There are a number of places where Jesus refers to himself in the third person. The most common is when he uses the title 'Son of Man' (by my count, there are some 78 times Jesus uses that title in the gospels!). For example Matthew 16:13 (NIV):
When Jesus came to the region of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, "Who do people say the Son of Man is?"
I understand the significance of that title (e.g. Daniel 7:13-14) but why does Jesus use it so often to describe himself? Complicating matters in my mind is the fact that the various gospels seem to use 'Son of Man' and 'I' interchangably. For example, Mark 8:27 is a parallel passage to the one above but it says:
Jesus and his disciples went on to the villages around Caesarea Philippi. On the way he asked them, "Who do people say I am?"
One other major case of third person titles that intrigues me is in John 17 where Jesus is praying and refers to himself as God's son and 'Jesus Christ':
1After Jesus said this, he looked toward heaven and prayed:
"Father, the hour has come. Glorify your Son, that your Son may glorify you. 2For you granted him authority over all people that he might give eternal life to all those you have given him. 3Now this is eternal life: that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent. 4I have brought you glory on earth by finishing the work you gave me to do. 5And now, Father, glorify me in your presence with the glory I had with you before the world began."
Why does he suddenly refer to himself as Jesus Christ here but nowhere else?