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. Daniel 7:13-14
I often wondered why Jesus called himself the “son of man” but these verses give us the explanation. Jesus, “one like a son of man” has been given authority, glory, sovereign power and is therefore God. Jesus and the Jews were familiar with these prophecies. Ezekiel, another significant Old Testament prophet, was also called “son of man” (Ezekiel 2:1). So Jesus’ contemporaries should have at least recognised Jesus as God’s prophet.
However, the Jews constantly overlooked passages like this one in Daniel, which would indicate Jesus claim as the “son of God” had a precedent. Yet they rejected Jesus’ claim quoting, “Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one” (Deuteronomy 6:4) without realizing the Hebrew word for “one” means “cluster,” like a cluster of grapes, one bunch. “One” indicates a compound unity.
If Jesus had called himself “Messiah” it would have suggested to the Jews he was a political ruler who was going to overthrow the Romans and this wasn’t the picture Jesus wanted to present at this time. Even today Jews reject the idea of Jesus being the promised Messiah because he didn’t bring political peace.
Jesus’ mission was much bigger than bringing a superficial peace—an absence of war. His mission was to bring peace to people’s hearts through a restored relationship with God.