Original Research

‘Son of man’ in the Gospel of Mark

Marius Nel
In die Skriflig/In Luce Verbi | Vol 51, No 3 | a2096 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/ids.v51i3.2096 | © 2017 Marius Nel | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 03 February 2016 | Published: 27 January 2017

About the author(s)

Marius Nel, Faculty of Theology, North-West University, Potchefstroom Campus, South Africa


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Abstract

What are the origin and source, as well as the meaning of the term Son of man as it appears in Mark? Is the background of the term to be found in the Old Testament, in Ezekiel and Daniel 7, or in the apocalyptic figure presented in 1 Enoch 47–71 and 4 Ezra 13? What does the intertextual reference of the term imply? Did the historical Jesus use the term as a reference to himself or to a divine (extraterrestrial) deliverer he believed was coming to save the Jewish people, or is the term a post-Easter title applied retrospectively by the Gospel writer upon the pre-Easter Jesus? Did Jesus use the title as a self-designation, or did he use it in a self-effacing way to refer to himself as a mortal in contrast with God? Did he use the title as a generic designation for all humankind? What is the essence of the Gospel writer’s usage of the term? These questions are discussed in terms of the passages where Mark utilises the term.

Keywords

Gospel of Mark; Son of man; Son of God; apocalyptic; eschatology

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