The Son of Man (Lk 21:27-21:27)

“Then they will see

The Son of Man

Coming in a cloud

With power

And great glory.”

 

καὶ τότε ὄψονται τὸν Υἱὸν τοῦ ἀνθρώπου ἐρχόμενον ἐν νεφέλῃ μετὰ δυνάμεως καὶ δόξης πολλῆ

 

Luke indicated that Jesus said that then they would see (καὶ τότε ὄψονται) the Son of Man (τὸν Υἱὸν τοῦ ἀνθρώπου) coming in a cloud (ἐρχόμενον ἐν νεφέλῃ) with power (μετὰ δυνάμεως) and great glory (καὶ δόξης πολλῆ).  This is almost word for word in Matthew, chapter 24:30, and in Mark, chapter 13:26.  Mark said that they would all see or experience the Son of Man (καὶ τότε ὄψονται τὸν Υἱὸν τοῦ ἀνθρώπου) coming in the clouds (ἐρχόμενον ἐν νεφέλαις) with his great power (μετὰ δυνάμεως πολλῆς) and glory (καὶ δόξης).  Matthew indicated that Jesus had an introductory comment that the sign of the Son of Man would appear in the heavens (καὶ τότε φανήσεται τὸ σημεῖον τοῦ Υἱοῦ τοῦ ἀνθρώπου ἐν οὐρανῷ).  Then all the tribes or races of people on the earth would mourn or lament (καὶ τότε κόψονται πᾶσαι αἱ φυλαὶ τῆς γῆς).  After these phrases, then came the common element that they would all see or experience the Son of Man (καὶ ὄψονται τὸν Υἱὸν τοῦ ἀνθρώπου) coming on the clouds of heaven (ἐρχόμενον ἐπὶ τῶν νεφελῶν τοῦ οὐρανοῦ) with his power (μετὰ δυνάμεως) and great glory (καὶ δόξης πολλῆς).  The clouds were the common place where theophanies in the Old Testament occurred, as Yahweh often appeared in a cloud on a mountain.  The Son of Man is a reference to Jesus himself as a Hebrew Messianic figure.  What do you know about the Second Coming of Jesus?

The sake of Jesus and the gospel (Mk 10:29-10:30)

“Jesus said.

‘Truly!

I say to you!

There is no one

Who has left house,

Or brothers or sisters,

Or mother or father,

Or children,

Or lands,

For my sake

And for the sake

Of the gospel good news,

Who will not receive

A hundredfold now

In this age,

Houses,

Brothers and sisters,

Mothers,

Children,

And field lands,

With persecutions,

In the age to come,

Eternal life.’”

 

ἔφη ὁ Ἰησοῦς Ἀμὴν λέγω ὑμῖν, οὐδείς ἐστιν ὃς ἀφῆκεν οἰκίαν ἢ ἀδελφοὺς ἢ ἀδελφὰς ἢ μητέρα ἢ πατέρα ἢ τέκνα ἢ ἀγροὺς ἕνεκεν ἐμοῦ καὶ ἕνεκεν τοῦ εὐαγγελίου,

ἐὰν μὴ λάβῃ ἑκατονταπλασίονα νῦν ἐν τῷ καιρῷ τούτῳ οἰκίας καὶ ἀδελφοὺς καὶ ἀδελφὰς καὶ μητέρας καὶ τέκνα καὶ ἀγροὺς μετὰ διωγμῶν, καὶ ἐν τῷ αἰῶνι τῷ ἐρχομένῳ ζωὴν αἰώνιον.

 

This demanding saying of Jesus, talking about giving up family and land for eternal life, can be found in Matthew, chapter 19:29, and Luke, chapter 18:29-30, but slightly different.  There is nothing here about the apostles sitting on the 12 thrones judging the 12 tribes, since that was not important to the gentile Christians that Mark was addressing.  Mark said that Jesus then issued a solemn proclamation to his disciples (ἔφη ὁ Ἰησοῦς εἶπεν αὐτοῖς Ἀμὴν λέγω ὑμῖν).  Anyone who has left house (οὐδείς ἐστιν ὃς ἀφῆκεν οἰκίαν), brothers (ἢ ἀδελφοὺς), sisters (ἢ ἀδελφὰς), mother (ἢ μητέρα), father (ἢ πατέρα), children (ἢ τέκνα), or land fields (ἢ ἀγροὺς) for his sake and the sake of the gospel good news (ἕνεκεν ἐμοῦ καὶ ἕνεκεν τοῦ εὐαγγελίου), would receive a hundredfold now in this age (ἐὰν μὴ λάβῃ ἑκατονταπλασίονα νῦν ἐν τῷ καιρῷ τούτῳ), in houses (οἰκίας), brothers (καὶ ἀδελφοὺς), sisters (καὶ ἀδελφὰς), mothers (καὶ μητέρας), children (καὶ τέκνα), and field lands (καὶ ἀγροὺς), with persecutions (μετὰ διωγμῶν), in the age to come, (καὶ ἐν τῷ αἰῶνι τῷ ἐρχομένῳ) and eternal life (ζωὴν αἰώνιον).

