Question #3 – How was Jesus called “man”?
The Bible says that Jesus was a “man.” Paul spoke of this in 1 Timothy 2:5 when he wrote: “For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, THE MAN Christ Jesus.” Strong’s defines both “men” and “the man” as follows:
Anthropos (G444): manfaced, that is, a human being: – certain, man”Strong’s Hebrew and Greek Dictionaries
Anthropos is used in 560 times in the New Testament. In each of these is used as a reference to physical mankind. One such scripture is Matthew 4:19: “And he saith unto them, Follow me, and I will make you fishers of MEN.” Just like the other 559 times, this verse is referring to mankind, human, or fleshly people. The next verse uses the same G444 “man” in reference to Jesus:
Romans 5:15 But not as the offense, so also is the free gift. For if through the offense of one many be dead, much more the grace of God, and the gift by grace, which is by ONE MAN, Jesus Christ, hath abounded unto many.
Another instance of “man” describing Jesus in the following verse:
Acts 2:22 Ye men of Israel, hear these words; Jesus of Nazareth, A MAN approved of God among you by miracles and wonders and signs, which God did by him in the midst of you, as ye yourselves also know:
This “man” is defined by the Strong’s as:
Aner (G435): A primary word (compare G444); a man (properly as an individual male): – fellow, husband, man, sir.”Strong’s Hebrew and Greek Dictionaries
Notice that a comparative word for
Luke 5:8 When Simon Peter saw it, he fell down at Jesus’ knees, saying, Depart from me; for I am a sinful man [aner], O Lord.”
Luke’s usage of “aner” is clearly indicating humanity, not divinity. When the New Testament uses “anthropos” or “aner” in descriptions of Jesus Christ, it is confirming that Jesus’ body was of the same human origin as all other mankind.
Adam was a “figure” of “him that was to come.” Since Adam was was a human formed from dust, you could say that Adam was from the adamas, or the human was from the humus. Why this is important is that Jesus is said to have come from that “figure.”
Romans 5:14 Nevertheless death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over them that had not sinned after the similitude of Adam’s transgression, WHO IS THE FIGURE OF HIM THAT WAS TO COME.
The word “figure” means the following in the Strong’s:
Tupos (G5179): From G5180; a die (as struck), that is, (by implication) a stamp or scar; by analogy a shape, that is, a statue, (figuratively) style or resemblance; specifically a sampl er (“type”), that is, a model (for imitation) or instance (for warning): – en- (ex-) ample, fashion, figure, form, manner, pattern, print.”Strong’s Hebrew and Greek Dictionaries
So, Adam acted as a stand-in double in place of the true star of the show—Jesus Christ. In the next passages we see how Adam and Jesus interrelate in the plan God first gave in Genesis 3:
Romans 5:15-19 But not as the offense, so also is the free gift. For if through the offense of one many be dead, much more the grace of God, and the gift by grace, which is by ONE MAN, JESUS CHRIST, hath abounded unto many. (16) And not as it was BY ONE that sinned, so is the gift: for the judgment was BY ONE to condemnation, but the free gift is of many offenses unto justification. (17) For if BY ONE MAN’S offense death reigned BY ONE; much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life BY ONE, Jesus Christ.) (18) Therefore as by the OFFENSE OF ONE judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness OF ONE the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life. (19) For as BY ONE MAN’S DISOBEDIENCE many were made sinners, so by THE OBEDIENCE OF ONE shall many be made righteous.
The usage of “one” in these passages do not refer to ‘one God,’ but instead to ‘one man.’ The word “one” in the Strong’s is:
Heis (G1520): (Including the neuter [etc.] hen); a primary numeral; one: – a (-n, -ny, certain), + abundantly, MAN, one (another), only, other, some. See also G1527, G3367, G3391, G3762.”Strong’s Hebrew and Greek Dictionaries
The usage of “heis” in these verses show that Jesus was a MAN and that He was “one” with those to whom He came to save. The next verses help confirm this idea.
Hebrews 2:14 Forasmuch then as the CHILDREN ARE PARTAKERS OF FLESH AND BLOOD, HE ALSO HIMSELF LIKEWISE TOOK PART OF THE SAME; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil;
Jesus took part in the SAME flesh and blood as those to whom He came to deliver. It says this sameness was necessary so that Jesus could defeat mankind’s enemy.
Hebrews 2:15-16 And deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage. (16) For verily he took not on him the nature of angels; [NOT a HEAVENLY body] but he took on him the seed of Abraham [An EARTHLY/HUMAN body].
Jesus did not take on himself the nature of spirit being, but He instead took on the same nature as those of Abraham’s descent. He came from the “seed” of Abraham. This is the same “seed” or “sperma” [G4690] mentioned earlier in this study. Sperma is a procreative term requiring the inclusion of a human.
