Human Being: Jesus and the Enigma of the Son of Man
Wink's ground breaking book on Jesus will punch some large holes in preconceptions
held by Christians and non-Christians alike. As Wink points out, Jesus avoided
referring to himself as Messiah or Son of God, preferring "the Son of Man," or
"the truly human one." This book is highly recommended for those interested in
a view of Jesus very different from the one codified in centuries of church dogma.
the publisher ...
The epithet "the son of the man" (or "the
Human Being") in the Gospels has been a highly debated topic. Wink uses this
phrase to explore not only early Christology but the anthropology articulated
in the Gospels. Jesus apparently avoided designations such as Messiah, Son of
God, or God, though these titles were given by his disciples after his death and
resurrection. But Jesus is repeatedly depicted as using the obscure expression
"the Human Being" as virtually his only form of self- reference.
explores how Jesus' self-referential phrase came to be universalized as the "Human
Being" or "Truly Human One." The Human Being is a catalytic agent
for transformation, providing the form and lure and hunger to become who we were
meant to be, or more properly perhaps, to become who we truly are.
"An impressive book. Brilliant and passionate, powerful
and provocative, a remarkable integration of religion, psychology, politics, the
quest for Jesus, and our yearning for 'The Human Being' that we see in Jesus.
Wink fills us with a passion for becoming truly human."
Borg, Author of Meeting Jesus Again for the First Time
rigorous historical-critical analysis of the 'Son of Man' traditions with informed
reflections on philosophy, psychology, and mysticism, Wink not only gives us new
insights into such texts as Ezekiel, Daniel, and the Gospels, he offers a new
understanding of Jesus within his own first-century context. More remarkable still,
through his recovery of the 'Human Being' he provides a lens through which all
readersregardless of religious identification or theological suasioncan
discover what it means to be human. This is engaged, honest scholarship at its
Amy-Jill Levine, E. Rhodes and Leona B. Carpenter Professor
of New Testament Studies, Vanderbilt University Divinity School
Wink's The Human Being is at once brilliant, innovative, provocative and challenging.
Displaying rigorous historical-critical scholarship while being attuned to recent
developments in literary and sociological methods, the volume is nonetheless thoroughly
readable, even also inspirational. Interpreting the phrase 'the son of man'-an
expression found both in Hebrew sources and on the lips of Jesus-as referring
to a human being, Wink explores what it means in Jewish and Christian texts to
'become more human.' Wink weaves together an impressive mix of textual analysis,
politics, psychology and ethics. His volume is an essential contribution to studies
of Paul, John, Gnosticism and even Jewish mysticism."