Continuing the discussion from A De Novo Adam's Language?:
Not quite, but good guess, I think.
Actually “Son of God” is used for several purposes through out Scripture. Every Christian, for example, is considered “born again” as a “son of God”. Angels are called “Sons of God.” Adam is called a “Son of God”. Kings are called “Sons of God.” Meanings range from:
- Close to God.
- Heavenly being
- From God
- Kingly authority
…and probably more.
About Jesus, it is said, however, that he is the “only begotten Son of God” (see here https://www.biblegateway.com/verse/en/John%203:16). You’ll notice that different translations translate this in different ways. Some very confusingly say “One and Only Son.” It is one of the places where the precise translation is difficult to english. This word “Begotten” is trying to point out that Jesus exists along side God from the beginning as a member of the Godhead (to use our trinitarian language and perspective), but also has a discrete entry-point into the world at in the Virgin Birth.
So, in some senses, Jesus is the Son of God among many other sons and daughters of God. However, in one important sense, he is the only Son of God. In retrospect, it is easy to read other uses of Sons of God just foreshadowing THE Son of God to come.
The much more interesting messianic term, however, is Son of Man, or Son of Adam. We see parallel in usage here. Just as there are many sons of God, but Jesus is THE Son of God, there are many sons of Adam, but Jesus is THE Son of Adam. Both these claims were understood as claims to divinity at the time, and this was why he was crucified, for the official charge of blasphemy (among other factors). All he had to do was say He did not mean it as a Messianic title, and they would have had no claim against him. Yet he is silent as they claim He claimed to be God.
They are both (Son of Man and Son of God) are Messianic titles that converge on Jesus, and historical theology ends up coming to believe that BOTH are true in special way with Jesus, he is THE man-god, incarnate, fully Man and fully God.
The use of these terms before do not diminish their meaning in relation to Jesus. Rather, the use in other areas is anticipatory, telling a long story of longing anticipation, waiting for the coming of the One to usher in a new order to the world.
Great question @Patrick.