'Oracle' word study:
A brief utterance, a divine oracle, or word from God, of oral tradition, oral law. Recognize words in oracle such as
orator, oration and the latin verb orare, to pray or utter or speak.
The Hebrew word for oracle is dabar "word" in 2 Samuel 16:23 with also the meaning debir "back" in the book of 1 Kings
Why is this important for us? It is important because Jesus, who lived during the first century, would have known the
oral tradition and would have been taught the Torah in this manner. It is also important for us to understand, therefore,
the references to "oracles" in scripture. You will see below that the Oral Tradition was entrusted to the Jewish people
and that Jesus taught from it.
Romans 3:1-2 -"Then what advantage has the Jew? Or what is the benefit of circumcision? Great in every respect.
Firstly, that they were entrusted with the oracles [Strong's 3051] of God."
"Oracles" is mentioned 5 times depending on your bible version: 2 Chron. 24:27, Lam. 2:14Act 7:38, Romans 3:2,
Hebrews 5:12, and 1 Peter 4:11.
"Oracle" is mentioned 17 times in KJV.
It is essential to be familiar with The Oral Law as Jesus would have known during the first century. Remember, the NT
was not yet written and the only "word" [dabar] that Jesus refers to was regarding the OT. Therefore, to truly
understand Jesus' words one must be open-minded to know the Oral Law (oracles) which encompasses the commands
Ernest R. Trattner writes: "The destruction of the Jewish National State and the burning of the Temple necessitated
tremendous changes of a structural nature. Many old regulations had to be abolished. The High Court at Jamnia also
took upon itself the power to suspend certain Biblical laws which were either obsolete or incapable of being fulfilled due
to changed conditions. Of the many prohibitions abrogated by the rabbis none benefitted Judaism more than setting
aside the age-old tradition against putting the Oral Law into written form. Despite the fact that for centuries it was
regarded as a serious transgression of Judaism to commit any part of the Oral Law into writing, the demands of the new
age were entirely too compelling to be denied. The time had come when the memory of the sages (even as it was
trained in those days) could no longer hold the vast accumulation by oral transmission. Since the destruction of the
Temple, the growth of the Oral Law, and the extension of its principles, mushroomed into a huge bulk. Individual
teachers, jurists, and disciples resorted to jotting down various aspects of the Oral Law as aids to memory. From such
beginnings as these arose the vast literature of the Talmud." (Understanding the Talmud, p. 8)
'Son of Man' word study:
Why is a word study on the phrase - son of man - important? Because it is a phrase that has taken on different
meaning with the most controversy being man vs. deity. In the OT, 'son of man' did not refer to God. Therefore, to be
consistent with the question of scripture being Added to or Subtracted from, when did Deity become synonymous with
Son of Man in the NT? Jesus is referred to as the “Son of Man” 88 times in the New Testament and 'son of man' is
referred in the Old Testament 107 times.
Excerpts from wikipedia:
The Hebrew expression "son of man" (בן–אדם i.e. ben-'adam) appears one hundred and seven times in the Old
Testament. This is the most common Hebrew construction for the singular and appears 93 times in Ezekiel alone and 14
times elsewhere. In thirty two cases the phrase appears in intermediate plural form "sons of men", i.e. human beings.
Within the Old Testament the first place one comes across the phrase son of man is in Book of Numbers 23:19:
In the Book of Job, we see son of man used a total of three times (all of which, interestingly enough, fall within poetry).
Within the Book of Psalms we find the same classical forms employed within Numbers and Job wherewith son of man is
used in parallel with man to describe humanity as a whole. "Son of man" is a common term in the Psalms, used to
accentuate the difference between God and human beings.
