Jehovah`s Witness/Follow up/ Thank you
Thank you Bro Hepburn for all your hard research.
And you said:
"Derrick gives his take on the three texts that we use to support the truth that Jesus was created. I could spend a great deal of time on each one of those countering the arguments that Derrick as produced."
"If you want to write and ask some more, please do so, but may I please ask that you wait a few days."
So yes, lets continue this interesting discusion. First he said,
Starting at DH 9-11 scripture points for Jesus not being created below:
"9.)Proverbs 8:22- "The LORD possessed me in the beginning of his way, before his works of old."
This is a passage of Scripture that should never be used to prove Jesus was created, because this passage is not even speaking of Jesus. I realize the JWs (and even some Christian theologians) have a tendency to try and make this verse about Jesus Christ, but it simply isn't. And there is no good reason to try and make it such.
First of all, we are clearly told in the chapter itself, what it is about....Wisdom. In fact, one should not just read Proverbs chapter 8 alone, but the first 9 chapters of the Book, because the entire discourse is Wisdom PERSONIFIED...giving something that is non-human (wisdom), a description and qualities, as if it were human.
There is absolutely nothing to indicate that the "wisdom" in chapter 8, is a different "wisdom" than the "wisdom" spoken of in the other chapters. In fact, if one reads the first 9 chapters of Proverbs, the entire discourse has a consistent flow. Its all talking about the same quality...Wisdom. Wisdom is given personal qualities.
Wisdom is also spoken of with FEMALE pronouns (hardly applicable to a male Messiah).
If we are to take the "wisdom" spoken of in Proverbs chapter 8 to be a description of Jesus Christ, then we would have a huge problem, because this "wisdom" is also described as female, and dwells with someone named "prudence".
10.)Proverbs 8:1-3- "Doth not wisdom cry? and understanding put forth her voice?
She standeth in the top of high places, by the way in the places of the paths.
She crieth at the gates, at the entry of the city, at the coming in at the doors."
11.)Proverbs 8:12- "I wisdom dwell with prudence, and find out knowledge of witty inventions."
I think it should be plain to see, that this is simply a passage, 9 chapters to be exact, of giving human attributes to the quality of wisdom. There is simply no reason at all, to connect this passage with Jesus Christ being a created Being.
And even if someone wants to insist that it is referring to Jesus, in the absence of any such evidence, it still would not teach that Jesus is created.
The NWT rendering of the word "qanah", as "produced", is unfortunate. The KJB rendering is better, as it says "possessed".
I make this point, because after showing that the entire passage is speaking specifically of "WISDOM", some JWs might try to say that "Jesus is the wisdom of God".
But that is also problematic, because that would imply that there was a time when Jehovah was WITHOUT wisdom. Obviously, that is not the case. Wisdom is not something created by God...It is an eternal attribute of God. It is something He has always possessed...not something He later on created.
For those reason, I would say that Proverbs 8:22 should not, and cannot be used to support the idea that Jesus is a created Being."
End of qoute
So what can be said about this reasoning?
Thank you for your hard work Bro Hepburn.
But OK what about Proverbs.
Derrick suggest that the use of wisdom in Proverbs 8 is the same as in the first few chapters. We say that in chapter 8 wisdom is used differently. One of the reasons Derrick gives is that God has always had wisdom and that there was never a time when he was without wisdom. He backed that up by suggesting that the NWT rendering of the word "qanah", as "produced", is not correct and that the KJV rendering of "qanah" as “"possessed" is correct.
The word “possessed” suggests that God always had wisdom while "produced" suggests that at one time he did not.
We agree that God has always had wisdom. Wisdom can briefly be summed up as the application of knowledge. In Proverbs 3:19 we are told that “The LORD by wisdom hath founded the earth”. A Psalmist echoed those words at Psalms 104:24 “O LORD, how manifold are thy works! in wisdom hast thou made them all: the earth is full of thy riches.”