Hebrews 2:17 Wherefore IN ALL THINGS it behooved him TO BE MADE LIKE UNTO HIS BRETHREN, that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people.
In “all” things Jesus was made “like his brethren.” This was necessary for Jesus to become their merciful and faithful high priest. Would you agree Jesus being made like them “in all things” had to include Him having the same flesh and a similar lineage? We know Peter did since he wrote that Jesus suffered for mankind in HUMAN FLESH.
1 Peter 4:1-2 Forasmuch then as Christ hath SUFFERED FOR US IN THE FLESH, arm yourselves likewise with the same mind: for he that hath SUFFERED IN THE FLESH hath ceased from sin; (2) That he no longer should live the rest of his time IN THE FLESH to the lusts of men, but to the will of God.
This word “flesh” is defined in Strong’s as:
Sarx (G4561): Probably from the base of G4563; flesh (as stripped of the skin), that is, (strictly) the meat of an animal (as food), or (by extension) the body (as opposed to the soul (or spirit), or as the symbol of what is external, or as the means of kindred, or (by implication) human nature (with its frailties (physically or morally) and passions), or (specifically) a human being (as such): – carnal (-ly, + -ly minded), flesh ([-ly]).”Strong’s Hebrew and Greek Dictionaries
The usage of “sarx” reveals that Jesus suffered in human flesh so that humans could live like Him. Thus, God didn’t just robe Himself in flesh to save humans from their sin, but He also robed Himself in the same flesh as the humans He came to save.
Antichrist is Anti-Flesh-of-Jesus
The Bible places great importance on believing that Jesus was born in flesh. It says that evidence that a person has God’s Spirit is that they will believe that “Jesus Christ is come in the flesh.”
1 John 4:2 Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is COME IN THE FLESH is of God:
The “flesh” mentioned here is the Greek word
John 1:14 And the Word was MADE FLESH, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.
The “glory” of God was robed in human (
1 John 4:3 And every spirit that confesseth not that JESUS CHRIST IS COME IN THE FLESH is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world.
So, to say that Jesus did not come in human flesh is to be of a different spirit, which is the spirit of antichrist. This denial is tantamount to denying the Messianic union of the Father and the Son.
1 John 2:22 Who is a liar but he that denieth that Jesus is the Christ? He is antichrist, that denieth the Father and the Son.
In John’s day, he dealt with those who held Gnostic beliefs. As time went on, their religious views began creeping into the church. One of these teachings is the idea that since Jesus was truly God, He could not be truly human. As a result, Jesus’ body must have come from Heaven. The Gnostics taught this because they believed sin was found in human flesh. Thus, they taught that man could only be freed from sin when their human bodies died and their spiritual bodies went on to Heaven. This is truly an antichrist doctrine since it denies that Jesus came in human flesh. It also aligns to what is found in
1 John 2:18-25 Little children, it is the last time: and as ye have heard that antichrist shall come, even now are there many antichrists; whereby we know that it is the last time. (19) They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would no doubt have continued with us: but they went out, that they might be made manifest that they were not all of us. (20) But ye have an unction from the Holy One, and ye know all things. (21) I have not written unto you because ye know not the truth, but because ye know it, and that no lie is of the truth. (22) Who is a liar but he that denieth that Jesus is the Christ? He is
2 John 1:7 For MANY DECEIVERS are entered into the world, who CONFESS NOT THAT JESUS CHRIST IS COME IN THE FLESH. This is a DECEIVER and an ANTICHRIST.
This Gnostic teaching was prevalent during the time of the Early Church. This is why 1 John 2:18 says, “Even now there are many antichrists.” Later in chapter four, the apostle credits the source of this antichrist theology as being spiritual.
1 John 4:3 And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and THIS IS THAT SPIRIT of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world.
In the Flesh of God doctrine, we see a revival of the Gnostic anti-flesh-of-Christ doctrines that attacked the Apostle’s original teachings on the origin and nature of Jesus Christ. Though these Gnostic doctrines were an issue in his time, the apostle John stated that the Church was still victorious over their perverted views.
1 John 4:4 Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.
The Gnostic teachings against the flesh of Jesus being human flesh were false in John’s day and they are false today. Jesus and His apostles taught Jesus’ was of a human origin. He was the “word made flesh,” which they understood to be, the “word made in HUMAN flesh.” The verses they wrote against those who denied Jesus’ human origin described their Christology as a rebellious and deceptive doctrine that originates from the spirit of antichrist. I believe their condemnation of Flesh of God theology makes the question of how Jesus was called “man” an easy answer.
Note: Any UPPERCASE, bold, or [bracket] areas in Scripture is added for emphasis.
Copyright © 2019 TK Burk. All Rights Reserved.
The next part of this study will explore question #4: How was Mary called Jesus’ mother?