When we hear “firstborn,” we naturally think of the child born first into a family, namely, the oldest child. But that way of understanding what firstborn means gets us into trouble when we see it used of Jesus in the Bible.
The Son of God is eternal. He has always existed and always will exist, without beginning or end. So when the Bible says that Jesus is firstborn of all creation (1:15), that does not mean He was created first before the rest of creation was created. This becomes clear in the very next verse where we read that everything was created by Him, which must exclude Himself since self-creation isn’t possible.
So what does it mean that Jesus is firstborn over creation? It means that Jesus is preeminent—He is first in rank above all of creation, being the image of God who created all things and holds all things together.
In what areas of your life do you struggle to place Jesus first?