So if we agree that God has always had wisdom, was able to apply his knowledge in his creative works, why do we say that in Proverbs 8:22 that wisdom was "produced”
The Hebrew word "qanah" can in some contexts mean possessed. Here is what Strongs Hebrew Lexicon says of "qanah". Notice meanings such as create, to produce, buy etc
“ to erect, i.e. create; by extension, to procure, especially by purchase (causatively, sell); by implication to own: — attain, buy(-er), teach to keep cattle, get, provoke to jealousy, possess(-or), purchase, recover, redeem,
It is interesting to see how the KJV renders different forms of this word
Buy 46, get 15, purchased 5, buyer 3, possessor 3, possessed 2, owner 1, recover 1, redeemed 1 got 1, gotten 1, in a compound word meaning “provoke to jealousy” 1
The NAS Bible rendered this word in the following ways
acquire 6, acquired 1, acquires 2, bought 20, buy 23, buyer 4, buying 2, buys 1, formed 1, gain acquisition 1, gained 1, get 3, gets 1, gotten 1, owner 1, possessed 1, possessor 2, purchased 3, purchaser 3, recover 1, redeemed 1, sold 1, surely buy 2.
The vast majority of cases the word "qanah" conveys the idea of something purchased or taken possession of by buying or making. Derrick rightly said in the answer that he gave Kay that one of the things we must “take into account the context”. This is also true when translating from the original language when a word may have more than one meaning.
Lets look at verses 23-30 in the KJV (Bold mine
23 I was set up from everlasting
, from the beginning, or ever the earth was.
24 When there were no depths, I was brought forth
; when there were no fountains abounding with water.
25 Before the mountains were settled, before the hills was I brought forth
26 While as yet he had not made the earth, nor the fields, nor the highest part of the dust of the world.
27 When he prepared the heavens, I was there: when he set a compass upon the face of the depth:
28 When he established the clouds above: when he strengthened the fountains of the deep:
29 When he gave to the sea his decree, that the waters should not pass his commandment: when he appointed the foundations of the earth:
30 Then I was by him, as one brought up
with him: and I was daily his delight, rejoicing always before him;
The first thing here is in verse 23. The word everlasting
is the same word discussed last time that does not mean “without beginning”, but means of gays long ago, at some time in the past. What time in the past is suggested? The context shows the creation of earth. What about that time?
Look at the other words in bold brought forth
. Even the KJV tells us that wisdom was brought forth
. It is good to get an idea as to what the Hebrew word means.
Strongs word number <2342> “חול chuwl primitive root; properly, to twist or whirl (in a circular or spiral manner), i.e. (specifically) to dance, to writhe in pain (especially of parturition) or fear; figuratively, to wait, to pervert: — bear, (make to) bring forth, (make to) calve, dance, drive away, fall grievously (with pain), fear, form, great, grieve, (be) grievous, hope, look, make, be in pain, be much (sore) pained, rest, shake, shapen, (be) sorrow(-ful), stay, tarry, travail (with pain), tremble, trust, wait carefully (patiently), be wounded.”
One of the meanings by Brown-Driver-Briggs Hebrew Lexcicon is to give birth. Many Bibles use words related to that in Proverbs 8 like “brought forth with labour pains” or “my birth” or “was I begotten.” or “I was born”
Just to demonstrate how the KJV has rendered word number <2342> observe these
"Are you the first man who was born ? Or were you made <2342> before the hills ? who fathered <2342> you.
"Do you know the time when the wild mountain goats bear young? Or can you mark when the deer gives birth <2342>?
The voice of the LORD makes the deer give birth <2342>, ….
Behold, I was brought forth <2342> in iniquity,....
Before the mountains were brought forth, Or ever You had formed <2342> the earth and the world, Even from everlasting to everlasting, You are God.
And they will be afraid. Pangs and sorrows will take hold of them; They will be in pain <2342> as a woman in childbirth;
As a woman with child Is in pain <2342> and cries out in her pangs, When she draws near the time of her delivery, ….
