Christ is not a created being. The misunderstanding in people’s mind is due to the false assumption that the words ‘begotten’ and ‘created’ mean the same thing. The fact is they do not mean the same thing at all.
The Bible gives us examples of both showing the difference between them. From the Bible we learn that God created the world out of nothing.
Hebrews 11:3 Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear.
Psa 33:6 By the word of the LORD were the heavens made; and all the host of them by the breath of his mouth.
Psa 33:7 He gathereth the waters of the sea together as an heap: he layeth up the depth in storehouses.
Psa 33:8 Let all the earth fear the LORD: let all the inhabitants of the world stand in awe of him.
Psa 33:9 For he spake, and it was done; he commanded, and it stood fast.
Thus we see a clear demonstration of the meaning of the word “create”, which is to make something out of nothing. It is when something comes into existence while there was no pre-existing matter for it to come from. Therefore it is created.
“Begotten”, on the other hand, is the exact opposite. It is when something comes out of another thing existing before it. Any begotten thing or creature has to have a source from which it stems. This source is not nothing (as in creation). Anyone who is begotten has come out of a begetter, therefore showing that there are two involved in the process. It is an obvious fact that the begetter is the source of the begotten thing, and therefore the source of the begetter is the same source as the begotten of it. In other words, the two can be traced back through the one line. Once again, the first book of the Bible furnishes us with an example of what we are talking about:
Genesis 3:16 Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children; and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee.
In the above verse the words “bring forth” are from the Hebrew word ‘yalad’ (Strong’s #03205) which means: to bear, bring forth, beget, gender, travail.
(See also Luke 3:23-38 where we see the line being traced back through each preceding father, up to the ultimate source.)
The point is clear that “begotten” means to bring forth, or to come out of. It does not mean to make something out of nothing.
One who is begotten is an inheritor of the begetter by right of birth. This fact is illustrated all around us. Every species that begets (brings forth), whether it be plant or animal, demonstrates the principle of inheritance. The product always inherits the nature of the begetter.
Christ is the only-begotten Son of God. He has the nature of His Father by right of inheritance.
Hebrews 1:4 Being made so much better than the angels, as he hath by inheritance obtained a more excellent name than they.
The Scriptures declare that Christ is "the only begotten Son of God." He is begotten, not created. As to when He was begotten, it is not for us to inquire, nor could our minds grasp it if we were told. The prophet Micah tells us all that we can know about it in these words, "But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall He come forth unto Me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from of old, from the days of eternity." Micah 5:2, margin. There was a time when Christ proceeded forth and came from God, from the bosom of the Father (John 8:42; 1:18), but that time was so far back in the days of eternity that to finite comprehension it is practically without beginning.
But the point is that Christ is a begotten Son and not a created subject. He has by inheritance a more excellent name than the angels; He is "a Son over His own house." Heb. 1:4; 3:6. And since He is the only-begotten son of God, He is of the very substance and nature of God and possesses by birth all the attributes of God, for the Father was pleased that His Son should be the express image of His Person, the brightness of His glory.
Finally, we know the Divine unity of the Father and the Son from the fact that both have the same Spirit. Paul, after saying that they that are in the flesh cannot please God, continues: "But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his." Rom. 8:9. Here we find that the Holy Spirit is both the Spirit of God and the Spirit of Christ. Christ "is in the bosom of the Father" being by nature of the very substance of God and having life in Himself. He is properly called Jehovah, the self-existent One and is thus styled in Jer. 23:5, 6, where it is said that the righteous Branch, who shall execute judgment and justice in the earth, shall be known by the name of Jehovah - THE LORD, OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS.