Tag Archives: Mark 13

Like a Son of Man

The Ancient of Days. 1794.  Watercolor by William Blake.

The Ancient of Days. 1794. Watercolor by William Blake.    Based on the “like a son of man” passage in Daniel 7.    In the Old Testament, Daniel is the master of apocalyptic imagery, which means using words as pictures to “reveal” or “uncover” that which is hidden.

Jesus talks about being the “Son of Man” eighty-one times in the New Testament. The term is Jesus’ favorite designation for Himself in the Gospels. So, what is the deal with this “Son of Man” stuff anyway?

Son of Man = Messiah = Divinity of Christ“. For years, I merely assumed this to be true, simply out of reflex of being a Christian. But if it is true, why is it true?  I never really thought about it that much. Recently, our  small group Bible study has been looking at the Gospel of Luke, and every now and then there are puzzled looks whenever Jesus speaks of this Son of Man. As I observe everyone scrambling to read their study bible notes, I know that I am not alone in my why question.

A number of critics complain that Christians read way, way too much into this phrase. The Son of Man as the Messiah?  Mmmm. How so?   Furthermore, the Bible never explicitly equates Son of Man with “divinity”. Are followers of Jesus getting ahead of the Bible when asserting the messianic, divine meaning of Son of Man? Can a believer in Christ reasonably defend such a claim?

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