The ante-nicene Christian writers read Sapiental passages (Prov. 8:22 etc.) Christologically to evince the Godhead of the Son by his begetting from the Father:
And it is by that very way, dear friends, that we find our own
salvation: even Jesus Christ, the High Priest by whom our gifts are
offered, and the Protector by whom our feebleness is aided. Through
him we can look up to the highest heaven and see, as in a glass, the
peerless perfection of the face of God. Through him the eyes of our
hearts are opened … for through him the Lord permits us to taste the
Wisdom of eternity. He is 'the splendour of God's majesty; and as
much greater than the angels as the title he has inherited is a
loftier one than theirs.' For it is written, 'He makes his angels
into winds, and his servitors into a flame of fire, but of the Son the
Lord declares, You are my Son, this very day I have fathered you…'
(Clement of Alexandria, 1 Corinthians 36, ca. c. AD 95 – 97.)
I will give you another testimony from the Scriptures, that God
begot before all creatures a Beginning, who was a certain Rational
Power from himself, and whom the Holy Spirit calls the Glory of the
Lord, or sometimes the Son, sometimes Wisdom, sometimes an Angel,
sometimes God, sometimes Lord and Word. … He can be called by all
these names because he ministers to the will of the Father and was
begotten by the Father's will. We see things similarly amongst
ourselves: for whenever we utter some word, we beget a word-yet not by
any cutting off which would diminish the word in us when we utter it.
(Justin Martyr, Dialogue with Trypho, 61)
For I would not say that the dogma of that heresy which is said to be
among you is true, or that the teachers of it can prove that [God]
spoke to angels, or that the human frame was the workmanship of
angels. But this Offspring, which was truly brought forth from the
Father, was with the Father before all the creatures, and the Father
communed with Him; even as the Scripture by Solomon has made clear,
that He whom Solomon calls Wisdom, was begotten as a Beginning before
all His creatures and as Offspring by God, who has also declared
this same thing in the revelation made by Joshua the son of Nave
(Nun). (Justin Martyr, ibid., 62)
What can be better entitled to the name of Wisdom than the Reason or Word of God? Listen therefore to Wisdom herself, constituted in
the character of a second Person. "At first the Lord created me as the
beginning of his ways, with a view to his own works. Before he made
the earth, before the mountains were settled, moreover, before all the
hills did he beget me."That is to say, he created and generated his
own intelligence (Tertullian, Against Praxeas 6, c. A.D. 210).
Exegesis and Patristics
"The Lord created me as the first of his works, before his works of
Proverbs 8:22 (LXX)
This text predated the New Testament writings; it says that God’s attribute of wisdom is created prior to the creation of all things.
The context of Proverbs 8:22 is talking about what the Latin Church fathers call “creation ad intra” (produced from one’s being i.e. begetting) as opposed to “creation ex nihilo” (produced out from nothing). This means that there is not one meaning to create .Even in us humans, we know that to begat is to create albeit in the context of "heredity".
One of the creation ad intra examples is “begetting” (to make someone have one’s nature).An example of this is a human father who begot a human offspring.A human person from a human person.
This is the kind of creation that is being talked about in Proverbs 8:22.The immediate contexts show this:
Verse 22 The Lord created me (Greek: KTISIS)
Verse 25 He begets me (Greek: GENNAO)
Proverbs 8 (Septuagint)
One example of creation ex nihilo is the creation of the flora (plant life) on the third day ( Genesis 1:13).God created the "flora" (plant life) by his speech ex nihilo (Genesis 1:11-12;Hebrews 11:3).God caused flora that is non-existent to become existent.
The Diaspora Jews knew very well the Wisdom Theology of the inspired Scriptures.In Sirach 24:9 [an inter-testamental writing), God’s wisdom is said to be “created before all ages.”
This coheres with the apostolic teaching as found in the New Testament Scriptures:
He is the image of the invisible God, the first begotten of every
Colossians 1:15 (1599 Geneva Bible)
This fits the context. The reason is that everything was created in, by and for the Son that is why he is called the first begotten prior to "all creation".The Son was not created ex nihilo! The Son is begotten from God!The Son is the "only begotten" from God ( John 1:18, 3:16). Jesus is a divine person (the Son) from a divine person (the Father).This is what the early church believed as well:
"If … it occurs to you to inquire what is meant by the Son, I will
state briefly that he is the first product of the Father, not as
having been brought into existence, for from the beginning God, who is
the eternal mind, had the Logos in himself, being from eternity
instinct with Logos."
Plea for the Christians ( A.D. 177) ~ Athenagoras