A common myth is that Jesus never believed He was God or claimed to be God. Scripture is quite clear, however, that this is not true. Lee Strobel suggests that there are at least 10 different facts presented within the Bible that point toward Jesus believing, claiming, and acting as if He is God.[1] These may go unnoticed, though, by just a surface reading of the text and without a proper understanding of the historical/cultural context, the Old Testament, and the biblical languages.

One of the greatest examples of Jesus making a direct claim to divinity is in Mark 14 with His reference to Daniel 7:13–14. When the high priest asks Jesus if He is the Messiah, Jesus responds with “I am” and then proceeds to tell them that they will “see the Son of Man seated at the right hand of the Power and coming with the clouds of heaven” (Mark 14:62). Jesus’ use of the term “Son of Man” for Himself, and the description that He gives with it matches the one given in Daniel chapter 7.

Though some have interpreted this title as a reference to the archangel Michael or the Jewish nation,[2] several factors stand in opposition to these two views. Firstly, the Daniel 7 passage describes the Son of Man as one who has the ability to approach the “Ancient of Days” (God the Father) and is given “authority to rule”, “glory”, “a kingdom”, and service/worship. Secondly, the Son of Man also comes with the clouds (7:13), which is often associated with God (e.g. 1 Kings 8:10–11).[3] These details indicate that he is not an angel or a mere man, though he is “in human form”.[4]

When compared to Mark 14, it becomes clear that Jesus is claiming that He has this same authority and ability detailed in Daniel 7, all of which can only be rightfully given to God. Jesus, then, is ultimately claiming to be God and to be equal with Him by the use of this name. The fact that the high priest believed that Jesus spoke blasphemy also testifies to the belief of the Jews that this “Son of Man” is more than just a mere man (Mark 14:64). In Jewish understanding, the Son of Man is direct reference to the Messiah,[5] whom Jesus Christ also directly claims to be (John 4:25–26).

While this is certainly not the only biblical evidence for Jesus’ belief and claim that He is God, it is one of the strongest arguments against the myth that He never did so.

 

Daniel 7:13–14 (HCSB)

“I continued watching in the night visions,

and I saw One like a son of man
coming with the clouds of heaven.
He approached the Ancient of Days
and was escorted before Him.

He was given authority to rule,
and glory, and a kingdom;
so that those of every people,
nation, and language
should serve Him.
His dominion is an everlasting dominion
that will not pass away,
and His kingdom is one
that will not be destroyed.”

 

Mark 14:61–62 (HCSB)

But He kept silent and did not answer anything. Again the high priest questioned Him, “Are You the Messiah, the Son of the Blessed One?”

“I am,” said Jesus, “and all of you will see the Son of Man seated at the right hand of the Power and coming with the clouds of heaven.”

 

 

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Sources used in this article are not necessarily in agreement with or endorsed by the author(s) of this website, but are rather used for the sole purpose of explaining/supporting the topics with which they directly relate.

[1] Ravi K. Zacharias and Norman L. Geisler, Who Made God? And Answers to Over 100 Other Tough Questions of Faith (Grand Rapids, Mich.: Zondervan, 2003), 81–84.

[2] Stephen R. Miller, The New American Commentary, vol. 18, Daniel (Nashville, TN: Broadman & Holman, 1994), loc. 3840–3853, Kindle.

[3] Ibid., loc. 3854–3864.

[4] Ibid., loc. 3820.

[5] Tim F. LaHaye and Edward E. Hindson, The Popular Encyclopedia of Bible Prophecy (Eugene, Or.: Harvest House Publishers, 2004), 369.