these words comprised a hymn that was sung in the early church about Christ and His preeminence.
Jesus Christ is exclusive and unique. I want to demonstrate from these 5 verses how Jesus is exclusive:
(1) In His relationship with God, (2) In His relationship with God’s creation, (3) In His relationship with God’s church.
I. JESUS IS EXCLUSIVE IN HIS RELATIONSHIP WITH GOD (15)
A. Jesus is the Image of God (15a)
“He is the image of the invisible God.” You might be thinking that if something is invisible there could not be an image of it, for if there were an image it would no longer be invisible.
And, the Bible is clear when it says, “God is Spirit” (John 4:24). In other words, God does not have a body. But, does that mean that God does not exist? NO! We know there is a world of reality beyond what we can see with our own unaided eyes. Microscopes and telescopes have proven that.
Jesus has become our microscope or telescope, if you will, for seeing God. When you look at Jesus you look at God. Listen to these verses:
Hebrews 1:3 “Jesus is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of His nature.” (NIV)
Matthew 1:23 “…and they shall call His name Immanuel, which is translated, ‘God with us.’”
John 14:9 Jesus said, “He that has seen me, has seen the Father.”
The Bible describes God in Isaiah 44:6 as the “First and the last.”
Jesus says in Revelation 1:17, “I am the first and the last.”
In Isaiah 42:8 it says of God, “I am Yahweh, that is my name; I will not give my glory to another.”
Yet, Jesus prayed in John 17:5, “Father, glorify me together with yourself, with the glory which I had with you before the world was.”
In John 1:1,14 “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God and the Word was God. And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us and we beheld his glory.”
There are many other verses that declare the deity of Christ. No other doctrine is more central or important to our faith than the deity of Christ. Jesus is the image of God! Also,
B. Jesus is the Essence of God (15b)
“The firstborn over all creation.” Here the word “firstborn” does not refer to time. It does not mean here that God created Jesus than created the world (as the J W’s teach). Jesus was not created. Jesus created creation as we will see in a few minutes. The only time Jesus was born was when Mary gave birth and laid him in a manger. “Firstborn” simply means “of first importance” or “first rank.” Solomon was not the firstborn of David but he was named firstborn (Psalm 89:27). God tells Pharaoh that Israel is His firstborn. What is he saying? That Israel is of first importance to Him.
Jesus is the essence of God. Think of it this way. If God were a man what would we expect him to be like?
1. We would expect him to be sinless.
“He was tempted in all points as we are, yet without sin.” Pilate said, “I find no fault in this man.”
2. We would expect him to speak the most profound and greatest words ever spoken.
Every time Jesus spoke people were astounded.
3. We would expect him to bring great change in people’s lives.
Just look at the disciples and yourself.
4. We would expect him to do miracles.
Jesus did repeatedly and dramatically.
5. We would expect him to know the future.
Jesus predicted many things about himself, the nation Israel and the future of the world.
6. We would expect him to show us what God is like.
He did. We see in Jesus love, kindness, mercy and grace.
Jesus is exclusive in his relationship with God. And:
II. JESUS IS EXCLUSIVE IN HIS RELATIONSHIP TO GOD’S CREATION (16-17)
A. Jesus is the Cause of Creation (16)
Paul covers the whole spectrum here:
1. Particles, planets, people, places
2. Visible and invisible
3. Principalities and powers
For instance, let’s consider the universe or cosmos. Think of how massive it is. John McArther writes: “If you could bore a hole in the sun and start dumping earths into it, you could put one million, two hundred thousand earths in it and still have room for 4 million three hundred thousand moons. The sun is 93 million miles away. The nearest star, Alpha Centuri, is 5 times bigger than the sun. Now the moon is only 211,463 miles away, just a walk really. Georgia Crowley could walk there. It’s true; you can walk to the moon in 27 years if you can go 24 miles a day.