All things were made by him
Which is a proof at once of all that is said before; as that he was in the beginning; and that he was with God the Father in the beginning; and that he was God; otherwise all things could not have been made by him, had either of these been untrue: which is to be understood, not of the new creation; for this would be a restraining "all" things to a "few" persons only; nor is it any where said, that all things are new made, but made; and it is false, that all were converted, that have been converted, by the ministry of Christ, as man: all men are not renewed, regenerated, nor reformed; and the greater part of those that were renewed, were renewed before Christ existed, as man; and therefore could not be renewed by him, as such: though indeed, could this sense be established, it would not answer the end for which it is coined; namely, to destroy the proof of Christ's deity, and of his existence before his incarnation; for in all ages, from the beginning of the world, some have been renewed; and the new creation is a work of God, and of almighty power, equally with the old; for who can create spiritual light, infuse a principle of spiritual life, take away the heart of stone, and give an heart of flesh, or produce faith, but God? Regeneration is denied to be of man, and is always ascribed to God; nor would Christ's being the author of the new creation, be any contradiction to his being the author of the old creation, which is intended here: by "all things", are meant the heaven, and all its created inhabitants, the airy, starry, and third heavens, and the earth, and all therein, the sea, and every thing that is in that; and the word, or Son of God, is the efficient cause of all these, not a bare instrument of the formation of them; for the preposition by does not always denote an instrument, but sometimes an efficient, as in ( 1 Corinthians 1:9 ) ( 2 Corinthians 1:1 ) ( Galatians 1:1 ) and so here, though not to the exclusion of the Father, and of the Spirit:
and without him was not any thing made that was made:
in which may be observed the conjunct operation of the word, or Son, with the Father, and Spirit, in creation; and the extent of his concern in it to every thing that is made; for without him there was not one single thing in the whole compass of the creation made; and the limitation of it to things that are made; and so excludes the uncreated being, Father, Son, and Spirit; and sin also, which is not a principle made by God, and which has no efficient, but a deficient cause. So the Jews ascribe the creation of all things to the word. The Targumists attribute the creation of man, in particular, to the word of God: it is said in ( Genesis 1:27 ) . "God created man in his own image": the Jerusalem Targum of it is,
``and the word of the Lord created man in his likeness.''And ( Genesis 3:22 ) "and the Lord God said, behold the man is become as one of us", the same Targum paraphrases thus;
``and the word of the Lord God said, behold the man whom I have created, is the only one in the world.''Also in the same writings, the creation of all things in general is ascribed to the word: the passage in ( Deuteronomy 33:27 ) "the eternal God is thy refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms", is paraphrased by Onkelos,
``the eternal God is an habitation, by whose word the world was made.''In ( Isaiah 48:13 ) it is said, "mine hand also hath laid the foundation of the earth". The Targum of Jonathan ben Uzziah on it is,
``yea, by my word I have founded the earth:''which agrees with what is said in ( Hebrews 11:3 ) ( 2 Peter 3:7 2 Peter 3:5 ) , and the same says Philo the Jew, who not only calls him the archetype, and exemplar of the world, but the power that made it: he often ascribes the creation of the heavens, and the earth unto him, and likewise the creation of man after whose image, he says, he was made F20. The Ethiopic version adds, at the end of this verse, "and also that which is made is for himself".
F20 De Mundi Opificio, p. 4, 5, 31, 32. De Alleg. l. 1. p. 44. De Sacrificiis Abel & Cain, p. 131. De Profugis, p. 464. & de Monarch. p. 823.