The Son of Man on the clouds (Mt 24:30-24:30)

“Then the sign

Of the Son of Man

Will appear

In heaven.

Then all the tribes

Of the earth

Will mourn.

They will see

The Son of Man

Coming on

The clouds of heaven

With power

And great glory.”

 

καὶ τότε φανήσεται τὸ σημεῖον τοῦ Υἱοῦ τοῦ ἀνθρώπου ἐν οὐρανῷ, καὶ τότε κόψονται πᾶσαι αἱ φυλαὶ τῆς γῆς καὶ ὄψονται τὸν Υἱὸν τοῦ ἀνθρώπου ἐρχόμενον ἐπὶ τῶν νεφελῶν τοῦ οὐρανοῦ μετὰ δυνάμεως καὶ δόξης πολλῆς·

 

This is exactly the same, almost word for word, in Mark, chapter 13:26, and in Luke, chapter 21:27, for the last sentence.  The first two sentences, however, are unique to Matthew.  Jesus said that the sign of the Son of Man would appear in the heavens (καὶ τότε φανήσεται τὸ σημεῖον τοῦ Υἱοῦ τοῦ ἀνθρώπου ἐν οὐρανῷ).  Then all the tribes or races of people on the earth would mourn or lament (καὶ τότε κόψονται πᾶσαι αἱ φυλαὶ τῆς γῆς).  They would all see or experience the Son of Man (καὶ ὄψονται τὸν Υἱὸν τοῦ ἀνθρώπου) coming on the clouds of heaven (ἐρχόμενον ἐπὶ τῶν νεφελῶν τοῦ οὐρανοῦ) with his power (μετὰ δυνάμεως) and great glory (καὶ δόξης πολλῆς).  The clouds were the common place where theophanies in the Old Testament occurred, as Yahweh often appeared in a cloud on a mountain.

The boundaries and division of the land (Ezek 47:13-47:14)

“Thus says Yahweh God!

‘These are the boundaries

By which

You shall divide

The land

For inheritance

Among the twelve tribes

Of Israel.

Joseph shall have two portions.

You shall divide it

Equally.

I swore to give it

To your ancestors.

This land shall fall

To you

As your inheritance.’”

Next Yahweh, via Ezekiel, took up the question of the boundaries of Israel and the division of the land among the tribes. Joshua, in chapters 13-22, first faced this problem. Here, it appears in a more summary fashion. Nevertheless, the problem of what to do with the people already there in this land was not even mentioned. Ezekiel was going to set up these ideal borders or boundaries of Israel. He also was going to lay out the inheritance distribution of the land between the 12 tribes. The tribe of Joseph was to be given 2 portions, one for Manasseh and one for Ephraim. Yahweh had already promised to give this land to their ancestors as their inheritance.

The Twelve prophets (Sir 49:10-49:10)

“May the bones

Of the twelve prophets

Send forth new life

From where they lie.

They comforted

The people of Jacob.

They delivered them

With confident hope.”

Finally we have the 12 prophets without mentioning their specific names. Just as there were 12 tribes so there also were 12 prophets. Sometimes they are referred to as the 12 Minor Prophets, Hosea, Joel, Amos, Obadiah, Jonah, Micah, Nahum, Habakkuk, Zephaniah, Haggai, Zechariah, and Malachi. They were important enough for Sirach to mention them so that this book of 12 or series of books about 12 prophets might have been considered canonical by the time of the writing of Sirach. Sirach wanted them to be like Elisha, whose dead body revived another dead person. These prophets gave comfort to the people of Jacob. They gave the Israelites hope.

Jacob (Sir 44:23-44:23)

“The blessing of all people

Came to rest

On the head of Jacob.

The covenant

Came to rest

On the head of Jacob.

The Most High acknowledged him

With his blessings.

He gave him his inheritance.

He divided his portions.

He distributed them

Among the twelve tribes.”

The stories about Isaac and Jacob can be found in Genesis, chapters 25-36. Thus the blessings and covenant of Abraham and Isaac came to Jacob, the son of Isaac. The Most High God acknowledged and blessed Jacob as he received his inheritance that was divided among the 12 tribes. Sirach has no indication about his 12 sons and their activities.

Jerusalem (Ps 122:3-122:5)

“Jerusalem is built as a city.

It is bound firmly together.

The tribes go up to it.

These are the tribes of Yahweh,

As was decreed for Israel.

They were to give thanks

To the name of Yahweh.

There the thrones for judgment were set up.

These are the thrones of the house of David.”

Now we have a full blown eulogy to Jerusalem, a well built city. All the tribes of Israel, those who believed in Yahweh, had a decree to give thanks to the name of Yahweh in Jerusalem. This is the place where the thrones of judgment were, the kings of the house of David. This psalm does not seem to be from David, but about David.