Monday, August 03, 2020

Turning the tables, or things aren't what they seem to be

Two things are particularly noteworthy here [Dan 7:13–14]. First, not only is this “one like a son of man" given glory and an eternal kingdom; the scope of his rule is also universal, “that all people, nations, and languages should serve him.” Second, Jesus has deliberately alluded to this particular vision from Daniel 7 with his provocative words “and you will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven.” The images evoked—a trial scene, the coming of the Son of Man, the clouds of heaven, and receipt of heavenly authority to rule—are far too specific to suggest anything otherwise.

So Jesus, before a human tribunal, makes the outrageous statement that he indeed is “the Christ, the Son of the Blessed,” implying that even if he is falsely judged by a human court, he will be vindicated by God, seated at God’s right hand, and given an everlasting kingdom over which he will rule. And in so doing, Jesus once again has subversively turned the tables on his accusers, bringing out the deep irony of the entire trial scene. For if those who are trying Jesus—the Jewish high priest, ruling council, and their lackeys—find him guilty, then Jesus has insinuated that they will in fact be acting not as the Ancient of Days would desire, but rather in collusion with the fourth beast and its arrogant horn by attacking Jesus. And these are the very ones who fancy themselves to be standing in the legitimate place of the God of Israel in giving a verdict, especially the high priest! Jesus’s words have turned the entire trial scene upside down, for Jesus has asserted that this earthly trial is an inversion of the heavenly reality. It is in fact, as Jesus has painted the picture, the high priest and his minions who are really on trial in association with the fourth beast’s hostile activities, and they will be condemned and ultimately destroyed by God! Meanwhile, Jesus is about to be declared innocent and installed as king, sharing in God’s very throne.Salvation by Allegiance Alone, 71–72

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