What does it mean that Jesus is the Son of Man?



Question: "What does it mean that Jesus is the Son of Man?"

Answer:
Jesus is referred to as the "Son of Man" 88 times in the New Testament. What does this mean? Does not the Bible say Jesus was the Son of God? How then could Jesus also be the Son of Man? A first meaning of the phrase "Son of Man" is as a reference to the prophecy of Daniel 7:13-14, "I saw in the night visions, and, behold, one like the Son of man came with the clouds of heaven, and came to the Ancient of days, and they brought Him near before Him. And there was given Him dominion, and glory, and a kingdom, that all people, nations, and languages, should serve Him: His dominion is an everlasting dominion, which shall not pass away, and His kingdom that which shall not be destroyed." The description "Son of Man" was a Messianic title. Jesus is the one who was given dominion and glory and a kingdom. When Jesus used this phrase related to Himself, He was assigning the “Son of Man” prophecy to Himself. The Jews of that era would have been intimately familiar with the phrase and to whom it referred. He was proclaiming Himself as the Messiah.

A second meaning of the phrase "Son of Man" is that Jesus was truly a human being. God called the prophet Ezekiel "son of man" 93 times. God was simply calling Ezekiel a human being. A son of a man is a man. Jesus was fully God (John 1:1), but He was also a human being (John 1:14). 1 John 4:2 tells us, "This is how you can recognize the Spirit of God: Every spirit that acknowledges that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God." Yes, Jesus was the Son of God – He was in His essence God. Yes, Jesus was also the Son of Man – He was in His essence a human being. In summary, the phrase "Son of Man" indicates that Jesus is the Messiah and that He is truly a human being.


Recommended Resource: Seeing and Savoring Jesus Christ by John Piper.

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What does it mean that Jesus is the Son of Man?