HEBREWS 2:16-18: “We also know that the Son did not come to help angels; he came to help the descendants of Abraham. Therefore, it was necessary for him to be made in every respect like us, his brothers and sisters, so that he could be our merciful and faithful High Priest before God. Then he could offer a sacrifice that would take away the sins of the people. Since he himself has gone through suffering and testing, he is able to help us when we are being tested.” NLT
OBSERVATION: Have you ever felt all alone? Have you ever wondered if anyone really understood what you were going through? Whenever you are tempted to feel this way, please remember…
The writer of Hebrews is very clear in his distinction between Jesus, mankind, and angels. Some have become enamored with angels and have moved their focus away from Jesus Christ. Hebrews makes it very clear. Jesus did not come to save the angels. Jesus came to save men and women. And, in doing so he needed to become like them in every way!
The incarnation, God humbling Himself to become a man and walk among us, is the greatest wonder of the Bible. We all deserved punishment. Yet, God, in His great love, humbled Himself, was born in a manger, grew up like everyone else, and experienced the same trials, suffering, and emotions that we all do. Yet, He did this without sinning so that He could be the perfect sacrifice for our sins!
Some may object to the statement – “Jesus understands!” They feel that what they are going through is unique. How could someone who lived over 2000 years ago understand what I am going through today? Did Jesus experience the pain of childbirth? Did Jesus experience the threat of nuclear annihilation? Did Jesus experience the stress of our fast-paced digital world?
At first glance, the answer would be no. However, this answer is incorrect at its core. It assumes that the basic emotions and experiences of pain are unique from one generation to the next. What I am experiencing is unique from what my father experienced, and so on. This is a fallacy because the basic needs of man never change. We are still dealing with the need for love and acceptance. We are still facing the fear of death. We are still wondering about the uncertainty of the future. And, here is the awesome truth…
WHAT JESUS DID NOT EXPERIENCE AS HE WALKED THIS EARTH, HE EXPERIENCED, AS A MAN, WHEN HE HUNG ON THE CROSS, BEARING ALL THE SIN AND BROKENNESS OF MANKIND!
On the cross Jesus fully identified with everything we have done, every pain we have experienced, all of our guilt and shame, and every unmet human need that we are experiencing. He bore the sins of the world and all of their combined suffering and guilt. Isaiah writes,
- “But he was pierced for our rebellion, crushed for our sins. He was beaten so we could be whole. He was whipped so we could be healed. All of us, like sheep, have strayed away. We have left God’s paths to follow our own. Yet the Lord laid on him the sins of us all.” Isaiah 53:5-6 NLT
The High Priests in Jesus’ day were mere men, broken by their own sin, and unable to truly empathize with the needs of those they served. Their sacrifices were imperfect and had to be offered for themselves and then for the people – over and over again. It was an endless cycle of sin, sacrifice, and sin. There was a great gap between God and man. Only God Himself could bridge this gap of sin and extend the true empathy that we all needed.
- “Therefore, it was necessary for him to be made in every respect like us, his brothers and sisters, so that he could be our merciful and faithful High Priest before God. Then he could offer a sacrifice that would take away the sins of the people.”
Now, we are no longer alone! Now, we are no longer under the judgment of God because of our sins! Now we have a High Priest who truly understands us – because He became one of us! Jesus is always there and He always understands.
WE ARE NEVER ALONE!
- “Since he himself has gone through suffering and testing, he is able to help us when we are being tested.”
Lord, this morning I have many concerns. Some prayers have not come to fulfillment. There are times of doubt and fear. Sometimes I feel alone. Yet, in all of these times, I am reminded of Your great love, faithfulness, and empathy. You called me when I was lost and broken, simply because You loved me. And, You will continue to heal and restore me, simply because You love me. Remind me, every step of the way…
YOU LOVE ME, YOU UNDERSTAND ME, AND YOU ALWAYS STAND READY TO HELP ME!
In Jesus Name!