We have been with child, we have been in pain <2342>; We have, as it were, brought forth wind;
Woe to him who says to his father, ‘What are you begetting?’ Or to the woman, ‘What have you brought forth <2342>?’"
Look to Abraham your father, And to Sarah who bore <2342> you; For I called him alone, And blessed him and increased him."
"Sing, O barren, You who have not borne! Break forth into singing, and cry aloud, You who have not labored with child <2342>! For more are the children of the desolate Than the children of the married woman," says the LORD.
"Before she was in labor <2342>, she gave birth; Before her pain came, She delivered a male child.
Who has heard such a thing? Who has seen such things? Shall the earth be made to give birth <2342> in one day? Or shall a nation be born at once? For as soon as Zion was in labor <2342>, She gave birth to her children.
The context even from the KJV is telling us that at some time in the past, wisdom was “brought forth
or was born, begotten. Therefore according to the context the correct way to translate "qanah" is as the NWT does, as “produced” or “made me” (BBE) or “created me” (GNB)
Now we agree with Derrick that God already had wisdom as can be seen in the fact that he planned and was able to create everything, so here, in this chapter wisdom must refer to something else. When we tie that in with John 1:3
and Col 1:15
that Jesus was the agency
that God used in creating then we can understand that wisdom in Proverbs 8 is referring to Jesus as Gods master worker.
Verse 30 of chapter 8 in the KJV is interesting it reads is part “Then I was by him, as one brought up
Notice the RSV “then I was beside him, like a master workman
;” Many Bibles say that and some say as the NHEB “then I was the craftsman
by his side.”
Those are similar to most Bibles.
The KJV does not say master worker or craftsman. It has translated the Hebrew word אמון ‘amown as “ brought up with him”
Of this word, Strongs says “probably in the sense of training; skilled, i.e. an architect”. Brown-Driver-Briggs says “artificer, architect, master-workman, as firm and sure in his workman-ship”
You make up your mind if the KJV is correct. There is another reason why I mention that word. It is masculine. Derrick makes the point of saying that wisdom is a feminine word so that makes it unfitting for Jesus. Yet wisdom is referred to in masculine terms as a “master worker”.
Hebrew is similar to Greek in that all nouns have a “grammatical gender”. However, Hebrew does not have a neuter gender (it). Grammatical gender is not the same as natural gender. General knowledge of the language and context will let the reader know when natural gender is meant.
Derrick, quotes from the KJV "I wisdom dwell with prudence” and says “ "wisdom" …. dwells with someone
named "prudence" '
If he is correct, who is this someone
named prudence? My answer, nobody. Prudence is a major or dominant quality of wisdom. Wisdom is spoken of in the first person and is seen as speaking. Prudence is in the third person and does not speak. The Hebrew word translated as prudence is ערמה and according to Strongs means “trickery; or (in a good sense) discretion: — guile, prudence, subtilty, wilily, wisdom.”
Brown-Driver-Briggs gives it this meaning “craftily” or prudence.
The BBE renders Proverbs 18:12 as “I, wisdom, have made wise behaviour
my near relation;”
Douay “ I, wisdom, dwell in counsel
, and am present in learned thoughts.”
ERV “I wisdom have made subtilty
my dwelling, and find out knowledge and discretion.”
GNB “I am Wisdom, and I have insight
; I have knowledge and sound judgement.”
GWV “"I, Wisdom, live with insight
, and I acquire knowledge and foresight.”
ISR ““I, wisdom, have dwelt with insight
, And I find knowledge, foresight. “
NHEB ”I, wisdom, have made prudence my dwelling. Find out knowledge and discretion.”
NWT “I, wisdom, I have resided with shrewdness
and I find even the knowledge of thinking abilities”
TRC “I wisdom have my dwelling with knowledge
, and prudent counsel is mine own.”
The NHEB above has used the word prudence but shows prudence is not a person but a quality, because prudence was wisdom's dwelling.
The contextual evidence is, that in Proverbs 8, wisdom has taken on a different meaning to the earlier chapters.