Son of Man

“For the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost” (Luke 19:10 NASB).

The title, “Son of Man,” was the Lord’s favorite name. He used it of Himself eighty-four times in the four Gospels. Never does anyone else in the Gospels refer to Jesus Christ as the Son of Man. Not until Acts 7:56 does Stephen in a singular case describe Jesus this way.

Why does the Lord Jesus so guardedly name Himself the Son of Man? It seems best to say the Lord’s use of the term is based on Daniel 7:13–14, where Daniel in a vision sees a man like a “Son of Man” come to God the Father (the Ancient of Days) and this Son of Man is given an everlasting and universal kingdom. By using this title, the Lord lays claim to being the Messiah without openly saying so.

This name is very significant because it looks at the two comings of the Lord Jesus. A few illustrations prove the point. At the first coming as Luke 19:10 says, He came to seek and to save lost people. As the Son of Man, He had nowhere to lay His head (Matthew 8:20), but He did have authority on earth to forgive sins (Mark 2:10) and He was Lord of the Sabbath (Luke 6:5). Of course the “Son of Man” statements by Christ also predicted His death and resurrection (Matthew 17:12, 22–23; Mark 10:45.

But there is much more. This name of Christ also anticipates His second coming to reign as King of Kings. The Son of Man will send His angels to gather the lost (Matthew 13:41) and He will sit on a glorious throne to reign (Matthew 19:28; 25:31; 26:64). His return will be spectacular (Matthew 24:27–31; Luke 17:24).

It is perfectly appropriate at Christmastime to focus on the two comings of Christ. More is encompassed in “Son of Man” than we can imagine!