Tuesday, March, 12, 2019 | 1:37 PM | by Munholland
I’m sure you have many nicknames that float around your family. Those names say something about the person who gives the name and the person receiving the name. Nicknames give an indication of personality and relationship. We call Nate ‘There are no accidents Beck’. It refers to an incident when he wanted his sister to leave his room. She was not obliging, so he did what came natural. He shot at her feet with a high powered airsoft gun. Abigail went crying to her mother to show her the yellow pellet imbedded in her foot. Nate quickly said it was an accident. That is how he got the name ‘Nate – there are no accidents – Beck. So, whenever something goes wrong but is the natural result of what was being done, we pull out the old nickname. That name is tied to a story that encapsulates something about Nate’s personality or MO.
Jesus’ nickname was ‘Son of Man’. In Matthew alone, Jesus refers to himself as ‘The Son of Man’ 29 times! That nickname was not accidental. It meant something. In order to find out what it meant to those listening to Jesus, we need to look at the backstory. The only place we see the title ‘Son of Man’ is in a dream that the King of Babylon told to Daniel the prophet.
“In my vision at night I looked, and there before me was one like a son of man, coming with the clouds of heaven. He approached the Ancient of Days and was led into his presence. He was given authority, glory and sovereign power; all nations and peoples of every language worshiped him. His dominion is an everlasting dominion that will not pass away, and his kingdom is one that will never be destroyed.” (Dan 7:13-14)
The Son of Man was unique. He shared the authority, glory, and power of God. All nations worshipped him, and his strong kingdom would not be destroyed or end. What we see is that Jesus understand himself has having that unique relationship with God, sharing in God’s divinity, even receiving worship. You can see how this name cause quite a stir in Israel – especially among the teachers. Jesus was claiming to be much more than the Messiah. He was equating himself with God, one worthy of divine worship. The people who listed to Jesus knew the backstory which made sense of the nickname.
The New Testament is full of references to the Old Testament. Events, people, and prophetic references are rich. They bring out profound understandings of God, God’s relationship with people, and people’s relationships with each other. The next time you read a reference or a nickname in the Bible, check out the backstory. You’ll be amazed at how much is packed in there.
Inviting you further into the Kingdom,