In-Sight: Realistic Spirituality

This is not a commercial for The Common English Bible.  There are some places where I think it misses the boat, which is a risk every translation must take in its aim to make the Bible more accessible and readable…

But…I have noted that the CEB translators have used “The Human One” (in capital letters) in place of the traditional phrase, “Son of Man.”  At first, I did not like this update, and I put it on the list of my other frustrations with the CEB.

And then I thought, “This may be the exact translation that opens the way for reading this designation Jesus made about himself.”  Yes, the phrase has historical and religious significance, and you can trace that in by studying the traditional phrase in scripture and tradition

But in terms of spiritual formation, isn’t this what we are all looking for:  someone to make faith “human”–to make it visible, real, and attractive.  Our minds may be fascinated with “Son of Man” studies, but our hearts long for “The Human One” who can make the abstract concrete, the impersonal personal, and the theological transformational—someone, as John put it in whom the Word became flesh (John 1:14)–someone who puts a face on God—“The Human One,” who dwells among us full of grace and truth.  I can love a God like that!

About jstevenharper

Retired seminary professor, who taught for 32 years in the disciplines of Spiritual Formation and Wesley Studies. Author and co-author of 31 books.
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