The Book of Ezekiel is unique within the tradition of the Old Testament, in that as the story unfolds, the phrase son of
man is used approximately 94 times by a divine being to refer to the author. Son of man here appears to be a title
referring to the humanity of the author, much how the word "human" may suffice in English. It is not a respectful
appellation, but a humbling one (in some cases, an arguably abject one), and this use is a consistent pattern
In the Book of Daniel, parts of the text were originally written in Aramaic, this portion of the volume (7:13-14) deals with a
vision attributed to the author about "the times of the end". Within the context of Daniel passages, the use of son of man
is more consistent with the concept of self-reflection.
As generally interpreted in the OT, denotes mankind generally, with special reference to their weakness and frailty (Job
25:6; Psalms 8:4; 144:3; 146:3; Book of Isaiah 51:12, etc.). It is also a title frequently given to the prophet Ezekiel,
probably to remind him of his human weakness.
Additionally, the term "son of man" was not used in the OT as the specific title of the Messiah.
The New Testament expression ὅ ὑιὸς τοῦ ἀνθρόπου is a translation of the Aramaic "bar nasha," and as such could
have been understood only as the substitute for a personal pronoun, or as emphasizing the human qualities of those to
whom it is applied. That the term does not appear in any of the epistles ascribed to Paul is significant. Psalm viii. 5-7 is
quoted in Ḥeb. ii. 6 as referring to Jesus, but outside the Gospels, Acts vii. 56 is the only verse in the New Testament in
which the title is employed; and here it may be a free translation of the Aramaic for "a man," or it may have been
adopted from Luke xxii. 69. (Jewishencyclopdia.com)
"According to the old Jewish prophesies, the Messiah was a great future leader who would overthrow all evil rulers and
set up an eternal Kingdom of God. During the period when Jesus was growing up, many people were expecting this
Messiah to appear within a short time.
But there were different ideas about how the Messiah would accomplish his goals. Many common people thought of him
as a military leader who would drive the Romans out of the country. But the scriptures sometimes depicted him as a
devout holy figure who would use non-violent methods and God's assistance to achieve his ends."
"God is not as a man, that he should lie nor as a son of man, that he should be changed" (Numbers 23:19). "Blessed is
the man that doth this and the son of man that shall lay hold on this" (Isaiah 56:2). "Let thy hand be upon the man of thy
right hand: and upon the son of man whom thou hast confirmed for thyself" (Psalm 79:18). The Prophet Ezechiel is
addressed by God as "son of man" more than ninety times, e.g. "Son of man, stand upon thy feet, and I will speak to
thee" (Ezekiel 2:1). This usage is confined to Ezechiel except one passage in Daniel, where Gabriel said: "Understand,
O son of man, for in the time of the end the vision shall be fulfilled" (Daniel 8:17).
|Matthew 26:62 The high priest stood up and said to Him, "Do You not answer? What is it that these men are testifying
Matthew 26:63 But Jesus kept silent. And the high priest said to Him, "I [adjure You by the living God, that You tell us
whether You are the Messiah, the Son of God."
Matthew 26:64 Jesus said to him, "You have said it yourself; nevertheless I tell you, hereafter you will see THE SON OF
MAN SITTING AT THE RIGHT HAND OF POWER, and COMING ON THE CLOUDS OF HEAVEN." **
** [caps ref. Jesus' quote from Daniel 7:13] "I kept looking in the night visions, And behold, with the clouds of heaven
one like a son of man was coming, and he came up to the One of Ancient Days and was presented before Him".
In this instance, Jesus refers to Daniel 7:13 of the Old Testament.
|Copyright 2012. Do Not Add or Subtract. All rights reserved.
>>PARABLES and MIDRASH word study
A short religious allegory. Click above to learn more about how the Hebrew
designation for "parable" is "mashal" and is confirmed by the fact that in the
New Testament the Syriac "matla" Greek, corresponds to the Hebrew "mashal,"
and used (Matt. 13:18, 31, 33; 22:45; Mark 4:2; Luke 5: 36, 6:39).
Strong's Concordance Hebrew/Greek Lexicon
Excellent source to study the origin of words
prior to translation changes.