‘Son of Man’ is an expression that normally refers to a human being as is evident in the Biblical passages like the following:
- When he came near where I was standing, I fell prostrate in terror. But he said to me, “Understand, son of man, that the vision refers to the end time.” – Daniel 8:17
- What is man that you are mindful of him, and a son of man that you care for him? – Psalms 8:4
- Put not your trust in princes, nor in the son of man, in whom there is no help. – Psalms 146:3 KJV
But in Daniel 7:13-14, the meaning of the words changed. The same wordings are still used but this time it refers to someone from heaven whom people will serve and who has a dominion, glory, and a kingdom that lasts forever.
As the visions during the night continued, I saw One like a son of man coming, on the clouds of heaven; When he reached the Ancient One and was presented before him, He received dominion, glory, and kingship; nations and peoples of every language serve him. His dominion is an everlasting dominion that shall not be taken away, his kingship shall not be destroyed.Daniel 7:13-14
This ‘Son of Man’ is more likely a figure of a messiah and a mediator between God and man because it would be a form of idolatry for people to serve another heavenly being other than the One True God. This, of course, for Christians refers to Jesus as he clearly identified himself as the Son of Man in front of the high priest, and all the chief priests and the elders and the scribes.
The high priest rose before the assembly and questioned Jesus, saying, “Have you no answer? What are these men testifying against you?” But he was silent and answered nothing. Again the high priest asked him and said to him, “Are you the Messiah, the son of the Blessed One?” Then Jesus answered, “I am; and ‘you will see the Son of Man seated at the right hand of the Power and coming with the clouds of heaven.’”Mark 14:60-62
By the words ‘I am’ and ‘Son of Man’ in this passage, Jesus claimed to be the fulfilment of what Daniel and the other prophets foretold that he is the Son of God and the Messiah of Israel. This would answer the question raised above.
Other Bible verses that supports Jesus’ role as the Son of Man can be found in Matthew 16:27-28, Matthew 24:30-31, Acts 7:55-56, and Revelation 14:14.