Why Is Jesus Called “Son of Man”?

Jesus Christ

"Son of Man" is a title that Jesus often used to refer to himself in the New Testament. The title is derived from the Hebrew phrase "ben adam," which literally means "son of man." In the Old Testament, the phrase "son of man" is used to refer to human beings in general, and in some cases, it is used as a way to express humility or to indicate that the speaker is a mortal.

In the New Testament, Jesus uses the title "Son of Man" to refer to himself in a way that emphasizes his humanity. The title is often used in conjunction with other titles, such as "the Christ" (meaning "the Messiah"), "the Lord," and "the Son of God," to indicate that Jesus is both fully human and fully divine.

For example, in the Gospel of Mark, Jesus says, "The Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders, chief priests and teachers of the law, and he must be killed and after three days rise again" (Mark 8:31). In this verse, Jesus is predicting his own death and resurrection, and he is doing so as the "Son of Man," emphasizing his humanity.

Another example is in the Gospel of Matthew 26:64, where Jesus says to the High Priest, "It is as you said. But I say to all of you: From now on you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the Mighty One and coming on the clouds of heaven." Here Jesus is identifying himself as the Son of Man, and also as the one who will come in glory and power.

The use of the title "Son of Man" also has an eschatological meaning as well. It is used to refer to the coming of a future figure in Jewish apocalyptic literature, such as in the book of Ezekiel, where the prophet sees a vision of "one like a son of man" coming with the clouds of heaven to receive authority and rule over the earth (Ezekiel 1:26-28).

In the New Testament, this eschatological figure is identified as Jesus himself, who is the one who will come in glory to judge the living and the dead (Matthew 25:31-46)

Moreover, in the context of the time, it was a way for Jesus to speak about himself without attracting too much attention from the Roman authorities, as it was a common term used for humans and did not have any political connotations.

Overall, the title "Son of Man" is a way for Jesus to emphasize his humanity, while also pointing to his divine nature and his ultimate role as the coming eschatological judge. By using this title, Jesus is emphasizing that he is fully human and fully divine, and that he is the one who will ultimately bring about the kingdom of God.

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