What does the title “firstborn” among many brothers in Romans 8:29 signify?Some think it refers to Jesus as the first to experience resurrection into the eternal state.Though that’s true, “Firstborn” in Romans 8:29 is a title referring to a position of honor or preeminence.The firstborn was recognized as unique, having a unique position among brothers.
The commentator Alford says: “That He might be shown, acknowledged to be, and glorified as, the Son of God, preeminent among those who are by adoption through Him sons of God.This is the further end of our election, as regards Christ: His glorification in us, as our elder Brother and Head.”
This leads to another point made by Paul.Jesus Christ is also a co-heir with his brothers.Though He, as firstborn, has a place of honor, He is not arrogant, proud or self-centered.Hebrews says, “Jesus is not ashamed to call them brothers.”He knows who He is.He also knows who we are.I’m not worthy of the honor of being so identified with Jesus Christ.Just think of it, I am a co-heir with Christ.
What does that mean?It doesn’t mean I’m equal to Christ.He is eternal, I am not.He is infinite, I am not.He has no limits, I do.He is God the Son; I am a son of God.He is the firstborn, I’m a brother.He freely shares with me what is rightfully His and delights in my sharing in His inheritance.
Praise God the Son, who humbly shares with all who believe in Him the inheritance that is rightfully His.