Son of Man | Luke Shimek

John 5:25-29

In our passage, Jesus expressly claims sovereignty over all creation. The Pharisees and teachers of the law would understand Jesus’ claim to be the Son of Man as a reference to Daniel’s dream in which God assuages His people’s fears while in Babylonian and Persian exile by pointing to the coming of the Son of Man, giving Him sovereignty over all peoples, making Him the sole king and the giver of life eternally.[1] In contemporary culture, we are often concerned when authority is centered in one individual as that person may abuse and misuse their power, but Jesus proves Himself novel.

What does Jesus do with His authority? First, Jesus heals: Jesus just healed an invalid man. When John the Baptist asks Jesus for confirmation that he is the Messiah,  Jesus declares dominion by replying “Go and tell John what you hear and see: the blind receive their sight and the lame walk, lepers are cleansed and the deaf hear, and the dead are raised up, and the poor have good news preached to them.”[2]  In Verse 25, Jesus’ reference to the dead hearing the Son of God’s voice echoes Ezekiel’s valley of dry bones, where God breathes life back into his exiled people; Jesus comes to breathe life into all creation. How has Jesus made us new? From what do we still yearn for Jesus to heal us?

Second, Jesus calls and forgives: In a similar healing in Mark, Jesus heals a paralytic man only after forgiving the man’s sins, so that his supremacy as the Son of Man is proven.[3] He dines with tax collectors and sinners, even admitting one of them into his inner circle, saying “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. I have not come to call the righteous but sinners to repentance.”[4] Jesus clearly states that a repentant tax collector is justified before God, not the Pharisee praying near him.[5] He even yearns and calls for those he rebukes, as in the case of Nicodemus[6] and the rich young ruler. In what ways are we resisting Jesus’ call to us and offer of forgiveness because of our pride, our doubts, or our need to be “presentable” to God and others?

When we answer Jesus’ call, the grace of the Holy Spirit continuously mends our relationship with the Father, incessantly sanctifies us,[7] and makes us co-heirs with Christ in his eternal dominion. Any goodness that comes out of us, any fruit that springs from our lives, comes from answering the Messiah’s call and witnessing not only the ultimate power of our savior, but also his great benevolent movement towards us.

Luke M. Shimek is an introvert but still managed to snag an extroverted wife who is a member at Advent as well as two pets. He currently works at a local videogame publisher after achieving ABD status at an R1 institution. That description should make me unique…

[1] Daniel 7:13-14

[2] Matthew 11:4-5.

[3] Mark 2:1-12.

[4] Luke 5:27-32, also Luke 19:1-10.

[5] Luke 18:9-14.

[6] John 3:1-21. For Nicodemus’ response, see John 7:50-51 and John 19:39-42.

[7] 1 Thessalonians 5:23-24