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Testimonies.

1. That Christ is the First-born, and that He is the Wisdom of God, by whom all things were made.

In Solomon in the Proverbs: “The Lord established39293929    [Condidit. Bull, Opp., v. p. 515.  ἐκτήσατο, Jerome; ἔκτισε, alii. See Justin, vol. i. p. 264; Athenagoras, vol. ii. p. 133; Clement, ib., p. 194; and see note, Oxford translation. See Irenæus, vol. i. p. 488.] me in the beginning of His ways, into His works: before the world He founded me. In the beginning, before He made the earth, and before He appointed the abysses, before the fountains of waters gushed forth, before the mountains were settled, before all the hills, the Lord begot me. He made the countries, and the uninhabitable places, and the uninhabitable bounds under heaven. When He prepared the heaven, I was present with Him; and when He set apart His seat. When He made the strong clouds above the winds, and when He placed the strengthened fountains under heaven, when He made the mighty foundations of the earth, I was by His side, ordering them: I was He in whom He delighted: moreover, I daily rejoiced before His face in all time, when He rejoiced in the perfected earth.”39303930    Prov. viii. 22–31. Also in the same in Ecclesiasticus: “I went forth out of the mouth of the Most High, first-born before every creature: I made the unwearying light to rise in the heavens, and I covered the whole earth with a cloud: I dwelt in the high places, and my throne in the pillar of the cloud: I compassed the circle of heaven, and I penetrated into the depth of the abyss, and I walked on the waves of the sea, and I stood in all the earth; and in 516every people and in every nation I had the pre-eminence, and by my own strength I have trodden the hearts of all the excellent and the humble: in me is all hope of life and virtue: pass over to me, all ye who desire me.”39313931    Ecclus. xxiv. 3–7. Also in the eighty-eighth Psalm: “And I will establish Him as my first-born, the highest among the kings of the earth. I will keep my mercy for Him for ever, and my faithful covenant for Him; and I will establish his seed for ever and ever. If his children forsake my law, and walk not in my judgments; if they profane my judgments, and do not observe my precepts, I will visit their wickednesses with a rod, and their sins with scourges; but my mercy will I not scatter away from them.”39323932    Ps. lxxxix. 27–33. Also in the Gospel according to John, the Lord says: “And this is life eternal, that they should know Thee, the only and true God, and Jesus Christ, whom Thou hast sent. I have glorified Thee on the earth: I have finished the work which Thou gavest me to do.  And now, do Thou glorify me with Thyself, with the glory which I had with Thee before the world was made.”39333933    John xvii. 3–5. Also Paul to the Colossians: “Who is the image of the invisible God, and the first-born of every creature.”39343934    Col. i. 15. Also in the same place:  “The first-born from the dead, that He might in all things become the holder of the pre-eminence.”39353935    Col. i. 18. In the Apocalypse too:  “I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give unto Him that is thirsting from the fountain of the water of life freely.”39363936    Rev. xxi. 6. That He also is both the wisdom and the power of God, Paul proves in his first Epistle to the Corinthians. “Because the Jews require a sign, and the Greeks seek after wisdom: but we preach Christ crucified, to the Jews indeed a stumbling-block, and to the Gentiles foolishness; but to them that are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God.”39373937    1 Cor. i. 22–24.


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